Weight Loss Support - Folate levels decreasing

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01-06-2007, 11:08 AM
A study came out recently (it was in our newspaper yesterday) that for the first time since they started enriching bread and cereals with folate, blood folate levels in americans are decreasing to alarming levels.


The first suspected cause is obesity...you need more folate and you absorb it poorly if you are obese

The second cause is low carb diets. Since the primary source of folic acid is enriched bread and cereal products a low carb diet will be lacking. Other good sources (fruits vegetables, legumes, fortified oj) also may be missing on a low carb diet

The 3rd cause is a trend towards whole grains. Whole grains were exempt from the folic acid fortification law because whole grains DO contain naturally occurring food folate. However food folate is not absorbed as well as the folic acid added to white bread.

Low levels of blood folate have been linked to birth defects and alzheimers. So if you are obese, on a low or reduced carb plan, or avoid processed fortified grains - please take a 400 mg folate supplement daily.

01-06-2007, 12:37 PM
That's very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

01-06-2007, 11:32 PM
This may be a dumb question, but do you mean folic acid? or is folate something different. Thanks ennay

01-07-2007, 12:08 AM
either, both

folic acid is the form of it that is put in foods artificially, it is converted by the body to blood folate

food folate is the naturally occurring form in foods

most supplements are folic acid, i think a few say folate

01-07-2007, 12:39 AM
Refining wheat, rice, etc. removes the nutrients--that's why they have to "enrich" them by adding nutrients back. Whole grain products already have these nutrients.

I wouldn't want to switch to white bread just because they put folate in it. ;)

Good sources of folate (same as folic acid) are leafy green vegetables, such as spinach, turnip greens, etc. and these do not have high carbs. Also, most beans and some peas contain folate as does asparagus and brewer's yeast. It's pretty easy to get a list of foods by doing a web search.

Virtually all multivitamins contain the required daily amount of folic acid, and there are special supplements for women who are pregnant. Folic acid is a very important nutrient.

Thanks for mentioning this, ennay!


01-07-2007, 08:57 AM
I wonder... I am on SBD, but I eat tons of veggies, beans, etc. Does anyone know how much of these foods one has to eat to get the proper amount of folate?

01-07-2007, 09:10 AM
Here is a government website that lists foods and amounts:



01-07-2007, 11:28 AM
folic acid = vitamin b, right?
or am I just not awake?

01-07-2007, 12:00 PM
Oh no, I wouldnt switch to white bread either...if you eat a diet rich in fruits and veggies and whole grains you should be fine, but I think it is the combo of #2 and #3 that really hurts. People who stay too long on phase 1 on sbd, or who never really bring back their 3 starch, 3 fruit on phase 2.
Atkins for sure

eight bit - folate is just ONE of the b vitamins. there are several

I eat an average of 2200 calories a day (nursing) and eat a LOT of veggies, some fruit and all whole grains (MOSTLY SBD phase 2 with some devations allowed) For the past 28 days according to fitday my folate intake is right AT the RDA, so I could see that a lower calorie diet would have difficulties meeting the rda.

Most multivites have it, if you are even contemplating ttc, you shoud take a supplement with 800mcg for at least 3 months first.