Folic acid is also known as folate, vitamin B9, pteroyl-L-glutamic acid, pteroyl-L-glutamate and pteroyl mono glutamic acid are forms of the water soluble vitamin B9. Folate and folic acid derives its names from the latin word ‘folium’ which means leaf. Leafy vegetables are the principal sources of folic acid.
It is recommended that and adult take at least 100 microgm/ day of vitamin B9 (Folic Acid), children eat 80 mcg, infant have 25 mcg and pregnant women eats 400 mcg respectively. Folic acid which is a type of vitamin B helps to repair DNA, make DNA and produce RBCs.
Deficiency in folic acid may cause anemia which is a condition where you have few RBCs only. This can deprive your tissues of oxygen it needs because RBCs carry the oxygen. This may affect their function. Folic acid levels in your body can become low in just few weeks if you don’t eat sufficient amounts of folate rich foods.
Foods that are high in folate include: Leafy vegetables such as spinach, asparagus, lettuce, turnip greens and various Asian vegetables. Legumes such as dried or fresh beans, peas and lentil are also rich sources of folate. Egg yolk, baker’s yeast. Fortified grain products such as pasta, cereal, bread and some ready to eat breakfast cereals are fortified with folate.
Sunflower seeds Liver and liver products contain high amounts of folate Meat and Fish Folate is important for cells and tissues that rapidly divide Cancer cells divide rapidly and drugs that interfere with folate metabolism are used to treat cancer. It is also very important in aiding rapid cell division and growth such as in infancy and pregnancy. Kids and adults both need folic acid to produce healthy red blood cells and prevent anemia.
Some of the common symptoms of folate deficiency include Diarrhea, Inadequate intake seen in alcoholics macrocytic anemia with weakness Overcooking of food resulting in loss of folic acid activity Shortness of breath Impaired absorption due to small intestinal diseases.
Nerve damage with weakness and limp numbness Pregnancy complications Mental depression Sore or swollen tongue Peptic or mouth ulcers Headaches/ irritability Heart palpitations and Behavioral disorders It is very important that we must have a nutritious balanced meal as our body requires an array of essential nutrients to run smoothly.
They help us fight against diseases, builds our body and for proper growth and development of our body. So remember to include foods that are rich sources of these vitamins and minerals; eat and enjoy every meal to stay healthy and fit. So, do treat your family and kids with healthy, nutritious, freshly homemade foods.
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