Folates - Vitamin B

Folate is a water-soluble B vitamin which can be obtained from food sources such as fruits, vegetables, and dairy products. Folic acid is the synthetic form of folate, typically found in fortified food and supplements.

Health Functions
Folate acts as a coenzyme or cosubstrate in nucleic acid synthesis (DNA and RNA) and amino acid metabolism. Folate is important in maintaining a healthy heart and lowers the risk for depression.

Disease Risk Reduction
Folates can help prevent diseases such as strokes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and pregnancy/birth defects.

Groups at Risk
People who are at risk for folate deficiency include pregnant women and people with malabsorption syndrome, MTHFR polymorphism, or alcohol use disorder. Folate deficiency can cause megaloblastic anemia – megaloblasts are red blood cells that have abnormal structure and size. Fortunately, folate deficiency is uncommon since it is naturally-occurring in most food sources.

Intake Recommendations
Adults typically need 400 micrograms of folate daily. Pregnant women need to take at least 600 micrograms daily to prevent neural tube defects and other birth-related problems. Do not take too much folic acid (more than 1,000 micrograms from supplements) since it can cause seizures. Folate is highly abundant in green, leafy vegetables (e.g. spinach, lettuce) and fruits (e.g. avocado, banana). However, if you are unable to obtain the necessary daily requirement, you can take supplements or consume food fortified with folic acid. It is best to take folate as part of a balanced diet to take advantage of its benefits. In addition, taking folate from natural food ensures that you are taking moderate amounts of folate (preventing you from reaching toxic levels).

7D VARIETY Recommendations
A cup of Energy Dates contains 7% of the recommended dietary intake for folate. Folate is very important especially during pregnancy to help prevent neural tube defects in the fetus. If you are pregnant, 7D VARIETY recommends you to consume Energy Dates since it is considered safe and healthy for your growing baby.