What does the body need folic acid for?

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1 What does the body need folic acid for?

Folic acid is an essential vitamin in the human organism. It is involved in numerous metabolic processes. In medicine it is also known as folate or vitamin B9. Cell division takes place in the bone marrow of the human organism. This is where the production of blood cells takes place, which must be renewed regularly. These are the red blood cells (erythrocytes) and the white blood cells (leukocytes). Iron is also particularly important for the production of blood cells. Folic acid is essential for the production of genetic material and the normal course of numerous metabolic processes.

A folic acid deficiency therefore primarily affects the blood count. If the body, which can only store very small amounts of the vitamin, has used up its supply, anaemia (lack of blood) develops.

Pregnant women are recommended to take folic acid before pregnancy, as this ensures a sufficient vitamin level in the body. However, a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet is of course a prerequisite. A folic acid deficiency is suspected of promoting premature births and being involved in the development of heart defects. Women are therefore strongly recommended to take folic acid if they wish to have children.

There are various reasons for a folic acid concentration that is too low:

  • through an incorrect or inadequate diet
  • Alcoholism
  • a disturbed absorption in the gastrointestinal tract, chronic intestinal diseases
  • Taking certain medicines
  • increased need during pregnancy or lactation

2. how long does folic acid last in the body?

The German Society for Nutrition (DGE) recommends that an adult should take 400 micrograms of folic acid daily. People who consume larger amounts of alcohol have a higher folic acid requirement.

For women who want to have children, breastfeeding mothers or pregnant women, the recommended intake of folic acid is 800 micrograms per day. The dosage and daily requirement can vary in certain life situations, such as pregnancy and breastfeeding or during heavy physical activity. Height, weight and gender play an important role in calculating the requirement.

The human organism can store a maximum of 10-15 mg folic acid, this supply lasts for about three months. However, this reserve is only for the exceptional case that the human organism is no longer supplied with folic acid. In general, folic acid should be consumed daily through a varied and balanced diet.

3 Which foods contain a lot of folic acid?

The human organism can only store folic acid in small quantities, so it is best to take folic acid in with food every day.
Folic acid reaches the small intestine via the mucous membrane in the blood. Natural folic acid sources are mainly green leafy vegetables. Spinach in particular contains a lot of folic acid. Other natural foods include lettuce, cabbage, tomatoes, peas, liver and egg yolk.

The vitamin is very sensitive to heat and air. Foods containing folic acid should be prepared gently, which means using less heat and less water. If the vegetables are cooked briefly, important vitamins are still present.

TOP 10 foods with a high folic acid content: (µg per 100 g)

1. chick peas 340 µg

2. wheat germs 300 µg

3. soya beans 200 µg

4. kale 190 µg

5. seaweed 180 µg

6. peas 150 µg

7. mung beans 140 µg

8. peanuts 125 µg

9. cress 110 µg

10. sunflower seeds 100 µg

4. folic acid as a food supplement

Folic acid is available in the form of dietary supplements. It is offered in the form of folic acid capsules and folic acid tablets. Both forms are easy to handle and get into circulation quickly.
However, folic acid tablets are sold in pharmacies, which in many cases have been manufactured with artificial additives or abroad. Folic acid capsules often contain only the active ingredient in a vegetable cellulose shell and can therefore be produced without fillers.

Anyone who would like to take folic acid in the form of food supplements can choose between folic acid capsules and folic acid tablets. These should be taken with sufficient liquid (for example water or juice). It makes no difference whether folic acid is taken before or after a meal. However, if you have a sensitive stomach and cannot take folic acid tablets or folic acid capsules on an empty stomach, you should eat something first and then take the food supplements.

In general, it should always be ensured that the product was produced in Germany in order to guarantee a consistently high preparation quality. If you buy a preparation from Germany, you can be sure that the product was also produced safely and is of high quality.
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5. conclusion

Folic acid is an important vitamin which can only be stored in small amounts in the body. For this reason, it must be supplied daily with food. The vitamin is of essential importance for cell division, the production of blood cells and the genetic material. Women who wish to have children or are breastfeeding mothers have a higher folic acid requirement because they have to supply their child as well. Foods containing folic acid include spinach, peas, eggs and liver. In general, green vegetables contain a lot of folic acid. The body can store a maximum of 10-15 mg folic acid. This supply would last for about three months, but you should consume folic acid every day. If you would like to take folic acid in addition to your diet, you can choose between folic acid capsules and folic acid tablets. Both alternatives should be taken in sufficient quantities with liquid. In order to ensure a consistently high quality of the product, you should make sure that it was produced in Germany.


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