Folic Acid / Folate / folacin C19 H 19 N 7 O 6

Folic Acid is also referred to as the Folate or folacin, folate of folacin is the generic term in which folic acid is naturally available, and it is oxidized monoglutamate as used in fortified foods and dietary supplements.

Folic Acid is part of the B vitamin necessary for metabolism and the growth of the cells. Folic acid and folate are the same thing and have similar effects. Folic acid is the man made form of the supplements and Folate is the natural form of the folic acid found in the food.

Benefits of Folic Acid supplements

  • Helps in the forming and maintaining red blood cells
  • Necessary for pregnant women and women planning to get pregnant
  • Lowers the risk of early labor and preeclampsia
  • Manages Anemia
  • Managing rheumatoid arthritis

Folic Acid as a supplement

Folic acid is part of the multivitamin and commonly administered as a supplement, it contains B-complex vitamins, adults take an average 400 mcg, and children take 200 mcg. 100% of folic acid is bioavailable. Adults aged 51 – 70 years are likely to take more folic acids as compared to other age groups.

Benefits of taking Folic Acid

Folic acid is necessary for pregnant women and women planning to get pregnant. Folic acid minimizes the risk of children born with birth defects in the brain and spine, spina bifida and anencephaly. Folic acid also lowers the risk of early labor and preeclampsia. It is advised that all women of child bearing age take folic acid supplements alongside multivitamins.

Folic acid is also necessary in managing other diseases such as anemia among other conditions, research have shown that folate deficiency is common among people with digestive problems, liver disease, kidney disease and people who abuse alcohol. Folic acid is also used in managing rheumatoid arthritis and in reducing the effects of drug methotrexate.


Recommended dietary allowance for folic acid varies with the individuals. Risks Associated with Folic Acid Folic acid is considered safe for human body, and the side effects associated with folic acid are rare. High intake of folic acid results in insomnia, bloating, nausea and excessive gas.


High intake of the folic acid affects how effective the seizure medicines are, it has been noted that a number of regular medicines affect the intake of folic acid by the human body. Regular diseases such as sleeping pills, diabetes drugs and some antibiotics generally lower the amount of folic acid the human body can absorb.