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Miracle vitamin folic acid fulfills children's desires and protects against colon cancer

Miracle vitamin folic acid fulfills children's desires and protects against colon cancer


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The diverse positive effects of folates

Folic acid has numerous positive properties and promotes health in a variety of ways. On the one hand, the vitamin couples help to have a baby faster and already ensures better health with the embryo in the mother's belly. On the other hand, it protects against colon cancer and cardiovascular diseases by, for example, causing a slight reduction in blood pressure. An expert explains why folates are so important to us.

Professor Dr. Berthold Koletzko is chairman of the Child Health Foundation. In a current recommendation, he explains the numerous advantages that regular folate intake brings. For example, the addition of folic acid to bread and pasta in the United States and Canada resulted in a 20 percent drop in colorectal cancer. Folic acid is also effective against high blood pressure, since it is partly responsible for the breakdown of vascular-damaging homocysteine ​​in the blood and thus contributes to a slight reduction in blood pressure.

Healing folates

Professor Koletzko even attributes folic acid to a key role in the fight against heart attack and stroke. He relies on a study from China that showed that folic acid and B-vitamin supplements with folic acid reduced participants' risk of stroke by up to 20 percent. Another study showed that the combination of folic acid and zinc increased the sperm count of the participants by 70 percent and thus also the chance of having a child.

Folic acid - the baby vitamin

The expert advises pregnant women in particular to increase their intake, because folic acid can protect the child from serious damage. "Pregnant women should eat a diet rich in folate and also take a folic acid supplement," said the Council of the Child Health Foundation in a recent statement. The vitamin is an important building block in the formation of new cells and therefore involved in many essential processes in the body of the unborn child.

Folates protect the unborn child from malformations

The professor points out that folic acid can protect against a whole range of malformations. These include, for example, neural tube defects such as spina bifida (open back) and hydrocephalus ("water head"). Heart defects, malformations of the urinary tract or the formation of a cleft lip and palate (“rabbit cleft”) can also be prevented by taking folic acid during pregnancy. In addition, "the risk of anemia at birth is reduced and the risk of premature birth is reduced," says Koletzko. The Child Health Foundation recommends a daily intake of at least 400 micrograms of folic acid shortly before and during pregnancy.

Folates in the diet

"Folates are collective terms for a naturally occurring form of the water-soluble B-vitamin, which is essential for human health," explains the expert. Folic acid is not found in nature in this way. It is the synthetically produced form of vitamin B9. If you want to eat rich in folate, you should resort to plenty of raw food, fruit, leafy greens, cabbage, broccoli, lamb's lettuce, fennel, spinach, asparagus, whole grains, sauerkraut and potatoes. Virtually all vegetables and salads that eat the leaves of the plant serve as a source of folate.

Caution - folates are quickly lost

"Unfortunately, the body can only utilize part of the folic acid it contains," explains Professor Koletzko. The vitamin is extremely sensitive to heat and light and is easily lost when the food is cooked for a long time or kept warm. The body can only utilize around 50 percent of the folates contained in the diet. In contrast, synthetic folic acid can be used to about 85 percent.

Food supplements have long been standard in the USA and Canada

Since 1998, flour, bread, bread rolls, breakfast cereals, rice and pasta have been fortified with folic acid as standard in the USA and Canada as well as in around 100 other countries. This led to a large decrease in neural tube defects and congenital heart defects. In Germany, however, the number of these malformations has remained the same for years. (vb)

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