Folic Acid Deficiency: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Causes and Treatment

Folic acid deficiency can cause a variety of digestive problems, including diarrhea, abdominal pain, and indigestion. In addition, it can also cause anxiety, weight loss because it causes a lack of appetite. Find out more about folic acid deficiency: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Causes, and Treatment.


What is folic acid?

Folic acid is a water-soluble form of the B-vitamin complex. This substance is necessary for the development of the body because it is multifunctional, ranging from helping the process of DNA production to the formation of red blood cells.

The presence of this nutrient has long been known to be important as a health caregiver for all ages, especially for pregnant women because of its many benefits for babies in the womb. Not only for pregnant women and fetuses but folic acid is also included in one type of nutrition that is good for pregnant programs.


What Are the Functions of Folic Acid

Some of the benefits obtained by the body if folic acid is sufficient to include:

The process of forming body cells goes well

Folic acid collaborates with vitamin B12 and vitamin C to help the body in breaking down, use while forming new proteins. These protein compounds will help the formation of red blood cells and produce DNA, building the basic foundation of the body that carries a person’s genetic information.


Avoid anemia

Folic acid’s function is to make red blood cells. enough folic acid, the production of red blood cells will always be below normal so you can easily have anemia.


Preventing babies from being born with defects

The formation of the central nerve has occurred since the beginning of the fetus grows in the womb. Folic acid plays a role in preventing defects in the brain and nerves, such as anencephaly or spina bifida. These nutrients also play a significant role in the repair, formation, and function DNA, which will affect placental growth and fetal development.

Folic acid is essential for pregnant women to prevent babies being born with disabilities.     Folic acid is also important to be consumed by mothers who are undergoing a pregnancy program.


What happens if your folic acid is low?

Your body won’t function as well if it doesn’t have enough oxygen. Low folic acid levels can cause megaloblastic anemia. With this condition, red blood cells are larger than usual. There are fewer of these cells.


How long does it take for folate deficiencies to be corrected?

For folic deficiency, anemia treatment is usually for 4 months. But if your cause is folic deficiency anemia, it will not change or go away, you may have to take folic acid for longer, that is for the rest of your life.


What are the symptoms of low folic acid?

Symptoms due to anemia are caused by a reduced amount of oxygen in the body.

  • Common symptoms include fatigue, having little energy (lethargy), feeling faint, and becoming prone to shortness of breath.
  • Less common symptoms include headaches, sudden heartbeat becoming noticeable (palpitations), changing feelings, and ringing ears (tinnitus).
  • You may look pale.

You may also experience numbness in your feet and hands. Some people may also experience depression. know about long-term chronic dysthymia depressive disorder and find a way to treat it.

folic acid deficiency: Symptoms, Diagnosis, Causes and Treatment

What causes folic acid deficiency?

  • The most common reason is not eating enough foods rich in folic acid. This is most common in older people who do not eat well. People who are alcohol dependent are another group that often does not eat properly.
  • Pregnancy causes folic acid reserves in your body to be used by growing babies. You are at risk of becoming low in folic acid during the later stages of pregnancy, especially if you do not eat well during pregnancy.
  • Some unusual intestinal conditions can lead to poor absorption of folic acid – for example, celiac disease.
  • Some blood disorders can lead to very high red blood cell turnover – for example, sickle cell disease and thalassemia.
  • Some inflammatory conditions can cause low levels of folic acid – for example, severe Crohn’s disease. However, this is less common.
  • Some drugs interfere with folic acid. Therefore, you may need to take extra folic acid when taking certain medications.


How To Adequate folic acid?

Folic Acid is required for different reasons. Some of the things that affect the body’s need for folic acid include age and gender. Certain conditions, such as pregnancy, can also affect the level of folic acid needs for the body.

Generally, the recommended consumption of folic acid for men and women is 400 micrograms/day for those over the age of 13 years. Pregnant women should consume 500 micrograms per day for all ages. Folic acid or folate as a vitamin for infants is required in doses of 85-90 micrograms per day.

If the needs of folic acid can not be met from food, you can take folic acid supplements. Consumption of folic acid supplements should be based on the recommendations of a doctor. This is to ensure the dose of B vitamins obtained according to the needs and conditions of your body.


Foods Rich in Folic Acid

The benefits of folic acid must be important to our body, right? Fortunately, foods containing folic acid are available in abundant quantities. Some foods rich in folic acid that are easily obtained around us include:

  • You can also eat green vegetables like spinach, broccoli and lettuce.
  • Nuts, like peas.
  • Fruits, such as melons, bananas, and lemons.
  • Foods enriched with folates, such as bread, cereals, and juices.


Folic acid deficiency treatment

For treatment, you can take one tablet of folic acid (folate) every day. You need to take it until anemia is corrected and folic acid deposits in the body are formed (usually for about four months).

You may need advice on dieting to stay healthy and tablets can be discontinued if your diet improves.

You may need to continue treatment if a poor diet is not the cause of the folic acid deficiency. For example, if you have sickle cell disease, you may need to take folic acid tablets daily indefinitely.


Dangers of low folic acid

Folic acid has an important role in the formation of red blood cells, so a folic acid deficiency in pregnant women can increase the risk of anemia. Anemia during pregnancy cannot be underestimated, because if left untreated, it risks causing premature childbirth and babies born with low weight.

If not treated, vitamin B12 deficiency can cause complications in the form of infertility, senile, neural tube defects in the fetus, vision impairment, to ataxia.

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