Pillar Healthcare’s MethylFolate capsules are produced within the European Union and the product is produced to the highest industry standards. Each batch of MethylFolate is independently tested for its purity by an independent laboratory ensuring that the product complies with all recognised safety and consumer standards. The European Food Safety Authority has authorised certain health claims regarding folate and its beneficial effects. A brief examination of these claims will highlight the strenuous effort that went in to selecting and perfecting our nutritional products:
- Folate contributes to maternal tissue growth during pregnancy
- Supplemental folic acid intake increases maternal folate status. Low maternal folate status is a risk factor in the development of neural tube defects in the developing foetus.
- Folate contributes to the normal function of the immune system
- Folate contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue
- Folate contributes to normal homocysteine metabolism
- Folate contributes to normal psychological function
- Folate contributes to normal blood formation
According to the European Union, “most European countries have policies in place advising periconceptional supplementation with 0.4 milligrams (otherwise known as 400mcg or four hundred micrograms) of folic acid taken daily prior to conception and for the first three months of pregnancy. However, most women in Europe are still not taking supplements prior to conception, and the ability of folic acid to reduce the number of NTD has not been fully realised.”
The European Union is not the only organisation that recommends such intervention. It is our opinion, which is shared by most, that folate like all other nutrients should be consumed through one’s diet. However, it is becoming apparent that for a multitude of reasons, the recommended level of folate is not being reached. This is where MethylFolate supplementation can provide a simple and affordable solution.
Folic Acid is an essential nutrient for both men and women, with its most prevalent usage during the conception and pregnancy periods, and of course, the prevention of Neural-Tube Defects (NTDs). Neural tube defects (NTDs) originate from a failure of the embryonic neural tube to close. Fortunately, adequate maternal folate application is known to reduce the risk of human NTDs, which makes its consumption a must for all women trying to conceive and when pregnant. Most governing bodies concerned with health, fertility and pregnancy will advocate the proper consumption of folic acid during this time, either through diet and/or supplementation, including the EU, World Health Organisation, The Centre for Disease and Control, an almost endless list.
Folate is the natural form of ‘Vitamin B9’ which is found in fresh dark green leafy vegetables, legumes, and cruciferous vegetables. It is essential for several cornerstones of good health, like those listed above. It is also involved in your DNA production, correct cell division, activating B12 and in reducing homocysteine levels.
There is a gene, called MTHFR, that helps produce an enzyme that converts a portion of folate and folic acid into folinic acid. Folinic acid is then converted into the active form methylfolate, which is used by our cells to perform the functions mentioned above. We are becoming increasingly aware that a significant portion of the population has a variation in one of their MTHFR genes that negatively impacts their ability to convert folic acid (a synthetic version of folate), and even some of the folate that naturally occurs in foods, into the active form of folate. It is estimated that between twenty-five and sixty percent of the population has this gene error. However, if an individual has an MTHFR gene mutation, then dietary folate and folic acid supplements may not be converted to the active forms such as folinic acid and methylfolate sufficiently, which can increase the risk of birth defects, miscarriage, increased homocysteine levels and even clotting. This is one of the reasons why Methylfolate is the preferred source of ‘Vitamin B9/Folic Acid/Folate’ in our opinion.
If you have any concerns about your folate status or the possible presence of an MTHFR issue, speak to a healthcare professional who is familiar with folate metabolism and MTHFR genes.