Folate is water-soluble vitamin B9, which plays important role in creation of red blood cells and in synthesis of DNA.
Folate deficiency is not the most common problem in our country, because it's rather easy to get enough of this vitamin, eating leafy greens, lentils, liver, oranges, milk, papaya and other folate-rich foods.
This problem usually occurs in pregnant women, who don't get supplementation. If expectant mother doesn't consume sufficient amount of folate, risks of premature delivery and birth defects appear extremely elevated.
Sometimes lack of folate can cause anemia - a condition, in which your body contains inadequate amount of red blood cells. These elements normally supply your organs with oxygen.
Lack of red blood cells make it difficult for the body to attain appropriate oxygenation and work properly.
In vast majority of cases, it happens because of poor diet, alcohol misuse or decreased absorption in the gastrointestinal tract (for example if you have celiac disease or Crohn's disease).
People, who take certain medications, such as phenytoin, methotrexate and sulfasalazine, regularly, may have low levels of folate.
It's not uncommon for people to live with vitamin B9 deficiency for a long time, as symptoms are often mild and barely noticeable. Be attentive to your body and don't ignore these signs of folate privation:
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#1. Extreme tiredness – feeling exhausted is normal, if you had vigorous workout or stressful event. But be aware that constant fatigue, which doesn't leave you after rest, may be a sign of folate deficiency.
#2. Glossitis – it's a medical term for swelling, redness and soreness of the tongue, which usually accompany severe folate depletion.
#3. Memory problems – several studies found that vitamin B9 takes part in improvement of brain performance. Lack of this element can lead to forgetfulness and cognitive decline.
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#4. Nausea and vomiting – people with insufficient levels of folic acid often complain of nausea, vomiting, aching and diarrhea, which become apparent after having a meal.
#5. Mouth sores – in advanced cases, lack of folate can cause painful swallowing and oral lesions.
#6. Inexplicable weight loss – losing several pounds without trying is a dream of thousands women. However, it sounds better than it is in reality. Unintentional weight loss can be a sign of numerous health issues, including folate deficiency.
#7. Pale skin and excessive hair loss – paleness is one of the most common signs of anemia. You may also notice that your hair fall out excessively, if levels of folate and red blood cells appear extremely low.
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The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!
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