Folic Acid: Thank You, Next!

I'm Emily!

Our mission at Aphrodite is to pull women out of the darkness of infertility and to get them to the family they've always wanted. We are totally into educating our patients so that they can make the most informed decisions about their reproductive health.

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Folic Acid: Thank You, Next!

You’ve probably heard of folate being a super hero of reproductive health. Folate metabolism affects ovarian function, implantation, embryogenesis and the entire process of pregnancy(1). And because of that most run-of-the-mill prenatal vitamins proudly include the synthetic form of folate in its ingredients:  folic acid.

But did you know that 40% of the population has a genetic mutation that leaves them unable to fully process folic acid?(2) They are missing the enzymes that allow for the breakdown of folic acid and absorption of folate by the cells.

An external supply of synthetic folic acid, like that found in prenatal vitamins, taken by someone with the MTHFR gene variation, can therefore accumulate in the blood stream and become hazardous to fertility success. Folic acid build up can cause improper implantation and embryogenesis, and/or repeated early fetal loss and recurrent first trimester miscarriages.(2)

And guess what? Most women are not screened for the MTHFR mutation until way late in their infertility struggle. And so, you, the consumer, go along each morning and pop your prenatal vitamin, not knowing that folic acid may be hindering your fertility success.

So what to do about it?
Well, one, you can get tested. But tests are expensive and time consuming.

So, in the mean time, you can do what I suggest to all of my patients while they are TTC, kicks your folic acid filled prenatal to the curb and find one that uses L-methylfolate instead.

L-methylfolate is the bioavailable (absorbable) form of folate. It’s less stable (aka has reduced shelf life) than folic acid -so it’s not used by supplement companies looking to cut costs.

But for those brands willing to put in the money and research into their products, L-methylfolate allows all consumers, even those with the MTHFR genetic mutation, to bypasses the harsh task of folate break down and conduct simple absorption by the cells.

High quality brands that are already in the know about L-methyflolate include:
MamaBird (small company, family run)
Ritual (large trendy company with lots of other supplement offerings.)

So in the words of Arianna Grande say “Thank you, Next!” to folic acid and welcome L-methylfolate into your prenatal vitamin life.

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Hi, We're
Ghoncheh & Emily!

And we make up the team at Aphrodite Fertility Acupuncture, here in San Diego, California.

We're here to be your number one cheerleaders, your expert ttc advocates, your mystical acupuncturist gurus, and your sarcastic besties that make you laugh even in the heaviest of times.

We wear all the hats so you don't have to. Pile it on. We're here to carry the load. 

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