Supplementing folate levels whilst having loading doses B12

Hi me again. Sorry for all the posts but I keep on thinking of questions I hadn't asked - my brain seems to be very sieve-like lately! I'm currently on dose 3 of 6 B12 injections as a trial to see if there's an improvement in my symptoms as B12 was low end of range (215 in a range of 147-840) My ferritin and folate was towards lower end of range. Doctor says folate normal (level is 6.8 in a range of 3.1-19.9) and ferritin was 42 (range 11-307) so no need to supplement but all advice on here is that my folate and ferritin is too low and is needed for the injections to work effectively. My question is what folate and/or iron supplements would you recommend and where would you get them please? My iron levels seem to be ok it's just the ferritin that seems to be on the lower end of the range. Also would taking these supplements adversely affect any tests for Thyroid T3 levels and antibodies as I am considering having these checked privately as because my levels of TSH and T4 were in range they won't test for them routinely. Thanks in advance for any info :-)

17 Replies

  • If I were you I would take a Vitamin B complex which contains METAFOLIN (B9) instead of Folic acid. It is said that it is more absorbable than folic acid. Sorry I know nothing about thyroid .

  • Thanks I'll have a look in our local health food shop to see if they have anything.

  • Hi cooper, I would look at the thyroid forum. Just click on my communities above and then click on browse communities to find thyroid uk. They have saved my life with their advice on thyroid meds and recommended supplements.

  • Hi thanks I don't know yet whether there is any issue with my thyroid - considering testing, but I know from this site that my b12 folate and ferritin although within range are considered to be low so it is those I'm looking at supplementing in the short term. If my new blood tests for vitamin D and autoimmune disorders comes back normal then I may consider further thyroid testing privately to rule that in or out. I have joined the Thyroid UK forum too though so thanks for your suggestion :-)

  • Just bear in mind that if you do have an underactive thyroid that could explain yout nutrient deficiencies. People with this, myself included, tend to have little or no stomach acid leading to poor absorption. It could be why you are deficient.

  • Ordinary folic acid will do for the majority of people. It's cheaper than metafolin and is more easily absorbed, not less.

    Metafolin is pushed by little pharma who make loads of cash by selling it to people when folic acid from Tesco would work just as well.

  • Thanks I've looked today at a supermarket folic acid which was 400 (not sure of measurement) so would this be adequate?

  • Yup. 400 ug a day should be totally adequate for most people. Try it for a month or three and see how it goes.

    Some people (about 8% of the population) have a genetic mutation that means they're only about 30% efficient in converting folic acid to the active form. Those people (like me) can find that methylfolate (metafolin) is needed.

  • Great advice.

    Can I add that you may need to take several of the folic acid tablets and lots of people recommend a dose of 5 mg per day if you are on frequent jabs. (This is 12 of the 400 mcg ones if you get 200 mcg from a multivitamin and mineral supplement). This is what I did for a while but found in the end I need methylfolate (at that level) instead.

    I suggest you start at a low dose and increase it if you need more.

    Don't forget all the cofactors needed to metabolise the B12: I would suggest a broad spectrum multivitamin and mineral supplement, plus the extra folate, and potassium and magnesium, especially if you need fairly frequent jabs.

    I hope you feel better soon.

  • Cooper74

    I've been taking 1 – Folic Acid 400ug every day for as long as I can remember but you can also get it naturally from dark green vegetables like broccoli and spinach and dried legumes such as chickpeas, beans and lentils. Folic acid is also added to some breakfast cereals.

    B12 and Folic acid - folate - B9 work together

  • Except that many of Tesco's vitamins contain aspartame.....

  • I don't think I'd let that put me off. I consume loads of aspartame. It is perfectly safe.

  • Are they still peddling this nonsense? Methanol is formaldehyde? Like *&^T^& it is.

    Yes, aspartame is a methyl ester. Yes, methyl esters are hydrolysed in the body to form methanol - just like the methyl group on methylcobalamin, or methyl folate is oxidised to methanol, before the body convert it to something less harmful. A glass of tomato juice contains 4 times as much methanol as a glass of diet coke. Even the magical pectin (hailed as the reason why natural methyl esters are OK) is hydrolysed in the gut.

    What about methyl 2-aminobenzoate - used to flavour fruit drinks and sweeties?

    What about methyl butyrate in pineapple oil?

    If there were any slight possibility of aspartame having any of the effects in that piece don't you think the hyper-litigious Americans would have won at least one class action suit?

  • I'm not a scientist FB but Dr Mercola is highly respected and I would rather not take aspartame myself. It's up to you

  • Dr Mercola is highly respected

    Not by the FDA he's not...

  • Depends whether you believe the FDA or big Pharma - again it's up to you...

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