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Essential folate Folate is a vitamin with many essential roles in health. Low levels of folate during pregnancy are associated with neural tube defects, such as spina bifida. Insufficient folate levels are also associated with cardiovascular disease, colon cancer, Alzheimer's disease, depression and megaloblastic anemia. Less severe but still unpleasant symptoms of low folate status can include weakness, fatigue, and shortness of breath. Heart health and other roles Folate has an essential role in DNA synthesis, protein metabolism, and red blood cell production. It is also required in methylation cycles, which are an important part of many biological pathways. One of these pathways is the conversion of homocysteine into useful compounds. High levels of homocysteine (and low levels of folate) are associated with problems in the cardiovascular system. Supplemental folate has been associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer. Your body's preference Biofolate is the form of folate that is produced in the body, and is the natural, preferred form for performing its biological roles. AOR's Biofolate provides an effective supplemental form to maintain this essential nutrient at optimal levels. The biologically active form of folate • Lowers levels of homocysteine • Promotes cardiovascular health • Reduces the risk of cancer • Required for DNA synthesis www.aor.ca Advanced Orthomolecular Research Innovative Research & Scientific Integrity AOR 9 - 4101 19th Street NE , Calgary, Alberta T2E 6X8 Canada Bio Folate™ 30 Vegi-Caps Serving Size: 1 Capsule 5-Methyltetrahydrofolate 1 mg Suggested Use: Take one capsule per day, or as directed by a qualified health care practitioner. Source: Pharmaceutical synthesis Cautions: None Known. Main Indication: Megaloblastic anemia, methylation, cardiovascular health, neural tube defects Complementary Products: Homocysteine+, Methylcobalamin, Benfotiamine, Advanced B Complex Bio Folate™ www.aor.ca Advanced Orthomolecular Research Innovative Research & Scientific Integrity AOR 9 - 4101 19th Street NE , Calgary, Alberta T2E 6X8 Canada Folic acid (or folate) is a water-soluble vitamin that plays a key role in the biosynthesis of DNA and RNA, red blood cell production and the metabolization of proteins. Folic acid is also necessary for genome maintenance, the regulation of gene expression, and other functions. Natural folates are found in dark green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, mustard greens, turnip greens) as well as oranges, broccoli, cauliflower, liver and brewer's yeast. The absorption efficiency of natural folates is approximately 50% that of supplemental folic acid. This is because natural food folates must be converted to other forms prior to absorption from the small intestine. Folic acid (in supplemental form) is already in the appropriate form and therefore does not require this process, making it much more efficiently absorbed as a result. Folate Deficiency A deficiency in dietary folate has wide-ranging implications. There is an overwhelming amount of research supporting folic acid's ability to prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, during pregnancy. Other implications of deficiency can include weakness, fatigue, irritability, headaches, difficulties in cognitive function, cramps, palpitations, and shortness of breath. Studies have also revealed that low folate levels are linked to elevated serum homocysteine concentrations, and decreased hemogloblin and red blood cell concentrations. Folate deficiencies have also been linked to increased risks of cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancer, Alzheimer's disease and depression. A number of conditions can lead to folate deficiency. Chronic alcohol users can become deficient in the vitamin due in part to ethanol's impairment of folate absorption and metabolism, as well as to increased folate excretion caused by ethanol. Several conditions including Crohn's disease, lymphoma and diabetic enteropathy can also result in folate deficiency. Some conditions or situations such as chronic hemolytic anemias (e.g., sickle cell disease), chronic hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis, chronic exfoliative skin disorders and of course pregnancy, all cause an increased demand for folate. Folate and Cardiovascular Disease Folic acid's critical role in converting homocysteine back to methionine gives it the potential to address many of the health conditions that are initiated by high homocysteine levels. One meta-analysis determined that folate supplementation reduced plasma homocysteine levels in a dose-dependent fashion. Based upon findings from this meta-analysis, it has been estimated that for every 50 microgram daily increase in average folic acid intake, 4,000 to 18,000 deaths due to cardiovascular disease could be prevented annually in the U.S. alone. Folate and Cancer Folic acid also appears to protect against a number of cancers, particularly colorectal cancer. Some 20 epidemiologic studies suggest that people with the highest folate intake have an approximately 40% reduction in the risk of this cancer. In one sweeping study involving 88,756 women, there was a 75% reduction in colorectal cancer risk among those using multivitamin supplements containing folic acid, compared with those not using these supplements. Long-term folate supplementation was also found in another study to reduce the incidence of colorectal neoplasia by 62% in subjects with extensive chronic ulcerative colitis. Such subjects, without this supplementation, typically have a 10-fold to 40-fold increased risk of developing colorectal neoplasia. Epidemiological studies also demonstrate a useful role for folic acid in preventing cancers of the brain, stomach and esophagus. Folic acid therapy for cervical dysplasia is also well- established.