Folic acid or vitamin B9 is required for effective bodily function. Since the body cannot produce folic acid, it must be supplemented from the diet. In the body, folic acid synthesizes, repairs and methylates the DNA. Another important function is to increase the number of healthy red blood cells. Green leafy vegetables are the principle source of folic acid but nowadays to prevent the widespread folic acid deficiency, several cereals are fortified with it. Deficiency of folic acid is difficult to trace and can go unnoticed for many months. Knowing about the symptoms, causes, risk factors and treatments will help you understand it better and you may be able to counter it well too. Read the article below to know more on the various symptoms of folic acid deficiency.
Deficiency Symptoms Of Vitamin B 9
- Irritation is the most common symptom of folic acid deficiency. Folic acid or vitamin B9 is responsible for keeping the central nervous system healthy. So, due to its deficiency, depression and lethargy sets in.
- Lack of folic acid can also result in lightheadedness. It makes one forgetful even in a short span of time.
- There is a decrease in appetite and gradual loss of weight. Due to a lack of folic acid, there is a reduction of red bloods cells, which makes the skin appear pale.
- Concentrating and focusing is difficult.
- In pregnant women, the lack of folic acid can lead to abortion. The death rate is very high in infants whose mother suffers from folic acid deficiency. Since, the normal development of the spine and brain of the infant is aided by folic acid; its intake should be increased among pregnant women.
- In males, the lack of folic acid might lead to decrease in sperm count while in women it leads to the impairment of oocyte maturation.
- Folic acid deficiency can also cause pain in the chest and abdomen, irregular heartbeat and shortness of breath.
- There is increase in hair fall and there is grayish-brown pigmentation of the skin.
- Slacking of mental agility.
- Lack of folic acid causes anemia because there is a decrease in the production of red blood cells, and diarrhea.
- Increase in the risk of schizophrenia. As folic, acid regulates the homocysteine levels, which increases due to the lack of folic acid. This increases the homocysteine level and it produces the cytokines responsible for triggering schizophrenia.
- There is a risk of increase in allergic diseases like asthma.
- Lack of folic acid in children can increase the risk of their contacting renal diseases.
Causes Of Folic Acid Deficiency
- Lack of diet that is rich in folic acid.
- Increase intake of alcohol.
- Dialysis of kidney.
- Low absorption of folic acid.
Treatment Of Folic Acid
- Eat food rich in folic acids like green leafy vegetables, salmon, and soybeans.
- About 1000 mcg dietary folate requirement is recommended for an adult.