Folic Acid as Brain Food

Two new exciting studies have illustrated more health benefits of folic
acid. We have known for a while the importance of folic acid
supplementation during pregnancy, as it is needed for the normal
development of the nervous system, including the brain. Two recent
large studies have illustrated the importance of folic acid in older
people as well. In a study of 965 patients over age 65, the
participants with the highest intake of folic acid had a 50% reduction
in developing Alzheimer’s disease. In a separate study of 818 people
over age 50, 3 years of supplementation with 800mcg of folic acid a day
significantly improved cognitive function, including memory and
information processing, compared to the placebo group. As an added
benefit, homocysteine levels (a risk factor for heart disease)
decreased 26% in the folic acid group. Food sources of folic acid
include green leafy vegetables, beans, sunflower seeds, eggs, and
liver. Folic acid is best taken as a supplement with B12. Folic acid
appears to play an important role in keeping us sharp mentally as we
age- something we all could use! Make sure you are getting at least
800mcg per day from supplements.