Folic Acid Deficiency? Top 10 Folic Acid Foods You Have to Try Before Folic Acid Tablets
Folic acid deficiency basically means you have a low level of folic acid, or vitamin B, in your body. The importance of this nutrient can be demonstrated by the various health benefits it can give, ranging from its anti-inflammatory properties, ability to help prevent and treat cardiovascular diseases, mental disorders, and even cancer, to its benefits for the physical appearance. The causes of folic acid deficiency may vary across people but it is mostly due to excessive alcohol consumption, eating overcooked folic acid foods since heat basically destroys folate, unbalanced diet and unhealthy lifestyle, kidney dialysis, and even certain medications.
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Symptoms for folic acid deficiency may include poor or stunted growth, physical and mental fatigue, behavioral changes such as irritability and even depression, a red and inflamed tongue called glossitis, paraesthesia or the recurring sensation of pins and needles, disturbed vision and hearing, and mouth ulcers. Exams can be made through a blood test, especially for pregnant and lactating women since folic acid deficiency, or any other nutrient inadequacies for that matter, have a great impact on them. Though a serious type of this condition is rare, consulting with your doctor and perhaps taking folic acid tablets is still vital. Fortunately, this can be prevented. By living a healthy lifestyle and eating the right type of foods, particularly excellent folic acid foods, avoiding folic acid deficiency can be as easy as 1-2-3. Below are effective folic acids foods you can easily incorporate into your daily dietary program before taking folic acid tablets.
Top 10 Folic Acid Foods You Have to Try before Folic Acid Tablets
Number one on this list, the most folic acid dense food in all of the folic acid foods. Legumes are basically seeds or pods of a leguminous plant that is edible and therefore used for consumption. Well known in this group are beans, all sorts of them, chickpeas, peas, and lentils. In fighting folic acid deficiency, a cup of cooked black-eyed peas (171 grams) can provide 356 micrograms of the nutrient. That is 89% DV or Daily Value, a percentage that tells you how much nutrient you are getting for that particular serving in relation to how much of that nutrient is needed each day. For a hundred gram, that would be 208 mcg of folic acid or 52% DV. Cooked lentils, on the other hand, offer 181 mcg or 45% DV for the same 100-gram serving size. Other members of the family include Mung beans with 80% DV for a serving of 100-gram, pinto beans with 74%, lima beans with 68%, chickpeas with 71%, and kidney beans with 58%, all for the same serving size.
Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy vegetables, simply called as dark leafy greens that are excellent folic acid foods, are comprised of the following: spinach, raw with a serving size of 1 cup or 30 grams, gives off 58 mcg of the vitamin, amounting to 15% DV. If that isn’t enough, a hundred gram has 194 mcg or 49% DV. They are also brimming with lutein and beta-carotene that can give amazing health benefits. Beets shouldn’t also be ignored with a whopping 109 mcg or 27% DV for the same 100-gram serving size. This vegetable is known as a detoxifier, cleansing particularly your liver. Romaine lettuce meanwhile provides 136 mcg or 34% DV with a 100-gram serving size. Other types of lettuce effective against folic acid deficiency include butterhead, salad cress, chicory, and arugula.
Asparagus is an edible shoot from a tall plant belonging to the lily family. Their tender textures are consumed as a delicacy and obviously as a vegetable. What they are famous for, however, is being a highly nutrient dense food, including folic acid. In fact, a cup of these incredible vegetables can deliver a staggering 262 mcg of folic acid; that would mean 65% of folate DV. This is along with other vitamins and mineral vital for the body like vitamins A, C and K, and manganese. If 1 cup seems too much for you, consider its 149 mcg or 37% DV for a hundred gram of serving size. Make the most out of their versatility by mixing them in salads or adding them in a decent meal of lean meat and brown rice.
This green colored, savory, and often ignored fruit that is also known as butter pear, is technically, and perhaps surprisingly for some, a berry; single-seeded at that. Despite its whopping 161 calories and relatively high-fat content, avocados are effective folic acid foods, on top of other nutrients essentially needed such as vitamin K, dietary fiber, and fatty acids. This fact alone might push you to reconsider and overlook its calorie content. 100 grams of this fruit can give you 81 mcg of folate; that’s 20% DV already. Per cup of cubed avocados, a 150-gram of serving size, it’s 122 mcg or 30% DV. You can toss them in a bowl of salads or even in sandwiches. Either way or in any other ways for this matter, you will be guaranteed of its amazing folic acid benefits.
Broccoli, Brussels Sprout, and Cauliflower
We are still not done with other vegetables deem as excellent folic acid foods. The famous yet often snubbed broccoli supplies 108 mcg of folate, or 27% DV, in 100 grams serving size. This superfood likewise has antioxidants that are very much needed in fighting off free radicals. A 100-gram of raw Brussels sprout, on one hand, provides 61 mcg or 15% DV while raw cauliflower, for the same serving size, gives you a decent 57 mcg or 14% DV. You can combine these vegetables for a complete and satisfying meal experience.
Citrus fruits are well-known as potent folic acid foods, aside from their vitamin C content. Perhaps the most celebrated among them is oranges in which 100 grams, all commercial varieties, can provide 30 mcg of the vitamin—accounting for 8% DV—with a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice (86 grams) holding 25.8 mcg or 6% DV. A ¾ cup serving can contain as much as 25 mcg of folate. In addition, a serving of one grapefruit, a kind of subtropical citrus, provides around 40 mcg or 8% DV.
In contrast to citrus fruits are tropical fruits which, on their own, are effective folic acid foods all the same. Consider the following: a) mangoes, in a hundred gram serving size, boast 43 mcg of folate, an 11% DV; 71 mcg or 18% DV for a 165-gram serving size. b) Cantaloupe melons, a vitamin A and C rich fruit, can give you 21 mcg or 5% for a hundred gram serving. c) Papayas for the same 100-gram serving size brag a 37 mcg, amounting to 9% DV while d) bananas have 20 mcg or 5% DV, still for the same serving. Other worth noting tropical fruits that are great in fighting folic acid deficiency include pomegranate with 27% DV, and guava and kiwi, both with 7%, all for a 100-gram serving size.
Seeds and Nuts
These small but terrible (in a beneficial way) folic acid foods are effective in combating folic acid deficiency. Flax seeds provide 54 mcg of folate per 2 tablespoons of serving size; that would amount to 14% DV of the vitamin. Sunflower seeds, on the other hand, offer 82 mcg or 21% DV for a quarter of a cup serving. For nuts, almonds are among the notable example, with 54 mcg or 12% DV for 1 cup of serving size. Peanuts meanwhile give 88 mcg or 22% DV for a serving of ¼ cup. This is aside from all other nutrients you can get from them such as magnesium, zinc, vitamins A and E, and even omega-3 fatty acids. Their versatility would also give you countless ways of consuming them—from eating them raw, roasted, or sprinkled onto a bowl of healthy salads.
Wheat Bread and Cereals
Sometimes, most of us perhaps take bread and cereals, as a breakfast food or snacks, for granted. Knowing, however, how essential they are as folic acid foods to help treat and prevent folic acid deficiency might somewhat change the way we look and treat them. A slice (29 grams) of whole wheat bread, for instance, gives off 25 mcg or 6% DV while a hundred grams is 85 mcg or 21% DV. Other sorts of bread you can choose that are considered folic acid foods are wheat germ bread with 8% DV, French bread with 24%, and Italian bread with 14%, all for a hundred grams of serving size. The cereals we usually consume to start the day is also fortified with up to 400 mcg of the vitamin per serving. Just always remember to look at the nutrition label to give yourself a bigger picture.
This fruit (yes, fruit! Technically) should not be excluded in your battle against folic acid deficiency, before taking any sort of folic acid tablets that is. Squash’s nutritional value is something not to be undermined. Aside from essential minerals and other vitamins, its folic acid content accounts for 21% DV of folate by providing 41 to 57 mcg per cup of winter squash in particular, all varieties. Summer squash, on one hand, gives 33 to 36 mcg or 8% DV for the same serving size. Squash surely is one of the folic acid foods you don’t want to miss out.