Having not just pregnant women, but women of childbearing age take folic acid has been wildly successful at treating numerous diseases related to neural tube defects, but a new study has linked taking high doses with an increased risk of autism.
It’s no wonder it’s a major headline, there are very few solid links to potential causes of autism, and the study was well done and thorough.
Do we need to reconsider our supplement recommendations?
Only a little. For instance, whether it’s over-the-counter, supplemental, or an actual prescription, it’s one size fits all. Really, though, we’ve only studied adult men when it comes to most recommendations (and with pregnant women, recommendations are hit and miss and change frequently). Weight, genetics (including race/heritage and family conditions like allergies and IBS) and other factors can change how well a drug works, what dose you need, and more!
Folic acid is still doing more good than harm. One thing to remember is that some people overdo star nutrients, from folic acid, to Vitamin C, to Calcium. While most people can use a little more, you don’t need to take a lot at once.
Even better, choose a reliable multivitamin. You’ll note the vitamins Colloids for Life sells are (firstly) all careful mixes of well-studied herbs, vitamins, and minerals. And (secondly) they’re high-quality, you can rely on an accurate label (independent studies have found this isn’t so with grocery store labels).
Its likely more doctors will take an interest in which multivitamins their patients take (I’ve heard many will just throw whatever free sample they have at patients, or when asked they just take anything, and while something is better than nothing, clearly there’s room for improvement!). Better ones will not just write down brand names, but track copy down the ingredient list.
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