Mind Matters

Can High Folic acid (vitamin B12) Diet or Folate Spplements Cure Alzheimer’s Disease ?

Recent scientific studies have proved that folic acid (vitamin B12) effectively arrests the degeneration that occurs in the Alzheimer’s disease. People who have Alzheimer’s disease usually have low levels of folic acid in their blood. But whether this is the direct effect of the disease or due to the general weakness is not yet clear.

Folioc acid has a track record of rectifying the neural tube complications that arise during the formation of the fetus. Homocystein, an amino acid (basic building block of protein) is found to be abnormally high in the patients of Alzheimer’s disease. Folic acid decreases the homocystein content in the brain.

Green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits and juices, whole wheat bread and dry beans are rich sources of folic acid. Since 1998, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of USA has recommended the the addition of folic acid to enriched breads, cereals, flours, corn meals, pastas, rice, and other grain products.

The insoluble deposits of amyloid (brain proteins) called plaques develop in the brain. These are predominantly seen in the learning and memory areas of the brain. The folic acid helps in destroying these plaques and resisting the damage. Folic acid helps in forming healthy nerve cells and brain cells. Folic acid deficiency leads to memory loss. Low folic acid diet leads to poor performance and concentration deficits in general population.

Alzheimer’s disease symptoms surface only after a long time. So researchers speculate it will take many years before folate supplementation in food could actually affect the incidence of dementia in the United States. A human clinical trial is going on in this regard. The results are still awaited.

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