Folate’s Role in Miscarriage Risk Reduction
Understanding the factors influencing pregnancy outcomes can help you make informed decisions when it comes to fertility.
One such factor is the intake of folate, a naturally occurring form of vitamin B9, often discussed for its potential role in reducing the risk of miscarriages. Fertility nutritionist, Isabelle Obert is on hand to explain folate's crucial role when it comes to miscarriage risks and folate deficiency.
The Folate Factor
"Folate is required for genetic coding of DNA and deficiency may create DNA defects in the embryo", says Isabelle. "DNA defects lead to infertility and miscarriage."
Further, several studies have hinted at a positive correlation between adequate folate intake and reduced risk of miscarriages, particularly when it comes to men. As Isabelle continues, "High levels of sperm DNA fragmentation have been shown to double the likelihood of miscarriage."
Researchers believe that folate aids in the creation and repair of DNA, thus playing a crucial role in the healthy development of the foetus, potentially minimising the risk of miscarriage.
Recommended Folate Intake
"Folate deficiency can affect your fertility. This is only temporary and can usually be reversed with folate supplementation." Folate supplementation should be considered for both partners to reduce the risk of miscarriage.
The NHS advises women who are trying to conceive to take a daily supplement containing 400 micrograms of folic acid. However, folic acid is the synthetic form of folate, and some recent research suggests that natural folate might be a better alternative.
"MTHFR gene mutation is thought to be present in 25% of global population. This gene mutation is linked with higher levels of homocysteine in the blood and low levels of folate and other vitamins. People with this gene mutation may need a higher folate intake."
For those who struggle to obtain sufficient folate from diet alone, supplements containing the natural form of the vitamin, often labelled '5-MTHF' or 'L-methylfolate', may be a suitable option.
We recommend Zita West Folate, which contains the natural form of folate 5-MTHF as Quatrefolic®, which has three times higher bioavailability than folic acid.
While no measure can guarantee the prevention of miscarriage, maintaining healthy folate levels is a proactive step. Approach your conception and pregnancy journey informed and supported, bearing in mind that every individual’s experience is unique, and professional medical advice is invaluable.
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