Folate is a critical nutrient for methylation, a vital process required for life. During pregnancy, folate supports a baby’s healthy neural tube development. But, it goes way beyond early development. It can influence mood, sleep, memory, and more for both children and parents.
Types of folate include folic acid, folinic acid, food folate, and methylfolate.
Folic acid is the form commonly found in multivitamins because it is cheap and stable. However, those with the MTHFR gene variation (> 60% of people) aren’t able to metabolize folic acid inefficiently.
Methylfolate is the active form found in our bodies. When you take methylfolate, your body can use it immediately because it doesn’t have to convert it to anything else. Quatrefolic® (glucosamine salt of (6S)-5-methyltetrahydrofolate ) is one brand of methylfolate.
Folinic acid (5-formyltetrahydrofolate) is a naturally occurring folate. It can convert easily to methylfolate without the enzyme dihydrofolate reductase. This allows your body to regulate the amount of methylated vitamins it needs.
It is important to note that folinic acid is different from folic acid. Folic acid is synthetic and does not exist in nature, whereas folinic acid exists naturally and is biologically active.
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Our community of science authorities looks at thousands of studies to consciously choose each nutrient in our vitamins. These nutrients are continuously researched so we only deliver science-backed benefits. Scroll down to see some of the strongest studies that support our research.
[6S]-5-methyltetrahydrofolate increases plasma folate more effectively than folic acid in women with the homozygous or wild-type 677C-->T polymorphism of methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase,Br J Pharmacol, 2009 Dec;158(8):2014-21.
University of Bonn, Germany
Red blood cell folate concentrations increase more after supplementation with [6S]-5-methyltetrahydrofolate than with folic acid in women of childbearing age, Am J Clin Nutr, 2006 Jul;84(1):156-61.
University of Bonn, Germany
Folate and neural tube defects,Am J Clin Nutr, 2007 Jan;85(1):285S-288S.
University of California, Los Angeles, USA
Folate and epigenetic mechanisms in neural tube development and defects,Child's Nervous System, Volume 29, Pages 1427–1433(2013).
University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
Prenatal folate, homocysteine and vitamin B12 levels and child brain volumes, cognitive development and psychological functioning: the Generation R Study, Volume 122, Supplement s1 (Nutrimenthe Project: Effect of Diet on the Mental Performance of Children), September 2019 , pp. S1-S9.
Erasmus University Medical Center, The Netherlands
Quantitative flux analysis reveals folate-dependent NADPH production,Nature 2014 Jun 12;510(7504):298-302.
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