Folica acid or folate is important in that it assists in many vital body functions. Two of the more important roles of folic acid are cellular growth and regeneration. Based on a health and wellness article published by the New York Times, folic acid is a “luscious” micronutrient due to the significant role it plays in preventing brain-related and behavioral conditions.
The crucial functions of folic acid are as follows:
– Biosynthesis of nucleotides in the cellular level
– Repair and synthesis of DNA
– RBC production
– Anemia prevention
Folic acid also called, Vitamin B9 is an essential nutrient made popular by its many unique functions, including its role in the prevention of fetal deformities, several types of cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease. Folic acid can be sourced from numerous items that one can easily find in groceries and markets.
Is there a difference between folic acid and folate?
The metabolic effects of folic acid are different to that of folate. For one, folate is essentially the bioavailable form of Vitamin B9 that you typically find in animal and plant sources. Although folic acid can be readily used the body, it is actually in synthetic form which means that this can only be found in fortified food items and supplements. The body therefore is more familiar with processing folate and will even regulate its synthesis by assisting in the removal of urine from the kidneys.
Food sources of folate
1.Dark Leafy Green Vegetables
It is not surprising to discover that some of the world’s superfoods are actually packed with folate. If you need an immediate boost in folic acid, experts recommend intake of dark leafy greens such as kale, collard greens, spinach, romaine lettuce, and turnip greens into your diet. In fact, one large serving of all nutritious greens mentioned above can deliver the recommended dietary intake for folate.
– 1 cup of romain lettuce has 76mcg of folate
– 1cup of mustard greens has 103mcg of folate
– 1 cup of turnip greens has 170mcg of folate
– 1 cup of collard greens has 177mcg of folate
– 1 cup of spinach has 263mcg of folate
One of the most nutrient-packed veggie, asparagus, contains high levels of folic acid too. One cup of boiled or steamed asparagus delivers up to 262 mcg of folic acid. This amount is equivalent to 65% of the body’s folic acid needs. Aside from being a very sumptuous food item, it’s enriched with vitamins and minerals such as manganese, Vitamins A, C, and K.
3. Citrus Fruits
Majority of fruits contain folic acid, but citrus fruits boast higher concentrations. For instance, orange is an excellent source of folic acid. According to studies, it holds up to 50 mcg of folic acid. A tall glass of fresh orange juice can provide all the folic acid that you need per day. Folate-rich fruits include grapefruit, grapes, papaya, banana, strawberries, and cantaloupe. Their folic acid concentration are as follows:
– 1 orange fruit contains 40 mcg of folate
– 1 papaya contains 115 mcd of folate
– 1 cup of fresh strawberries contains 25 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of raspberries contains 14 mcg of folate
– 1 grapefruit contains 30 mcg of folate
Broccoli is popularly known for detoxification purposes, but did you know that this veggie is high in folic acid too? One serving of broccoli can supply up to 24% of your daily folic acid needs. Apart from folic acid, broccoli has a long list of vitamins and mineral promoting optimal functioning of the body. Broccli is best served raw or slightly steamed.
5. Beas, Peas, and Lentils
Beans and peas that boast high amounts of folic acid are listed down below. A small serving of lentil on the other hand supplies you with the ideal folic acid intake per day.
– 1 cup of green beans has 42 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of green peas has 101 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of split peas has 127 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of lima beans has 156 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of kidney beans has 229 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of navy beans has 254 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of back beans has 256 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of garbanzos has 282 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of pinto beans has 294 mcg of folate
– 1 cup of lentils has 258 mcg of folate
Avocado is undeniably one of the most beloved vegetables there is. Apart from its creamy and sumptuous flavor, it is most prized for its nutritional content that which includes folate. Avocado holds up to 90 mcg of folate per serving translating to 22% of ideal daily folate needs. This vegetable is also high in fiber as well as fatty acids and Vitamin K. Adding them to sandwiches, salads, and tacos is a great way of to enjoy avocado and get the folic acid that your body requires.
The slimy okra is one of the most nutrient-dense veggies around. Apart from its ability to deliver vitamins and minerals, okra also holds the ability of cleansing the digestive tract by getting rid of buildup of toxic materials. One cup of cooked okra supplies the body with up to 37 mcg of folic acid.
8. Brussels Sprout
Brussels sprouts aren’t the most palatable of veggies, but its one excellent source of folic acid. One serving of Brussels sprouts supplies up to 25% of its’ daily recommended intake.
Brussels sprouts is teeming with other equally important nutrients such as Vitamins, K, A , C, manganese, and potassium.
9. Seeds and Nuts
Add healthy doses of folic acid to your diet through consumption of nuts and seeds such as flaxseed, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds to name a few. You can sprinkle them onto salads, or simply eat them raw. Peanuts are also high in folate, as a single serving offers up to 300 mcg.
- Almonds- one cup has 46 mcg of folate
- Flax seeds- two tablespoons has 54 mcg of folate
- Peanuts ¼ cup has 88 mcg of folate
- Sunflower seeds- ¼ cup has 82 mcg of folate
The cruciferous veggie, cauliflower, is regarded as an excellent source of Vitamin C. It is also important to note that the cauliflower vegetable contains high folic acid levels too. One serving of cauliflower supplies 55
mcg of folate, thereby accounting for as much as 14% of the recommended daily intake. The addition of fresh cauliflowers to salad or making it to faux rice or grated cauliflower is a great way to introduce healthy doses of folate into your daily diet.