Folic acid and heart disease:


that elevated homocysteine level is an independent risk factor for heart disease and stroke. The evidence suggests that the high levels of homocysteine may damage coronary arteries and makes it easier for blood clotting cells called platelets to clump together and form a clot. However, there is currently no evidence available to suggest that lowering homocysteine with vitamins will reduce the risk of heart disease. Clinical intervention trials are needed to determine whether supplementation with folic acid, vitamin B12 or vitamin B6 can lower the risk of developing coronary heart disease.
Lower folic acid higher the risk:
High homocysteine levels are associated with an increased risk of the heart disease. High homocysteine levels have also been linked to a relative folic acid deficiency. Researchers found that disease Control and Prevention report that the low blood levels of folic acid are associated with a substantially increased risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. Even when adjusting for other risk factors education level, race, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and body mass index, the death rate among the participants with low folate status was still 2.28 times higher than among the people with higher levels. The researchers conclude that at least a third of the participants had folate levels at baseline (1976-1980) so low that they would be in the high-risk category for dying from cardiovascular disease. So they urge further work to determine if recent efforts to fortify the food supply with folic acid are sufficient to decrease the proportion of the population at risk for heart disease because of insufficient folate levels.
Good effect of folic acid:
The researchers also looked at the effect of folic acid supplementation through analyzing data on the women with a folate intake, from the diet of less than 200 micrograms a day. Among the younger women, this group those who consumed 800 micrograms a day or more of folate through supplementation had a 48 per cent reduction in hypertension risk compared to those whose folate intake was less than 200 micrograms a day. The same intake produced a 40 per cent reduction in women in the older cohort. The research team concludes that supplemental folic acid may reduce the risk of hypertension and encourages future trials to examine folic acid supplementation as a means of lowering blood pressure in young women.

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