Folate deficiency is a condition that occurs when the body does not get enough of the essential vitamin, folate. This can lead to a range of symptoms, including fatigue, weakness, mouth sores, and neurological problems. If left untreated, folate deficiency can cause serious health issues. Fortunately, folate deficiency can be prevented with a diet rich in foods that contain folate.
Vitamin B12 and folate are both important for keeping the nervous system healthy. Eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of leafy greens, legumes, and fortified cereals is a great way to ensure you're getting enough folate. If the underlying cause of folate deficiency anemia persists, it may be necessary to take folic acid tablets for an extended period of time, possibly even for life. Folic acid supplements can help to restore folate levels in the body and reduce the risk of developing serious health complications. It's important to be aware of the early warning signs of folate deficiency so that you can take steps to prevent it. Common signs and symptoms include:
- Mouth sores
- Neurological problems
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
Your doctor may recommend blood tests to check your folate levels and determine if you have a folate deficiency. If you are diagnosed with a folate deficiency, your doctor will likely recommend dietary changes and/or folic acid supplements.