Folic acid – A-Z Medicine



What is the function of folic acid?

Folic acid is a type of B vitamin that is usually found in various types of foods such as:

  • fruits (banana, orange, lemon)
  • green vegetables (spinach, lettuce and broccoli)
  • beans (dried beans and peas)
  • asparagus
  • mushrooms and yeast
  • beef (liver and kidney)
  • fruit juice (orange juice and tomato juice)

These nutrients help your body produce and maintain new cells and prevent changes in DNA that can cause cancer.

Meanwhile, folic acid which has been formed in additional supplements or drugs, is usually used to support the fulfillment of folic acid intake in the body.

This drug is also used to treat various conditions caused by lack of folate intake, such as liver problems, alcoholism, inflammation of the walls of the digestive tract, and kidney dialysis.

Because of the many functions of folic acid, supplements that contain nutrients are also relied upon for:

  • prevent colon cancer, cervical cancer, heart disease, and stroke
  • reduce the risk of heart disease
  • treat memory loss, Alzheimer's disease
  • treat hearing loss due to age
  • prevent cataracts
  • reduce signs of aging such as osteoporosis
  • reduce symptoms of restless leg syndrome
  • Helps overcome sleep problems, depression, muscle problems
  • help overcome skin problems such as vitiligo.

If you are pregnant, maybe you need folic acid supplements to prevent birth defects in the baby later. To find out more information, you should consult your obstetrician.

How to use folic acid?

The best way to use folic acid is what your doctor recommends. Do not consume in amounts larger or longer than recommended. Follow the instructions on the label of your recipe. Drink folic acid with a full glass of water.

Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best efficacy from this medicine.

How to store folic acid?

The best way to store folic acid is to store it at room temperature, away from direct light exposure and moist air. Don't keep this medicine in the bathroom, and don't forget to freeze it.

Other brands of this drug may have different storage rules. Observe the storage instructions on the product packaging or ask your pharmacist. Keep all medicines out of the reach of children and pets.

Do not flush medicine in the toilet or in the sewer unless instructed. Discard this product when it has expired or if it is no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal agency about how to safely dispose of your product.


The following information cannot be used as a substitute for medical advice. ALWAYS consult a doctor or pharmacist before using this medicine.

What is the dose of folic acid for adults?

Normal adult dose for megaloblastic anemia

Healing dose: 1 mg every day, can be consumed by drinking, through the muscles, through intravenously, and through the skin.

Maintenance dose:

  • maintenance dose for adults: 0.4 mg daily
  • Maintenance dose for pregnant and lactating women: 0.8 mg daily

The minimum dose for this treatment is 0.1 mg daily.

Normal adult dose for folic acid deficiency

  • Dosage for adults: 400 mcg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.
  • Dosage for women of childbearing age, pregnant: 600 mcg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day
  • Dose for breastfeeding women: 500 mcg taken directly, through the muscles, under the skin or IV once a day

What is the dose of folic acid for children?

Normal dosage for children with megaloblastic anemia

  • Infants: 0.1 mg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.
  • Children less than 4 years of age: up to 0.3 mg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.
  • Children aged 4 years and over: 0.4 mg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.

The minimum dose of use of folic acid is as much as 0.1 mg every day

Normal dosage for children with folic acid deficiency

  • Folic acid dose for infants: 0.1 mg taken directly, through muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.
  • Doses of folic acid for children less than 4 years of age: up to 0.3 mg taken directly, through the muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.
  • Folic acid dose for children 4 years and older: 0.4 mg taken directly, through the muscles, under the skin or IV once a day.

The minimum dose of use of folic acid is as much as 0.1 mg every day

Normal dosage in children for the recommended daily vitamin / mineral supplement needs

  • Premature babies: 50 mcg taken daily
  • Infants aged 0 to 6 months: 65 mcg taken every day
  • Toddlers 1 to 3 years old: 150 mcg taken every day
  • Children ages 4 to 8 years: 200 mcg taken every day
  • Children aged 9 to 13 years: 300 mcg taken every day
  • Teenagers aged 14 and over: 400 meg taken every day

In what dosages are folic acid available?

  • Capsules, oral: 5 mg, 20 mg
  • solution, injection, sodium folate: 5 mg / mL
  • Tablets, taken directly: 400 mcg, 800 mcg, 1 mg
  • Tablets, taken directly (preseverative free): 400 mcg, 800 mcg

Side effects

What side effects can be experienced due to folic acid?

Folic acid usually has very few side effects. If you have any unusual effects from consuming this product, tell your doctor. If you see symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, rash, itching / swelling (especially the face / tongue / throat), dizziness, or difficulty breathing, seek medical help immediately.

Other side effects of using folic acid are as follows:

  • High fever
  • Blushed skin
  • Shortness of breath
  • Skin rash
  • Itching of the skin
  • Chest tightness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Wheezing

However, not all people who consume folic acid will experience the side effects that have been mentioned. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have concerns about side effects, please consult a doctor or pharmacist.

Prevention & Warnings

What should be known before using folic acid?

Before deciding to take this medicine, there are several things that you must do, namely:

  • Make sure you don't have an allergic reaction to the drug, because if you have an allergy to folic acid, then you should not take this drug.
  • Make sure you don't have other serious health problems. If you have other illnesses, your doctor may need to change the dosage of use to suit your conditions and needs. In fact, for certain cases, your doctor may have to do a health test to ensure that the use of folic acid is safe for you.
  • Tell your doctor if you have kidney problems, or are on kidney dialysis
  • Tell your doctor if you have hemolytic anemia, which is a condition when red blood cells are destroyed faster than they are formed.
  • Tell your doctor if you have pernicious anemia, which is a condition when the body cannot produce enough red blood cells due to the body's lack of vitamin B12.
  • Tell your doctor if you have anemia but have not been diagnosed by a doctor and have not been confirmed by laboratory tests
  • Tell your doctor if you have an infection
  • Tell your doctor if you are an alcoholic

Is folic acid safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women?

There is no adequate research on the risks of using this drug in pregnant or nursing women. Always consult your doctor to consider the potential benefits and risks before using this medicine. This drug is included in the risk of pregnancy category A according to the US Food and Drugs Administration (FDA).

The following are references to pregnancy risk categories according to the FDA:

  • A = No risk,
  • B = No risk in some studies,
  • C = Maybe risky,
  • D = There is positive evidence of risk,
  • X = Contraindications,
  • N = Unknown

During pregnancy, folic acid deficiency is something that often attacks pregnant women. This can result in imperfect formation in the fetus, which can cause the baby to be deformed at birth. Therefore, as recommended by the US Center for Disease Control published in one of's articles, women who are pregnant are actually advised to consume as much as 0.4 mg of folic acid every day. Meanwhile, if a pregnant woman has a history of giving birth to a baby with congenital defects such as failure of neural tube closure, the folate dose given will be higher at 4 mg per day.

Meanwhile, for nursing mothers, consuming folic acid is something that does not harm the mother and baby. Because, although folic acid can come out with breast milk and consumed by breastfed babies, folic acid is actually needed to help meet nutrition in infants.

So, channeling folic acid through breast milk to babies who breastfeed is actually a good thing. In addition, no side effects were detected in the mother and baby after consuming folic acid.


What medicines might interact with Folic Acid?

Although some drugs may not be taken together at all, in other cases some drugs can also be used together although interactions may occur. In cases like this, the doctor may change the dose, or do other prevention things that are needed. Let your doctor know if you are taking other drugs both over the counter and from a prescription.

Using these food supplements with any of the following medicines can cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If the two drugs are prescribed together, your doctor can change the dose or see how often you use one or both drugs.

There are 25 types of drugs that often interact with the use of these food supplements, including:

  • Aspirin Low Strength (aspirin)
  • biotin (Hair, Skin & Nails, Appearex)
  • Calcium 600 D (calcium / vitamin d)
  • CoQ10 (ubiquinone)
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine)
  • Fish Oil (omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids)
  • Lasix (furosemide)
  • levothyroxine (Synthroid, Levoxyl, Tyrosint, Levothroid, Eltroxin, Levothyrox, Euthyrox, Unithroid, L Thyroxine Roche, Levo-T, Oroxine, Eutroxsig, Novothyrox, Tyrosint-Sol, Levotabs, Levotec, Evotro, Evotro)
  • Lipitor (atorvastatin)
  • Lyrica (pregabalin)
  • methotrexate (Trexall, Rasuvo, Methotrexate LPF Sodium, Otrexup, Rheumatrex Dose Pack, Xatmep, Folex PFS)
  • Nexium (esomeprazole)
  • Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine)
  • Plavix (clopidogrel)
  • Singulair (montelukast)
  • sulfasalazine (Azulfidine, Sulfazine, Azulfidine EN-tabs)
  • Synthroid (levothyroxine)
  • Tylenol (acetaminophen)
  • Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin)
  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)
  • Vitamin C (ascorbic acid)
  • vitamin d
  • Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol)
  • Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol)
  • Vitamins (multivitamins)
  • warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven)
  • Xanax (alprazolam)

Can food or alcohol interact with folic acid?

Certain medicines should not be used when eating or when eating certain foods because drug interactions can occur. Consuming alcohol or tobacco with certain drugs can also cause interactions to occur. Discuss your use of drugs with food, alcohol, or tobacco with your health care provider, because there may be interactions between alcohol and tobacco with folic acid.

What health conditions can interact with folic acid?

Other health conditions that you have can affect the use of this drug. Always tell your doctor if you have other health problems, especially pernicious anemia, which is one type of anemia caused by lack of vitamin B12 in the body. Taking folic acid when you have pernicious anemia can cause serious side effects. You must be sure that you do not have pernicious anemia before starting to use this food supplement.


What should I do in an emergency or overdose?

In cases of emergency or overdose, contact your local emergency services provider (112) or immediately to the emergency department at the nearest hospital.

Symptoms of overdose that may occur from the use of folic acid are:

  • numb
  • tongue and mouth hurt
  • weak
  • can't concentrate
  • feel confused and end up feeling tired

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you forget one dose of this medicine, immediately take the missed dose. However, if the time is approaching to take the next dose, just skip the missed dose and return to the usual drinking schedule.

Do not force yourself to take these food supplements with a larger dose than usual, and do not double your dose because if done without the direction and approval of a doctor, you may experience serious health problems.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

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