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Folate

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Middle-aged and older adults benefit from fortification of enriched grain products with folic acid, showing a significant improvement in plasma folate status and homocysteine concentrations, according to a study by Paul Jacques, Tufts University, et al., published in the May 13 New England Journal of Medicine. FDA requires folate fortification to help reduce the incidence of neural tube defects. The study postulates folic acid fortification also may have a "beneficial effect on vascular diseases because of the relation between inadequate folate intake and higher circulating homocysteine concentrations. If a high concentration of homocysteine ultimately proves to be a risk factor for vascular disease, our data indicate that folic acid fortification would have a measurable effect on the rates of cerebrovascular and coronary heart disease in the U.S."

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