MTHFR? Vitamin C Can Boost Your Folate by 50%

August 4, 2015  |  Blog, Histamine Intolerance

Do you have mutations of MTHFR? Vitamin C can boost your folate by 50%.

Folate is a critical nutrient for protecting DNA and in homocysteine methylation. Yet folate is very fickle.

If you have an MTHFR mutation, in the presence of oxidative stress, then folate can become unstable and wreak havoc.

However, at least three small human studies, have shown that vitamin C acts to stabilise folate. Not only that but it helps to absorb it even with a fickle C667T MTHFR polymorphism.

Here are the findings:

  • Dosages were 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (343mcg) with ascorbic acid (either 289.4mg or 973.8mg).
  • Folate levels increased by 36% and 56% (that is in a dose dependent manner).
  • Vitamin C protected folate in the gastro-intestinal tract, intracellularly, the nervous system, and brain.
  • Results were maintained even with a C667T variant of MTHFR.

These studies suggest that vitamin C levels (rather than simply the rouge MTHFR gene) are the key protective factor.

For those of you with histamine intolerance vitamin C increases diamine oxidase making it doubly important. The recommended dosage for histamine intolerance is around 2000 mcg a day which is more than double that used in the folate studies.

Additional Reading

Lucock M, Yates Z, Boyd L, Naylor C, Choi JH, Ng X, Skinner V, Wai R, Kho J, Tang S, Roach P, Veysey M. Vitamin C-related nutrient-nutrient and nutrient-gene interactions that modify folate status. Eur J Nutr. 2013 Mar;52(2):569-82. doi: 10.1007/s00394-012-0359-8. Epub 2012 Apr 21. PubMed PMID: 22527288.

Verlinde PH, Oey I, Hendrickx ME, Van Loey AM, Temme EH. L-ascorbic acid improves the serum folate response to an oral dose of [6S]-5-methyltetrahydrofolic acid in healthy men. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2008 Oct;62(10):1224-30. Epub 2007 Jul 11. PubMed PMID: 17622258.

Aylett SB, Neergheen V, Hargreaves IP, Eaton S, Land JM, Rahman S, Heales SJ. Levels of 5-methyltetrahydrofolate and ascorbic acid in cerebrospinal fluid are correlated: implications for the accelerated degradation of folate by reactive oxygen species. Neurochem Int. 2013 Dec;63(8):750-5. doi: 10.1016/j.neuint.2013.10.002. Epub 2013 Oct 15. PubMed PMID: 24140430.

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  • Jenna Durant

    What brand of vit c do you recommend? I ask because of the whole citrus bioflavonoids issue.

    • liznc

      How about Buffered C from Nutricology? My Doctor recommends that one.

      • Hi Liznc. Buffered Vitamin C is great. I have also had good success with Liposomal Vitamin C. The issue is whether you are sensitive to citrus where the source would become an issue. Hope that helps.

        • liznc

          Alison, Yes I don’t eat any citrus because it causes migraines.

          • oh; so have you checked out Camu Camu or Gubinge/Kakadu plum?

          • Oh right. Have you tried some of the herbal mast-cell stabilizers for migraines such as feverfew and butterbur?

    • The issue is what you will tolerate; which would need to be a bio-individual recommendation. You can obtain vitamin c other than via citrus through Camu Camu for example. I have also had good success with Liposomal Vitamin Cs.

  • Lucas Malson

    Your photos are so beautiful!

    • thankyou; its were I live, and nature is my inspiration. I hope you enjoy them.

  • Janice Taylor

    The low histamine chef from the UK suggested Quercetin +Vit C which is water soluble. I took 2 caps and it took away a lot of my flushing! She also recommends Mangosteen

    • Hello Janice welcome! That of course was not for MTHFR but for mast cell activation. Quercetin and luteolin is also not tolerated with some CYP mutations. Thanks though for the reminder.

  • Xenia M

    Is Vitality C safe in your opinion? It’s made by American Neutriceuticals. thank you!

    • Hi Xenia M thanks for asking. I am not familiar with that product. Some people do better on natural forms of vitamin C so that would be something to consider.

      • Xenia M

        Thanks Alison.

        What is a natural form of VIT C? Suggestions? And what about Liposomal VIT C by Golden Tiger Lipids. I’m MTHFR a1298c (hetero) with Celiac and histamine intolerance.

        • Hi I am sorry I cannot give personal advice without a full medical history. You can get natural vitamin C forms from Iherb such as Camu Camu

  • patricia keller

    What is it about folate that is so crucial? I have both HIT & hypothyroid, and I know that folate & homocysteine methylation is important for both, but I am not sure how they are connected. I appreciate your input!

  • Linda Holt

    Are the veggie caps of Camu Camu a good way to go or do you recommend the powder raw or not raw? I don’t do smoothies or drink juice, so prefer the capsules if they’re just as effective. Thanks.

  • Margot P

    Did you mean to write 2000mg of vitamin C? The folate study was in mg, not mcg.