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What are the side effects of folic acid?

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Quick Answer

Most people do not suffer side effects with folic acid, but those who take high amounts of it may experience confusion, diarrhea, sleep disorders, upset stomach and other conditions, states WebMD. Taking a lot of folic acid over a long period may increase the risk of a heart attack.

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What are the side effects of folic acid?
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Full Answer

Folic acid treats folate deficiency as well as anemia. WebMD says. People who eat leafy vegetables, beans, yeast and mushrooms consume folic acid naturally. Folic acid supplements can help the bowel absorb nutrients properly. Women may take folic acid to prevent birth defects and miscarriages during the early days of their pregnancy. The vitamin can also treat age-related conditions, AIDS and vitiligo.

Most people who take the recommended dose of 400 micrograms of folic acid suffer no side effects, WebMD asserts. The majority of patients take the smaller dose and should only take higher doses if doctors advise it. Higher doses can contribute to a variety of issues, ranging from behavior changes to skin reactions. Taking high doses for an extended period can increase the risk of a heart attack in patients who already have health problems. Doctors think too much folic acid may also increase the risk of prostate and lung cancer.

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