“In healthy overweight subjects a short-term folic acid supplementation reduces the circulating level of some inflammatory mediators… thus suggesting a potential therapeutic role for folic acid in the protection from atherogenesis and cardiovascular diseases,” wrote the researchers in the International Journal of Obesity (Vol. 30, pp. 1197–1202).
Since people who are overweight or obese are said to be in a state of increased inflammation, compared to non-overweight and non-obese people, reducing inflammation could benefit the ever growing number of people with ‘weight issues’.
The researchers, from University of Pisa School of Medicine, recruited 60 healthly but overweight (BMI between 25 and 29 kg per sq.m) for the 12-week unmasked randomized placebo-controlled trial. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive either a folic acid supplement ()2.5 mg per day) or placebo .
In agreement with a number of other studies, volunteers receiving the folic acid supplements had decreased levels of homocysteine (12 per cent), an amino acid that, by itself, has been linked by epidemiological studies to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. For the inflammatory molecules, the researchers reported that, compared to baseline, the volunteers taking the folic acid supplement had significant drops in the circulating concentration of all three molecules: MCP-1, 15 per cent; IL-8, 17 per cent;CRP, 6 per cent.
Longer term studies are needed to confirm if such effects are beneficial long-term, and also whether such benefits would be seen in obese people.courtesy of nutraingredients.com