Your genes play an important part in your health and how your body functions.
Sometimes, however, you can have a mutation in certain genes that can increase your risk of disease due to dysfunctions in cells.
MTHFR mutations are fairly common and can cause your homocysteine levels to rise, putting you at a higher risk for heart disease.
With the right MTHFR supplementation program in place, however, you can significantly reduce these risks.
Is It Possible To Supplement The MTHFR Gene
Supplements are a great way to ensure you get enough nutrients on a daily basis to support bodily functions, but many people simply take a multivitamin without considering what they truly require.
Everyone’s body has a unique genetic makeup and mutations in certain genes can make you more dependable on specific nutrients and supplements.
The good news is there are ways to use supplements in order to counter the effects that MTHFR gene mutations can have on your body.
To determine which supplements to take, it’s important that we consider the role of the gene and what problems certain mutations may cause.
The MTHFR gene ensures proteins with the same name are produced in your body.
These proteins have different roles to play, and they signal the metabolism of homocysteine, a naturally occurring amino acid that’s actually not “good” for you.
By breaking down homocysteine into other chemicals, the MTHFR gene ensures this amino acid does not circulate through your body at high concentrations.
This is where supplements and nutrients come into the picture. For the MTHFR gene to work effectively, it needs to convert folic acid into an active form that can be used by the body, which is called folate.
When looking at supplements that could potentially counter the negative effects of a mutation in your MTHFR genes, then you should focus on these particular nutrients.
One important recommendation to consider with MTHFR supplementation is that it contains the active form of folate instead of folic acid.
This particular form of the nutrient can be absorbed by your body more easily, ensuring its bioavailability is enhanced compared to using a supplement that contains folic acid.
Apart from folic acid, try to use supplements that contain vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 as well.
These are also important nutrients that the MTHFR gene’s functionality relies on.
Supplements Versus Food For Your MTHFR Gene
An important matter to discuss is whether it’s better to get these important nutrients for food or you should still use supplements as well.
The good news is that there are many foods that contain folate, as well as other B vitamins, that play important roles in your body.
Some of the best foods you should turn to when you want to load up on folate include papayas, oranges, lentils, brussels sprouts, bell peppers, cauliflower, avocado, asparagus, and leafy greens.
These foods give you the active form of folate, which means your body does not first need to convert folic acid and folate.
When it comes to obtaining vitamin B12, you’ll generally need to turn to animal sources of food.
This is because animal-derived foods, such as meat, are the primary sources of vitamin B12.
It is also where problems start to come in for people who are vegetarian or vegan.
That said there are a couple of great ways to get vitamin B12 if you are vegetarian or vegan. One of my favourites is nutritional yeast, another option is fortified plant based milks.
Food like mussels, liverwurst, sardines, lamb, clams, and beef liver are high in vitamin B12. A serving of octopus meat gives you 600% of your daily vitamin B12 requirements.
If you do not have a balanced meal plan that includes foods with folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12, then mthfr supplementation might be needed to ensure you do not experience a deficiency.
When your body does not have enough of these nutrients, the process of breaking down homocysteine becomes dysfunctional.
Our Final Thoughts On MTHFR Supplementation
When you have mutations in your MTHFR gene, you may be at a higher risk of disease.
With the right supplements, such as folate, you can improve the functioning of the proteins made by this gene and ensure nutrient deficiencies won’t cause problems for you.
It’s important to note that gene mutations alone do not cause disease, but rather contribute as a combined element alongside your lifestyle habits and behaviors.