Navigation Links
Higher Folic Acid Levels in Teens Tied to Academic Success
Date:7/11/2011

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Teens who have high levels of folic acid appear to do better in school than those with lower levels, Swedish researchers report.

"Folate intake had a positive association with academic achievement" in the students studied, the authors wrote in the report published in the July 11 online edition and the August print issue of Pediatrics.

Not only should health providers monitor folic acid levels in teens, but the findings should influence school meals, school teaching and information given to parents, according to the researchers.

Teens often have high levels of the blood protein homocysteine, an amino acid linked to heart disease, and low levels of folic acid. In previous studies, folic acid levels have been linked to mental ability; however, until now this had not been linked with improved school performance, the study authors said.

"We know that folate plays a really critical role in brain development and brain function," said Dr. Daniel Armstrong, associate chair of pediatrics at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

"We know that, in young children, folate deficiencies are associated with poorer neurocognitive function and neurocognitive development," he noted. In fact, folate deficiencies may be involved in the development of autism, he added.

Armstrong thinks that a diet rich in folate might be important for brain functioning throughout life. "It's one of those things that's no harm, no foul. It's not going to do us any harm and it might do us some good," he said.

To find out whether folate might do some good, a team led by Dr. Torbjorn K. Nilsson, from the department of laboratory medicine at Orebro University Hospital in Sweden, collected data on folic acid levels in 386 teens aged 15 years. The researchers also looked at any possible effects of socioeconomic status and genetics.

The investigators found that teens who had the highest levels of folic acid also got the best grades. None of the other factors they examined accounted for their finding, Nilsson's team noted.

"These results provide new information that points to the importance of keeping a closer watch on folate status in childhood and adolescence. They may also have direct implications for school meal provisions, school teaching programs and information to parents," the authors concluded.

However, there is no scientific evidence that taking folate supplements will be beneficial, Armstrong noted. "It's too early to say that everyone should start taking folate," he stressed.

Folic acid is one of the B vitamins and is a key component in making DNA and RNA. Insufficient folic acid is a cause of certain birth defects of the spine and brain, including spina bifida.

Among the elderly, folic acid consumption appears to affect mental ability, and low levels of this vitamin have been associated with dementia and Alzheimer's disease, according to several studies.

Folic acid is found in leafy green vegetables, fruits, dried beans, peas and nuts. In addition, people can obtain folic acid from breads, cereals and other grain products enriched with folic acid, as well as folic acid supplements.

More information

For more information on folic acid, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCE: Daniel Armstrong, M.D., professor and associate chair, pediatrics, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; July 11, 2011, Pediatrics, online


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Stroke risk in pregnant women 2.4 times higher
2. TEMLA shows higher diagnostic yield than EBUS or EUS in largest reported series to date
3. Higher daily dose of aspirin could play key role in preventing heart attacks for those with diabetes
4. Delayed access to tertiary care associated with higher death rate from type of pulmonary fibrosis
5. Hospitals in U.S. Territories Have Higher Death Rates: Study
6. Class of Drugs Linked to Higher Heart Risk in Older Diabetics
7. Inducing labor is not associated with higher rates of cesarean sections
8. Medicaid managed care plans owned by public companies have higher administrative costs
9. Medicaid managed care plans owned by public companies have higher adminstrative costs
10. Internal bleeding higher with popular heart device than earlier model
11. Analysis finds mortality from all causes higher among hepatitis C-infected
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Higher Folic Acid Levels in Teens Tied to Academic Success
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... the certification process to promote standards of excellence for the field of eating ... for March 22 – 25, 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Apple Rehab ... services, staged a mock evacuation of the facility as part of a disaster drill ... Department, Echo Hose EMS and Shelton City Emergency Manager, as well as the ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... Milford, NJ (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... weekend at scenic Alexandria Park in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by ... and physical activity. The fun run is geared towards children of all ages; ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: ... souls in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is ... Bible. She has taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ladies at ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Planet Fitness, one of the largest ... its plans to open a flagship location in Covington, LA at 401 N. U.S. ... Go store next to Office Depot in the Holiday Square shopping center. Its location ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/2/2017)... -- Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY ) ... of 2017 on Tuesday, October 24, 2017. Lilly will ... the investment community and media to further detail the ... begin at 9 a.m. Eastern time. Investors, media and ... the conference call through a link that will be ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... -- Cohen Veterans Bioscience and Early Signal Foundation announce ... home sensors for real-time monitoring of patients with trauma-related ... organization focused on disruptive health solutions for rare disorders ... to record and integrate behavioral, cognitive, physiological and contextual ... ...
(Date:9/23/2017)... Pa. , Sept. 22, 2017 Janssen ... a complete response letter from the U.S. Food and ... seeking approval of sirukumab for the treatment of moderately ... letter indicates additional clinical data are needed to further ... moderately to severely active RA. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: