Why B Vitamins, including Folate, are Essential When TTC

Eloise Edington  |   16 Mar 2022

When you’re trying to conceive, it’s important to give your body the nutrients it needs to prepare for pregnancy.

Alongside a fertility-friendly diet, fertility specialists recommend taking a high quality prenatal to supplement any missed essential vitamins and minerals when trying to get pregnant.  Wondering what supplements to take when TTC?   Fear not; we’ve teamed up with Proceive (view their partner profile here and visit their website here) to explain the difference between folic acid and folate.

The Proceive Conception® range of nutritional supplements has been specially formulated to support fertility and preconception.  Proceive has been developed by fertility experts using ingredients with clinical science supporting its impact on fertility parameters in both men and women.

Read on to discover what the difference is between folate and folic acid, why taking fertility supplements is important whilst TTC and pregnant, and how much to take.

Written by Holly Pigache

What is folic acid and why is it important when TTC and pregnant?

Folic acid is a B vitamin (B9, called folate in its natural form) that supports conception and is essential in your baby’s neural tube development during early pregnancy.  The Department of Health recommends 400ug of folic acid to reduce the risk of chromosomal abnormalities in the egg, as well as minimising the chance of developmental defects in your baby’s brain and spine.

As folic acid plays such an important role early on, make sure your conception supplement has the recommended amount of this B vitamin.  But here’s the catch: the body can’t always use folic acid effectively, so ingesting folic acid in its natural or metabolised form, folate, helps your body maximise the benefits of folic acid.  (Read on to discover more about folate.)

How much folic acid should I take and for how long when TTC?

The recommended daily amount of folic acid in adults is 400ug but when you’re trying to conceive, your fertility specialist may suggest an increased dose.

Having a diet of foods rich in varied forms of folic acid can help increase your folic acid intake but it might not give you enough of this nutrient for healthy baby development.  Therefore, taking a folic acid or folate supplement when TTC and pregnant is recommended by the Department of Health to ensure sufficient intake.

Even before you’re trying to conceive, plan ahead and take a pre-conception supplement with folate or folic acid each day for three months, before you actively begin trying and for the first three months of pregnancy.

Benefit from 20% off Proceive fertility supplements when entering code FHH20 at checkout.

What is folate?

Folic acid (the synthetic form of vitamin B9) needs to be converted by enzymes to the biologically active L-Methylfolate in order to be used by the body. However, recent research has shown that over 40% of people worldwide have a genetic variation that means the enzymes needed to convert folic acid to folate don’t work as well as they should.

You can boost your folate intake by including foods high in folate in your diet, such as:

  • Leafy vegetables
  • Eggs
  • Oranges and lemons

Yet many of us don’t have a varied enough diet to absorb enough of this essential nutrient, so new research is therefore focusing on supplementing with L-Methylfolate, especially when TTC.

Proceive only ever use the highest quality ingredients that are backed by robust clinical evidence.  Following the latest research on L-Methylfolate (folic acid in its natural form), Proceive use this across all products in their range.

You might think taking an off-the-shelf folic acid supplement is enough when TTC, but if you’re part of the 40% who can’t metabolise folic acid, it makes sense to take folate in its most active form, L-Methylfolate.

Proceive only ever use the highest quality ingredients that are backed by robust clinical evidence. Following the latest research on L-Methylfolate (folic acid in its natural form), Proceive use this across all products in their range. This means you can feel secure in the knowledge that by taking Proceive preconception supplements, you’re getting the best, most active form of folate for conception and your baby’s development.

Understanding the difference between folate and folic acid helps you ensure your body is getting essential nutrients when TTC and pregnant.  Even with a diet of foods rich in folic acid, taking a fertility supplement and prenatal containing folate is important so your body gets the best form of this B vitamin.

All the men and women’s nutritional supplements in the Proceive Conception® range are specially formulated for fertility and preconception.  Using ingredients with clinical science, Proceive has been developed by fertility specialists to support fertility.

Receive 20% off Proceive fertility supplements, by entering code FHH20 at checkout.

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