MTHFR genetic mutation seems to be widespread, are there any supplements that may help manage your symptoms?
Supplements often recommended are Methyl Folate, Methyl B12, and B6 (P5P). I use these forms specifically because depending on enzyme availability other forms may not be biologically available. I’ve made a shortcut to supplements I have tried on the left hand side of this site. You’ll see a high dose and low dose version of Folate.
MTHFR and Methyl Folate
It seems that many vitamins have up to 6 or more forms in your body. Folate can go through many conversions in your body, and each conversion is done through methylation and enzymes. Folic Acid is the synthetic form of Folate. ( Folate is the category, Folic acid is one type within the category) It is converted as following:
- Folic Acid -> is converted in the liver to:
- Dihydrofolic acid (dihydrofolate) -> uses the enzyme dihydrofolate reductase to create:
- Tetrahydrofolic acid -> uses the enzyme serine hydroxymethyltransferase to create:
- 5,10-methyleneTetrahydrofolate -> uses MTHFR to create
- 5-methylTetrahydrofolate (Methyl Folate!)
As you can see there are several steps needed for this conversion. If one step is not working, whether because of variations in PH, temperature, mutations etc, you will not get the Methyl Folate needed to to perform normal body functions. If you have even one MTHFR mutation you may not have enough, if you have both..you probably need help. If you’re not getting Folate from your diet (from vegetables and legumes, not fortified cereal) it may be helpful to supplement with this item directly.
B12 comes in several forms as well, and they have varying delivery methods.
- Cyanocobalamin- does not occur in nature
- Hydroxycobalamin – also found in the lab, may be used in cases of COMT mutations
- Adenosylcobalamin – most B12 is stored in this form in the liver, this is an active form
- Methylcobalamin – this form has a “Methyl Group” attached and is used in several pathways for methylation, also considered an active form
7 forms of vitamin B6 are know to exist, this is lifted directly from wikipedia:
- Pyridoxine (PN), the form that is most commonly given as vitamin B6 supplement
- Pyridoxine 5′-phosphate (PNP)
- Pyridoxal (PL)
- Pyridoxal 5′-phosphate (PLP), the metabolically active form (sold as ‘P-5-P’ vitamin supplement)
- Pyridoxamine (PM)
- Pyridoxamine 5′-phosphate (PMP)
- 4-Pyridoxic acid (PA), the catabolite which is excreted in the urine
Interesting the PN is commonly given as B6 supplement but P5P is the active form. Again one can use the active form in case there are any conversion issues in the body
These 3 supplements are known to be the active forms and used by each cell of the body for several biochemical processes. However Biochemistry and Genetics are more complicated than a list of supplements. Supplements can interact with one another and other gene mutations to cause problems. You’ll need to get a current genetic workup to know how, and yeah talk to your doctor.