View Full Version : Folic Acid on an Empty Stomach?

04-22-2007, 07:08 AM

I have just been told that one is supposed to take Folic Acid on an empty stomach. However, I have been taking mine at night. Does anyone know if this is very important or whether it doesn't really matter too much?

Thanks very much and keep well! :)

04-22-2007, 07:33 PM
With meds, as a general rule, unless I am told specifically to take them on an empty stomach, I take them after I eat. with all the problems I have had with nausea, I rather do ANYthing than erp. I think it's a good general "rule." I take my folic acid in the AM, after breakfast with a lot of my other daily meds. I seem to tolerate them better early in the day, anyhow.
Love, Kathy

04-23-2007, 06:40 AM
Folic acid is one of those things it is important to take on an empty stomach - usually at least 30 minutes before or two hours AFTER a meal, with a sip of water. The reason is that food interferes with the absorption of folic acid supplements and reduces tha bioavailability. So if you are prescribed a 400 mcg supplement and you take it with food, you are only getting the benefit of about 250 mcg. The difference can be significant if you are taking methotrexate, and don't eat a diet high in folates. There are other medicines that can block the absorption of folic acid, so you should always check with a pharmacist about which meds can safely be taken together. And folic acid supplements can mask the symptoms of vitamin b-12 deficiency, so some doctors recommend that anyone taking foic acid should also take B-12 supplements. So that might be something you need to ask your doctor about too.

And ILoveHistory, folic acid supplements can interfere with the effectiveness of antiseizure meds, so you have to be careful about taking them close to when you take your antiepileptics. You might want to ask your neurologist about the best time to take them. And you might also want to keep a food list for a few days to see how much folic acid you are getting in your diet. If you eat a lot of foods fortified with folic acid (breads, cereals, juices) and then take supplements too, it can definitely interfere with your antiseizure meds and possibly provoke seizures, so you want to be extra careful about your supplements.

04-23-2007, 10:54 AM

Littlered: Thanks very much for your response! :)

Marycain: Thank you SO much for letting me know! I had absolutely no idea that Folic Acid supplements could interfere with my anti-epileptic drugs! :shock: I will certainly speak to my Neurologist about this.

I do not eat bread or very much cereal (except for Cornflakes and Rice Krispies because they are gluten-free) because of the Celiac Disease. I am not allowed to drink fruit juices anymore because they contain too much sugar; I'm not sure quite what the problem is, but apparently there is now something wrong with my Pancreas and they are trying to control my blood sugar levels, which are going crazy. I am going from being worryingly Hypoglycaemic, causing seizures and strange migraines, to having very high blood sugar and we are struggling to control it. :(

Thanks again and keep well! :)

05-23-2007, 03:19 PM
Thank you, MaryCain! I didn't know it had to be taken on an empty stomach, something I will now do each morning BEFORE I eat breakfast. It takes me awhile before I want to eat anyhow. But thank you for educating me!
ILoveHistory, I hope you are well and happy, you little sweetheart! Your posts are so intelligent and well written. I bet you are one heck of a great student! Love, Kathy

05-24-2007, 06:18 AM
Hi Littlered!

Thank you very much! :oops: :D

How was the move?

Keep well! :)

05-24-2007, 07:51 AM
ILoveHistory, the move was just fine. We hired some "starving students" (College Kids with a truck) to move us. My husband and daughter packed most of our things, and unpacked most of them, so all I had to do was watch and direct. We still have a few boxes to unpack (I do a few each day if I am up to it). Since we have been here 3 weeks, I kind of think that whatever is in those last few boxes, we must not need much! Seriously, though, I think it's mostly pictures and books. (My husband marked a lot of the boxes "odds and ends"--sure makes unpacking both a mystery and a pain! :D ) Love, Kathy

05-24-2007, 12:44 PM
Littlered, I'm glad to hear it! :)

Keep well! :)