Patients having history of cardiac problems are not protected from attacks or stroke by taking a supplement of folate according to a recent study.
Folic acid or folate is one of the B Vitamins used for production of new cells by the body. Some medical practitioners prescribe it to prevent cardiac problems.
Dr. Lydia Bazzano, working at Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans led a research on 17,000 people comprising 12 trials since 2002.
The results of the study proved that people on folate supplements for 6 months have similar chances of developing cardiac problems as the ones not on the supplementation schedule.
Bazzano answered an interviewer, "We found that there was no benefit to using folic acid supplements in terms of cardiovascular disease risk or stroke risk."
"We also found that there was no harm in terms of all-cause mortality. Using the supplements didn't seem to make you die any faster, which was good news," he added.
The results can be found in American Medical Association's Journal.
There are previous studies as evidences for folate helping to reduce cardiac problems, as it reduces the plasma concentration of a sulfur-containing amino acid called homocysteine which is one of the factors leading to cardiovascular problems.
Bazzano explains that folate has its benefits by preventing neural tube defects during pregnancy, but this is not a way to be chosen to reduce cardiac problems.
She said,"Really, what you should be doing are things like quitting smoking, increasing your exercise if you can, lowering your blood pressure, lowering your cholesterol.
"We know that those things have a major benefit and significantly reduce your risk of having a heart attack or a stroke in the future."