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Sign the White House Petition to end Mandatory Flour Fortification with Folic Acid

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by Ripley, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

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    Just got wind of this, and it seems important.

    Sign the White House Petition to End Mandatory Fortification with Folic Acid

    >>>> http://1.usa.gov/1wlovWv <<<<

    Please help spread the word. Tweet it. Share it on Facebook!

    Folic acid fortification is intended to prevent rare NTD birth defects that ONLY affected 0.05% of US births before fortification began. Meanwhile, the majority of the population has difficulty utilizing that supplement. It's a ridiculous policy that should be ended.

    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/pe...iched-flour-folic-acid-linked-cancer/ZbGt2Lvh

    Note: Only 150 signatures are required for this to become a National issue. Please sign it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015
  2. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    This seems to be nonsense. Folic acid is hydrogen folate and in body fluids free folate ions and folic acid will equilibrate automatically. The petition may have oversimplified things but as it stands it is absurd.
     
  3. ahmo

    ahmo Senior Member

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    Wayne and South like this.
  4. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    I have no idea who Ben Lynch is and I am not too impressed by that site but it confirms the fact that the petition has got it wrong. Folate and folic acid are the same thing in practice. Neither are the same as the various active metabolic derivatives.

    Not much point in sending a petition to the White House if it gets the basic chemistry wrong to my mind. And I am not sure what it has to do with PR and ME to be honest.
     
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  5. sregan

    sregan Senior Member

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    I'd like to see them reverse whatever rule put that in place. Smacks of them adding fluoride to drinking water everywhere. Our freedom of choice was further eroded in the land of the supposed free.

    Whoever started the petition might not have his facts straight though...

    "Human clinical trials have shown that folic acid fortification has resulted in population wide increases breast, prostate and colorectal cancers."

    Where is the data on these trials?
     
  6. Gondwanaland

    Gondwanaland Senior Member

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    The following is not about folic acid, is about cholesterol, but I am posting it here just as an example for the decisions that are made for whole populations:
    The Government’s Bad Diet Advice
     
  7. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Folate researchers in the UK recently (last year I think) went public with wanting to prevent folic acid supplementation in foods. As the evidence accrues, and this is a new area of research, it looks like folic acid in many people acts more like a poison than a vitamin. Indeed some of the recent research implies that just two slices of folic acid fortified bread is poisonous. Folic acid is tentatively linked to dementia, cancer, and natural killer cell dysfunction ... the same kind of dysfunction found in most ME patients.

    We have long known that folic acid can be poisonous. What mitigated this was the presumption that it is rapidly converted by the liver to biologically active folate. It turns out the liver is easily overwhelmed, and folic acid often gets through into the blood stream. Some genetic problems, notably with MTHFR, seem to increase risk.

    There is no question this requires more research. Since folic acid is used as a mandatory additive in many counties, I regard this research as urgent. How much damage might we be doing? We need more studies, and more careful studies, which means more funding and more political will from health authorities.
     
  8. Sushi

    Sushi Senior Member Albuquerque

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    Yes, I was thinking of the MTHFR SNPs too, as many of us have one of the important two. Researchers have told us that, even if we don't have one of these SNPs, that folic acid can "grab the receptors" and block active folate from being taken up. Sorry for the inexact language!

    Sushi
     
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  9. South

    South Senior Member

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  10. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

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    For what it's worth, here's what I found with a little Googling on the subject. The references below are mainly copied from two articles [1][2]:

    Folic acid refers to the oxidized synthetic compound used in dietary supplements and food fortification, whereas folate refers to the various tetrahydrofolate derivatives naturally found in food.
    http://blog.designsforhealth.com/blog/bid/115121/Folic-Acid-vs-Folate-Part-I

    The form of folate that can enter the main folate metabolic cycle is tetrahydrofolate (THF). Unlike natural folates, which are metabolized to THF in the mucosa of the small intestine, folic acid undergoes initial reduction and methylation in the liver, where conversion to the THF form requires dihydrofolate reductase. The low activity of this enzyme in the human liver, combined with a high intake of folic acid, may result in unnatural levels of unmetabolized folic acid entering the systemic circulation.
    http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&aid=1343280

    The human gut appears to have a very efficient capacity to convert reduced dietary folates to 5-MTHF but limited ability to reduce folic acid...Chronic liver exposure to folic acid in humans may induce saturation, which would possibly explain reports of systemic circulation of unmetabolized folic acid.
    http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/100/2/593

    One of the major risks associated with excessive intake of folic acid is the development of cancer.
    http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/your-breakfast-giving-you-cancer
    http://blog.designsforhealth.com/blog/bid/115121/Folic-Acid-vs-Folate-Part-I
    http://www.nbcnews.com/id/35874922/ns/health-diet_and_nutrition/t/your-breakfast-giving-you-cancer/

    High doses of folic acid 'promotes growth of cancerous cells'
    http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/271601.php
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121183414.htm

    Our data suggest that folic acid supplementation may promote the progression of established mammary tumors. The potential tumor-promoting effect of folic acid supplementation in breast cancer patients and survivors needs further clarification
    http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0084635

    Several studies have reported the presence of unmetabolized folic acid in the blood following the consumption of folic acid supplements or fortified foods.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17697404

    Human exposure to folic acid was non-existent until its chemical synthesis in 1943, and was introduced as a mandatory food fortification in 1998.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18038944

    A randomized control trial found that that daily supplementation with 1 mg of folic acid was associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer.
    http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/content/101/6/432.full

    In the United States, Canada, and Chile, the institution of a folic acid supplementation program was associated with an increased prevalence of colon cancer.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19190501
    http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/content/16/7/1325.abstract

    The presence of unmetabolized folic acid in the blood is associated with decreased natural killer cytotoxicity.
    http://jn.nutrition.org/content/136/1/189.short

    Since natural killer cells play a role in tumor cell destruction, this would suggest another way in which excess folic acid might promote existing premalignant and malignant lesions.

    In one study, consumption of folic acid in excess of 400 micrograms per day among older adults resulted in significantly faster rate of cognitive decline than supplement nonusers.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15824266

    Folic acid supplementation might increase the risk of colorectal neoplasia
    http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=207344

    Higher folate levels may be associated with faster progression of localized prostate cancer
    http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/content/19/11/2833.short

    Treatment with folic acid plus vitamin B(12) was associated with increased cancer outcomes and all-cause mortality in patients with ischemic heart disease in Norway, where there is no folic acid fortification of foods.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19920236

    Baseline dietary folate intake and plasma folate in nonmultivitamin users were inversely associated with risk of prostate cancer, although these associations did not attain statistical significance in adjusted analyses:
    http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/content/101/6/432

    Our data suggest that folic acid supplementation may promote the progression of ACF to colorectal tumors.
    http://paperity.org/p/42511851/effe...progression-of-colorectal-aberrant-crypt-foci

    There continues to be concern that folic acid fortification may have adverse effects in subpopulation groups not originally targeted for fortification...Over the past few years, the US population has been exposed to a significant increase in folate intake, for which essentially no data on safety exist. The potential cancer-promoting effect of folic acid supplementation needs to be considered...on the vast majority of the US population, who are not at risk of NTDs.
    http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/80/5/1123.full

    Folate has a dual effect on cancer, protecting against cancer initiation but facilitating progression and growth of preneoplastic cells and subclinical cancers, which are common in the population. Thus, a high folic acid intake may be harmful for some people. Nations considering fortification should be cautious and stimulate further research to identify the effects, good and bad, caused by a high intake of folic acid from fortified food or dietary supplements. Only then can authorities develop the right strategies for the population as a whole.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18326588

    In a double blind, placebo controlled randomized trial of 1021 men and women carried out over a 10 year period, “Folic acid was associated with higher risks of having 3 or more adenomas and of noncolorectal cancers.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17551129

    Well, if methylation is important to ME/CFS, then I would think that eating an enriched-flour product or fortified rice with fake folates would be counterproductive for someone with the MTHFR C677T mutation who had ME/CFS and would therefore have difficulty metabolizing folic acid. Is that not correct?
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015
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  11. South

    South Senior Member

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    The petition is being run by a real .gov site, and is non-registration if people simply want to sign a petition. It does require an email address to sign a petition on this site, but no password or any registration tedium. And since it's run directly by the gov, not by a third party petition management company, I don't think the email address gets sold.

    It states "When you sign this petition, your initials, city, and state may be publicly displayed on the petition page". Just initials though, not your name.

    I just signed the petition; a minute later it emailed me a confirmation email with a link in that email to confirm that I did want to sign that petition. I clicked that link and got a simple page that said basically, ok, it worked. Seemed legit.

    This is the page where I found the "how this petition site works" info:
    http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/06/24/making-we-people-more-user-friendly-ever
     
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  12. sregan

    sregan Senior Member

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    @Jonathan Edwards Why are you not impressed with the site?
     
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  13. Maia

    Maia

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    Here is it explained rather well: OPPOSING ROLES OF FOLATE IN PROSTATE CANCER

    "It has been postulated then that folate may play a dual role in tumorigenesis, depending on the amount of available folate and whether or not the cell has already become neoplastic. Indeed, animal studies have shown that folate supplementation is protective prior to initiation of carcinogenesis. After neoplastic transformation, however, folate depletion inhibits tumor growth.14,15 These findings are consistent with both a protective role for folate via maintenance of nucleotide pools and proper epigenetic regulation, as well as a detrimental role via enhanced cellular proliferation post-transformation."

    and

    "As reviewed by Mason et al,40 there was an increase in colorectal cancer incidence in both the U.S. and Canada that coincided with mandatory folic acid fortification in the mid 90’s. It has been postulated that the increased folate levels seen at this time may have allowed previously existing, however otherwise clinically indolent, tumors to proliferate. With the evidence just discussed regarding increasing tumorigenicity and proliferation rates of prostate cancer cells occurring in high folate environments,3739 it is tantalizing to suggest the same phenomenon could explain the increase in prostate cancer incidence seen in North America from 1998–2002.1,3 In a recent case report, a patient with GS 3+4=7 prostate cancer had been managed successfully, PSA < 3ng/mL, for 10 years with intermittent androgen deprivation therapy using leuprolide, flutamide, and finasteride. He subsequently developed biochemical progression with a rising PSA to 21.3ng/mL, despite attempts at anti-androgen withdrawal, adding other anti-androgens, and eventually continuing leuprolide while adding docetaxel for over 18 weeks.41 It was then discovered that the patient had begun taking high dose supplements containing a total of 8mg of mixed folates and 5mg of Vitamin B12 (a folate coenzyme) at the beginning of his PSA rise. His serum folate at the time of his PSA peak was 303.6 nM. After stopping the supplementation and discontinuing his consumption of fortified foods, his serum folate level dropped to 9.06 nM. Remarkably, his PSA started to decline within two weeks, nadiring at 2.08 ng/mL.41
     
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  14. Gondwanaland

    Gondwanaland Senior Member

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  15. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    I cannot see what potential effect of folate on prostate cancer has to do with PR and ME. My original point was that folate and folic acid are the same thing - which is confirmed by the fact that many of the papers cited above use the words interchangeably (as in 'folate may play a dual role in tumorigenesis). I don't know of any evidence that folate or methylation are relevant to ME but even if they were I do not see what it has to do with all the papers about cancer to be honest.
     
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  16. Maia

    Maia

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    Fortunately there are beneficial bacteria living - hopefully - in our guts that can produce some folate and the human host can benefit.

    Folate Production by Probiotic Bacteria (2011)

    Folates represent an essential nutrition component in the human diet, being involved in many metabolic pathways. The daily recommended intake as approved in the European Union is 400 μg/day for adults [1,2]. Efficiency of DNA replication, repair and methylation are affected by folate, therefore high amounts of folate are required by fast proliferating cells such as leucocytes, erythrocytes and enterocytes [3].

    ...the colon represents a major depot of folate and the vitamin produced by the colonic bacteria exceeds dietary intake and affects the folate status of the host. It is produced in large quantities by the colonic microbiota, mainly as monoglutamylated folate, the form that is absorbed at the highest rate [17], intestinal bacteria being one source of this vitamin. Many studies assessed the contribution of intestinal microbiota to the folate intake of animal hosts [17,18,19,20], and it has been demonstrated that the folate synthesized by intestinal bacteria can be absorbed and used by the host [18,21,22,23,24]. Recently, direct evidence of absorption of folate across the colon has been irrefutably provided [25]. The apparent rate of absorption in the colon is considerably lower than that in the small intestine. However, in the distal portion of the gastrointestinal tract the transit time is longer than in the small intestine, and the supply of folates by the colonic microbiota is constant and continuous, whereas their availability in the upper tract is discontinuous and mostly affected by food intake.
     
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  17. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

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    This is patently false and an overgeneralization. Folate is often used interchangeably with folic acid (and in fact the FDA is intentionally confusing this issue), but folic acid is not a natural form of folate and is difficult for many people to reduce into the active form of folate.

    Supplement manufacturers have even published the explanations on the difference between folic acid and the reduced forms of folate, and the mechanisms of why many people cannot tolerate folic acid:

     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015
  18. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    Sorry, but it's right. Folate is not 'reduced forms of folate', it is folate. And I cannot see what it has to do with ME!!!
     
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  19. Ripley

    Ripley Senior Member

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    Well, I honestly don't know how you can be a member of the PR forum and not know how methylation is relevant to ME/CFS. Just look around!:

    Google Search: site: phoenixrising.me "folic acid"

    And I think @Fredd would be disappointed to hear you say that! :)

    The relationship with ME/CS obviously has nothing to do with cancer. You sign the petition so that you can reverse a dumb policy that messes around with your methylation cycle, which is likely related to ME/CFS.
     
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  20. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    I see lots of stuff about folate and methylation on PR, indeed, but I have never figured out what the reason is to think is has anything to do with ME other than somebody once had a theory about it.
     
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