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need a dummies guide to folinic acid

littlebird6180

Senior Member
Messages
119
I am homozygous MTHFR mutation and I have CFIDS/ME, POTS, etc. I've been feeling really depressed and my neuroadrenal levels were through the roof, showing high everything (from serotonin to cortisol). My doctor concluded I"m in a constant state of high anxiety and stress that is wiping me out.

She suggested taking a combo of folinic acid and b12 and thought this would help with the depression. The folinic acid though (800mcg) is giving me headaches and making me feel crappy. I have a prescription of potassium but I never take it because I'm afraid of it - I know this is a bit silly but my heart just feels so unstable and I've read scary things about potassium and the heart. My cardiologist was the one who prescribed it for me so even sillier. But I'm on SOOO many medications and supplements that I try to introduce new things one at a time and very slowly. Should I be taking this with the folinic acid? Will it help alleviate the negative side effects?

I'm really struggling to wrap my head around all of this, especially with the brain fog and general depletion. Anyone who can give me a quick laymen's terms guide would be so appreciated.

Thank you!
 

NilaJones

Senior Member
Messages
647
A potassium pill has about as much potassium as one large bite of a potato, so I suggest you not worry too hard :). You can also dissolve the pill in a glass of water, and just drink a little, then see how you feel. It will take effect within minutes.
 

CCC

Senior Member
Messages
452
If you are homozygous MTHFR, you might find you don't tolerate folinic acid. A lot of people here have found methylfolate to be more effective.

That said, you might also want to think about dosage. Some people can tolerate only the tiniest of crumbs to begin with. Your doctor should be aware of all this.
 

Mary

Moderator Resource
Messages
17,291
Location
Southern California
I have a prescription of potassium but I never take it because I'm afraid of it - I know this is a bit silly but my heart just feels so unstable and I've read scary things about potassium and the heart. My cardiologist was the one who prescribed it for me so even sillier.

Potassium is crucial for heart health. I'm assuming your cardiologist prescribed potassium because your levels are low. You should take it. Yes, everything you read says, potassium - watch out! In reality, it's next to impossible to get too much potassium from food, and low potassium is very common. It can make you tired, cause palpitations and so on. The RDA is 4500 mg. I'm guessing your prescription is for much less than that.

I take around 800 mg. a day of potassium gluconate (in divided doses), as well a glass of low-sodium V8 which has 900 mg. I used to get severe fatigue off and on for several years which I only discovered was due to low potassium when I started Freddd's methylation protocol. On blood work my potassium was always low-normal.
 

alicec

Senior Member
Messages
1,572
Location
Australia
I agree - you may be sensitive to folinic - methylfolate may be a better option, or you may just have started with too much.

However don't overlook the possibility that introducing B12 is also causing problems even though you think it is the folinic. What form of B12 and how much?

Here is a post about introducing active B12 and folate.
 

CCC

Senior Member
Messages
452
On another note - we associate headaches with low potassium in this household.
 

Chocolove

Tournament of the Phoenix - Rise Again
Messages
548
But I'm on SOOO many medications and supplements that I try to introduce new things one at a time and very slowly.
@littlebird6180

It would be a good idea to get out your meds and supplements check them out on a drug interaction checking database which also checks with supplements as well as some foods and lifestyles for problems. This is a helpful interactions checker: :thumbsup:
https://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.php

Potassium can be a real issue if you have kidney problems and/or severe adrenal issues. This is rather common, so there are many lists of high and low potassium foods online. They are easy to google. :)

Print out a copy of the interactions to work with, another to post on your frig, and one for your purse. You could probably also upload one to your smartphone. That way whenever, wherever, you can check on this. Thus you can try to suss out your reactions.

It is very helpful to track what you eat (food and pills) by notebook listing your body's reactions. It will help you sort out the cause. It wouldn't surprise me if there is an app for this downloadable to your smartphone.

Unfortunately I've had a lot bad luck relying on doctors and pharmacists to check for and prevent bad reactions. I would always double check anything before I take it, including the dosage prescribed vs. the dosage actually in the bottle. :eek:

:hug:
 

Jimbo39

Senior Member
Messages
405
Location
San Deigo, CA
I agree - you may be sensitive to folinic - methylfolate may be a better option, or you may just have started with too much.

However don't overlook the possibility that introducing B12 is also causing problems even though you think it is the folinic. What form of B12 and how much?

Here is a post about introducing active B12 and folate.

Great link! Very comprehensive but easy to understand. I like the way you explained the interactions of B vitamins and how to counteract averse effects and that it's only thro trial and error we can find what will work for us.

How is niacinimide different from niacin?
 

alicec

Senior Member
Messages
1,572
Location
Australia
niacinimide different from niacin

Niacinamide, as the name implies, is nicotinic acid, aka niacin, plus an amide group (CONH2). When taken as a supplement at normal doses, there is no essential difference.

High doses of niacin are sometimes recommended for various reasons and here there can be a difference. Niacinamide does not cause the flushing reaction of high dose niacin, but for treatment of high cholesterol, appears not to be as effective. In this instance, niacin is preferred but there is a need to build up the dose slowly to avoid the unpleasant, but harmless, flushing reaction (which is the result of vasodilation).
 

littlebird6180

Senior Member
Messages
119
this is all so helpful and interesting. thank you!

I actually take 500mg daily of niacinimide - of everything i've taken, this has had the most noticeable impact on me. it gives me a great boost in energy every day and i've taken it religiously for a year because of that.

i stopped the folinic acid for a couple of days but kept taking the b12 (Adeno B12) and didn't have headaches. I started the folinic acid again but this time took it in the afternoon and haven't had any of the negative effects. Sometimes I think I just take way too much in the morning when my stomach doesn't have enough food in it.

I see Dr Vera at Dr Klimas office and she is really wonderful at tracking everything I'm on and I do check for interactions. The potassium is because I take florinef acetate which can deplete potassium but I just started the Potassium. The dose says 10 MEQ which I think is around 750mg.

Every time I think I've got a grasp on things, I come on sites like these and am blown away by how knowledgeable everyone is. The depth of understanding and the breadth. I have almost no memory retention so I use evernote, a 3 ring binder and these symptom tracker sheets I made myself (see attached - these are actually wildly outdated now because I'm not talking half the stuff on that list but at least a dozen other things).

I also started Calm G and Calm CP which are a result of the neuroadrenal studies and I noticed the Calm G's main ingredient is 5 mehtyltetrahydrofolic acid so now am wondering if this is overdoing it all. I have a few weeks before my next appt though with Dr Vera.
 

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