Type 2 Diabetes – Does Folic Acid Help Prevent Heart Disease?

In August of 2017, the journal Nutrition Research and Practice reported on a study carried out on post menopausal Korean women who had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. They were looking specifically at the risk of the women developing heart disease.

Scientists at Ewha Women’s University and Huh’s Diabetes Clinics in Seoul, Korea, included 25 women in the study who had been supplemented with 800 micrograms of folic acid for eight weeks…

  • Folate (a B vitamin) levels, significantly increased while homocysteine, a type of amino acid, levels decreased.
  • LDL, or “bad” cholesterol levels, decreased. The ratio of LDL to HDL or “good” cholesterol, improved as well as the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL.

From the above results, the researchers concluded folic acid lowered blood homocysteine, increased folate, and improved the character of cholesterol. The amino acid homocysteine is made from the breakdown of proteins in the body and is associated with heart and blood vessel disease in adults…

  • in high levels, it increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
  • Homocysteine is thought to contribute to a buildup of plaque inside arteries.
  • lower levels are associated with a decreased risk for heart and blood vessel disease.

Folate or folic acid, also known as vitamin B9, is necessary for DNA replication and cell division. It has been previously seen to lower homocysteine levels when combined with vitamins B12 and B6. Some foods high in folate include…

  • legumes – beans, peas, lentils.
  • nuts,
  • avocados,
  • dark green leafy vegetables – broccoli, spinach, collard greens, turnip greens, okra, brussels sprouts.
  • asparagus, and
  • citrus fruits and juices.

Beans and citrus fruits are not usually eaten together, but vegancooking.com suggests cooking Spicy Citrus Black Beans. The ingredients sound tasty…

  • orange juice,
  • lime juice,
  • black beans,
  • olive oil,
  • minced onion,
  • garlic,
  • chili powder,
  • garlic powder,
  • onion powder,
  • cumin, and
  • oregano.

Getinspired.com offers a recipe for making a Broccoli Salad with avocado dressing. Hummusapien.com tells how to make a broccoli salad using cashews to make the dressing. NB. Be careful of portion sizes. Although avocado fat is healthful, it still has more calories than protein or carbohydrates.

How about a healthy Waldorf Salad? Purelytwins.com has a recipe that uses broccoli, avocado, mustard, red grapes, and walnuts.

Legumes and dark green leafy vegetables are easy to grow in your kitchen garden…

  • asparagus and citrus fruits take more patience than legumes.
  • asparagus takes time to become established before you can harvest the edible shoots.

Why not consider orange trees as part of your landscaping: the best time to plant young trees is in spring.