Methyltetrahydrofolate Reductase Deficiency, MTHFR
Methyltetrahydrofolate reductase deficiency, or MTHFR is a condition associated with a slightly higher risk of neural tube defects and pregnancy loss. Approximately 40% of Americans are carriers of the MTHFR genetic deficiency, while 10% have the mutation that causes acute disease. The other group of carriers can have a variety of symptoms and health problems.
The MTHFR enzyme is involved in the conversion of the amino acid homocysteine to another amino acid, methionine. People with mild MTHFR deficiency have a decreased ability to perform this conversion, and as a result they have higher levels of homocysteine in their body and lower levels of the vitamin folate.
- When it’s all working right, the MTHFR gene begins a multi-step chemical breakdown process, known as methylation, which in simplified terms, is works like this:
- The MTHFR enzyme works with the folate vitamins (B9, folic acid), if you carry this gene mutation methylated folate and methylated B vitamins are needed.
- 5-methyltetrahydrofolate helps convert the amino acid homocysteine down to another essential amino acid, methionine, which is used by your body to make proteins, utilize antioxidants, and to assist your liver to process fats. Methionine helps with depression and even inflammation. It also helps with the conversion of estrogen both estradiol (E2) into estriol (E3)!
- Methionine is converted in your liver into SAM-e (s-adenosylmethionine), which is anti-inflammatory, and supports your immune system, helps produce then breakdown of your brain chemicals serotonin, dopamine and melatonin, and is involved in the growth, repair and maintenance of your cells.
- Proper methylation pathway like the above is going to mean you will have a better chance in eliminating toxins and heavy metals, which can reduce your risk for cancer and other health issues, and put less stress on your adrenals.
At Serenity Health Center, Dr. Debra Muth finds that despite the statistics more people are affected by the MTHFR gene mutation and is a highly significant public health problem that is completely ignored. Yet, millions are suffering from pulmonary embolisms, addictions, fibromyalgia, miscarriages, schizophrenia, severe depression, cancer and autism to name a few.
What do these conditions have in common?
They all may be linked to a MTHFR gene mutation in the individual expressing these symptoms and health conditions.
It is important to make sure the gene mutation is not turned on in order to prevent disease. It is important to prevent this mutation to be turned on especially during pregnancy to prevent complications in unborn infants.
I believe everyone should have testing done for MTHFR mutations it is inexpensive and can prevent a lot of problems and with treatment you can feel much better.