Vitamin B9, known under the name of folic acid, is important for a properly functioning nervous system and immune system. It also plays an important role in the development of red blood cells, genetic material (DNA) and healthy growth during pregnancy. Vitamin B9 is part of the vitamin B complex.


Vitamin B9 is naturally found in vegetables (especially asparagus, Brussels sprouts, spinach, broccoli and leafy vegetables), fruits, whole grain products, nuts, eggs and to a lesser extent milk and milk products.



A shortage of vitamin B9 can lead to defects in the red and white blood cells and in bone marrow changes. A shortage may also result in a reduced uptake of various nutrients in the intestine. Other symptoms are poor appetite, weight loss and fatigue.
A shortage of folic acid in women in early pregnancy increases the risk of giving birth to a child with spina bifida, cleft lip or cleft palate.


No adverse effects are ever observed of a high intake of natural vitamin B9, that is present in the diet. Who receives more vitamin B9 than he or she needs, pees out the surplus.