Best Folic Acid Supplements Ranked for 2018 – Top 10 Brands

best-folic-acid-supplements-on-the-market

Jump Ahead to the Best Folic Acid Products

Have you eaten any leafy greens recently? How about asparagus? If the answer is yes, then you have consumed some folate (vitamin B9).

Folate is a natural water-soluble vitamin that is important for many biological functions. Some of the functions of folate include its role in making DNA, cell growth, formation of the nervous system of the fetus, and protection against heart disease and stroke.

As such, folate deficiency may cause many manifestations; these include anemia, neural tube defects (problems with the brain and spinal cord of the fetus), depression, diarrhea, inflammation of the tongue, and many others.

What is Folic Acid?

In contrast with the naturally occurring folate, folic acid is the synthetic form that is present in supplements and vitamin B9-fortified foods (cereals, flour, pasta, etc). The terms folate, folic acid, and vitamin B9 refer to very closely related compounds.

Inside the body, vitamin B9 must first be converted to THF – the active form – before it can participate in reactions.

The most important of these reactions include:

  • Making new cells and DNA. This is particularly significant in pregnancy.
  • Eliminating homocysteine. Accumulation of this compound may increase the risk of strokes and heart disease.

Folic acid supplements generally come in the form of tablets of differing dosage. Prenatal multivitamins also contain folic acid.

Uses & Benefits of Folic Acid

Folic acid is the synthetic version of folate, an essential vitamin. Folic acid is used to increase levels of folate in the body, which can have a variety of benefits. Some primary folic acid uses include:

  • Pregnancy: Folate is vital for a healthy pregnancy. Experts recommend taking 400 micrograms per day of folic acid both before and during pregnancy. This can help reduce the risk of birth defects, particularly those related to the baby’s spinal cord and brain. Most birth defects occur within the first few months of pregnancy, so it’s important for women who may become pregnant to ensure adequate levels of folate/folic acid intake. Folic acid is always included in prenatal vitamins, although standalone folic acid supplements may also be recommended to mothers-to-be.
  • Folate deficiency: It’s possible to become deficient in folate, which can lead to anemia and other health concerns. Folic acid is effective at eliminating folate deficiencies, which can help reduce the risk of anemia, improve nutrient utilization, and more.
  • Cancer: Low levels of folate in the blood has been linked to some types of cancer, and a diet high in folate has been shown to potentially reduce the risk of developing some cancers including breast, colon, lung and pancreatic cancers. However, the relationship between folate and cancer is complex. Taking too much may result in an increased risk of certain cancers, while taking the recommended dosage is thought to reduce the risk. Thus, patients are advised to speak with their doctor to work out an ideal dosage amount and timing in order to optimize folate intake.
  • Heart disease: Folate may be beneficial in addressing heart disease. High-dose folic acid supplements have been shown effective in reducing homocysteine levels and improving vascular function in patients already suffering from coronary artery disease. Since high homocysteine levels in the blood are linked to a hardening of the arteries, it’s thought that folic acid’s homocysteine-reducing effects may be beneficial in addressing heart disease. One study also found that men with higher dietary intakes of folate showed a reduced risk for heart attacks and strokes.
  • Other uses: Folic acid has shown some promise in addressing age-related vision loss, high blood pressure, gum disease, cognitive decline, and vitiligo. These are all considered issues that folate is “possibly effective” for, meaning that research has shown positive potential, but there is not conclusive evidence to support these uses. More research is needed.

Although folic acid and folate are often used interchangeably, there are some differences between the two. Folate is a naturally occurring essential vitamin found in foods, while folic acid is the synthetic version of the vitamin.

Some experts believe that folic acid is not absorbed as easily as folate, which can potentially lead to unhealthy levels of unmetabolized folic acid in the bloodstream. Elevated levels of unmetabolized folic acid has been linked to cancer development, difficulty concentrating, changes in sex hormone levels, and trouble sleeping.

Thus, many believe that increasing natural folate intake from foods should be the focus, although there are still some reasons to take folic acid supplements.

Who Can Benefit from Folic Acid?

  • All women who can get pregnant, including those who are not actively trying to get pregnant. Pregnancy increases the nutritional requirements of many substances, as the mother’s body provides nutrients to the developing fetus. Folate is rapidly used up in making the cells of the baby, which can cause folate deficiency. This may increase the risk for the development of birth defects, particularly neural tube defects. The recommendation that women who are not trying to get pregnant take folate supplements is due to the possibility of unplanned pregnancies, and the fact that neural tube defects occur in the first few weeks of pregnancy, when the mother may still be unaware of the pregnancy.
  • Aging adults. Research has shown a relation between low blood folate levels and a higher incidence of age-related macular degeneration (vision loss) and hearing loss in the elderly.
  • People who suffer from conditions associated with folate deficiency; these may include liver disease, ulcerative colitis, kidney disease, and alcoholism.

Taking Folic Acid

Folic acid supplements are available in tablet or liquid forms. Folic acid supplement dosage varies depending on your diet, but generally speaking the recommended dosage is higher for women: All women between the ages of 15 and 45 should take 400 micrograms per day.

Women who have had a previous neural tube defect-affected pregnancy should take 400 micrograms of folic acid per day when not planning a pregnancy, and 4000 micrograms per day starting one month before they start trying to become pregnant.

You may take the tablets with or without food. If you forget a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If the day of the missed dose has passed, do NOT take a double dose on the next day; only take the new dose as scheduled.

Folic Acid Side Effects

Generally speaking, folic acid causes few if any side effects in most people. Long-term consumption of folic acid in high doses may be associated with diarrhea, headache, confusion, skin reactions, asthma attacks, seizures, and heart disease.

What to Look for in a Good Folic Acid Supplement

The highest rated folic acid supplements are made by reputable companies that adhere to strict guidelines in the manufacturing process. Using only high-quality ingredients enables the product to achieve maximum efficacy and safety.

They are also gluten free, artificial preservative free, and non-GMO. Practical considerations include small tablet size, availability in multiple dosages, and/or scored tablets that can be easily split into equal doses.

Top 10 Folic Acid Products Compared

Heads up, there are affiliate links in this article, so if you buy something, we get a cut of the sale.

Note: Folic Acid is also commonly known as Vitamin B9.


1. Nature’s Blend Folic Acid

Nature's Blend Folic Acid 1000 mcg

Nature’s Blend Folic Acid is probably the best folic acid supplement on the market today. It comes in a container of 1,000 tablets, each contains 1,000 micrograms of folic acid. This affordable folic acid product is perfect for prenatal folic acid supplementation and for anyone with a folate deficiency. These small, easy-to-swallow tablets are preservative and gluten free. They contain no artificial coloring, flavors, wheat, sugar, starch, or yeast.

Highlights

  • 1,000 micrograms of folic acid per tablet.
  • Affordable
  • Gluten and preservative free
  • Free from artificial colors, artificial flavors, sugar, yeast, starch, and wheat
  • Perfect for prenatal care
  • Scored tablets
  • Manufactured in the USA

Who Makes It?

Nature’s Blend is a subdivision of the Arizona based company, National Vitamin Company (NVC). Since its establishment in 1974, NVC has expanded its manufacturing operations to produce an extensive range of dietary supplements and OTC drugs, including Nature’s Blend Folic Acid.

NVC’s commitment to provide premium-quality products at affordable products and their strict adherence to Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) guidelines has ensured their status as one of the top manufacturers of supplements.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for the #1 folic acid supplement, look no further! The quality, affordability, and practicality of Nature’s Blend Folic acid set it apart from competitors.

ⓘ If you buy something using the link below, we get a small commission.

Where to Get It
amazon-logo-newer

2. NOW Foods Folic Acid

NOW Foods Folic Acid

NOW Foods Folic Acid is another top vitamin B9 supplement. Combination with vitamin B12 gives this supplement a synergistic effect. NOW Foods only uses high-quality ingredients in manufacturing, making this a potent and effective folic acid supplement. No bigger than a pea, these 800-microgram tablets are easy to swallow and are quickly absorbed by the body.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folic acid
  • 25 micrograms of vitamin B12.
  • Affordable
  • Synergistic effect with vitamin B12
  • Great for prenatal care
  • Non-GMO, free from gluten, wheat, yeast, soy, sugar, and dairy
  • Produced in GMP-certified facilities in The USA and Canada

Who Makes It?

NOW is an Illinois-based, family-owned business that has been around since 1968. With several facilities across the USA and Canada, they have a solid manufacturing and distribution chain. The centerpiece of NOW’s core values is their commitment to providing quality products that help empower people to lead healthier lives. NOW Foods Folic Acid is a perfect manifestation of these beliefs, making it one of the best vitamin B9 on the market today.

Bottom Line

This is a very effective folic acid supplement, and the addition of vitamin B12 gives it a distinctive advantage. Its quality and affordability make it one of the better folic acid supplements available today.

ⓘ If you buy something using the link below, we get a small commission.

Where to Get It
amazon-logo-newer

3. Solgar Folic Acid Tablets

Solgar Folic Acid Tablets, 800 mcg

Solgar makes a very powerful folic acid supplement. Containing 800 micrograms of folic acid per tablet, this supplement is perfect for pregnant women.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folic acid per tablet.
  • Kosher, gluten free, and vegan friendly
  • Non-GMO
  • Free from wheat, dairy, soy, yeast, sugar
  • Free from artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives

Who Makes It?

Solgar, the company that makes this powerful folic acid supplement, was established in 1947. They are wholly committed to making high-quality dietary supplements that are based on scientific research.

Solgar has cemented its position as an industry leader, incorporating state-of-the-art facilities and exceeding the requirements of GMP. This clearly reflects on this product, making it one of the best vitamin B9 supplements available now.

Bottom Line

Solgar makes one of the most effective vitamin B9 products. If you are looking for a great folic acid supplement made by a company with decades of experience, this is one of your best choices.

ⓘ If you buy something using the link below, we get a small commission.

Where to Get It
amazon-logo-newer

4. Spring Valley – Folic Acid

Spring Valley - Folic Acid 800 mcg

Spring Valley Folic Acid is a good vitamin folic supplement that is free from lactose, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folic acid per tablet.
  • Affordable
  • Free from gelatin, preservatives, and artificial colors and flavors
  • Good for women’s health

Drawbacks

  • May cause stomach cramps
  • Only one dosage option

Who Makes It?

Spring Valley is a manufacturer of high-quality dietary supplements and vitamins. The Spring Valley brand is associated with Walmart.

Bottom Line

Spring Valley Folic Acid is a good vitamin B9 supplement that is affordable and effective.  If you have a sensitive stomach, you might experience some cramps with this one.

ⓘ If you buy something using the link below, we get a small commission.

Where to Get It
amazon-logo-newer

5. Sundown Naturals Folic Acid

Sundown-Naturals-Folic-Acid

Sundown Naturals Folic Acid is a vegetarian-friendly folic acid supplement. One tablet daily of this effective product is enough to get the many folic acid benefits that we mentioned before. This is a non-GMO, lactose-free, and gluten-free product.

Highlights

  • 400/800 micrograms of folic acid per tablet.
  • Vegetarian friendly
  • Small pills, easy to swallow
  • Non-GMO
  • Free from gluten, dairy, lactose, starch and sugar
  • No preservatives, artificial flavors, or colors

Drawbacks

  • Tablets are non-scored
  • Some customers have reported mild skin reactions

Who Makes It?

Sundown Naturals is committed to providing products that are as natural as possible. Their entire product line is 100% GMO free. Their 40-year history of making top-quality dietary supplements has earned them a loyal customer following.

Bottom Line

Sundown Natural makes one of the most effective folic acid supplements. If you are vegetarian or have any food allergies, this is an excellent choice.

ⓘ If you buy something using the link below, we get a small commission.

Where to Get It
amazon-logo-newer

6. Nature’s Bounty Folic Acid

Nature's Bounty Folic Acid 800 mcg

Nature’s Bounty Folic Acid pills are vegetarian friendly and free from gluten, fish derivatives, and milk. These good folic acid pills come in an attractive bottle that contains 250 pills each.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folic acid
  • Affordable
  • Vegetarian friendly
  • Non-GMO and free from gluten, milk, fish, yeast, starch, sugar, and artificial additives.

Drawbacks         

  • Tablets may be difficult to swallow
  • Some customers report that this is less effective than other brands

Who Makes It?

Nature’s Bounty has been making quality, health-conscious products for decades. They combine nutritional science breakthroughs with top-of-the-line manufacturing to produce dietary supplements that are trusted by many customers.

Bottom Line

This supplement is very affordable. Whether you need it for dietary supplementation in pregnancy, heart health, or general health, this is an excellent folic acid supplement. Some customers find it hard to swallow, and others find it less effective.

7. Source Naturals MegaFolinic

Source Naturals MegaFolinic 800mcg

Source Naturals MegaFolinic contains folinic acid rather than folic acid. This form is more active in your body, making it one of the most effective supplements. It is vegan friendly, hypoallergenic, and free from gluten, dairy, egg, corn, soy, and wheat.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folinic acid per tablet
  • Highly active form of vitamin B9
  • Hypoallergenic, vegan friendly, and gluten free
  • No artificial additives
  • No preservatives

Drawbacks

  • Expensive
  • Bad taste
  • Some people report that this is less effective than other B9 supplements

Who Makes It?

Established in 1982, Source Naturals quickly became a pioneer of the dietary supplement industry. Source Naturals was one of the leading companies in making formulations that contain multiple herbs and vitamins. Their high-quality products have helped wellness-conscious individuals take control of their health.

Bottom Line

This is one of the most effective folic supplements, however it is pricey compared to other brands, and some users find it less effective than other B9 supplements.

8. Nature’s Way – Folic Acid

Nature's Way - Folic Acid, 800 mcg

Nature’s Way makes one of the top folic acid supplements. These capsules are easily absorbed into the body, where they help you get the numerous folic acid benefits we have discussed. Unlike other brands on this list, Nature’s Way Folic Acid comes in the form of gelatin-containing capsules.

Highlights

  • 800 micrograms of folic acid per capsule
  • Potent vitamin B9 formulation
  • Contains no preservatives, yeast, milk, wheat, sugar, soy, or corn

Drawbacks

  • Expensive
  • Capsules contain gelatin
  • May cause stomach upset

Who Makes It?

Nature’s Way is one of the first supplement producers to be TRU-ID certified, which means that you can be sure that the ingredients listed on the label are what’s actually in the product.

Bottom Line

If you prefer capsules to tablets, this folic acid supplement is a great choice. Although Nature’s Way’s product is more expensive than some competitors, these are some of the better folic acid pills on the market.

9. Solaray Folic Acid Capsules

Solaray Folic Acid Capsules, 800mcg

If you are vegetarian and do not like swallowing tablets, these aloe vera-containing capsules are a good vitamin B9 supplement for you.

Highlights

  • 800 mg of folic acid per capsule
  • Powerful folic acid supplement
  • Vegetarian

Drawbacks

  • Less affordable
  • May cause upset stomach

Who Makes It?

Since its establishment in 1973 in Utah, Solaray has pioneered encapsulated dietary supplement formulations. Today it remains one of the biggest health supplement manufacturers in the US.

Bottom Line

If you want good folic acid pills from a reputable manufacturer, these are a great choice. They may cause stomach upset in those with sensitive stomachs.

10. Bulksupplements Pure Folic Acid

Bulksupplements Pure Folic Acid

As the name suggests, this folic acid supplement is pure folic acid with no added ingredients! This means that this is one of the most effective formulations. It comes in powder form, so an accurate milligram scale is required to measure the correct folic acid supplement dosage.

Highlights

  • Adjustable serving size
  • Pure folic acid
  • No added ingredients

Drawbacks

  • Difficult to measure accurate dose
  • Increased incidence of side effects due to potential for overdose of folic acid

Who Makes It?

Nevada-based BulkSupplements provides dietary supplements in bulk from grams to metric tons! Their FDA-approved facility abides by strict health code regulations, ensuring the safety and efficacy of their product.

Bottom Line

If you want pure folic acid, there really is no competition. This is arguably the best folic acid supplement for experienced health-conscious people. Before you buy this, make sure you have an accurate milligram scale to measure your folic acid supplement dosage.