Preventing Methylfolate Side Effects

Quotation-Benjamin-Franklin-planning-preparation-motivational-Meetville-Quotes-76699The most read article on MTHFR.Net is ‘Methylfolate Side Effects‘.

That’s unfortunate.

Avoiding side effects caused by methylfolate is ideal.

It’s time I address it.

How do we reduce the likelihood of methylfolate side effects?

Before I spell some of the common causes of side effects induced by methylfolate, I should clearly state this is not all of them. I also do not know all the reasons why methylfolate causes side effects. The body is complicated. That said, the reasons outlined below are the very common causes of side effects caused by methylfolate. It is also understood how to prevent many people from experiencing side effects from methylfolate – and I share these below for you.

A note on supplementation:
Many people think that once a supplement is recommended, it is needed to take every day, sometimes multiple times a day and forever.

WRONG.

A supplement is defined as ‘something that completes or enhances something else when added to it’.

This means that a supplement enhances your biochemistry and physiology – and once complete – stop. If you continue to supplement beyond completing or enhancing your biochemistry, you are going to push it beyond where it needs to be.

This is a COMMON MISTAKE made by patients AND doctors worldwide.

Exercise makes you feel good. Breathing makes you feel good. Drinking water makes you feel good.

If you exercise too hard, you get sore and hard to do anything for the next few days.

If you breathe too quickly or forcefully, you can get light-headed and faint.

If you drink too much water, you can get a stomach ache, cramp, lose electrolytes and – if an excessive amount all at once – die.

Listening to this podcast will help answer questions about ‘How much to take?‘ (opens in new window so you can listen to it and read at the same time because I know you like to multitask 😉 )

Now on to the recommendations…

1. Electrolytes.

Methylfolate supports methylation.

Methylation supports cell growth and division.

What happens when a cell divides? It becomes two cells. What happens when 10 billion cells divide? They become 20 billion cells.

What is inside these cells? Magnesium and potassium – and glutathione. If any of these are deficient, then the cell does not function properly, gets sick and dies.

As the cells malfunction, you malfunction. As the cells die, you experience greater side effects and a flare of your immune system – especially if your cells die a necrotic death which is what happens when the cells are very weak. This form of cell death triggers autoimmunity. Not good.

    • Solution: Take electrolytes BEFORE taking any form of methylfolate OR methylcobalamin. I formulated Optimal Electrolyte to really make a significant impact in one’s potassium and magnesium levels and also support mitochondria. Optimal Electrolyte is based upon my pretty famous MTHFRade formula which has helped thousands of people. They’re easy to take, taste good, mix readily in water and your picky children will be compliant with them as well.
    • Who needs electrolytes? Given that a significant number of us are potassium deficient, I would venture to say everyone. I take electrolytes almost daily – usually right after I wake up – and sometimes a few times a day if I am exercising or sweating (sauna, heat). I simply feel much better while taking it.
    • Key signs that you need electrolytes:
      • Nausea
      • Dizzy
      • Frequent urination
      • Drinking water and then having to go to the bathroom quite quickly
      • Muscle aches/spasms
      • Frequent thirst which is insatiable
      • Dry skin
    • Key issues increasing need for electrolytes:
      • Stress
      • Exercise
      • Sweating
      • Diet high in sodium / low in potassium (MOST of us)
      • Caffeine intake
      • Processed foods (due to high sodium/low potassium)
      • High protein diet  (GAPS and Paleo – high protein depleting magnesium and potassium – especially if not eating greens/veggies)
    • How to take electrolytes: In a tall glass of water OR stainless steel OR glass water bottle, add 1 scoop of Optimal Electrolyte. Sip or drink one serving 20 minutes prior to exercise and possibly another serving during or after – depending on the duration of activity.
    • If you are not active due to fatigue, simply add 1/2 to 1 serving in a tall glass of filtered water and drink over a few minute time period.
    • NOTE: Fill your glass or water bottle half full. Then add the electrolytes. They fizz quite readily and may spill over if you add them to a full bottle or glass. Stir or shake the bottle lightly a few times (sealed of course!) and then fill to the top.

2. Glutathione. As methylfolate supports methylation, cells divide. As cells divide, the amount of glutathione they have reduces by…let’s say 50%. If one is already deficient in glutathione – and many people with MTHFR are deficient in glutathione – then there is going to be a flare of side effects.

Foods which increase glutathione are those which contain cysteine, glutamine and glycine. However, it is not that easy. Also requires magnesium, ATP, amino acid transport across the cell membrane and also the outer mitochondrial membrane. Then these components work together to form the glutathione.

Then, once the glutathione is formed, it gets used up quickly IF there is adequate selenium. After it gets used, it is damaged and has to get repaired and this requires vitamin B2 as active riboflavin. This active form of riboflavin is FAD and needs T4 thyroid hormone to form it. Hypothyroid? Hmmm.

    • Solution: Easiest way to increase glutathione levels is with liposomal glutathione. This allows the glutathione to ‘slip’ inside the cell with tiny liposomes. In fact, this is more effective at raising red blood cell levels of glutathione than IV glutathione – and significantly less expensive.
    • Who needs glutathione? Any one living and breathing. If you have any chronic condition, it is likely you are low in glutathione.
    • How to take glutathione: Start very slowly with a small amount. If you are sensitive in general to things, start with just a few drops. May mix liposomal glutathione in some juice if you like.
      • Pulsing glutathione is also likely recommended. This means taking it every other day or every few days initially. As you continue to improve or feel better, you may increase the frequency or the dosage…slowly.
      • If you feel worse, then stop taking it. You may need to open up your sulfite pathway with vitamin B1 (Thiamin) and molybdenum first. If you know you do not tolerate sulfites – wine, dried fruits – or sulfur-containing foods like eggs, cruciferous vegetables or your flatulence smells like sulfur, then you should also support sulfite pathway first with B1 and molybdenum before you take glutathione. Avoiding sulfur-containing foods and supplements for a few days is also recommended to help clear out the sulfite pathway. Keyword there is ‘a few days’ – not a few months or forever. Introduce them back slowly – but first introduce glutathione.
      • NOTE on Thiamine: I recommend Vitamin B1 because sulfites somehow induce a vitamin B1 deficiency. Those with high sulfites are more prone to B1 deficiency. Yes, thiamine contains sulfur – but it also needed for so many important reactions. You can try B1 on it’s own to see how you do with it – or you can try taking Molybdenum first for a few days and then take B1.

3. Superoxide Dismutase (SOD). If glutathione and electrolytes don’t cut it, then superoxide dismutase, known commonly as SOD, may be deficient for various reasons. If you have SOD snps, are low in zinc, copper and/or manganese, then the likelihood you will experience side effects from methylfolate is high.

What does SOD do? SOD breaks down the very damaging reactive oxygen species called superoxide. SOD converts superoxide into hydrogen peroxide. It is then up to glutathione to clean up hydrogen peroxide (along with catalase).

Why does one get side effects from methylfolate with SOD issues? When taking methylfolate, your body produces nitric oxide from it. It is one of the results from supplementing with methylfolate. This is beneficial as nitric oxide increases blood flow. However, when SOD enzyme is not working due to SOD snps or mineral deficiencies of copper, zinc or manganese, then superoxide levels are likely high. If this is the case, then the high superoxide levels combine with the increased nitric oxide to form a very damaging pro-oxidant called peroxynitrite.

Solution: The best way to support SOD is to make sure your red blood cell levels of manganese, zinc and copper are in the normal ranges. If they are and you have a SOD snp, then you may need to supplement with SOD directly.

4. Protein or Methionine. If you not consuming adequate protein, you may not be consuming enough methionine. Methionine is THE amino acid which helps produce the body’s #1 methyl donor: SAMe.  If you are a vegan, vegetarian, have digestive issues, take antacids, eat like a snake (don’t chew much), drink a lot of fluids (of any type) during meals, then you may be low in methionine.

What does Methionine do? As mentioned above, it is the key amino acid needed to produce your most important methyl donor known as SAMe – also known as SAM, or s-adenosylmethionine. SAMe supports over 200 absolutely critical reactions in the human body. Another key point about SAMe is that it is the 2nd most important compound in our body. Who’s first? ATP which is your power source.

What happens if you increase methionine or protein intake before supporting with electrolytes and glutathione and SOD? Methionine is quite easily damaged by oxidative stress (think free radicals but this isn’t entirely correct as the term oxidative stress). If methionine is ingested from the diet in those with high oxidative stress (due to low glutathione and low SOD), then side effects may occur.

Point: Reduce your oxidative stress first with the glutathione and SOD – and possibly also vitamin E and phospholipids such as phosphatidylcholine. Selenium and riboflavin are also important – but I get into those below..

Why does one get side effects from methylfolate when methionine is low? In short, because methylfolate may make your methionine levels lower over time if you are not consuming enough protein. This gets complicated quickly and I am going to refrain from getting into it here. It will just lead to confusion.

What are the side effects from giving methylfolate when methionine is low? Histamine may increase. Histamine leads to running noses, itchy, skin disorders, tight chest (asthma or just difficulty breathing).

Solution: Eat more protein. This may be partly why some people do very well with GAPS or Paleo ‘diets’ as they are typically more protein. If you are eating more protein and still having issues, it may be that you are not absorbing it. Work with your doctor to increase absorption of your protein. Chewing helps and so does not drinking very much during meals as this dilutes your stomach acid and digestive enzymes.

If you know you have digestive issues are not enough stomach acid, taking 1 capsule of PreGestion during meals may be useful. Also taking 1 capsule of Methionine may also be more readily available in this form rather than from food if your digestion is weak or compromised.

These four recommendations may make a significant difference in how you respond to methylfolate and methylation in general.

  1. Electrolytes
  2. Glutathione
  3. SOD
  4. Methionine

Of course, there are other factors at play – such as a generalized deficiency in various B vitamins and other minerals.

If you know or suspect that you may be deficient in various minerals or vitamins, then it is important that you replenish many of them prior to supporting with methylfolate or methylcobalamin. Why? Because if you support with these two powerful methyl donor nutrients, it can cause a ‘clog’ in your biochemistry. This ‘clog’ may occur in how your brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) get formed and/or eliminated. Obviously, this can cause some significant issues.

The easiest way to replenish vitamins and minerals – and reduce some stress at the same time – is with Optimal Start. This is a specialized formulation I developed that helps people begin to restart their biochemistry without shocking it with methylfolate, methylcobalamin, iron or copper.

If you feel you are fine in most minerals and vitamins except B vitamins, then taking B Minus would be something to consider. B Minus is without methylfolate and methylcobalamin. This helps prime a lot of biochemical pathways without stimulating methylation. Most people respond very well to this formulation.

STRESS IS WASTEFUL AND DEMANDING

The biggest result I see is by reducing people’s stress and supporting their adrenals. Stress is a direct stimulator of methylation. If reducing stress, then the demand on methylation goes down. Therefore, your dependence upon nutrients such as methionine, methylfolate and methylcobalamin go down.

If one is stressed, they are using up a variety of nutrients – and their cortisol is likely low – especially if they have been stressed or anxious for some time. This leads to autoimmunity, fatigue, hypothyroidism, wasting, poor memory, hard to get out of bed in the morning, frequent urination (loss of K and retention of Na) and…

Supporting adrenals can be quite rapid if:

  • eating properly
  • avoiding caffeine and stimulants
  • supplementing with adrenal cortex (best taken in the morning around breakfast)
  • sleeping before 11 PM
  • getting at least 7 hrs of rest nightly
  • increasing activities which you really enjoy
  • avoiding high glycemic, refined carbohydrates
  • eating quality protein foods and quality healthy fats

If you are a person that is easily startled or irritated, then you are likely maladapted. This means your nervous system is geared towards reacting vs responding.

This isn’t healthy – and you know this.

The way to support this is by doing the above recommendations along with taking adaptogens.

Optimal Adrenal is a blend of adaptogens that I designed for those experiencing lack of clarity and stress. It is also effective for those easily startled, panicked or pissed off. It may be taken any time of day but most effectively in the morning and afternoon.

Effects are typically felt quite immediately with these recommendations. Some degree of improvement is seen within one week for most people. All? No. Most. Some people have very tough blockages which require a lot of massaging and slooow headway – one nutrient at a time. One intervention at a time.

Introduce one nutrient or one change at a time – every few days – so you are assured it is either helping, doing nothing or hindering. If you add many things or change many things at once, it becomes frustrating trying to pinpoint what is going on.

SUMMARY:
It is important to prepare your cells and other biochemical pathways before stimulating them with methylfolate and methylcobalamin.

Following the lifestyle, dietary and environmental recommendations in the MTHFR Protocol post is a very important first step.

The next step is to begin with some basics – and these basics are as explained above:

  • electrolytes
  • glutathione
  • B vitamins (no B12 and no methylfolate)
  • multivitamin/multimineral (no B12 and no methylfolate – plus no Iron or Copper)
  • reducing stress by supporting lifestyle, diet and adrenals

Implementing these things may significantly improve your ability to tolerate methylfolate and methylcobalamin.

This is definitely a big start in the right direction and should help many people.

ALREADY TAKING METHYLFOLATE AND FEEL GREAT?
Excellent! However, it may be a ‘honeymoon’ period and in a few days or weeks, side effects may appear.

Discuss this article with your doctor and make appropriate changes to your protocol.

Just think of a bell-shaped curve.

Before you started taking methylfolate, you felt terrible. You began taking it and started to feel good. Day after day goes by and you continue to improve. In time if the above things are not corrected, you will begin to slide down the other side of the bell-shaped curve.

My whole point of this article is to prevent this from happening!

My goal is to keep you feel amazing!

I’ve made people go down the ‘other side’ by not pulsing methylfolate and by not preparing their biochemistry for it. It is much harder getting them back where they were than it is preventing them from getting side effects in the first place.

Do heed this warning.

I’ve seen it happen way too much – caused by me, caused by other doctors and caused by over-excited people feeling amazing and pushing their system too hard with methylfolate. Methylfolate is powerful.

Keep in control.

If you feel amazing, that could be a warning shot across the bow to actually stop taking the methylfolate for a day or two.

That is how I do it.

Remember, I am compound heterozygous MTHFR myself which means my MTHFR enzyme is reduced by about 70% in function.

Do I take methylfolate every day?
No. I take it when I feel mentally slow or use my brain heavily such as during conferences or writing long articles such as this 🙂 (but I won’t take it now because it is midnight and time to go sleep. I don’t want my adrenals to get taxed…)

__________________

Want to get more in depth and learn more nuances and see how it all ties together?
Get access to the recorded conference where I discuss folate, CBS, transsulfuration, oxidative stress, mitochondrial function, sulfation, detoxification and multiple genetic issues.

If you’re a physician or health professional, CE credits are available.

477 Responses to “Preventing Methylfolate Side Effects”

  1. Meagan November 26, 2014 at 3:47 am #

    Would electrolyte/mineral drops work well also? Are you familiar with the mineral drops? Thanks

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 4:14 am #

      Hi Meagan – possibly. I am not familiar with the specific formulations. I am very particular in what I use and how much – and also how to deliver the nutrients. The main reason why I started my company, http://www.SeekingHealth.com , is because I needed some way to provide people very high quality formulations which work. This is also the reason why I continue to own it – instead of selling it like most people who start supplement companies. Selling it would lead to the new owner destroying what I’ve built in order to maximize profits – not the health of people. I only know three supplement companies that are under the original owners: Xymogen, Seeking Health and Designs for Health.

      • Debbie Brenner March 11, 2015 at 11:58 am #

        Systemic Formulas is another company in this exceptional category who have original owners. Stuart Wheelwright…son of original biochemist “Doc” Wheelwright owns the company. Grandson and biochemist Dr. Shayne Morris is head of the formulations. Other notable research scientists are Dr. Jack Tips & Dr. Daniel Pompa. I personally train under all three of these phenomenal healers. I learned about you and Seeking Health from one of my clients. Thank You for your unwillingness to compromise quality and for your commitment to helping other patients and and practitioners understand MTHFR.

        • Terilynn March 12, 2015 at 1:53 am #

          All due respect Debbie Brenner but Systemic Formulas use a one size fits all mult ingredients idea which I had the experiences from hell with the GCel (Glutathione), Ga (adrenal) and MoRS Methyl Donor.

          There is no way to separate all the ingredients and with so many SNPs variations and IF and WHICH genes are expressing, those are very dangerous supplements! I will never try them again and the chiropractic Dr did it ALL backwards and never went low and slow. Most of their ingredients my body does not tolerate in their combos or strengths.That said, I cannot tolerate even Seeking Health multivitamin powder 🙁 that’s just my body.

          On Systemic Formulas, my thyroid levels went completely haywire with the highest free T4 (way over the limits) I have ever had of course setting me up for a year of reverse t3 hell 🙁 and the company NEVER responded as my ND was on vacation.

          All I can say is never never again!
          One size fits all thinking does NOT work here!!

          I am VERY appreciative Dr Lynch does such in depth research and creates individual ingredient supplements from acceptable and well tolerated forms. I could not have achieved what I have achieved with him and Seeking Health.
          Thank you Dr Lynch, Mrs Lynch, and the Seeking Health Team!
          Keep up the great work!!

  2. Gemma November 26, 2014 at 4:33 am #

    Dr Ben are these recommendations suitable for children? My 2yo has recently started with B12 and methylfolate on the advice of our naturopath and it has improved her moods greatly but she has come out in a rash and is very itchy. I’m still waiting for our nat to get back to me but thought your recommendations might be a good place to start?

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 7:00 am #

      Gemma – yes absolutely. Taking the methylfolate can help with moods as you see – but also can increase histamine. So clearing out histamine is important. Using Optimal Start, Optimal Electrolytes and Optimal Liposomal Glutathione – and tapering down on the B12/methylfolate for a bit – ALL with your doctor’s permission – may be something to consider. You can also use the Optimal Multivitamin Powder – use the dose your doctor recommends – and mix in some juice. This will provide complete portfolio of vitamins/minerals inc some B12 and methylfolate. Seems that the pathways are not entirely opened up. This is why I recommend the things in the article first before giving the B12/methylfolate now. Dr Paul Anderson is the one who enlightened me on the clogging up of downstream pathways and increasing histamine. It’s more than just histamine though – but your child’s symptoms are showing higher histamine. If you ran an organic acids test, likely going to be high in methylhistidine/methylhistamine. Taking B1 and Histamine Block may help – and lowering histamine-containing foods – and tyramine-containing foods – such as cheese/processed meats.

      • Gemma November 26, 2014 at 7:39 am #

        Thank you so much Dr Lynch 🙂 I really appreciate the work you do and find it fascinating – and useful!

      • Powell December 9, 2014 at 2:59 pm #

        By histamine block you mean normal over the counter anti histamines? I’ve had extremely high histamine responses as well

  3. Leanne November 26, 2014 at 4:38 am #

    Thanks for this. I had a cellular nutrition test that showed I am deficient in glutathione (I am compound heterozygous for MTHFR). I tried taking NAC, but had awful fatigue side effects. Do you think I may do better with liposomal glutathione?

    Also, a stool test showed I have fat malabsorption. Is this something you see with MTHFR?

    I am beginning to think many of my issues — adrenal fatigue, hypoglycemia, anxiety may all be related to my MTHFR. I seem to tolerate up to 1mg MTHF daily and methylcobalamin, but have not noticed much change in my symptoms.

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 6:50 am #

      Leanne – if one has high levels of oxidative stress, taking sulfur can really backfire. Also – if one’s sulfur levels are elevated, it pushes them to become cysteine and then sulfites. This pathway can get clogged which is why I make the recommendations above. Stop the sulfur-containing foods and supplements for a few days, take the B1 and molybdenum. Then introduce the glutathione slowly – not the NAC.

      Fat malabsorption can be related to MTHFR or just by itself – both. If methylation or sulfur is low, then making phosphatidylcholine is low and so is taurine. Taking Optimal Lipsomal Glutathione along with Optimal PC and/or Taurine may be useful – with meals. If there are pathogens present, they push out taurine (not directly – indirectly) and this can cause fat malabsorption.

      It’s all connected. Not just MTHFR.

      Need to address the other things also – and I highly recommend addressing the recommendations as suggested.

    • Jeanne November 29, 2015 at 9:55 pm #

      The fat malabsorption is also one of the symptoms of celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, which causes all of the other issues too. It just takes a blood test for Ttg to find out. I hope you keep searching till you find your core problem and don’t stop till you get your answers.

  4. Anna November 26, 2014 at 5:41 am #

    Leanne – try lipase digestive enyzmes for fat malabsorption. It is on amazon. It helped my daughter and I tremendously in absorbing fats into our diet.

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 6:45 am #

      Many reasons for fat malabsorption – and it could be related to deficient taurine and/or phosphatidylcholine – a sign of low methylation and insufficient sulfur in the diet. Taking enzymes treats the symptoms – not the underlying issue. Digestive enzymes are great – but they are not addressing the problem at the core.

  5. julie van November 26, 2014 at 5:53 am #

    thank you so much for this article. i believe it explains my reaction to Methyl cpg supplement for my mthfr homogenous c677t mutation. after 7 days straight on the supplement I awoke on the eighth day with extreme dizziness the dizziness lasted on and off for the last 4 Weeks. I assume my electrolytes must be extremely low. I drink smart water 1 liter a day with electrolytes in it is this not enough? Do I need to be taking in more electrolytes? Not sure why I had this reaction.

  6. julie van November 26, 2014 at 6:05 am #

    Thank you so much for this article!I had a very bad reaction to methyl cpg supplement that my dr. Prescribed for me after receiving my Mthfr blood work that i was homogenous c677t. After 7 days of this supplement i became extremely dizzy! I stopped taking the supplements immediately and even took some niacin as you have suggested. After reading this article I assume my electrolytes must have been extremely low. I drink one liter of SmartWater everyday which contains electrolytes. Is this not enough for me? Should I be taking more? Not sure as to why the dizziness lasted after the supplements were stopped?

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 6:44 am #

      Julie – SmartWater may not be enough. Taking a potent electrolyte may be needed. Also adrenal fatigue could be causing this. It’s not just ‘one’ thing typically – but a combination of things. Methylfolate can also lower blood pressure and if too low – make one feel dizzy. This is why the electrolytes and adrenal support is needed – one of the reasons why. Methylfolate makes nitric oxide – stimulates the production. And the effect can stay for some time – even after stopping it.

  7. annie November 26, 2014 at 9:23 am #

    Hello =)
    What tests will show if we would benefit from this protocol? I have had a whole lot of blood work done this year, so I have a lot to refer to if need be. I am an overmethylator and dont make enough histamine (per my funct med gal)
    Adrenal fatigue/CFS last year (diagnosed by symptoms only, no tests), then had tests this year showing low thyroid, fatigue would NOT stop…..then funct. med gal provided me with some supplements to balance out the issues she found via bloodwork (overmethylation, excess copper, low histamine producer, etc). Feeling better but not good enough yet.
    Thanks for any tips and direction!
    Annie

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 9:09 pm #

      Annie –

      Not an easy recommendation.

      I typically recommend tests of:
      – RBC Folate
      – serum ferritin
      – RBC Fatty acids
      – Organic acids
      – Methylation profile
      – RBC Essential and Toxic elements
      – CBC with chem panel

      Starting with some of the basics above even without labs may be something to consider. Do talk with your doctor about them before implementing.

  8. Maggie November 26, 2014 at 11:48 am #

    Excellent article – thank you for all the work you do and all the free information you provide!
    Was the prenatal designed to take everyday or should the advice from this article be recommended for the prenatal as well? Also, if a woman is mid-way through her pregnancy, would it be advisable to start the Optimal prenatal if she’s never taken methylfolate or methylcobalamin before? Thanks!

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 9:02 pm #

      Maggie –

      Prenatal – yes. That is one supplement that needs to be taken daily when pregnant or breastfeeding. That is a very demanding time nutritionally so the needs must be met daily.

      Yes. If a pregnant woman has never taken methylfolate or methylcobalamin before – she needs to start – as soon as possible.
      Switching to Optimal Prenatal is highly recommended. You will see I offer both folinic acid and methylfolate in it.
      These forms are the most active forms of folate.

      Great questions.

      Thank you for bringing them up.

      • Nikki December 6, 2014 at 2:26 am #

        Dr. Ben,

        Related question: should women with MTHFR who are in childbearing years and who may become pregnant pulse, or should they treat themselves as if they may be pregnant at any time and take a prenatal? What would you suggest for a woman who only tolerates lower doses of methylfolate (400 mcg., for instance, per day) and is in that situation?

      • Nicole December 6, 2014 at 2:41 am #

        Dr. Ben,

        Related question, if you don’t mind: should women with MTHFR mutations who are in childbearing years and who know they may become pregnant at any time pulse as suggested here, or should they treat themselves as if they may be pregnant and take a prenatal or at least methylfolate at the higher dose appropriate for pregnancy? What would you suggest for a woman who only tolerates lower doses of methylfolate (400 mcg., for instance, per day) and is in that situation? I am homozygous A1298C. I seem to do well with the Optimal multivitamin and some extra electrolytes, but my anxiety ramps up when I increase methylfolate.

  9. Dawn November 26, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch. I’m intrigued by your adrenal cortex recommendation, but would like to do further reading (when I do a Google search, the results tend to lean toward the “quackery” aspect). I’m C677T++ with chronic mood disorders and a horrible stress response (I have always “reacted” rather than “responding”). My husband is an endocrinologist, and I know better than to bring up the topic of “bovine adrenal cortex” with him. 🙂

    Thanks for the article.

  10. Vickie Martin November 26, 2014 at 2:02 pm #

    Whew… there’s so much information and it’s so hard to make sense of it all. First, I am MTHFR C677 T/T, so does this means I am homozygous? My Doc prescribed Metanx, two capsule per day, which I have tolerated well since starting Aug 14. I want to follow your protocol, but I am confused about about adding multi and B vitamins along with Metanx. I am thinking that is too much. I would appreciate you input. Also, are your products interchangable with Metanx? Do you require a prescription?

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      Vickie –

      If you have two T’s – then yes you are homozygous for MTHFR 677.

      Welcome to the club 🙂

      If you are tolerating Metanx well – excellent. You may need to support with some of the recommendations above – especially electrolytes and glutathione – and a multi without folate/B12 – something like Optimal Start.

      If you don’t have full nutrition, then some pathways get blocked and then biochemistry doesn’t flow well – and symptoms occur.

      I don’t prescribe or do treatments. I simply provide information now.

      You’ll have to inquire about all this with your doctor.

  11. Tessa November 26, 2014 at 2:22 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,

    Are there some people who will just never tolerate methyl folate and methyl B12 (and other methyl donors), even after opening up and supporting other pathways? After a lot of work with pathway support, I can tolerate folinic acid and hydroxy B12, but even the smallest amount of methyl folate or methyl B12 gives me symptoms. Diet and lifestyle factors are in place. I’m compound hetero and desire a family. I had a methylation profile – methionine 1.9 (1.6-3.6), cysteine 27 (20-38), SAM 98 (86-145), SAH 11.7 (10-22), homocysteine 9.5, cyststhionine 0.02 (<0.05), SAM:SAH 8.3.
    Thank you so much for all of your work!

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 8:58 pm #

      Tessa – I believe you may have a point and it is due to a variety of reasons.

      Reasons:
      – diet and lifestyle – already eating a lot of reduced folates and red meat – so not really needing more
      – genetics quite good so it’s like putting gas on the fire – moving pathways too quickly.
      – downstream methyltranferase genes plugged due to a variety of snps so the body cannot move through methyl donors fast enough – such as PEMT, GAMT, COMT, etc
      – high nitric oxide levels
      – low glutathione levels
      – low dopamine

      Need more information though – specifically what symptoms do they cause?

      • Tessa November 26, 2014 at 9:20 pm #

        Thanks Dr. Lynch!

        I have SNPs for CBS, COMT, DAO, MAO, MTRR, PEMT, VDR BSM…

        Methyl B12 triggers a migraine and the last time I tried methyl folate (about 100mcg) I felt anxious. When I tried methylfolate originally (over a year ago) I experienced palpitations, insomnia, anxiety, tunnel vision, heard voices…

        Thanks for your help! Would the practitioner portal be a good venue to post more information? I’ve taken some of your courses and am looking forward to more – want to help myself and help others!

        • Laura April 10, 2015 at 8:00 pm #

          Hi Tessa,
          MTHFR and COMT. Did Dr. Lynch ever respond to this? I too have touble with methyls. What did you figure out? Thanks!

          • Kate July 2, 2017 at 5:07 pm #

            Me too. Any updates or additional information.

  12. Bea November 26, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    Dr Lynch, thank you for this helpful article.

    I want to apply your suggestions, but am stuck because my sulfur sensitivity doesn’t go away. It started one year ago when I was given high doses of B12 & folic acid – I started having a severe reaction to all protein foods and sulfur supplements (severe cardiac and brain symptoms). This year I’ve had glutathione both IV & orally, with disastrous results each time: severe depression & cognitive problems immediately. I’m hetero for CBS C699T, but this reaction is so extreme. I’ve been avoiding sulfur foods & supps for 3 months now; I know this is a long time, but I still react to protein when I try, so I don’t know how to move forward. I will be so grateful for any advice. Thank you!!!

    (I’ve been taking Molybdenum 200mcg for over a month without noticing any improvement. But my recent urine elements showed rather high molybdenum in my urine, so I’ve stopped now).

    • Dr Lynch November 26, 2014 at 8:50 pm #

      Bea – lot of possible issues going on so hard to pinpoint – but:
      – need to lower oxidative stress and open up the sulfation pathway.
      – consider Calcium D Glucarate to support elimination of sulfur
      – have your doctor test you for arsenic and tungsten – RBC Essential and Toxic Elements by Doctors Data helps identify these – but you may also need to have a provoked heavy metals test – your doctor will decide.
      – B1 – take higher dose B1 – say 50 to 100 mg – but start at 50 mg.
      – you may be high in mercury also – need to check toxic metals.
      – considering a ketogenic diet may be helpful as well

      • Bea November 27, 2014 at 12:11 am #

        Dr Lynch, thank you very much for your reply! These are very helpful points for me. I will follow them up.

        As you suggested, I will try B1. I know this is a sulfur-containing vitamin, so I haven’t been taking it…but I think you are saying that this will actually improve my sulfur elimination?

        Thanks for your help!

        • Julia March 16, 2015 at 11:19 pm #

          Dear Bea, I have the same problem. CBS mutation and since high doses of methylfolate and -cobalamin no more tolerance for protein foods ans sulfur supplements in the brain. Did B1 help you? Or did you find an other solution? I would be happy to hear from you. Thank you! Julia

          • Bea March 31, 2015 at 3:25 pm #

            Hi Julia, sorry for the late reply. I’ve done a few things, with mixed results.

            First of all, I discovered that the heart problems upon eating protein (chest pains, shortness of breath, etc) are all from potassium deficiency. This started when I was given large doses of B12 and folic acid. But eating protein always made it worse. I had to take a large dose of potassium for a couple of months – I experimented with the dose that would stop the chest pains and shortness of breath. Now I’ve been able to stop the potassium. I still don’t know why eating protein made the overmethylation even worse.

            For the brain symptoms, the most useful thing has been supporting the urea cycle. I realized that my brain symptoms upon eating meat were exactly the symptoms of ammonia toxicity. When I tried measures to reduce ammonia, my brain symptoms cleared. That confirmed the ammonia diagnosis for me. Now I take L-ornithine to support the urea cycle.

            Having to go without protein was making me weaker and sicker. The only way I found to eat protein is by taking L-Ornithine at the same time. I also take a Solgar product that is Arginine-Ornithine. That also seems to help.

            I can eat vegetable proteins like lentils, legumes etc, and an egg. But animal meats, e.g. chicken, still cause brain symptoms.

            I also take Calcium D Glucarate. I tried taking B1, but it gave me head symptoms (eyes aching, pressure in the head, etc) so I had to stop. Also, with the overactive CBS, I realized that my B6 was depleted. I started taking B6 (in P5P form), and that has been very helpful for excitotoxicity. B6 is needed for making GABA, the main calming neurotransmitter, and an overactive CBS uses up all the B6. I gradually increased my B6 dose, with good results for anxiety.

            Finally I started taking high doses of antioxidants to relieve the oxidative stress. In my case Vitamin E has been very helpful, to prevent some brain symptoms. Also Selenium because my levels always test low (probably due to mercury using up selenium). I haven’t tried taking sulfur supplements.

  13. Bea November 26, 2014 at 8:39 pm #

    I should add that I’m a 36 year old female, with no prior history of heart issues. The cardiac problems only started after taking high doses of B12 & folic acid; since that time, eating protein causes symptoms of heart failure, i.e. chest pains, intense shortness of breath, palpitations on slight exertion. Along with brain fog, headache etc.

    Taking IV glutathione has caused disorientation, slurry speech, lack of balance, clumsiness, excessive sleepiness, short-term memory loss. So it’s a very extreme reaction that happens with sulfur supplements.

    I don’t know how to move past this sulfur sensitivity. Again, thank you for any help!!

    • Kathleen February 19, 2015 at 2:33 pm #

      Bea how was your sodium level when had these IV glutathione? My daughter had very similar reaction when on neuropathy drug because it decreased her sodium and may have done something to her folate level as well as she is low in that now.

      • Bea February 20, 2015 at 11:30 am #

        Hi Kathleen, thanks for your reply. I went back to my blood tests to answer your question about the sodium levels. They seem to be fine — the normal range is 135-145, and mine was 142. However, I think the treatments caused a large Potassium deficiency. I learned that this is common, especially with B12 injections. Taking potassium has helped some of my symptoms. The serum blood tests didn’t show my deficiency — I only found out when I tested Red Cell Potassium.

        I don’t know if any of this could apply to your daughter. I am sorry to hear about her problems. What I’ve found is that the right testing is very important — the standard blood tests (serum) didn’t reveal my potassium deficiency at all, but the Red Cell test was different.

        Thank you for the heads up on the sodium / folate. And best wishes for your daughter’s recovery!

        • Kathleen February 20, 2015 at 12:26 pm #

          Thank you Bea for the information about potassium in red blood cells. I’ve heard that the same thing can be true of magnesium. Don’t understand why they don’t do the more accurate test if it is a serious issue like yours and my daughters. They must have checked her electrolytes 6 times but always just normal blood draws.

  14. Santino November 26, 2014 at 9:19 pm #

    Hello Dr. Lynch,

    what about the multivitamin with relatively low b12 and methylfolate?

    I thought, this would be something most people can start with and take it everyday to adress everything just a little bit. My plan was to do this and then slowly put more supplements into my plan to address my SNPs.

    At this moment, I feel tired the hole day with brain fog. Don´t eat any gluten or diary since months. But also no vitamins or minerals. Do lot of sports and also relaxation. But I have brain fog and little constipation, feeling not good in my colon…

    KR,
    Santino

  15. Debbie November 26, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,

    Thank you for this article.
    I have a question about the B Minus supplement : Is the leucine added for a specific reason and can it cause side effects, perhaps as a result of creating an imbalance with other amino acids? This may sound silly- but I heard, for instance, that taking glycine reduces glutamine and can prevent sufficient removal of ammonia from the brain…and since I can’t tolerate any supplement for more than two days, I am always concerned about possible unknown effects…

    TIA.

    • Dr Lynch November 27, 2014 at 4:31 am #

      Hi Debbie –

      The amount of leucine in these capsules is very very low. It is not a problem in terms of imbalance. You eat a bite of any protein and you will get more leucine from that. The leucine is to help the nutrients flow into the capsule. I use it instead of magnesium stearate. It’s all a balance.

  16. Jim November 27, 2014 at 1:05 am #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,

    I notice that many of your supplements contain a lot of herbal ingredients. I was wondering what your stance is on salicylate and other intolerances (like oxalates)?

    I’d like to purchase several of your products, but can’t seem to tolerate salicylates. Also have discovered I have a problem with taurine. It causes cramps, twitching every time, perhaps because it’s a mild diuretic?

    I would love to hear your opinion on salicylate and other food intolerances.

    Thank you,

    Jim

  17. Henrik November 27, 2014 at 9:02 pm #

    Dear Dr. Lynch,

    this man or women (http://www.mthfrheds.com) has written an very interesting article where he/she states that she had to avoid food with high levels of folate and still avoid these to stay healthy. The reason is that he/he cannot bring this into it´s active form and the cumulating folate leads to symptoms.

    What do you think of this?

    I also experienced that when eating many green veggies I first felt great for one week but then I felt even worse than before…

    Is this because of the folate? I am also C667T AG and A1289 C GT…

    Thank you for answering!

    Henrik

    • Dr Lynch November 28, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

      Henrik – could also be increased oxalates and nitrates causing issues from leafy greens.

  18. Caledonia November 27, 2014 at 9:22 pm #

    Dr. Lynch, what doses of B1 and molybdenum would you suggest for opening up the sulfite pathway?

    Also, I could swear that previously you had suggested using NAD in conjunction with glutathione to make sure it converts to the good reduced glutathione and not the bad oxidized glutathione. Now you’re saying FAD – can you clarify?

  19. Caledonia November 28, 2014 at 3:39 pm #

    Also, I forgot to ask – would you suggest remaining on a lower maintenance dose of B1 and molybdenum after doing the sulfite pathway treatment, so that the pathway remains open? If so, what maintenance doses do you suggest?

    • Dr Lynch November 28, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

      Caldeonia – one has to experiment and see. There are other backup pathways also that support – such as general liver support (milk thistle) and calcium D glucarate

  20. Lisa Worthing December 1, 2014 at 4:48 am #

    Thank you so much for writing this article! I, too, cannot tolerate methylfolate or most B vitamins. Looking forward to trying this protocol and see what happens. When you first posted this, I was reading it and followed a trail (?) to a list of doctors who have taken one or more of your courses/seminars and treat patients (by state). I can’t seem to find that again…could you re-direct me there? Thanks so much!

  21. Lisa Worthing December 1, 2014 at 4:54 am #

    Oh, never mind. I found it! 🙂

  22. Cathi Hepworth December 3, 2014 at 6:42 pm #

    Thank you Dr. Lynch, This discussion is very helpful about when to back off, and how to prepare the body to respond the best before adding methylfolate. My son could not tolerate much methylfolate to begin with, so we backed off, added some of your optimal turmeric and optimal start for about 3 weeks, and then proceeded to start with the methylfolate and add slowly from there. He is on about 2.5 to 3mgs currently. We would love to able to recommend to him a multivitamin, but I am concerned about giving him your multi because it combines niacin and methylfolate. Doesn’t that pose a problem together? Won’t the niacin cancel out the methylfolate in the vitamin as well as the excess methylfolate he already takes? What are your thoughts about this, and can you recommend what to do? Obviously, our son is getting niacin in his diet already, as well, but he really needs a multi. Thanks

  23. Meg December 5, 2014 at 7:21 pm #

    How do we know how much to take? I feel pretty stable (only get mood swings due to bad diet). I am compound hetero (childbearing age) and take 1000 mcg of methylfolate and cobalamin a day, as well as 50 mg of p5p. I feel good. BUT, my homocystein is HIGH at 10!!! And my folate and B12 levels are high as well. I am worried about the high homocystein in case I get pregnant. Does this correlate to the amount of folate I am taking? THANKS, great article!!

  24. Kathy December 5, 2014 at 7:24 pm #

    Would love to see a debate between you and William Walsh, PhD. How do you respond to his criticism of methylating supplements and folate?

  25. Maria Smith December 5, 2014 at 8:20 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,

    You’re a brilliant mind! Just like you I’m compound heterozygous. I LOVE all of this information, but sincerely I am struggling trying to wade through it all and form it into a comprehensive “to do” list specific to my symptoms. I’m floundering out here on my own and my Naturopath has just enough MTHFR information to be a bit “dangerous”: “Take Folate and Methyl B12”. That’s the extent of her suggestions. I’m floundering out here on my own trying to decipher so much information I’m reading on the internet. My brain can’t seem to make clear sense of it all pertaining to my personal situation.

    My biggest struggle since trying to deal with my MTHFR is the random days of extreme irritability, sudden anger and maladaptation. I’m tired of it and so is my husband. :/ I’m scared I’m going to be like this the rest of my life…and that’s a hopeless feeling. I don’t like myself very much when this is happening.

    I understand you don’t have clinical appointments with patients, but can you refer me to a doctor that has been to many of your conferences and has a VERY CLEAR handle of how to deal with Methylation issues beyond “take Methyl B12 and Folate and stay away from Folic acid”? I’m willing to have coaching sessions over the phone or Skype.

    Thank you so much for all you do!

    • Dr Lynch December 5, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

      Maria –

      To be brutally honest, there is no doctor out there that has a VERY CLEAR handle on all this. It’s complex and multifaceted.

      However, we have come a long way over the last few years.

      I recommend reading this article in full and applying the recommendations. They should help your swings significantly.

      If you are taking methylfolate and methylcobalamin now, you may want to stop.

      Only take these two powerful nutrients when you feel tired, can’t think or sluggish.

      Do not take them if you feel alert, irritable, anxious.

      Instead, take something like Optimal Adrenal, Magnesium Plus and Optimal Start.

      The Optimal Electrolytes are also very important.

      Watch your sugar intake and carb loading and protein loading. Consider eating more healthy fats instead. I know it seems odd but can very helpful with mood stabilization.

      That help?

      Try it and comment back in a week or two.

      Also evaluate your estrogen levels. If high, you may do better with something like DIM + I3C to lower them. Higher estrogens tend to increase irritability.

      • Maria Smith December 8, 2014 at 4:07 pm #

        Dr. Lynch,

        I so appreciate your response, knowing how very busy you are!! Thank you!

        I do take L-5MTHF (Included in Systemic Fomulas’ G/Cel and Hydroxocobalamin in my sublingual Perque B12). I’m on high doses of the Perque, per my Naturopath. I will back off on that and see if any improvement in irritability/anger.

        I’m also on Bioidentical Hormone Creams (DHEA, Estradiol, Progesterone). I will talk with my Doctor about the Estrogen cream possibly being an issue.

        I have been on Seriphos for a few years now and that did an awesome job of helping me sleep at night.

        I take oral, topical, and magnesium drops because my levels were so low. That is now improving, especially with the muscle cramping I used to get at night.

        I also take 2 tsp. of sea salt daily as well as Body Bio Mixed Minerals…but, I will look at your Electrolytes as an alternative.

        I will absolutely look at all of your recommendations and re-read your article. Sometimes my brain doesn’t fully comprehend what I’m reading upon first pass.

        Thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!

        • Terilynn December 8, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

          Hi Maria,
          I am not a practioner and not qualified to give advice. I can tell you the Systemic Formulas made me very sick and very angry!

          I was also taking G-Cell and 2 others from SF. They really screwed up my thyroid labs, worst high free t4 and reverse t3 ever complete with hypo symptoms and that was without any increase in my naturethroid thyroid medication.

          Please please please be very careful with Systemic Formulas! They put too much other stuff in and you have no control of desired singular amounts! One size does NOT fit all. 🙂
          I am much better off with Dr Lynch’s Seeking Health brand.

          • Maria Smith March 17, 2015 at 9:24 pm #

            Terilynn,

            I am on soooo many Systemic Formulas supplements. I have loose stools about 1 1/2 to 2 hours after taking them. This has gone on for 1 year now. I have been on the Chelating program (DMSA, ALA, G/Cel and Bind) with Dr. Dan Pompa (who helps formulate Systemic Formulas) to rid my body of lead. My last lab tests in December showed a dramatic DROP in my T4, T3, Free T3 and Free T4….that’s going the WRONG way. :/ I don’t know if this is due to the SF supplements, or was due to me dropping my Naturethroid by 1 grain, trying to get off of meds all together. Maybe it was too soon…so when my labs came back in December, I had to increase my Naturethroid back UP to 3 grains. Bummer. My other concern is my blood sugar. I never took my fasting blood sugar at home before working with Dr. Pompa, so I’m not sure if there is correlation with using the SF products, but I can NOT get my fasting blood sugar below 110!!! Using his Cellular Healing Diet, I do not eat any sugar (including maple syrup, honey, or high sugar fruits). I eat only grassfed proteins, grassfed dairy (raw cheeses and raw/organic whole whipping cream and Beyond Organic raw havarti cheese), and some berries. I just don’t understand why I can’t get my fasting blood sugar down either. Oh, and my NMR test (a lipid test that’s more accurate than regular testing) shows VERY HIGH levels of Large Lipid Particles….which is not good if trying to prevent heart attacks, strokes, etc. I don’t know why this is all happening…. I have about 9 months left on my coaching contract with Dr. Pompa, so Lord willing things will improve by the end of the year. If not, I need to go another direction. Thanks so much for your input!

        • Jessica March 4, 2015 at 7:04 pm #

          Hi Maria,
          I am in the exact same situation as you. My naturopath is great, but I need someone who has fully researched this. I’ve researched some of the doctors who are recommended (taken a course), but honestly, I don’t think this is enough. To be recommended, more training should be required.

          I have severe anxiety reactions to B12. I try to summarize Dr. Lynch’s recommendations and take them to my doctor. This is extremely time consuming and pretty much has taken over my life. I need to find balance, but at the same time need to address this correctly without making things worse. Given my reaction to B12, my doctor suspects Pyroluria, so I’ve been taking B6 and zinc. She wants me to try B12 again but I am so fearful. I am going to take in these recommendations and ask to do them first.

          Like you, I also have hormone challenges. I am on so many blended supplements and things (estrogen patch, migraine meds) that I am now focusing on how to get off of them. It is difficult to tell what is helping anymore.

          But the #1 thing that has helped is my diet. A couple months ago I switched to a higher fat diet (Bulletproof Diet) and it was EXACTLy what my body needed. My hormone symptoms are less and I am trying to wean off the estrogen patch.

          Please keep posting with any updates or findings.

          • Maria Smith March 17, 2015 at 9:32 pm #

            Hi Jessica,

            I too am on sooo many blended supplements and don’t know what is helping and what isn’t.

            Recently, I stopedp taking 6 sublingual Perque B12 to see if this would help with my horrible irritability. I show low B12 on my last Spectracell Nutrient profile test, so I’m leary about staying off B12 for too long. So, this past 2 weeks, I have been taking 2 sublinguals about every 3 days.

            To be honest, I don’t know if this is helping or not due to my hormone imbalance as well. When I switched my Natural Radiance Progesterone cream to Progestelle (coconut oil based) Progesterone oil, after six weeks my hot flashes returned with a vengeance and I had horrible depression for about 7 days (last week).

            We are such a complex web of hormones and methylation actions, and toxin exposures that it’s sooooo difficult to narrow down what is exactly causing these issues. Sometimes I wonder if I need to go off ALL of my supplements (not my natural dessicated thyroid medication, though) for a time, then add back ONE at a time to see which is helping. But, because I’m a slooooow methylator, this would take me probably 1 year to add back everything necessary. Meanwhile, I could bring on deficiencies while slowly adding things back.

            Last night, I had to switch back to the Natural Radiance Progesterone cream. We’ll see how long it takes to get rid of the hot flashes again. 🙂

            It’s sooooo difficult and frustrating out here!!!! Thanks for your concern.

  26. Jodi Harms December 5, 2014 at 8:55 pm #

    Hi Dr Lynch,

    Thank you for your article. I started taking your optimal multivitamin recently and just wanted to clarify. I take 4 a day at the moment – based on your article does that mean I don’t need to be taking the multivitamin everyday???

    • Dr Lynch December 5, 2014 at 9:19 pm #

      Jodi –

      If you feel great while taking them, excellent.

      If there are days where you already feel great, then you may not need to take them.

      On days you feel more sluggish, perhaps you may need to take more.

      We are creatures of habit but our biochemistry is not habitual 😉 – it varies all the time.

      Note how you feel when reaching for the supplement bottle. If a bit sluggish or off, then you may need it. If you are on vacation or just feel great, then don’t take it.

  27. Ernesto Alvidrez December 5, 2014 at 9:02 pm #

    Where can I buy some of you supplements, especially the electrolytes solution?

    • Dr Lynch December 5, 2014 at 9:17 pm #

      Hi Ernesto –

      In these articles, there are the names of the supplements and in blue text. They are also underlined a bit when you mouse over them. Click on those and it will take you to the product pages where you can learn more and obtain if you like.

  28. john December 6, 2014 at 12:51 am #

    Dr Lynch for me molybdenum caused constipation, bloating and wiring effect while I did not exceed 500mcg. I do have bad reaction to sulfur containing foods. I am trying to support my BHMT08+ at the same time. Also when I try to support my liver with milk thistle I get fatigue so gut problems due to toxins reabsorption? But I am still skeptical regarding molybdenum :/

    • Dr Lynch December 7, 2014 at 8:19 pm #

      Hi John –

      Seems that you may need to evaluate your digestive system. Talk with your doctor and order a CDSA Test. This could significantly help.

      Lot to this – multiple pathways.

  29. Cindy modrosic December 6, 2014 at 1:53 am #

    Thank you for this article. I am also compound Hetero. I stopped taking foltx/folbic when I found your research. I recently found a dr within an hour of my office on your website. He recommended a methyl folate supplement with other b vitamins. I have been taking it for about 6 weeks now. I don’t feel drastically different, but my corticosteroid induced myopathy finally seems to be resolving itself (I stopped the prednisone 12/20/2013.) my dr tested my homocysteine and found it to be slightly elevated. I have noticed no negative side effects past frequent urination, which seems to be lessening. My question is, should I keep taking the folate and b vitamins every day til my homocysteine levels are normal again and then take it as needed and should I do anything else for the frequenct potty trips? I should also mention the dr had me do a 2 week liver flush which helped with weight loss from the prednisone and I have continued to work hard to keep my sugar intake low. Thank you.

  30. Michelle December 6, 2014 at 3:11 am #

    Dr Lynch- thank you for this article! It explains all my symptoms that I have struggled with my entire life- extreme anxiety, food and mood sensitivities where my parents have said its “all in my head”, frequent urination, brain mood, startle easy, ect.! Where do I begin? How do I get tested for Mthfr?

  31. Mary O'Neill December 6, 2014 at 3:26 am #

    Hi Dr Lynch, I am living in Australia, diagnose with dermatomyosits a year ago which was triggered by early breast cancer. Have just finished the journey of surgery, chemo and radium. I have just joined your page and find it very interesting. What are the basic tests that I need to get done to work out what I need/do not need to supplement? Thanks. Mary

  32. Kim December 6, 2014 at 5:21 am #

    So glad you take the time to write these wonderful gems. My doc had me on weekly IV’s of Methyl B’s, Folate and a glutathione push for 10 weeks, plus taking a multi B orally. Retested my hs-crp among other things, labs did not improve (actually got worse) hs-crp went through the roof, was 8 and went to almost 13. She was not sure why, not familiar with CBS, COMT genes that I have plus many others ( I ordered 23 and me). She only tested for MTHFR, Factor V Leiden. Wanted to keep me on my supplement protocol but I decided not. I take a few things now, not every day but frankly my feet, hands, joints hurt so much I am not sure what helps and what does not. I will try some of the things you recommended and see how I feel. Thanks again, good info. I think many of us give up on spending thousand of dollars at our functional med docs who don’t have enough pieces of the puzzle, so we treat ourselves. Not so great probably, but we have to try something.

  33. Missy Houghtaling December 6, 2014 at 11:53 am #

    Thank you so much for all of the information you share here. I have a question about electrolytes. I’m told I need to address this by adding salt to my water. I have adrenal fatigue, some early autoimmune disease. Compound heterozygous MTHFR and some other mutations.
    The electrolytes you recommend here are high in Mg and potassium, right? Do I need to add salt (like pink salt) to the electrolyte drink re: adrenal fatigue to ensure enough sodium – or would just salting food to taste be ok if using the electrolyte drink? I follow a modified autoimmune paleo diet, so I’m not eating processed foods. I’m on some methylated B’s from my ND and have felt great since adding that! She has me on NAC instead of glutathione.

    • Dr Lynch December 7, 2014 at 8:12 pm #

      Hi Missy –

      It depends.

      If your adrenals are really fatigued and you are losing salt because your aldosterone levels are low, then yes, you may need to add some more sodium to the electrolyte mix.

      I’d also consider switching from NAC to glutathione – talk with your doctor about this.

      Try the electrolytes without the added salt. If they are helping a lot – then great. If you feel you want to add more salt, then try that after a few days of electrolytes without added salt.

      • Missy December 8, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

        Thanks so much!

  34. Heather December 6, 2014 at 12:03 pm #

    On the first day I started methylfolate and each time I have increased the amount, I have one day of feeling incredibly relaxed. I have fibromyalgia and those days are the only ones I can recall with no pain and no jumping whenever someone touches me. What could cause this? Does the fact that it only lasts a day mean I still need to increase the amount I take? I am homozygous for C677.

    • Dr Lynch December 7, 2014 at 8:10 pm #

      Hi Heather –

      It seems that you may need to keep increasing the amount of methylfolate – but do so with an eye to stop increasing and possibly stop.

      Definitely add in the electrolytes and glutathione – without those supporting, the methylfolate can backfire.

  35. Donna December 6, 2014 at 5:01 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch. Just listened to your podcast with Sean Croxton on the MTHFR mutation, and having just learned I have such a gene, I loved the information. The info in this piece is helpful as well and I thank you for sharing! Respectfully thought I’d mention the line where you write…Optimal Electrolytes is based upon my infamous MTHFRade formula…Infamous means famous in a bad way and I bet that’s not how your formula is known. 🙂

    • Dr Lynch December 7, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

      Thanks Donna 🙂

      I like to poke fun at myself sometimes – but I see your point. Could be taken the wrong way. I’m a bit sarcastic by nature and people don’t know that until they come to my conferences or see my presentations 😉

  36. Robin December 6, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

    Thank you for this article and all your work! I have 677TT and also some CBS and COMT issues. My ND has me on your liquid methlyfolate and your multi that has the methlyfolate and methylcobalamin in it. I take everyother day and only 5 drops of the the methylfolate and 1 capsule of the multi I am also on hydrox B12 and niacin every other day to. All your products but I still get really irritable and I don’t know what to do. I just ordered the electrolyte formula you have as I have issues with being dizzy, insatiable thirst and frequent urination. I take magnesium at night so hopefully this wont cause any problems with that. I am just wondering how do I get the irritableness and anger to go away? She thinks I need to the methyl pathways open so I am taking what she says because I want this to work but will it work? Thank you again for everything!

    • Dr Lynch December 7, 2014 at 8:08 pm #

      Hi Robin –

      The electrolytes sound to be needed – glad you are getting them on board.

      The methylfolate may be aggravating the irritability. Consider talking with your doctor and getting off it for a week or two.

      Instead, I’d focus on Optimal Adrenal which will help support your mood in a good way.

      The electrolytes wont interfere with the magnesium at night. I’d actually switch the magnesium at night to Magnesium Plus and Ashwagandha. One capsule each.

      • Robin December 7, 2014 at 8:40 pm #

        thank you Dr Lynch. I will talk to my doctor and look into getting those supplements. I didn’t mention I take 5htp also in the afternoons because my neurotransmittors are out of wack. I was only sleep 4 hours straight at night but now I get at least 5 so its better. I find the magnesium helps that. Will the ashwaganda hinder my sleep? Thank for responding.

        • Robin December 8, 2014 at 6:15 pm #

          It means so much that you would respond to my message so thank you. I am going through some methlylation issues today because I went from doing the protocol my doctor told me to do at every three days and as she said if no problems increase to every other day. So last week I did that and yesterday and today have been very bad days. Tired, sick, anxious, irritable, depressed and sad. I am stopping the methylation as you said and I asked my doctor and she agreed. Just hoping this feeling will go away soon. Thank you again for the advise and I look forward to trying the electrolyte formula soon. Hoping that will help.

      • Joe March 20, 2017 at 10:43 pm #

        How do you increase your morning cortisol? I’m looking for an herb or something to do better in the morning for my adrenals.

  37. Robin December 6, 2014 at 8:42 pm #

    thank you for all you do! I am 677TT and have COMT and CBS issues as well. My ND has me on your liquid Methylfolate (5drops) and multi (1 capsule) with methylfolate and methylcobalamin, Niacin and hydrox B12 everyother day. I just cant get rid of the anxiety and anger issues. I ordered your electrolyte product just today because I have bouts with insatiable thirst and dizziness and frequent urination. Your protocol calls for not doing the methyl’s at least not all the time but I don’t seem to be able to use them at all,. My doctor says she trying to get me to clear the pathways so I am continuing what she says. I tried the liposomal glutathione and felt the same feelings as the methyl products, however I tried the glutathione every day in a small amount so would it be better to do that every other day to start and should I still be doing the methyls? Thanks so much again for all you do you are really a blessing.

    • Michael_Dowdy December 9, 2014 at 1:22 am #

      Hello Robin. All of the symptoms you mention can be linked to diabetes. Doctors have told me that judging from the amount and time of onset of my neuropathy that my diabetes must have been hidden for a long time. If you haven’t had a glucose tolerance test it may be a good idea to ask about one. This is all evolving science and medicine and what is thought to be correct today could be proven wrong tomorrow. Methylation is obviously a key pivotal genetic issue and needs to be looked at very seriously. I have two copies of the 677CT mutation. Natural vitamins and products are clearly superior to synthetic ones. Natural TMG, another methyl donor derived from beets, seems to have been very helpful to me. But even natural products can have big potential problems. Kidney stones can be caused by too much protien in the diet. Leucine, a BCAA, is beneficial to diabetics. This site of Dr. Ben Lynch has proven to be the most helpful to me because I have serious methylation issues. Dr. Amy Yasko has looked at the 677TT mutation and it’s likely link to autism. I hope this is helpful to you. Michael M. Dowdy

  38. Terilynn December 8, 2014 at 4:12 am #

    Dr Ben, you rock!! Thank you so much for all your work and sharing!! Greatly appreciated your feedback on my labs and that you offer such tests and services!

    Your feedback validated what I have been doing following the info on your website and making continual adjustments as pathways improve or something new in life needs attention.

    I’m looking forward to 2015 and can’t wait to try your recommendations!
    I wish I could get my family to listen. Having the MTHFR 677 +/+ and others, creating havoc for them and they do all the wrong things, and wonder why they suffer. 🙁

    You are a godsend and I love your sense if humor 🙂 I cannot say thank you enough!

  39. Dan December 8, 2014 at 4:28 pm #

    HI Dr. Lynch,

    I seem to be like Heather above, where I feel like the methylfolate (and especially folinic acid) helps me “relax” a bit, and at least get better sleep. If I stop either, then things get worse, including muscle cramps and twitching.

    So I’m curious if perhaps because of years of illness (ME/CFS) one’s levels of folate (and/or b12) can be so depleted that even if one does get some anxiety or irritability at times (and the niacin doesn’t seem to help), then in general, could that mean that one basically needs to take the folate more often?

    Also, do you have patients who can’t seem to tolerate any sort of taurine or phosphatidylcholine (as in the liposomal products)? I definitely have adrenal issues, but wonder if the taurine is too diuretic as my cramping, twitching seems to get worse when I take either of those. When I add salt, like you recommend above, the cramps and twitching get better, but then my nose and eyes get very dry.

    So complicated, but I appreciate any feedback you might be able to offer, even if it’s just on one of these questions. 🙂

    • Dr Lynch December 9, 2014 at 4:38 am #

      Dan –

      To me it may be a sign that you need some glutathione, potassium, electrolytes in general.

      I would highly recommend trying the Optimal Electrolyte. The taurine is minimal in there and enough to support electrolyte balance. There is a TON of misinformation about there on taurine.

      Chronic illness definitely depletes nutrients – tons of them. Please check viral and bacterial loads – and see if you can start attacking them albeit slowly and cautiously.

  40. Dan December 8, 2014 at 8:28 pm #

    I posted a question earlier wondering why some people who have been ill for a long time might need higher levels of methylfolate or folinic acid, (to replace, rebuild new cells, tissues) but I see it didn’t take.

    I’m curious Dr. Lynch what your opinion is on this matter, if you have an idea why some people seem to need a lot more, while others don’t.

    And also why niacin may not work for some people?

    • Dr Lynch December 9, 2014 at 4:33 am #

      Dan –

      There are many reasons – and I go over some in this course:
      http://seekinghealth.org/product/methylation-and-clinical-nutrigenomics-part-i-video-course/

      Briefly:
      – may be folate receptor antibodies
      – more demand to make more blood cells for various reasons
      – poor absorption
      – more snps

      Niacin may not work for some people as there are other issues – many – which are affected by folate and other pathways. Electrolytes and glutathione are new additions which is why I wrote this article.

      • Dan December 9, 2014 at 5:50 am #

        Sorry for the double post Dr. Lynch.

        I didn’t see my first post earlier, so tried to repeat it.

        Thanks for taking the time to reply — I really appreciate it.

      • Dan February 20, 2015 at 10:21 pm #

        Hello again Dr. Lynch,

        I’m wondering if niacin is a problem for some people, if a sublingual NAD or NADH supplement might be an alternative to help the krebs cycle?

  41. Rebecca December 8, 2014 at 9:07 pm #

    Hi Dr Lynch, I was hoping you might be able to help..

    I think I have been taking too much folate and have become overmethylated.

    I am 27 weeks pregnant and just had homocysteine checked and it has come back at 1.4

    I am homozygous C677T as well as homo or hetero a few others like COMT, MAO, PEMT, MTRR. I generally feel ok, energy and concentration a bit low but sure that is to be expected in pregnancy. Prior to pregnancy was a bit of anxiety, occ low mood, fatigue and poor memory/concentration but my mood is def better in pregnancy. I have mild pyrroles and Zn:Cu ratio often 2:1 (10 Zn, 20 Cu).

    I am taking 5 seeking health natal (500mcg folate), 2000mcg hydroxycobalaman, phosphatydlycholine, DHA, Zinc pin (30mg), Iron – mostly seeking health supps.

    Am I best going off the multi and B12 for a while and taking some methionine? I have the seeking health one here but not sure if contraindicated in pregnancy.

    I am worried being pregnant if I go off the multi I may miss out on something. My diet is pretty good and I have lots of dietary folate, every day.

    Appreciate any comments you may have,

    • Dr Lynch December 9, 2014 at 4:29 am #

      Rebecca –

      I don’t know what the lab range is for the homocysteine – seems quite low.

      Are you eating enough protein?? Need to and this is why I made the Optimal Prenatal Protein Powder as I know many women cannot eat much during pregnancy – let alone swallow more pills.

      • Rebecca December 9, 2014 at 4:49 am #

        Hi Dr Ben,

        Thanks for your quick reply.

        Yes I eat heaps of protein, at least 1gm/kg body weight, maybe more.

        Homocysteine reference range is 5-12 so it’s way under. 2 year ago my level was spot on at 7 but since i have been taking all these vitamins it has been gradually decreasing.

        Do you think I should stop the folate, B12, B6 in particular as they may be bringing it down too much? I was thinking I could try your methionine to up it a bit?

        Rebecca

        • Dr Lynch December 9, 2014 at 6:58 am #

          I would reduce the B6 a bit and make sure you are absorbing the amino acids – consider an amino acid plasma test to see if you are deficient in any of them.

  42. john December 9, 2014 at 7:49 am #

    Dr Lynch,

    Do yo know if molybdenum would interfere with bad bacteria in the gut or sulfate reducing bacteria? How do you specifically target sulfate reducing bacteria?

  43. Melanie December 9, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

    Hello. I recently had my blood taken for amino acids. It came back that I have 5 different low amino acids and one high. I am Herero for c677t. Not sure about anything else. I know I do not absorb nutrients well. Underweight and have never been able to put on weight. I see a nd dealing with digestive issues and sibo. what do you recommend to help absorb nutrients and get amino acids level. I have experienced a LOT of hair loss. Some adrenal issues. Thank you for helping.

  44. Raquel December 9, 2014 at 2:34 pm #

    I have been having repeated episodes of tachycardia, muscle twitches , excessive weight loss , chronic upset stomach altered with constipation and reoccurring low levels of potassium and calcium. I’ve had chronic dehydration ( but I’m constantly drinking water / thirsty and not diabetic ) . Low blood pressure and low body temp. I’ve landed in the ER time and again with no one being able to find the cause for my repeated deficiencies. Any thoughts on this Dr. ? I live in a small town in GA with no sign of any medical practitioners with wisdom to help.

  45. Melanie December 9, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

    What are your recommendations for low amino acids. Also my body doesn’t absorb nutrients well and underweight. Thanks

  46. Padma December 9, 2014 at 5:47 pm #

    Thank you for the article! My kids have been experiencing blank stares, could be absence seizures. I believe they started sometime around starting 5-mthf 1 mg. Does 5-mthf cause seizures if not administered properly?

  47. Raquel December 9, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,
    I just got a test result back showing elevated neropinephrine levels. I am under the care of a Nutritionist. He thinks I’m clearly having methylation issues however, he never proceeded with a treatment plan. He wants to do a hair test for heavy metal toxins. Do you have a better test you recommend that I could take to see of I have a methylation problem? And maybe some advice on what could be causing my elevated neropinephrine levels and some steps to take ?

  48. Ken December 18, 2014 at 8:19 am #

    Hi Dr. Ben,

    The main side effect I experience after consuming methylfolate (even from green leafy veggies) is insomnia. I go so far as to AVOID high folate foods just to get a good night’s sleep. Thoughts on which recommendation is best to help with insomnia?

    In Health,
    Ken

  49. Jane December 24, 2014 at 7:45 pm #

    I am currently taking Neuro Biologix brand of methyl folate 2/day for about 2 1/2 months. I think I am experiencing the bell curve you speak about – took a while to kick in and then felt great and now am feeling a bit jittery and anxious (tight chest/ hard to breath). I am heterozygous MTHFR. I eat a very clean diet (lots of leafy greens) and exercise regularly. Do I need to back off on the methyl folate a bit? I see my healthcare prof. after the beginning of the year but would like to hear what you think.

    • Dr Lynch December 30, 2014 at 5:58 am #

      Looks like you may be yes. Do show this article and your thoughts with your doctor.

  50. Trina December 30, 2014 at 4:51 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch – I reacted negatively to the normal protocol, and have been taking your Sensitive Probiotics and Optimal Start successfully. I tried to take Optimal Electrolytes but it causes me to experience anxiety. I do have some SOD snps and am wondering if I have to have my Dr test my manganese, zinc, and copper levels before I begin taking your SOD supplement? And, should I go ahead and start the hydrocobalamin supplement or wait till I can tolerate glutathione. I have also become sensitive to citrus, which I understand creates more histamine. Thank you.

    • Dr Lynch December 31, 2014 at 5:34 am #

      Trina –

      I wonder if the niacin in the electrolytes is causing anxiety for you but that would be odd. Take the electrolytes around mealtime – not away from food – and see if that works – a decrease in anxiety. Also try using the electrolytes when you are actually going to exercise or sweat. You don’t need to use manganese or copper when taking the Seeking Health SOD supplement. Need to talk with your doctor about hydroxocobalamin and glutathione. Starting low can really help – just bit by bit.

      • Trina December 31, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

        Hi Dr. Lynch, Thank you so much for responding to my questions. I will take the electrolytes around mealtime as you suggested. I want to start taking the Seeking Health SOD supplement, but am not sure if I have to find out my blood levels of manganese, zinc, and copper prior to starting. Thank you again. Your work and your words help to keep me encouraged and hopeful.

      • Trina December 31, 2014 at 4:33 pm #

        I forgot one more question; there is Vit. B1 & molybdenum in my Optimal Start multivitamin, but would you suggest taking them as additional supplements to help with my tolerance of glutathione? Thank you.

      • Frank November 23, 2016 at 1:58 am #

        Hello,
        I have also recently started the optimal electrolytes product and I experience irritability and aggression from it, similarly to anxiety. Do you think that form of niacin could be a cause? I do already take it with food.
        I was actually wondering whether the creatine could cause the irritability? I am also taking ornithine, and starting taking this at the same time.
        Do you think the elevated nitric oxide levels could cause irritability and aggression? I was considering doing the SOD supplement to attempt to address this.. thank you.

        • Dr Lynch December 3, 2016 at 4:04 am #

          Hi Frank –

          Interesting. Creatine wouldn’t cause it. If anything it would be the niacin but usually niacin calms people down – not wind them up. Elevated NO could definitely increase aggression and irritability. Glutathione could help neutralize the NO as could the SOD or PQQ.

          I’d also consider stopping the ornithine and seeing if the electrolytes are now fine for you. Need to determine which one is causing it. If you’re taking MTHF, you need to suss out how much of that you’re taking as well.

          Key is to understand that supplements are designed to enhance and support. Many are not intended to be taken daily.

          • Frank January 8, 2017 at 7:46 pm #

            Thank you so much for getting back to me.

            I think the ornithine was causing it and I will adopt your suggested approach to supplementing as required not as a routine.

            I did have a further question about muscle twitching as this has been a continuing issue for me and why I started with optimal electrolytes.

            I didnt know about the PQQ, is that worth taking alongside the SOD and Glutathione?

            Also, alot of people say its more effective taking NAC rather than glutathione because of something to do with glutathiones limited ability to cross the blood-brain barrier.. So was bit confused as to which is better.

            Would you be able to explain a bit more about your recommendation of PQQ as I am already taking SOD and Glutathione.

            Many many thanks,
            Frank

  51. Jennifer corley January 3, 2015 at 1:22 am #

    Dr. Lynch, ever since I began the mthfr protocol (4 months ago)I began losing weight and breaking out in hives on feet and hands. I overdid it initially and have since been able to maintain without the overmethylating side effects. However the unexplained weight loss And hives continue. Got results back on thyroid panel this week( been WNL entire life) … But tsh low and freet3 and t4 WNL. Therefore I’m hyperthyroid and md suspects hashimotos. Antibody test pending. Can’t help but think it’s something related to starting the protocol though since I was a asymptomatic prior to starting everything . Is it possible this may be due to kick starting the pathway? I did read that hives and thyroiditis are related. Just curious , thanks !

  52. jayne January 4, 2015 at 5:18 pm #

    This is the first I have read that it is an end-goal to eliminate methyl-folate and other active B forms. I thought that it is a life-long need; in order to get usable B vitamins every cell needs, for the rest of life.

    • Dr Lynch January 4, 2015 at 9:08 pm #

      It is the goal to obtain and maintain health.

      using methylfolate long term is needed – definitely – but in smaller amounts or periodically larger as needed.

      Using high amounts of methylfolate should not be required if one’s folate and methylation cycles are functioning properly.

  53. Jennifer January 4, 2015 at 9:29 pm #

    How does thyroiditis factor in to methylation , or does it ? I began losing weight upon starting the mthfr protocol and routine bloodwork revealed i was hyperthyroid . I now have chronic hives . Curious as to whether this is as a result of supplementing with methylfolate ?

    • Dr Lynch January 9, 2015 at 9:14 am #

      Jennifer –

      Yes, hives is related to taking too much methylfolate. Do talk with your doctor about stopping it for a bit – and then take periodically.

  54. Kate January 7, 2015 at 3:00 am #

    Dr. Lynch,

    Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge on this website. I have reached out to a recommended doctor in my area to schedule an apppointment but in the meantime, am hoping to ask you a few things. I am compound heterozygous, which I learned after a first miscarriage (a double trisomy). My homocysteine level was normal at this time. I was told to take Thorne prenatal, 5-MTHF (1 mg) and a bioactive B Complex. The pharmacy refilled the 5-MTHF as 5 mg instead of 1 mg, and I didn’t notice for some time. I was taking 6.8 mg of methylfolate instead of the 2.8mcg originally recommended. Around this time, I developed severe cystic acne (I am 36), which still persists but is slightly getting better. My doctor tested my folate and B12 levels, and my folate was normal (20) and my B12 high (1485). I was taking a total of 35,000% of my B12 between the prenatal and the B complex prescribed but had stopped the B complex at least a week or two prior to the blood test. I have stopped the B complex and the 5-MTHF and cut back on the prenatal, so I am only taking 666 mcg right now. However, as I am still trying to conceive (naturally), I am concerned about getting enough folate etc. However, if I am overmethylated, I want to address that safely. I started taking milk thistle to help cleanse my liver, in an attempt to help my skin. I haven’t taken the B complex in weeks, and stopped the 5-MTHF a week ago but my skin is still not letting up. We are actively trying to conceive and I may be pregnant now, so I want to do what is right for the baby and I am so lost. I am looking into your supplements now and would appreciate any recommendations, as well as any thoughts if I need to treat overmethylation, or start taking the 5-MTHF again. Thank you in advance for any insight you can provide.

  55. Dianne January 8, 2015 at 1:48 am #

    I am working with my doctor (finally found someone who knows about MTHFR and about you) to help me. I have one copy of C677T and I am likely suffering from adrenal insufficiency. I have been crashing for 2 months now and have been under high amounts of stress for over 3 year (weird symptoms for 3 years too). My blood pressure, the lower number, has been as low as 47 and my pulse dropped to 55 while still awake. I am concerned with my body kind of shutting down. Is there anything I should know to help me recover? My bigger question than myself are my three kids. 2 of them have 2 copies and they are both experiencing gut issues and pain and my other child that has one copy like me only has one copy and is autistic (terrible diet and texture issues). My doctor does not see pediatric cases so I have no idea how to support them and I do not feel well enough to figure out what I should do to support them. Do you have any sources specific to children?

  56. Sue January 16, 2015 at 7:37 am #

    Dr. Lynch – I wish my doctor or even my ND understood the MTHFR problem like you do as I am homozygous c677t and I have plenty health problems with interstitial cystitis and now 40 years later some sort of tendon joint issues getting very bad, but now I’m wondering if jumping on board the methylation band wagon has made my achy joints/tendons worse? My ND and certainly not my MD do not understand any of the adjustments to dosage or complementary supplements that may be necessary and to me this all seems complicated and overwhelming. In fact, when one is taking many supplements, how one can identify that the kale they ate for dinner is keeping them up is amazing to me. I clearly will need to find a functional doctor in the Seattle area unless you know of a simple way I can figure out what I need. Not sure on the path. Thank you so much.

  57. Teresa Strong January 30, 2015 at 8:31 pm #

    I was glad to read this article again. I have been supplementing for homozygous for 6 months. Last month, I had a herpes flare. I had blisters on my eyes, mouth, armpits, and other places–very painful. I tried cutting back on my supplements, nothing happened. Then I tried increasing. I tripled my methyl folate to 4800 mcg, kept methyl b12 at 5,000 mcg. Within 3 days the sores had just about vanished. Now I’m back down to 800 mcg methyl folate, 400 folinic acid and doing well. It’s good to see you do the same thing. In times of stress, increase. Have you noticed virus flair cycles in your own patients? Did I do the right thing?

    • Dr Lynch January 31, 2015 at 7:25 pm #

      Teresa –

      You proved that methylation deficiency increases viral replication and when you increase it, viral replication slows.

      Methylation inhibits many genes – and viruses use our genes and cells to do their dirty work.

      When you increased your methylation by increasing methylfolate and methylcobalamin, you inhibited viral replication!!

      You did the perfect thing! 🙂

      You also realize to back off when not under viral attack or stress and increase when you are.

      Fantastic!!

      High 5 – seriously.

  58. Efrat January 30, 2015 at 11:42 pm #

    Is it safe for a pregnant woman to take Liposomal Glutathione? Most of the labels say that a pregnant woman should avoid or consult with doctor. My doctors barely know about MTHFR. Also I am allergic to soy and flavorings so it is also difficult to find a brand that does not contain these products. Thank you.

    • Dr Lynch January 31, 2015 at 5:03 pm #

      Efrat –

      I do not recommend taking liposomal glutathione during pregnancy.

      Liposomal vitamin C would be great.

      • Efrat February 1, 2015 at 4:59 pm #

        Thank you so much.

      • Efrat February 1, 2015 at 5:07 pm #

        How many mg of Vit. C should be taken during pregnancy? Thank you.

  59. May January 31, 2015 at 8:34 pm #

    Hi dr Lynch. I have lots of Snps expressing after taking cipro about 4 years ago, I got very sick and GI was bad. I have CBS SHMT BHMT DAO TaQ, and MTRR MTR and MTHFR as well as FUTs and FOLRs. GI is better now, but I had a test done that shows mito dysfunction, and I over methylate horrible, also super low in all B’s Mag Zinc and have mercury toxicity. I use Chaga and Nac Selenium for that. Do you recommend I take the optimal multi and electrolytes? would that be okay for me? I started low dose of indiv B’s Krebs minerals, C, moved on to black bear spray 1x a week, now 2x a day, after 2 months I hate having to take 15 different pills 3x a day though. Plus, I am extremely tired all day every day. Am trying to get this right. I have seen 6 practitioners of mthfr, none have helped over the years, they pushed too much too fast, and I had set backs. Any help is something I would be thankful for.

  60. Margarita January 31, 2015 at 8:58 pm #

    So are these recommendations for someone with pretty normal mental health, like just having nutritional deficiencies and stress buildup? I was prescribed the methyl b-vitamins for mental health reasons…I know this is all interconnected, but I feel like a person with serious mental (brain) illnesses would probably need a different treatment. I’ve had very bad experiences with psychiatrists who proscribe medications to treat symptoms without knowing much about how it actually affects the brain. I’m pretty sure most bipolar people would say the same thing. I’m kind of worried how these supplements interact with strong psychotropic medications. However, my psychiatrist said he’s had quite a bit of success with patients like me. It’s frustrating because no one can tell me what the real problem is, since no one really understands the brain.

  61. Eve February 1, 2015 at 6:58 am #

    THANK YOU Dr. Lynch for this article! I only wish I knew this 2 years ago. My doctor started me on L-5-MTHF after finding out I am compound heterozygous (but feeling fine) and it has caused me sooo many problems. I now seem to have problems with histamine and salicylate foods! Do you think doing the above might reverse some of these results??

    1. If one is generally well without methylfolate, and has a negative reaction to it, do you see it as detrimental to be pregnant and not take it? Folic Acid is always emphasized so much!

    2. Do you offer a B12/folate free multi that is safe for pregnant/breastfeeding mothers? It looks like some of those ingredients in the Optimal Start wouldn’t be good then.

    I cannot even tell you how much I appreciate these articles and your Facebook posts. They are helpful until I can find a knowledgeable doctor!

  62. Josh February 2, 2015 at 9:07 pm #

    Very helpful article. I stopped b12 and L-MTHF due to some hyperness and irritability. I’ve started the electrolytes. I’ve had problems with taking Glutathione in the past. Optimal Start has molybdenum and thiamin in it. Would taking this be enough to open up the sulfite pathway, thereby making the need to take molybdenum and thiamin individually unnecessary?

    • Dr Lynch February 4, 2015 at 5:01 am #

      Josh –

      Good to always start simply and low and work up.. So yes – I’d try just Optimal Start first – without extra molybdenum and thiamine.

  63. Nanci February 2, 2015 at 11:07 pm #

    Hi Dr.Lynch,

    I don’t understand this MTHFR at all. I was tested via 23andme and found out I am heterzygous for C677T and have some major issues with VDR BSM (vitamin D) Genetic genie only had me with a these results but according to Amy Yasko and nutrahacker I could have more mutations. I have no idea what this all means.

    Amy made many, many suggestions one being a good multi-vitamin. so I ordered Thorne Basic Nutrients which has the good methylfolate and B12 in it plus many other vitamins and things in it. I read the reviews on amazon and quite a few people are taking it while treating MTHFR. so I figured I would try it.

    Took 2 the first day and 2 the second day as recommended and one today. I am a mess now. worse than I was before taking it. I have adrenal fatigue with a mix of highs and lows according to a saliva test in October but have been under a lot of duress stemming from chronic horrendous pain in my leg coming from my back (nerve pain from sciatica which came from a synovial cyst) and a slippage of the L4. had surgery but the pain has gotten worse. slippage was not addressed or operated on.
    I am sure my adrenals got worse since then and now I probably have all lows but can’t retest because I have been on ashwagandha and holy basil for awhile. I was on HC for the adrenals but even at 25-30mg of it, I found it never really gave me the benefits it should have and only raised my already high blood pressure and raised glucose.
    I might have parathyroid disease, have had NHL (non hodgkins lymphoma) in 2009, high blood pressure, a neck injury, adrenal issues possible thyroid, a HPA axis dysfunction stemming from chemo, the horrible neuropathy in my leg and butt and now this MTHFR. its all just too much to take. and now i feel a lump in my thigh and am scared my cancer is back. all this stress is taking its toll on me.

    This vitamin is not agreeing with me at all. I feel so anxious, jittery, shaky, coming out of my skin. these symptoms are not new to me but they are worse now.
    is this normal if you over methylate? I cannot tolerate supplements well. I think i should stop them.

    I have no idea what supplements or things to do or not take or do. how do I find out? I don’t have a clue on what to do. I am so scared and don’t need yet more things that make me feel badly. I am so lost.

    Can you please help me. Thanks so much.

    • Dr Lynch February 4, 2015 at 5:00 am #

      Nanci –

      I highly recommend finding a well-trained doc here to help you –
      http://seekinghealth.org/physician-directory/

      If you are taking something that is not agreeing with you – yes – you should talk with your doctor about it and see if it needs to be stopped or not.

  64. Nanci February 3, 2015 at 12:40 am #

    what happened to my comment? it just disappeared. too long to rewrite it again. will it appear again once it get moderator’s approval? did I just answer my own question. I just didn’t want it get lost and not appear on this page as I need a lot of help. Thanks

  65. Carlie Parke February 3, 2015 at 5:31 pm #

    I have a possible chance of having stem cell therapy, do you think that it is possible
    to correct any of the SNP defects using this methodology?

  66. Karen Peterson February 3, 2015 at 7:38 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,
    I know that I have electrolyte issues. I need to drink water and go to the bathroom constantly yet am always dehydrated. My body actually tested a flat 0 for vasopressin. However, whenever I take anything with even a little potassium in it, I get a horrendous headache that lasts for 3-4 days. No doctor has been able to explain why this is. Is it a Herxheimer reaction of some sort? Is it possible I have too much potassium in my system and I can’t handle anymore (doubt this)? I have 40% methylation reduction hetero MTHFR. Thanks.

    • Dr Lynch February 4, 2015 at 4:48 am #

      Maybe you cannot get the potassium into your cells – or you are taking potassium in appropriate ratios.

      I would consider taking a small amount of Optimal Electrolyte as it is a very unique blend.

      I would also consider the Adrenal Cortex – and possibly do this first.

  67. Sandi February 3, 2015 at 8:48 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch

    I am homozygous 677 and have a very difficult time tolerating any methylfolate. I have an unusual symptom though, and wondered if you might have any ideas or if you think it might shed some light on some other issue I may be dealing with. If I go in the ocean or soak in an epsom salt bath, I break out in hives! Nothing else causes them. It seems unusual because epsom salt is supposed to get rid of hives! Any ideas?

  68. Nancy Riggs February 3, 2015 at 9:16 pm #

    I am MTHFR C677T++. So the MTHFR enzyme is reduced by about 70% in function. What I am not understanding is, for example, if taking 400 mg of folate (from lemon extract) in a vitamin vs. 400 mg of methylfolate, does that mean the 400 mg of folate is 70% less effective as taking 400 mg of methylfolate? And I am not sure how folinic acid differs and how does the same dosage of folinic acid or folate differ in effectiveness than methylfolate? I would like to periodically test my RBC (red blood count) folate as an indication as to whether I may be taking too much or not. I am not very comfortable with monitoring how I feel. What should the RBC folate blood test range be that is optimal for the body? I would like to know because, from what I have read, that too much or too little RBC folate can turn off the tumor suppressor genes. And I have one CBS mutation, what about methylfolate vs another form of folate?

    • Dr Lynch February 4, 2015 at 4:44 am #

      Nancy –

      Given all your questions – I highly recommend you watch this Part 1 conference – It will really put you in the driver’s seat.
      http://seekinghealth.org/product/methylation-and-clinical-nutrigenomics-part-i-video-course/

      All your questions are answered there – in depth – along with a lot of other useful information.

    • Michael_Dowdy May 6, 2015 at 7:01 am #

      Hello Nancy Riggs. You mention a critical area when dealing with folates and methylation, these being involved with cancer treatment and need to looked at seriously. Methylation is a dangerous consideration when cancer is involved. Have you been told there’s a tumor marker found in your blood tests? If so, follow up immediately! I take 1000 mg of TMG (from sugar beets) a day to assist my methylation but I do so with a little fear! My homocysteine level is 7 (good) which is a little comforting that my methylation level is good. Vitamin B 9 is what’s being looked at here, it is in our body in it’s natural and synthetic forms. As you study look closely at 5,10 MTHF and how it is broken down by the mthfr enzyme. Look at formyl THF. It’s hard to escape synthetic folic acid because of it’s widespread use and it interferes with our body’s use of of the more desirable natural folate. 5-L MTHF (not 5-D MTHF) is the natural form, not other forms often just referred to as just 5 MTHF, folate, folinic acid, or folic acid which include different isomers that are processed in different manners. I’ve heard that folinic acid uses formyl THF though I’m not certain. Dr. Ben might confirm this. As far as RBC count it can vary for a number of reasons which include smoking so you’ll need to look that up. Pteroylglutamic acid and natural folate are both effective in raising RBC. Single carbon molecules are are often referred to as Levo or Dextro forms most commonly known as just L or D referring to the direction of light beam refraction as it passes through the molecule, Levo is normally found in nature, and Dextro is primarily man-made. Of course natural is superior in supplements but not always what the body gets. It’s best to get your vitamins and minerals through a good diet when possible. With genetic mutations though sometimes it’s very necessary to supplement as is likely the case with homozygous mutations, but can also be the case with some heterozygous mutations or the combination of different mutations. Excessive amounts of supplements though can be MUCH more dangerous than not getting enough because they can reach toxic levels. Be careful and educate yourself! 400 micrograms is often misstated as 400 milligrams, I think we all probably do it. Here’s a fascinating article that discusses some of your questions: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DNA_methylation This next article goes in more depth and discusses enzymes, methylation, demethylation, THF, and thiols that are used in cancer treatments: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3037834/

  69. Dr Serene Lim February 3, 2015 at 10:51 pm #

    Hello Ben,
    Just wondering about SOD – there are quite a few studies about poor oral absorption. Dr Datis Kharrazian encourages use of SOD cream and there’s a product called Glisodin, which has a little gliadin to facilitate absorption. I’m wondering if the gliadin would pose a problem for gluten sensitivity people but manufacturers think such a small amount would only work locally for sod permeability. I have prescribed your SOD but have not had much feedback.
    thanks for all your work.

  70. Terilynn February 4, 2015 at 1:21 pm #

    Agree with Dr Kim. My practioners also agree Glutathione is poorly absorbed orally. I know your Seeking Health brand is formulated liposomally.
    I did find a fabulous Glutathione and SOD topical cream I am using with tremendous success.
    Dr Lynch, have you considered creating any topical creams? I did not really believe in them much till I began using them. Pleasantly surprised me.

    BTW, I really do appreciate reading all your responses! You are a rare gem and greatly appreciated! Ditto to thanks for all your time and work!
    (That goes to your wife as well!)

  71. Lela February 9, 2015 at 1:01 am #

    Our 18 year old son is C677T homozygous with MTRR and COMT snyps. Methylcobalamyn 10 mg eery 4 daysL 5MTHF 1 mg per day,SamE 400 mg day, GABA 200 mg a day, Buffered C 500 mg day,Omega 3 2 per day,D3 5,000 IU per day, NAC 1 per day,Enlyte 1 per day,Cytomel and synthroid 1 per day.Treating gut bacteria due to slow motility SIBO for 3 years and now treating with Interface for Biofilms. He still feels horrible!! Although the first shot of B12 was great than tanked so we give him the shot every 4 days now. Is he over methylating? Are we missing something. His gut issues are mild gastroparesis, SIBO and dysenergic defecation, with IBS symptoms that resemble Chrons. HELP!!!

    • Dr Lynch February 9, 2015 at 8:10 am #

      Need to heal the gut/kill the pathogens and support glutathione levels first – and electrolytes – I’d talk with your doctor about stopping most of that and restarting.

      Focus on pathogen elimination, gut healing, liposomal glutathione, electrolytes. Also consider a probiotic like ProBiota Sensitive and another called Bacillus coagulans.

      • Kaylyn Blum March 5, 2015 at 1:10 am #

        Will the electrolytes feed the biofilm though?

  72. Lela February 9, 2015 at 11:47 am #

    Dear Dr Lynch,
    Thank you! Healing the gut has been the goal since we destroyed the microbiota killing off the Lyme and co infections when he was 4. After being launched by MD’s because he is a difficult case we sought help with a naturopath with 2 PHD’s in biochemistry.We are having better results but are not healed yet. I wonder if we will ever be with the motility issues. We hope that attacking the biofilms will bring a complete healing. I have reached out to our RN naturopath who has more MTHFR knowledge and went through your training. After reading your electrolyte and glutathione suggestions and talking about the bell curve, I was not surprised at your suggestion,thank you for your guidance! Lela.

  73. Kate February 10, 2015 at 12:13 am #

    Is the amount of niacin in the electrolyte mix ok while breastfeeding?

    If breastfeeding and maxing out every time I take MTHF, should I start with this protocol or right to the prenatal while BF — maybe the other nutrients will help balance it?

    • Dr Lynch February 10, 2015 at 6:16 am #

      Hi Kate-

      Absolutely fine – yes.

      It takes a lot of niacin to deplete SAMe and/or your methyl donors.

      There is not much at all in the electrolytes.

  74. Erin February 11, 2015 at 2:10 am #

    Hi Dr. Lynch

    I am homozygous A1298T and have been trying to conceive for the last 6 months with no luck. I have been taking Thorne Prenatal vitamins for the past 9 months which contain 500mcg of Methylfolate and 500mcg of Folinic acid. Based on your post, should I not be taking this everyday? I seem to tolerate it well.

    Also the Methylfolate shouldn’t be causing any fertility issues right?

    Thanks for your time and help. You are an amazing person!
    Erin

    • Dr Lynch February 11, 2015 at 1:39 pm #

      Erin –

      If you feel great on it – then continue.

      Methylfolate should HELP fertility issues 🙂

      Please read this article and listen to the podcast:
      http://mthfr.net/prenatal-supplementation-optimizing-your-future-child/2012/01/20/

      The Thorne Prenatal Vitamins are ok – but in my mind – they do not have enough of the necessary nutrients.

      Please do consider the Optimal Prenatal Protein Powder – it’s easy to take, years of research went into it and I certainly wish it was available when my wife was pregnant with our three boys. I truly know that this is the best prenatal out there – and I want those who are pregnant, breast feeding or trying to conceive – to have access to the best.

      We are working on getting a testimonial video from a midwife who said that she had never seen a placenta so beautiful and wondered what she did. Our customer told her about the Optimal Prenatal and this protocol.

      Wish you the best and a very beautiful baby!

  75. Lela February 11, 2015 at 11:37 am #

    Dear Dr Lynch,

    Our doctor recommends that we try a Meyers cocktail(injected). Since I’m not sure what is in it. Since we need to by pass the gut is this ok? Or do we stop everything abruptly? And should we be continuing the 10 mg methylcobalamin every 4 days or switching to the methylcob 7.5/hydroxo 2.5 mg blend? The bio chemist Dr wants to try the Meyers Cocktail and the RN naturopath with MTHFR training wants to try the other. Maybe there are too many cooks in the kitchen, but they do try to work together. Lela

  76. Jacqueline Chay February 17, 2015 at 7:38 pm #

    Hi Dr Lynch – My recent blood test results came back with very high RBC Folate count (2195) I am confused as to whether this is from previously taking Folic Acid and whether I should be taking methyl folate or any form of folate? Is there any way to bring these folate levels down? Thanks for any assistance you can give.
    Jackie

    • Dr Lynch March 2, 2015 at 8:01 am #

      Hi Jackie –

      Many reasons for high RBC folate:
      – folic acid intake
      – any form of folate intake
      – low B12 intake
      – oxidative stress (low glutathione)
      – blocks in MTR enzyme (many reasons)

      RBC Folate doesnt mean much – we don’t know what type of folate is high.

      Need to run MCV, MCH, and also methylmalonic acid – to evaluate B12 – but even that is not guaranteed to identify a B12 issue.

  77. Kathleen February 19, 2015 at 3:42 pm #

    I notice a lot the first recommendation is to heal the gut and support glutathione. You recommend electrolytes and glutathione. Is there a way to test whether your level of glutathione is adequate?

  78. Margaret February 20, 2015 at 2:33 pm #

    DR. Ben,
    Does this make sense? I am homozygous for A1298C and MTRR A664A. I was put on
    Methyl Protect and SAMe. I had some initial side effects, but stuck with it because there were other good side effects. Some of the bad side effects subsided . I think there was some detoxing going on. Then I became overmethylated so I reduced my intake to one capsule every other day. That reduced overmethylation symptoms but increased old symptoms. In the past I had to chelate heavy metals and looking at the methylation cycle I see where lead and aluminum can inhibit methylation. I figured that I needed to chelate some more since it had been awhile. Because the heavy metals were blocking methylation I thought it resulted in a build-up of methyl groups since I was not using them to metylate. Did a CaEDTA challenge and lo and behold I believe that the chelation of heavy metals actually improved my tolerance of methyl groups. I am now feeling very good taking one methyl protect per day. Do you think this makes sense?

  79. Susan February 21, 2015 at 4:40 am #

    Dr. Lynch,
    With homozygous c677t is it bad to take large amount of niacinamide throughout the day for arthritis ? Is there a way to compensate? Thank you.

    • Dr Lynch March 2, 2015 at 7:30 am #

      Susan –

      Just also keep an eye on your homocysteine, liver enzymes and methylation profile (SAM:SAH ratio – via Doctors Data). Or you can just support with some B12 and methylfolate or TMG or B6 or choline to help keep homocysteine down and moving.

      • Susan March 3, 2015 at 5:34 am #

        Dr. Lynch,

        Thank you for recommendations. I’m starting with HomocysteX Plus and will ask my functional medicine doc or ND to run those tests to make sure all ok while taking niacinamide to see if it helps arthritis stiffness. I know I have that c677t ++ problem and want to be pro-active.

  80. Samantha McRorie February 21, 2015 at 9:49 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,
    I am wondering about the sulfite pathway. I know I have major issues with sulfur – taking MSM triggers unpleasant symptoms. Taking spanish black radish (a high sulfur whole food supplement) triggers massive headaches (most likely a histamine response).

    You mention clearing the suite pathway before supplementing with glutathione – stating: “You may need to open up your sulfite pathway with vitamin B1 (Thiamin) and molybdenum first. If you know you do not tolerate sulfites – wine, dried fruits – or sulfur-containing foods like eggs, cruciferous vegetables or your flatulence smells like sulfur, then you should also support sulfite pathway first with B1 and molybdenum before you take glutathione. Avoiding sulfur-containing foods and supplements for a few days is also recommended to help clear out the sulfite pathway.”

    B1 is a sulfur supplement so does one clear the pathway by eliminating sulfur foods and supplements THEN adding the molybdenum and B1 then add the glutathione then add back in sulfur foods slowly?

    I found what you wrote confusing. If one is too avoid sulfur supplements and food for a short time before adding in the glutathione why is it okay to add in B1?????

    Thanks for clarifying.

  81. Lela February 22, 2015 at 5:18 pm #

    Dear Dr Lynch
    We are adding some things as suggested by
    Cedar Mt Sinai / Dr Pimental protocol. He is already
    On SCD and Fodmop diet using Interface
    To kill SIBO and newly adding Xifaxin & neomyacin
    With 50 mg arithromyacin . Are you familiar
    With this gut bacteria treatment?
    What are your feelings? Are we in right direction?

    • Michael_Dowdy February 23, 2015 at 12:45 am #

      Hello Lela. Overcoming genetic mutations are best done with a corrected diet if possible. Most drugs are poisons with potential dangers. Paracetamol (tylenol), very heavily used, is a top drug that depletes glutathione and tough on the liver. Research it. It’s much safer to avoid antibiotics and drugs when possible. Always check toxicity reports and LD50 of anything you take, medicine or supplement. Yes, supplements can be just as dangerous as medicines. Even NAC has a strong potential danger. There are better choices to get cysteine through diet. I’ve read that genetic mutations of the methylation cycle are somewhat overcome by the trans-sulphuration cycle. Sometimes the body has a way of working out it’s own problems. I use coconut oil twice a day to help with gut issues, but I strongly advise to be careful with the amount. I use a heaping tablespoon twice a day. I use diphenhydramine for my unexplained histamine issues because I buy them for less than a penny each. You can create additional problems with drugs and supplements so I recommend use as little as possible to achieve the needed results. If there are negative effects speak with your doctor immediately. Take antibiotics exactly as prescribed and finish them unless your doctor advises otherwise. Fluoroquinolones have dangers and is prescribed as Cipro pretty often, even though it is reported to cause neuropathy. I take only asprin for my clotting issues from heterozygous Factor V Leiden and MTHFR 677CT++ because sodium warfarin, basically rat poison, frightens me. Educate yourself through study. My statements are to the best of my belief and I’m only a patient.This is a great site to study. Respectfully, Michael M. Dowdy

      • Cindy February 23, 2015 at 1:03 am #

        Baby aspirin does not help FVL as it works on platelets and FVL affects fibrin. Something I’ve learned from other FVLers.

        • Michael_Dowdy March 4, 2015 at 10:01 am #

          Hello Cindy. I’ve read that aspirin’s effect is irreversable and that that is the drawback to using aspirin compared to Warfarin. Aspirin is what I use and even one of my doctors uses aspirin as well since he has Factor V Leiden himself. Do you have FVL combined with an MTHFR mutation? If so, what are you using or what do you feel safe with using? The risks associated with Warfarin and the dietary restrictions associated with it makes it seem like a very poor choice to me. I don’t use baby aspirin because I believe the dose is too small so I take a regular 325 every evening. I’ve never had a clot or embolism and I’m 55. The American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons recently published articles stating that aspirin should be considered as a safe alternative to prevent DVT and VTE in patients having total joint replacements. Are you saying they’re wrong?

        • Michael_Dowdy March 4, 2015 at 12:46 pm #

          Hello again Cindy. My mistake! I should have said American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons or AAOS. If you have any problem finding the articles I’ll be happy to look them up again and post the link for them for you to review. Respectfully, Michael M. Dowdy

  82. Lela February 22, 2015 at 5:21 pm #

    Sorry one more question… Wh does he feel the need for Claratin every
    Day? Is this histamine levels? What to do?

    • margaret February 22, 2015 at 9:49 pm #

      instead of claritin . Try grape seed extract.

  83. Lela February 23, 2015 at 6:31 pm #

    Thank you Mike n Margaret
    I will try the grape seed extract.
    Not sure coconut oil will do the trick. Im sure it works on the normal gut
    But he has motility issues big time! Hence the SIBO. But Thanks

  84. rohan February 24, 2015 at 12:31 am #

    Hi Dr Ben,

    I’m heterozygous for both MTHFR, COMT, one CBS, etc. Cant tolerate methylcobalamin, I don’t feel anything on 500 mcg of methylfolate. I started to work on my electrolytes and strangely feel worse with potassium rich foods. I feel better with sea salt. I suspect adrenal fatigue. What could be the cause for my intolerance for potassium? And what should I do to correct it?

    • Dr Lynch March 2, 2015 at 6:44 am #

      Hi Rohan –

      Not sure -someone pointed out a reason for intolerance to potassium and I cannot recall what their reason was. Possibly you are low in sodium more than potassium? Or your potassium levels are already sufficient? Or?

  85. GG February 26, 2015 at 6:05 am #

    If one cannot take Optimal Start because of the herbs and breastfeeding (or pregnant ladies out there) is there any other option for replenishing? Lots of single nutrient capsules?

    Thank you for updating this article more!! This started happening to me over a year ago and still struggling bc of it. I appreciate the time you devote to this, it is life-changing.

    • Dr Lynch March 1, 2015 at 7:37 am #

      Hi GG –

      I’d recommend:
      Trace Mineral Complex OR Trace Mineral Complex II (no Cu or Fe) – but I rather you try the first one as Cu is needed for many
      B Minus

  86. Karr February 26, 2015 at 11:06 pm #

    In regards to the Optimal Start, can this be used for children as well? Our pediatrician prescribed a methyl folate complex and my son developed a rash and irritability and my daughter experienced dizziness. Also, would you suggest the same steps as listed above for kids as well? I’m following them for myself (methyl folate induced anxiety for me) and so far, so good!

    • Dr Lynch March 1, 2015 at 7:32 am #

      Karr –

      Absolutely – start low – and work up.

      I use Optimal Start on my three boys every day after breakfast – 2 capsules for my 6, 9 and 12 yr old.

      I give the B12/MTHF as needed.

      I give the Optimal PC capsule typically each morning also with breakfast. Watch this though – can cause anxiety in some – and decrease it in others.

      Great to hear you are doing well! 🙂

      So awesome seeing a trend in a LARGE group of people and having a protocol work for them when nothing before was working. I really think this initial set up is a big key.

  87. Richard March 1, 2015 at 9:31 pm #

    Wow, u sure provide more than a novice might absorb. Our family is replete with many symptoms noted as mthfr related issues. There exists ADHD, Depression, various forms of operable cancer, RA, miss-carriage and gastro problems that only seem to get worse as some solution is tried. Please note, a SCD taken with RA is a potential disaster. The carbs created a slow down and infection in divaticular pocket. RA meds only made it a lot worse. The best thing learned from this last escapade is, everybody is different, Dr M says there are three types of metabolic bodies, and I elected the wrong remedy for one with the SCD. Thank you for the opportunity to learn and get better. I hope to see more info in the future and perhaps add some info from the patient side.

  88. Daniela Feldhausen March 2, 2015 at 11:46 am #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,
    Thank you so much for all of this information! You’ve really helped my 10-year-old. He has been having acid reflux/vomiting for a year, and a facial tic (blinking) for 6 months. A few months ago he tested positive for SIBO and a parasite called d. fragilis. We cut fructose, lactose and carbs out of his diet to stop the reflux and vomiting. After I stumbled across your website, we did the testing and discovered he is homozygous for both MTHFR A1298C and MTRR A664A, and heterozygous CBS A360A, COMT H62H and V158M, MTR A2756G, MTRR, and VDR Bsm and Taq. He is taking B Complex Plus and Hydroxo B12 and took glutamine to help heal his gut for about 2 months. His gut is healing – he can now tolerate lactose and carbs again, but not fructose. Orange juice makes him vomit within seconds. The B vitamins both help the blinking and make it worse. If he doesn’t take any B vitamins at all, the blinking gets worse. And if we add extra L-5-MTHF the blinking gets worse. We’ve also tried your Histamine Block, thinking maybe histamines are the problem, but that hasn’t made a difference. Do you have any suggestions for how to decrease his blinking? Many thanks!

  89. Melody Garrison March 2, 2015 at 3:35 pm #

    I appreciate your website. I had trouble taking the methyfolte prescription. Bought the 400 mcg and I felt yucky taking it. I’m just so upset, it seems that I would need to be rich to follow this protocol. Any other suggestions for someone who cannot afford the protocol such as eating certain vegetables etc? Thank you very much!

  90. Melody Garrison March 2, 2015 at 10:28 pm #

    I posted a comment earlier this morning and it said something like “waiting for response” but it’s not even there now. Any suggestions?

  91. Angela DelaCruz March 3, 2015 at 10:04 pm #

    Dr Lynch,

    I recently had blood work sent to HealthDiagnosticLaboratoryInc. with these results:

    C677T = C/C
    A1298C = A/C

    The PA at Dr. office said I should take L-methylfolate 7.5 mg/day

    Do I also need to take vit B12 ?

    Thanks,
    Angela

    • Dr Lynch March 4, 2015 at 5:46 am #

      Hi Angela –

      NO. You appear to have only 1 minor MTHFR SNP – I would NOT recommend much methylfolate at all – instead do the basic preparations as defined in this article and then proceed with a basic multivitamin with some methylfolate in it – like Optimal Multivitamin Plus

  92. Melanie March 4, 2015 at 11:07 am #

    Hello. My son is homo for c677. He functions normal,very active, and shows no issues with this gene. What would you recommend him taking from your supplements to support his body. He is 11 years old.
    Just trying to stay ahead. Thanks.

  93. Kim March 4, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

    Dr. Ben, question… I’m compound hetero, but I have a number of other SNPs as well (CBS, MAO-A, and others). There is a lot to research and figure out, but many of the supplementation suggestions conflict with each other. In particular, it seems like Methyl-B12 is one of the ones that may or may not be good, depending on which SNP you’re looking at.

    Can anyone take Hydroxy-B12 instead of Methyl? Is there any reason a person would not want to take the Hydroxy form?

  94. Nicole March 5, 2015 at 8:21 am #

    Hi Dr Lynch,

    Its seems to me from your previous posts that you prefer the use of liposomal glutathione over NAC to increase glutathione levels – it there a reason why? Is it ok to take both?

  95. Kaylyn March 6, 2015 at 12:19 am #

    Dr. Lynch,

    Curious if the electrolytes will feed biofilms? And if it would be better to kill them off first and THEN add in electrolytes. Not sure I have biofilms– But I do have candida and I am sure I have H.pylori, so I am guessing some type of biofilm is present?

    • Dr Lynch March 7, 2015 at 12:37 am #

      Kaylyn –

      Biofilms are tough. As there is no sugar in the electrolyte, I am not sure they’d feed the biofilms – however, that doesn’t mean much as food in general that you consume may be feeding the biofilms on a regular basis.

      You can try the other recommendations or maybe just use sea salt.

      Best option is to hit the candida pretty hard but making sure your system is supported before you do so you don’t feel sick while doing so.

  96. Samantha McRorie March 6, 2015 at 9:01 pm #

    Asking again – because this was missed further up^^^

    Dr. Lynch,
    I am wondering about the sulfite pathway. I know I have major issues with sulfur – taking MSM triggers unpleasant symptoms. Taking spanish black radish (a high sulfur whole food supplement) triggers massive headaches (most likely a histamine response).

    You mention clearing the suite pathway before supplementing with glutathione – stating: “You may need to open up your sulfite pathway with vitamin B1 (Thiamin) and molybdenum first. If you know you do not tolerate sulfites – wine, dried fruits – or sulfur-containing foods like eggs, cruciferous vegetables or your flatulence smells like sulfur, then you should also support sulfite pathway first with B1 and molybdenum before you take glutathione. Avoiding sulfur-containing foods and supplements for a few days is also recommended to help clear out the sulfite pathway.”

    B1 is a sulfur supplement so does one clear the pathway by eliminating sulfur foods and supplements THEN adding the molybdenum and B1 then add the glutathione then add back in sulfur foods slowly?

    I found what you wrote confusing. If one is too avoid sulfur supplements and food for a short time before adding in the glutathione why is it okay to add in B1?????

    Thanks for clarifying.

    • Steve March 9, 2015 at 6:37 pm #

      I’m also waiting for a reply to your question. It all can be overwhelming can’t it? The more I read the more frustrating it can be. “Treating a deficiency of this can lead to that, so you must first do this if you presently don’t suffer from that.”
      I’m just trying to gather info from all different sources and make decisions. I saw a RN recommended from this site (1 of 2 in N.J.) in January. No change in my symptoms. So I’ll keep researching.

  97. Pat Pinney March 8, 2015 at 11:23 pm #

    My son has gone to see a doctor for methylation who I saw is using your program for methylation.

    We are having a terrible time. Her associate (who has since quit) put him on SAME, where he had a terrible reaction, then gave us a calming formulas, which didn’t help or he had a bad reaction. Vitamin Bs drive him crazy. I found a purely natural vitamin B (Vitamin Code) that he can take off and on.

    I was told my son has a CBS gene variant. He has multiple variants per your computer program. The METHFS has 2 variants and the FOLR2 (fetal) has 1 variant. He also has SOD variants. The first doctor told me “your poor son” when she saw his gene results from your computer program.

    I paid for the second test you recommended on your video and his B-12s were virtually non-existent. Also b2 and b9 were very low.

    We have since been referred to another methyl expert and she sold us a product by Professional Health Products called MTHR & BHMT assist.

    But (again) this gave my son another very bad reaction: My son says this last product made him feel he had a lot of pressure/stress, then when it wore off he had no control over his emotions. Do you think it was the metyhlfolate in it? It has 600 mcgs. We didn’t receive any prep vitamin for this multivitamin by the new doctor.

    I’m afraid we are at lab rat mode: My son is saying I should give up and accept he will just have terrible stress the rest of his life. Should I play doctor and just order the vitamins in the order you show here?

    Would you suggest another physician I could see on the internet using Skype?

    I am lost and my son has told me to give up. I’d give up, but it seems to me the doctors I have used are not following your program???
    Thank you in advance for your time.

    Pat

    • Alyson March 25, 2015 at 2:40 pm #

      Pat, I can definitely relate to lab-rat mode. The side effects of these protocols can be truly harrowing. I’m honestly thinking that for those of us who have horrendous reactions to b supplements, it might not be worth it. I understand that mutations can cause problems, but when we try to fix or “balance” them we end up causing more problems because we’re just so complex. I’m slowly recovering from a year of hell brought on by methylfolate, hydroxocobalamin, niacin, etc. I think you are doing the right thing stopping immediately when he has a bad reaction. started a protocol in March, got worse in April (doctor blamed it on toxins), spent April, May, and June in iir tryiao pulse and adjust supplements while feeling consistently worse, quit everything in June. M side effects

      • Alyson March 25, 2015 at 2:46 pm #

        Sorry, I got cut off. I meant that I spent April, May, and June in repair mode trying to pulse and adjust supplements while feeling consistently worse, quit everything in June. My side effects lasted until JANUARY. I’m still not the same. I’m slowly feeling more human with acupuncture, Chinese herbs, and supplements that don’t trouble me like zinc, magnesium, fish oil, etc. I don’t think I can attempt any methylfolate protocol again. If b vitamins cause more stress, maybe they just aren’t worth it, even if they make sense on paper.

        • Alyson June 23, 2015 at 1:20 pm #

          Acupuncture and Chinese herbs did nothing. My God, I’ve fallen into so much quackery over the past year and a half, including this MTHFR marketing. My chronic illness left me desperate to try anything, and I ended up getting worse. I’m ashamed I wasn’t more critical.

          • Sandi June 23, 2015 at 3:41 pm #

            Alyson,

            It’s quite obvious that you’re frustrated and angry, but I don’t think it’s fair for you to claim something is “quackery” just because it didn’t work for YOU! For some of us, what you call quackery, has been life changing. I’m sorry you aren’t having any luck getting better, but for some of us, who have spent years looking for answers to their health problems, this site has been a life saver. If you don’t think the MTHFR protocol is the answer for you, perhaps you should look for answers elsewhere!

          • Alyson June 23, 2015 at 5:44 pm #

            Sandi, I’m very glad it has worked for you. Please understand that I am not calling the treatment of MTHFR quackery. Folate is essential for health, and some people do develop deficiencies and need special care. This should be done in a measured, systematic way.

            Rather, I am criticising the way in which naturopaths misrepresent the treatment: oversimplifying, overpromising, drawing tenuous conclusions, and making side effects an afterthought. The connection between genes and illness is complex, and taking supplements without a doctor’s care is risky, particularly when it comes to B vitamins.

            I’m also cautious now of following the advice of a single person who lacks a background in genetics, is not beholden to peer review, and who has a definite interest in selling these supplements.

            A number of lucky people will hit on something that works for them, but I’m sure you can appreciate that just as many people risk dangerous interactions. They need to be aware of that risk. I’m concerned because I don’t see those risks adequately addressed in this site.

            I am frustrated because this protocol itself made me severely ill. I am posting here because it is relevant to others who might have adverse effects.

          • Sandi June 23, 2015 at 7:50 pm #

            Alyson

            As far as I am concerned, this site is merely a tool for people to use to try to help themselves. The work that Dr. Lynch has done is extremely helpful to many of us. Everyone must be their own advocate, whether dealing with an MD or a naturopath, or an acupuncturist etc. I believe Dr. Lynch is giving us much needed info so that WE may better help OURSELVES. I am grateful to have this site as just one more source of information. Nobody should rely on just one Dr’s opinion or just one source of information. No one doctor or naturopath knows everything so the more help we can get to understanding our own health, the better off we will ultimately be. Also, Dr. Lynch seems to take side effects very seriously and cautions against starting any protocol before one is certain that they are ready for it. He strongly recommends, for example, healing the gut before starting, as well as getting methylation pathways and genetic testing, among many other suggestions to prepare oneself for methyls. If one chooses to ignore those precautions, they are probably asking for trouble. For some of us, the potential side effects are worth the risk. Some of us suffer with illnesses that are already much more debilitating than any possible side effect might be. Many of us have had our daily lives improve by leaps and bounds because of this site. Just because it didn’t work for you, doesn’t mean it doesn’t work.
            Furthermore, I prefer Dr. Lynch’s supplements to any others, but, if you don’t like that he makes money off of them, you can always get lesser quality ones somewhere else.

          • Michael_Dowdy June 23, 2015 at 10:53 pm #

            Hello Alyson. There’s not a reply link to Sandi’s next comments but I’ll tell you that I totally agree with her in her next couple of comments. Dr. Ben and this site have proven extremely helpful to me. I’m sorry that you have not been as successful in finding a working combination for yourself. I’m only a patient but I’ve tried to study on my own and find answers. I’ve achieved some unexpected improvements, some of which I’m not exactly sure why. Something I’ve done seems to have helped. I have the help of some really good doctors that treat my more serious conditions. I do not see a naturopath though, instead I use the information I’ve learned through my personal study. I have no financial agenda for my comments, only a desire to hopefully improve my health and share what I think is helpful. I hope you find the answers you’re looking for. This site is very helpful. Respectfully, Michael Murray Dowdy

          • Alyson June 24, 2015 at 10:59 pm #

            Sandi,
            I am happy it’s worked out for you. Again, I never claimed that just because I’ve had trouble it doesn’t work for anyone. Some people need folate supplementation. Some (like me) need B12. Some people tolerate methylfolate. Some do fine on folic acid. Some need methylcobalamin, while others (like me) only tolerate cyano or hydroxyocobalamin. And so on.

            My concern is that the side effects came too little and too late to the discussion, and that shouldn’t have happened. They should come first, in clear language without marketing. The discussion shouldn’t happen in response to people getting seriously sick. I didn’t choose to ignore any precautions. I was under the care of a doctor who learned from Dr. Lynch. But how, in 2013, was I supposed to be aware of side effects and take precautions that weren’t discussed until 2014?

            I suffer tremendously debilitating illness. I understand what it is to be willing to risk pain, effort, and expense to get better. What I was NOT willing to risk, however, was getting worse. And that’s exactly what happened with my B12 anemia while taking methylfolate. Understand I’m not complaining about a transient discomfort. I’m talking about the potential for permanent, debilitating neurological, psychiatric, and cognitive damage in certain at-risk people.

            I do believe in being an informed, proactive patient. But my concern is that these are infinitely complex issues with a high potential for serious (even dangerous) side effects. I think it’s important to stress the risks, even if they don’t happen to everyone. Some lucky people may improve by leaps and bounds, but others may be put in danger.

            Frankly, this is complicated and risky stuff. When done right, it can be life saving. But it needs to be highly tailored and supervised and based on testing, not just reactions to symptoms or genes. I don’t think that’s stressed enough here.

          • Eve June 25, 2015 at 2:27 am #

            Well said, Alyson. I am in the same boat, same timeline. 2 years now I cannot tolerate anything and my health is worse than it was – when I felt fine before the methylfolate!!!! And likewise, all this happened in early 2013, before this article was published, or any information. Believe me, I searched for it prior to this article!!

            I also was under the care of a trained ND, so I wasn’t taking a chance by myself. AND I had researched it here before taking it. @ years of struggle all because some “superior” supplement. With the added problem of being able to take things to correct it when pregnant and breastfeeding. So upsetting. I want my health back.

  98. Lela March 9, 2015 at 10:59 am #

    Dear Kaylyn,
    We have been working on killing biofilms for a few years now for our son with a bio chemist/naturopath. He uses 2 cap of Interface(Klaire Labs) 2 X day. I felt this was too much for him and we all agreed to 1 cap 2 x day. It may take longer but easier on his gut, since he has motility and SIBO issues. Good Luck! Lela

  99. Lela March 9, 2015 at 11:01 am #

    Dear Kaylyn
    Sorry forgot to tell you take the Interface 1 to 2 hours away from food to be effective.

  100. Elle March 10, 2015 at 5:05 pm #

    Has anyone had issues with the authorized generic (L-methyfolate MFG Brekinridge) of Deplin? My pharmacy switched to it in January and I slowly started going downhill. on the next refill I had them give the Deplin (mfg Pamlab) back. I’ve been back on it for about a week and am slowly starting to feel better, (I also increased my AD). But I am having some stomach issues.. anyone have any of these issues? The pharmacy as well as the company swear it is the same formula so I am feeling a bit fustrated, thanks!

    • Dr Lynch March 11, 2015 at 5:40 pm #

      It may have been a racemic blend – a mix of L and D forms of methylfolate – which is not good. Need the pure L isomer.

  101. Elle March 11, 2015 at 5:49 pm #

    Thanks so much for the reply! I will stick with the name brand! Starting to feel better today!

  102. Violet March 12, 2015 at 4:48 am #

    I really appreciate the article. Being compound heterozygous myself I find this information very useful. Thank you for your hard work Ben!

  103. Emily March 14, 2015 at 12:33 am #

    My side effects are always horrible anxiety and horrible depression at the same time. Terrible combination! I have only ever felt that way when overmethylated. Niacin really helps bring me back to normal. I only ever take methylfolate every 2-3 days so it seems like it shouldn’t happen. I think it must have something to do with my comt and cbs snp’s getting backed up. : (

  104. Tessa March 14, 2015 at 12:51 am #

    Hi!

    We started my 5 year old on methyl folate injections and he responded with TERRIBLE room clearing gas 🙂 He also actually soiled himself a few times. So we lowered the dosage and sloooowly worked our way back up. The soiling stopped but the foul gas remained.

    A year later our naturopath put him on black walnut capsules which immediately stopped the foul gas. But before that point it sort of stumped her.

  105. Stacy March 14, 2015 at 12:54 am #

    i have adequate glutathione and can not take b12. ER visit with anxiety and flushing.
    When taking nay supplement over a period of time, I start to react to it.
    I have not started the Methofolate yet.
    Working with one of the doc on your web site to start a program.
    Did 23andme and another genetic profile.

  106. Elizabeth March 14, 2015 at 1:04 am #

    I am homo c677 and have experienced severe muscle cramping in my chest and back when I take my methylation supplements, despite taking magnesium and potassium and increased water.

    • Marcia March 14, 2015 at 7:26 pm #

      I had the same problem. It wasn’t a lack of magnesium or potassium, it was not enough salt. That may be your problem too, especially if you’ve increased your water.

  107. Diane B March 14, 2015 at 1:08 am #

    In response to your question asking how we do on folate donors…my response is below.

    I have a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, but I walked away from mainstream medicine 20 years ago. I am much better now after treating my methylation cycle mutations…
    Homozygous: COMT V158M, COMT H62H, VDR Taq.
    Heterozygous: VDR Fok, MTHFR A1298C, MTHFR C677T, MTRR 11, CBS A360A, BHMT 02, 04, 08.
    Heavy metal toxicity with uranium, cadmium, lead.
    I had so much nerve pain and nerve issues when I took Deplin. I can’t tolerate methyl donors at all without nerve pain.

    My son has a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia for 20 years, and he has the following mutations:
    Homozygous: COMT V158M, COMT H62H, VDR Taq.
    Heterozygous: VDR Fok, MTHFR A1298C, MTHFR C677T, MTR A2756G, BHMT 01, 02, 04, 08.
    He became more psychotic when we added Deplin. We took him off and he is now able to tolerate Fola Pro 6 tablets without psychiatric symptoms. He is profoundly better after addressing his methylation mutations.

  108. Rebecca March 14, 2015 at 2:09 am #

    Hello. I was wondering what your opinion would be on SAMe and calcium folinate, as we do not have much access to methylfolate in Australia. Can get it, but it’s much easier to use SAMe and calcium folinate.

  109. Padma March 14, 2015 at 4:01 am #

    Hello Dr Lynch,

    I have twin boys diagnosed with pdd-nos with a single copy of a1298c mutation. We started 5-mthf 2 mg along with mb-12 shots when they were 20 months old. I started seeing staring spells. They started around the same time when I started 5-mthf. So I know they are related. I have been trying to figure out ever since what I should be doing, changed the doses, stopped them altogether, nothing worked. Right now, they are 3 and on 5 mg dose,still see the spells. I see you mentioned seizures as one of the side effects of 5-mthf. Please let me know what I should be doing differently. Btw, we live in Bothell, WA. I would love to take a consult with you, but I see you are no longer doing consultations 🙁

  110. Laura March 14, 2015 at 4:06 am #

    hi Dr. Lynch,

    I am Hetero c677t. When I started FolaPro methyl folate, I began taking 1/8 tablet at night for about 2 weeks. It seemed fine so I went to 1/4 tab for 2 weeks. I take cortisol and thyroid, bio identical. I started losing weight. I went up to 1/2 tab for about 10 days. During that time I continued to lose weight, became hyper and anxious. I stopped the methyl folate
    For a few months then reintroduced it by crushing a tab then dabbing my little finger in it and that was my dose. My blood work reflected my T3 increasing as well as my cortisol but still in low range. Over a year I lost about 25-30 lbs. I had some very difficult stress to navigate. I take no stimulants. My heart started having rhythm issues so now I have an internal heart monitor to try to capture any events and I’ve gained about 30 lbs. my cortisol was slightly above normal and my T3 finally normal. I cut back and last blood work showed below normal of both. So I’m taking them every few days. I am frustrated and feel like a yo yo. The weight gain is in places I’ve not had before. The pathways are open and changes happen continuously which keep my body confused! The weight gain is frustrating as is the wonky, but seldom, heart rhythms. All started with taking the methyl folate and methyl B 12. And there are no Drs. Here to monitor or guide me. I do have a wonderful Fibromyalgia Dr. I just feel all out of constant balance. I am GF, soy free, very little sugar, no chemicals and eat organic. My blood type is B +. Thank you so much for all you do in this field!

  111. Jude March 14, 2015 at 8:37 am #

    3/13/15 Note to Dr. Lynch
    file:///C:/Users/Judith/Documents/23&Me/Dr%20Ben/Preventing%20Methylfolate%20Side%20Effects%20-%20MTHFR.Net.htm
    Hello Dr. Ben: Thank you for the helpful articles and videos. Very appreciated!

    Here are my major SNP’s:

    RS4680 COMT V158M +/+ AA
    RS4633 COMT H62H +/+ TT
    RS6323 MAO A R297R +/+ AA
    RS1801131 MTHFR A1298C +/- AC
    RS1801394 MTRR A66G +/- GA
    RS651852 BHMT 8 +/- CT
    RS234706 CBS C699T +/- AG
    RS1979277 SHMT C1420T +/- AG
    Likely Suox

    Lead levels off the chart, uranium, aluminum, cadmium, barium, arsenic high.. just starting EDTA suppositories slowly.

    Would you consider replacing the standard thiamine in your supplements with benfotamine? I imagine there would be many who could benefit from being able to take a mult-vitamin. It took me many years to figure out why multi’s would give me a terrible headache. Muscle testing revealed a sulfur donor. B1, Thiamine, as the culprit.

    Taking pathway supports like 1000 mg molybdenum, FolaPro 200 mg L-5 MTHFR, TMG 650 mg, P5P 33 mg, sublingual B complex by Source Naturals, methylcobalamine 5-10 mgs sublingual (going to move towards hydroxy) is not enough to be able to take the standard form of Thiamine. See below for total B’s. I am also taking Norival for Vitamin B6 10 mg N-Acetyl L-tyrosine 300 mg, Biopterin 25 mcg.

    I am unable to take multi vits because they contain a form of Thiamine (B1) that I react to badly, gives me headaches. I just discovered that Thiamine is a sulfur donor and I have great difficulty with headaches from taking in sulfur foods and vitamins. Tests always show low glutathione, I am taking Researched Nutritionals liposomal glutatione and doing coffee enemas to help create glutathione. For iron absorption methylcobalamine 5-10 mgs, lithium orotate 10 mgs, and Transfer Factors Sensitive (these help).

    I am 68, very ill, progressively worsening over my life especially the last 20 years. Autoimmune thyroid, gastritis, celiac, fibro, ME, MCS, neuropathy, degenerative joint/disc disease, leaky gut, chronic anemia, trigeminal neuralgia, migraines. Paleo diet, gluten, legumes, grains, dairy, soy, bad fat free. Need to avoid corn and sugar, I know. Without proper sulfur absorption I have had replacements for two hips, one knee, and two neck surgeries. Spinal problems with pinched nerves. Tests show poor absorption, gut pain started over 30 years ago. Never can get rid of candida, metals attract, and depression/anxiety my companions with severe isolation. Bipolar, depression & Anxiety run in my family. Folks tend to disappear when you have a chronic illness and MCS makes it very difficult to socialize even if I could find the energy. I am taking NP Thyroid for Hashi’s which was not diagnosed until age 40. I believe low thyroid was a problem from very early in my life.

    I have been on opiods for pain for 9 years. Cannot tolerate other pain meds.

    Sublingual Coenzemate B Complex by Source Naturals

    Vitamin C (as niacinamide ascorbate) 17 mg 28%
    Thiamin (from 20 mg cocarboxylase [Coenzymated]) 13 mg 867%
    Riboflavin (from 15 mg flavin mononucleotide [Coenzymated]) 10 mg 588%
    Niacin (from inositol hexanicotinate 34 mg, niacinamide ascorbate 30 mg, & nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide 10 mg [Coenzymated]) 39 mg 195%
    Vitamin B-6 (from 15 mg pyridoxal-5′-phosphate [Coenzymated]) 10 mg 500%
    Folate (as folic acid) 400 mcg 100%
    Vitamin B-12 (from 1 mg dibencozide [Coenzymated]) 860 mcg 14,333%
    Biotin 150 mcg 50%
    Pantothenic Acid (as calcium D-pantothenate) 25 mg 250%
    Sodium 5 mg <1%
    Coenzyme Q10 12 mg †
    Inositol (as inositol hexanicotinate) 7 mg

    Sublingual B12 source Naturals
    Vitamin B-12 (as methylcobalamin) 5 mg

    Thank you.

  112. Santino March 14, 2015 at 10:24 am #

    I got horrible anxiety from a b complex containing:

    34mg of Niacine
    120mg of methyfolate
    400% of daily recommendation of methylcobalamin.

    I had horrible anxiety attacks (which had not long time, so it 100% was from the b complex). First I had enhancement of Libido maybe an hour after intake. 4-5 hours later I had these anxiety attacks.

    It seemed that I was much more sensitive to histamine for 2-3 days after intake.

    I am compound heterozygos and have little too high homocysteine, but after having this experience 2 times with 2 different b complex where methylfolate and methycobalamin were in, I really do not want to try again.

    I thought the niacine must work somewhat against these side effects…

    Or should I try methylfolate alone?

    I did tolerate hydroxocobalamin injection which I had 3-4 years ago. But interestingly I got very ill AFTER I got injections of hydrocobalamin and folic acid over a few weeks.

  113. Anne March 14, 2015 at 8:57 pm #

    Does testing for COMT (and others) help determine if you will be sensitive to methyl supplements? My doc only tested me for MTHFR and told me to take methylfolate/methyl B-12. How does a person know if they should take methyls or not BEFORE they start taking them???
    I will not take anything until I am sure they won’t cause problems for me. I have SVT and am afraid the methyls will cause big time problems.
    Seems like the “cure” is worse than the illness!
    -Anne

  114. Lela March 15, 2015 at 9:31 pm #

    Dear Dr Lynch,
    As we continue with efforts to heal the gut we were told to help our son learn to cope with it. What is the CDSA test for the digestive system? We have started pulsing up with the gluthathione about 1/4 tsp every day with 1 scoop D Ribose. Is there a difference between the liquid and powdered forms? He does not tolerate the natural sweeteners (stevia)in your products, are any of them made without it? Thank you for all your experience and knowledge! As we can all attest to the fact that unless we all do our own research on each snyp,and each reaction, no one else will. Lela

  115. Lela March 16, 2015 at 2:30 pm #

    Dear Dr Lynch,is it necessary to supplimen
    With BH 4 if you have the CBS/COMT snyp
    When U R Homo C677T ++? Or wait to seif after
    Starting methyl cycle it takes care of self?
    Thank you again! Lela

  116. Alyson March 25, 2015 at 2:20 pm #

    “I’ve made people go down the ‘other side’ by not pulsing methylfolate and by not preparing their biochemistry for it. It is much harder getting them back where they were than it is preventing them from getting side effects in the first place.”

    I was one of those pushed down the “other side” by methylfolate. I had no idea what was going on and had no idea to expect it. My doctor, who follows Dr. Lynch’s info, had no idea either. When I started having severe problems, we had no idea what was wrong and scrambled to fix it. Nothing we tried worked. I went through a year of pure hell and pain, even worse than my original illnesses. A year later, I’m still having a horrible time. I feel older and sicker, and have lost my confidence in alternative medicine. It made me sicker than allopathic medicine! The methylfolate caused SEVERE, HORRIFIC full face cystic acne. I was a beautiful, single young woman. I worked as a model. I’m now permanently scarred and disfigured. I’ve lost my work and my self confidence. The scarring is deeper than my tissue’s ability to regrow.

    I have to wonder, Dr. Lynch, why it took so long for you to address in detail the difficulties of methylfolate. So much is made about the dangers of pharmaceuticals and the benefits of supplementation. So much info on methylfolate makes it seem like a slam dunk sort of treatment. But once people like me start getting horrific side effects, we’re pretty much guinea pigs. Had this information been available a year ago, had I known the true extent of the bad side effects I was risking, I could have safeguarded my health and my face. I’m glad some people might get better on it. As for me, I’m suffering permanent, life-changing damage.

    • Dr Lynch March 26, 2015 at 12:06 am #

      Alyson –

      It’s because this is emerging research. It takes time – a LOT of time to determine why these side effects have occurred – and then – how to prevent or resolve.

      As far as I know, there are no other doctors working hard to discover why people have these side effects from methylfolate.

      I want to know why – and prevent.

      I would really consider a product like this – great things happen for many with acne:
      http://www.torfspa.com/products.html

      • Alyson March 26, 2015 at 12:58 am #

        I appreciate it, Dr. Lynch.

        The acne was truly bizarre. At first, upping magnesium and vit C cleared it beautifully, and left my skin better than ever. But I stayed on some bit of the methylfolate protocol and a month later, the acne was back with a vengeance. It stayed for several months after stopping supplements. In fact, the entire spectrum of side effects occurred like clockwork as if I were still taking methylfolate. I tried hydroxocobalamin alone, methyl b12 alone, and niacin alone. All caused the acne to return.

        I also had the full list of side effects: severe swelling, body aches, joint pain, brain fog, psychotic anger, fatigue, tremors, muscle contractions to the point of convulsion, reclusiveness, headaches. Aside from the cystic acne, all the skin on my face thickened and formed white lumps. My soft tissue would not heal (paradoxical folate deficiency maybe?). After I quit the protocol in June, I got hyperthyroid, lost 20 lbs in a few weeks, got severe thirst and urination, kidney pain. I was a mess.

        The acne and other side effects have finally evened out, but I’m left with scarring. I’m wondering if there is some way to optimize soft tissue healing? Also I think it would be helpful to have an article on how to care for methylfolate skin issues- I learned a lot the hard way.

      • Alyson May 7, 2015 at 6:31 am #

        I keep wondering about the acne, and I have two thoughts about what it might have been:
        1. I have bacterial overgrowth in my gut and permeable intestine. The methylfolate/hydroxocobalamin/methylcobalamin combo somehow increased the flora, or increased their toxins getting out though my gut lining into my muscles, skin, blood, etc. Sugary foods tend to trigger similar symptoms, but to a much lesser extent.
        2. It was actually dermatitis herpetiformis, and somehow the b vitamins triggered my celiac symptoms to get worse. It was different from regular acne. It began at my scalp and back hairline, then edged out over my face. It was extremely painful, searing and burning and throbbing more than itching. But technically I suppose it was itchy as well. It came on very fast – we’re talking multiple cysts forming within minutes of taking supplements. There were clusters of cysts that would not come to the surface. Some of them looked like bubbles and left behind thickened white nodules of tissue. After a few months whatever facial skin wasn’t broken out was thickened, red, itchy, and rough. My skin was hypersensitive.
        Wherever they were I have either ragged, shallow purple boxcars or compressed, tough white lumps. It is not normal acne.

        At the same time I had acne, I had tons of other issues that worsened: bloating, full body swelling, joint pain/stiffness, muscle/skin pain, sensitivity to light/movement/sound, full body tremors multiple times a day and several times a night, extreme thirst, frequent urination, difficulty emptying, psychological changes:anger/dread/paranoia/hysteria, brain fog, night sweats, numbness in feet/head/hands, hand tremors/weakness, poor night vision, shadows in my peripheral vision, thinning, coarse hair, hair falling out, sudden weight loss, clumsiness, kidney pain, adrenal pain, thyroid pain, difficulty swallowing and speaking, shortness of breath, IBS, fainting/dizzy spells, etc etc. Reading other people’s experiences with celiac, a lot of them mention the same bizarre symptoms, particularly earthquake-like tremors. Some of them note that sugar sets off the DH rash too.

        I get my celiac results in a few days.

        I can’t stop wondering why I got so sick on the vitamins. I think gut health/celiac/dietary triggers are important areas that need to be more looked at.

        • Missy August 4, 2015 at 10:15 pm #

          Alyson, I too have issues with a lot of these supplement protocols. I suspect by using the methyl B12 and folate protocols, you pushed through some other vitamins/minerals and couldn’t replenish them fast enough. I’m thinking things like zinc and vitamin A.

          I am celiac and have dealt with really bad metal and fat soluble vitamin deficiencies because of all of the diarrhea and fat malabsorption (magnesium, zinc, selenium, vitamin A, E, and D, etc) for a very long time and it’s extremely hard to raise them until you get your gut flora under control. There are gobs of articles out there about how low vitamin D causes intestinal permeability, which causes autoimmune reactions; and vitamin D can’t be brought up without vitamin A, which can’t be absorbed without proper zinc, etc. It’s a huge trainwreck if you have any sort of gut issue.

          Try using Optimal Start to get those basic minerals back up to speed, or even the Trace Mineral complex that Dr. Ben recommended up above. I’m in a similar boat with acne, but zinc and vitamin A/D along with healing my gut by no gluten AT ALL seem to be the critical components for me. Some people need to do SCD or GAPS to get their gut totally healed.

          Good luck!

    • Michael_Dowdy March 26, 2015 at 3:53 am #

      Hello Alyson. I’m very sorry to hear about your experience. Skin is our largest organ. It also removes some toxins from our body. Imagine what soap scum which is left after bathing stuck to showers and tubs might do when it doesn’t rinse off of our skin. Try to find and use something which rinses off easily and completely and doesn’t stick to tubs, showers, and skin. Niacinamide is good for the skin. I’ve also seen very significant skin improvement after adding virgin coconut oil to diet. Dr. Lynch’s expertise has really benefited me. 5-L MTHF often doesn’t get used because folic acid is readily used first using up folate receptors since it’s processed through the intestines. Folic acid is synthetic and NOT found in nature and it’s difficult to avoid consuming since it’s in most breads, cereals, ect. It’s worth taking some time studying this site for real answers. “Folate” is a DECEPTIVE term which includes both natural and SYNTHETIC forms of folate and you must check to see if you are being fooled into consuming pteroylglutamic acid instead of natural folate. Folic acid served a purpose but it’s not always beneficial. Respectfully, Michael M. Dowdy

      • Alyson March 26, 2015 at 3:26 pm #

        Thanks Michael, I had cut folic acid from my diet, and the supplements were from Seeking Health, so I don’t think that was the issue. Interestingly, the acne stated after I decreased natural sources of folate from my diet- I had been eating tons of leafy greens, and my dr. told me to stop. Then I got the acne. I’m wondering if the skin problems were paradoxical folate deficiency- adding niacin to quench methylfolate did not help breakouts.

        • Michael_Dowdy June 25, 2015 at 7:08 am #

          Hello Alyson. I’m so sorry I didn’t see your response until just now. Why were you told to reduce your intake of leafy greens? That really puzzles me unless you’re taking coumadin. If you had a bad response to methylfolate I would stop taking it or greatly reduce the dose. I had immediate bad responses to Metanx but I’m doing pretty well right now on a low dose of methylfolate, in fact I have no intention of making any changes to the supplements I take for now. I wish methylfolate had been developed many years ago when I was younger though and I understand how some feel otherwise because of negative side effects but there’s two sides to that coin. Niacinamide can be beneficial to the skin sometimes. I wish I had time to read through all of the posts but I don’t. Please let me know why you were told to reduce leafy greens. Have you had kidney stones? Did your doctor think pesticides used on the leafy greens were causing problems for you? I find doing away with leafy greens in diet very disturbing. Respectfully, Michael M. Dowdy

          • Alyson July 29, 2015 at 9:44 pm #

            Hi Michael,

            My MTHFR doc told me to avoid leafy greens because she said my body couldn’t process folate and it would interfere with the methylfolate. That just doesn’t make sense to me now. I had no folic acid supplementation, no folic acid in diet. I had a test through Seeking Health and my unmetabolized folic acid was low. My methylfolate was way high.

    • Eve March 26, 2015 at 4:13 am #

      Sorry to hear your results, but I understand!! I felt fine too, but my doctor tested me for MTHFR and said I needed to take L-methylfolate. 2 years later and I still cannot handle histamine foods and my food tolerances have dwindled in that time to an extremely limited diet. I too feel so much older since taking the supplement, and wish I never did.

      • Alyson March 26, 2015 at 4:17 am #

        Sorry to hear that! I think the “aging” feeling for me comes from the way it put my adrenals and thyroid through the ringer, “flushed out” my hormones, and wrecked my skin and depleted antioxidants. Im finding Chinese herbs and acupuncture help a bit.

        • Kim March 29, 2015 at 1:39 am #

          Alyson, I’ve been reading your comments with great interest. I have three questions if you don’t mind answering!

          1) When the cystic acne started, what did it feel like? I don’t mean to the touch, I mean, could you sense anything in your face as the spots began to form? (I feel pressure in my cheek and have been since raising too high on the B12 — and I fear a cystic spot is forming, but I’ve never had that before so I have no clue what to watch for.)

          2) And then, how long did you wait before stopping the Methylation protocol when you realized that was the cause of the skin problems?

          3) How much B12 and Folate each were you on when this began?

          • Alyson March 29, 2015 at 11:12 pm #

            Hi Kim,
            Glad to help- if I can save anyone from a lifetime of facial scarring I would.

            The acne started as occipital acne- bizarre extremely painful itchy cysts on the back of my scalp. Then groups of cysts all over my face. YES, I did feel them forming. The cysts appeared almost in real time within an hour of each dose, whether it was methylfolate, niacin, or hydroxocobalamin. My skin burned. My doctor told me it was “toxins” leaving and to do footbaths. I know now that’s nonsense. I was on a tab of othomolecular products methyl b12 i think a methylfolate from seeking health. I was on them for 4 mos. The acne started about a month in. At first, adding magnesium and c made it go away. Then it came back. Adding niacin did not help. Pulsing doses did not help. I stopped at the end of June. Overmethylation lasted until Feb or so. To be honest, I’m really angry. One tablet had 83,333% DV of B12. Yes, 83,333%. That’s a megadose. No wonder people are having issues! B12 megadose increases cancer risk, btw. I feel scammed.

        • Bea April 9, 2015 at 7:27 pm #

          Hi Alyson, I am so sorry to hear what you’ve been through. I share some of your experience because I also became very ill after I was given mega-doses of B12 and Folic Acid (in my case not methylfolate). It took 8 months for the most severe symptoms to subside. And now, 1.5 years later, I am still suffering from it every day.

          I understand the feeling of aging, as I felt exactly that way too — aged very rapidly, and my appearance showed it. It’s so frustrating. I think it’s partly because the high dose of B12 greatly increases the oxidative stress on the body. I’ve had some relief from headaches & other head symptoms by taking high doses of antioxidants, in my case especially Vitamin E and Selenium.

          Could you please tell me, where you learned that “B12 megadose increases cancer risk”? It would help me very much, as I’ve been researching the effects of B12 megadose on the body. Thank you!

          • Kim April 9, 2015 at 8:42 pm #

            Hi Bea,
            When you say “mega doses”, exactly how much were you given?

            And, were you taking any/all of the pre-cursor supplements (Electrolytes, Glutathione, SOD, etc.) before you started the B12 and Methylfolate?

          • Alyson April 10, 2015 at 4:12 am #

            Hi Bea,

            To start with, here is a really good summary of B12 cautions. I’ve not personally heard these cautions from naturopaths, and that troubles me:

            http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/vitamin-b12/safety/hrb-20060243

            I would add to it, “Use cautiously in patients with psychiatric concerns.”

            I actually first heard about a potential cancer link and folic acid supplementation from the Unmetabolized Folic Acid test Dr. Lynch recommends. I’m not sure how strong the link is, or if it’s just for certain types of cancer. My UMFA was high, but I wasn’t eating folic acid fortified foods. Guess what I WAS taking? Methylfolate. I’m not sure if that was connected.

            As for cancer and B12, I just came upon some articles randomly.
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15499634?dopt=Abstract
            http://psa-rising.com/eatingwell/vb12_folate04.html
            I think the link is primarily between B12 and prostate cancer (I don’t remember the others?) The theory as I understand it is methylation might turn off certain tumor-supressing genes? Normal levels of B12 are protective against cancer in general.

            I definitely agree about the oxidative stress. I was in pain and shaking all the time. At 29 I looked 25. I thought I had a few years of youthfulness left. Now at 30, I look a good 10 years older than I should. And I don’t feel like myself anymore. It’s a terrible feeling. I look back on my past and it’s like looking at a fundamentally different person- that’s how traumatic the experience was. I think maybe it did something to my glutathione? And stressed my adrenals like crazy. Have you tried resveratrol? I used to love magnesium and fish oil, but now nothing really makes a difference. I’m on selenium and E and butter oil, etc etc.

            I really wonder why it takes so long for the side effects to go away. What happened to our bodies? Were other deficiencies induced? I can’t find enough information and I’m not clear what’s theory and what’s proven.

          • Alyson April 11, 2015 at 3:06 am #

            Hi Bea,
            I got some new information about my situation and why I’m feeling just awful. I went to an endocrinologist who was able to look at my whole body of symptoms. I’m not sure if I should go into the whole diagnosis, but he showed me how my symptoms were all linked. It was so logical and clear it was just a revelation. He explained things that urologists, gastroenterologists, gynecologists, thyroid specialists, naturopaths, etc, all couldn’t. As for the megadoses, they were just a stress on my already stressed-out body.

            I think the difficulty for patients is that traditional doctors tend to treat us with pharmaceuticals and surgery, without understanding the root cause or how all the health issues fit together. We get only a few minutes of their time and they tend to dismiss what they can’t explain. Without a true full diagnosis, we don’t get better and we suffer side effects from medications. We get confused and wonder if the disease is all in our heads. Then naturopaths step into the breach with new theories and plenty of supplements to sell, but these don’t always fit. These theories get echoed by other naturopaths and all over the blogosphere. It’s hard to find critical discussions. People tend to be very sold on these theories so it takes a long time for adverse reactions like ours to trickle through. Plus there’s always another supplement to take, so you get stuck in this spiral of side effects and hope, without true improvement.

            I think I’ve finally found what I really needed all along – a specialist to look at my body and figure out just where it was breaking down and why, and then to treat that in a scientific manner. Someone who could give me legitimate diagnoses and explain how they connect to each other. It’s very difficult to find a doctor who can make such connections. For me that is an endocrinologist who deals with very difficult cases.

          • Ally April 11, 2015 at 8:22 pm #

            Alyson- Do you mind telling what your diagnosis was? Thinking maybe it could help others who are having troubles with large doses of b12 as well.

          • Donna April 13, 2015 at 9:34 pm #

            Heterozygous MTHFR C677T with MANY other SNPs…

            I too have been having horrible side effects from methylated vitamins. My 23andMe information has been processed through MTHFRSupport and NutraHacker. NutraHacker’s report told me to avoid all methylated vitamins and what vitamins to take and avoid for other SNPs. It is very interesting…

            My Folate levels are with range now that I have not been eating folic acid fortified foods, but my B12 is out of range on the high side so I am backing off the hydroxo B12 supplement for now.

            I just started on 500mg of Acetyl-L-Carnitine and I feel this is helping with my neuropathy and RLS. It feels good to be making some head way through this journey. It was worth getting tested and would recommend everyone do this before they start taking supplements that their bodies may not tolerate. NutraHacker gave good guidance for supplements and also has an additional report that explains what pharmaceutical meds to be cautious taking as well.

          • Alyson May 6, 2015 at 2:31 am #

            I know this is late, but I wanted to respond to Ally. I have some new info about what happened to me. The endocrinologist strongly suspects celiac and small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) which has caused intestinal permeability. This means that:

            1. My damaged digestive system cannot absorb enough nutrients
            2. Toxins (esp produced by SIBO) get out into the body.
            3. I am having autoimmune issues.

            Without nutrients your body cannot produce hormones. You get adrenal insufficiency. He said I might have menopause level hormones at 30. Thus dry, frizzy, thinning hair, no libido, crepey, thin skin. Low estrogen means bladder tissue thins. Thus he explained the interstitial cystitis I have suffered since 14. I suspect my uterine tissue is likewise problematic, with uterine cramps month round.

            Low hormones can cause my severe dry mouth/eye. There is also something called Sjorgens syndrome with celiac. Dont know about that yet.

            Low vit a, zinc, etc means eye problems. He diagnosed my thinning retinas which opthalmologist missed. I have been seeing greyish streaks out of the corner of my eye for a while now.

            Low b vitamins, etc, means nerve damage(sometimes reversible) he tested my feeling in extremities, it’s lacking. I also have facial muscle tremors.

            So far he said my thyroid is healthy in its own right, but under autoimmune attack. Hence nodules.

            There are still other pieces to this diagnosis I don’t yet know. But this Dr is exceptional- he doesn’t throw you a pill and shrug you off. He works with tough cases and connects the dots. He values the body’s healing capacity.

            It was the sibo and intestinal permeability that gave me some new clues about b vitamins. Obviously, my gut was NOT HEALED when I took them. Epsom foot baths temporarily helped my symptoms bc they moved my bowels faster. But eventually that was overrun. . Here’s what I suspect:
            1. Permeability let the vitamins get into my blood and muscles too much
            2. B12 (methylcobalamin and hydroxocobalamin) actually FEED some gut flora. See p 61 of this article:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3099351/ So the supplements were actually feeding the SIBO, causing them to pump out more toxins. Hence the infected acne, swelling, bloating, lack of appetite, body pains, mood changes, etc. Also why it took me so long to recover and my skin became so extremely reactive to foods. My skin didn’t settle until month 12. The increased sibo might also account for my decreased healing and resiliency, since bacteria can poach nutrients from your food before you get them.

            The reason I suspect this link is because I am on a strict diet. 100% no gluten, no dairy (I was 90% before) I notice right away if something bothers me. Sugar and some fodmaps produce the SAME problems the b vitamins did:acne, bloating, gas, swelling, full body pain, cognitive n psychological changes, cconfusion. I think these foods are feeding the sibo like the b12 did, but to a lesser extent.

            I strongly suspect that ppl suffering like this from the protocol need to revisit the gut and check for celiac, permeability, sibo, etc. Once those toxins get into your body, charcoal, yucca, and turmeric won’t help. This is why I doubt naturopaths. I was sick as a dog and she told me I was detoxifying instead of figuring out what was truly the matter. Naturopathy seems part medicine, part fad, part marketing to me. I thought I’d be safe from the pitfalls of modern medicine and that I was avoiding unnecessary harm from pharmaceuticals, getting to the bottom of my illness, and fully warned about the risks. Instead I got a scientifically unjustified, one side fits all, experimental protocol that destroyed the health I had left and missed my full diagnosis.

            FWIW, my Dr doesn’t really believe in supplements as a broad treatment. He believes in healing the gut so you can get nutrients from food. He cautioned me that long term supplementation can induce other deficiencies and cause disease.

            All of this explanation is a theory on my part and could well be wrong. But I suspect this is an area to look at if you’re sick from the protocol.

          • Ally May 17, 2015 at 10:16 pm #

            Alyson- Thanks for sharing. I am checking my gut health via my dr tomorrow (won’t have results for afew weeks), but she agreed it was important to ensure gut health before moving forward. I don’t have any gut problems, however, but I’d rather know then guess. When you said you thought you were going low and slow, how low did you start? She said starting as low as 30 mcg (liquid form) of methylb12 was very low and I shouldn’t have problems. She had me starting at 1000mcg and increasing up to 5000 within 2 weeks! Way too fast for me!! I hope you are on your way to recovery and it sounds like you have found a dr that can help you.

          • Alyson May 23, 2015 at 4:42 am #

            Hi Ally,
            I think I started at a quarter tab of methyl b12, maybe 250 mg? And worked up to a 1000 or more? I got sick within a week or two.
            I have been diagnosed celiac and Hashimoto’s and anemia and am starting treatment for that. I don’t think supplements for MTHFR really have any use for me now. I think if you have undiagnosed celiac or other autoimmune it’s dangerous to go taking all sorts of supplements without a competent doctor’s care. My original (MTHFR) doctor was not competent, and I worsened under her care. Not only was I overdosed on folate, but I have since found I have dermatitis herpetiformis, the celiac rash, which worsens in the presence of iodine. Plus she made my zinc/copper balance and my potassium get out of whack because she was filling me full of supplements I didn’t need.
            I think a lot of MTHFR doctors aren’t getting to the root diagnosis because they are fixated on the supplements they sell. I didn’t have heavy metals, or fluoride, or trouble detoxing. I needed to remove the gluten autoimmune trigger. All the supplements in the world wouldn’t help if I didn’t do that. And I didn’t know to do that because I didn’t have a diagnosis.
            The endocrinologist has me on B12 shots weekly. So far I am tolerating them very well.
            My former doctor never tested my B12 or folate before supplementing. She saw the MTHFR homozygous A1298C and just set me up on the protocol. If a doctor tells you to “test the waters” and see how you feel on these supplements, run. It means they don’t know what they’re doing and you’re a guinea pig. These doctors need to test base levels before prescribing supplements. A polymorphism does not guarantee a deficiency.

          • Ally May 25, 2015 at 7:20 pm #

            Alyson – My dr did a nutrient test through Spectracell, and we found borderline low b9, vit d and b12. My glutathione and folate levels were normal. So, I think she(we) are confident that I at least need to supplement some b12, b complex eventually, and obviously methylfolate just to help get the methylation cycle up and running again. I won’t have my gut health test back for a while, so I’m going to hold off on going up too high before doing so to ensure I don’t have any issues (parasites, SIBO, etc.) I’ve been gluten and dairy free (some cheese) since January, so hopefully that has helped my cause some as well. I never had any issues with it before, so hoping it’s not the case now. Thank you for your replies. It’s nice knowing there are others out who understand the frustration this mutation causes and the obstacles we have to overcome. I wish you continued healing and health!

          • Alyson June 16, 2015 at 10:36 am #

            Hi Ally,
            Sorry I missed this, I wish you health as well! I am supplementing B12 now, but cyanocobalamin shots weekly and plain cobalamin tablets daily. No methyl. So far so good. So if you don’t tolerate one form, there are always others. My folate levels are good too. Personally I am cautious about supplementing methylfolate just for the sake of the methylation cycle, when folate levels are good. I’m also cautious of supplementing folate when B12 is low and folate is good- folate can mask the worsening of b12 deficiency signs. That happened to me- I’ve got all kinds of neuropathy as a result.

  117. margaret moreland March 26, 2015 at 2:27 pm #

    I just want to suggest some avenues to follow to help with methylfolate side effects . I am A1298C and MTRR along with cytochrome enzyme deficiencies. I really have detox issues..My biggest problem is heavy metals buildup. As you know lead and aluminum can block the methylation cycle . Combine that with enzyme defects and you are between a rock and a hard place. I found that chelating out the heavy metals effectively increased my tolerance for methyl groups. Does that make sense to anyone? If you have dental amalgams you need to have them removed as a first step. To address immune system craziness my doctor used a system based on quantum physics called Bioset to retrain my body not to react to anything and everything. This is a peel the onion process. You have to go through layer by layer of “cleaning up your cellular metabolism. he b

    • Alyson April 1, 2015 at 9:10 am #

      Hi Margaret,

      Did you have heavy side effects with methylfolate, then stop and begin chelation, then go back on methylfolate with no side effects? Did it work for you? I know I have trouble detoxing (swelling, salt issues,etc) but I’m not high in heavy metals I don’t think.

      • margaret April 13, 2015 at 9:42 pm #

        Alyson,
        I really think that the chelation of lead (in my case) really helped me tolerate the methylated B12 and folate. I have had no more problems with overmethylation. My physician wants me to have 10 chelations and then we will check lead levels again.

        • Michael_Dowdy April 15, 2015 at 6:47 am #

          Hello Margaret. Metal allergies run in my family. Fortunately I have no known allergies of any type after recent testing. I’ve also been tested for toxic metals levels but none were found. I did however treat myself with strong doses of oral EDTA plus cinnamon attempting to clean up calcification in my arteries, a quite painful experience with bad muscle spasms. Were you diagnosed with lead or other heavy metal poisoning? What chelation agents and what type of therapathy did you use? How high were your individual toxic metal levels to require chelation and how high are they now? (copper, lead, mercury, ect?) Thanks, Michael Dowdy

          • margaret April 16, 2015 at 1:40 pm #

            Michael,
            Heavy metals are toxic so the body’s reaction to them is not allergy related. The metals interfere with the normal functions at molecular levels. My physician uses Ca EDTA IV’s for chelation. To check for toxic levels one collects a 6 hour urine after the IV. In the IV she also puts Bvitamins and magnesium for the comfort of the patient. Also because your mineral levels may lower after chelation because they are also chelated out of your body. My
            By most problematic heavy metal presently is lead. It was in the highly elevated level. Because of that she wants me to do 10 chelations with CaEDTA. After the 10th I will do another urine collection to see if the lead level is down. If you have mthfr cycle issues that go uncorrected you will build up heavy metals in your body. My opinion– but seems logical to me. So now that I can tolerate the methylated supplements i am hoping that this will be the last series of chelations I need to do, since I will have corrected the methylation defects. By the way calcification in your arteries may be due to an imbalance in your Calcium/magnesium ratio. Most people take in too much calcium and not enough magnesium.

  118. Nicole March 27, 2015 at 3:59 am #

    Hi Dr Lynch

    I am so confused, please help me. Why do you recommend people to take niacin to support BH4 levels, when niacin uses up methyl groups which should therefore be avoided by undermethylated people.

    My doctor said I should try niacinamide for my acne and anxiety, but I am homozygous for 1298 and very undermethylated and don’t want to make my health worse. My doctor doesn’t know the answer, which is why I have turned to you.

  119. Susan March 27, 2015 at 7:42 am #

    Nicole – I was going to take niaciamide throughout the day about 900 msg total for arthritis and dr Lynch’s homocystex plus formula and my primary doctor said not to take the niacinamide because she has seen negative effects with niacin. She does not like supplements in isolation because she likes balance and says we are way too complicated to do that. I’m confused too. Im homozygous c677t and have developed a lot of osteoarthritis and tendon issues.

  120. ally March 30, 2015 at 3:04 pm #

    Hi- is it safe to begin methylb12 and then methylfolate while breastfeeding? I’m homozygous 667. I am currently taking iron, fish oil, vitamins and will start magnesium this week. I’m terrified I will pass on toxins to my baby. Thank you!

  121. Deone March 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm #

    I am Homozygous A1298C I took only 3 mcg of l-methlyfolate and and immediately had a herpes outbreak. I also have H63D Hemochromatosis & M.S. My N.P. only knows how to test for the HH and MTHFR gene mutations. Do you have any input on what to be tested for and where to do this? My insurance paid for the HH & MTHFR but I don’t think any of the other tests are covered in this way. Any input on what and where I should go for additional testing would be greatly appreciated.

  122. Donna April 1, 2015 at 11:13 pm #

    Hello Fellow Bloggers~

    I have made a few comments on this site and have learned that MTHFR is the tip of the iceberg. I finally made the investment for the 23andMe test and have the report from MTHFRSupport. Wow! So much information and excited to begin research, but not sure where to begin… I brought copies to my Neurologist and Endocrinologist so they could review before my next appointment with them.

    Do any of you have suggestions in how I should start to dissect this report? I was originally diagnosed as heterozygous C677T and it was confirmed with this report, but now I have all this additional information I am not sure how to work into my healing.

    I have some nursing eduction, but not to the point where I understand all of the conversations some of you more advanced patients have the gift of…I enjoy learning from all of you!

  123. Linda April 29, 2015 at 12:10 pm #

    Dr Lynch as I sit here writing this note – either over or undermethylating (I can’t figure out which since for me the symptoms are similar) – I’m more confused than ever regarding dosage and when to take and when to skip. I was recently diagnosed homozygous for the C677T mutation. It was recommended that I take two Methyl Protect capsules and refer to your website MTHFR net. Based on that and your 677 protocol, my goal was to reach approximately 4,000 mcg methylfolate and 2,000+ mcg methylated B-12. I took it low and slow and working my way up the bell curve and now I’m taking four Active B-12, two chewable multis and two 2.5 mg methylated B-12 – yea. Then I read your latest information regarding not taking supplements every day, and too much folate, etc. My question is – how does one know when to skip a dose, day or even week? Also, when you skip, can you just go back to your regular dose or do you have to go low and slow again? As I said, my particular symptoms prior to diagnosis and subsequent supplementation were extreme dizziness/swimmy head (not related to crystals), anxiety, nervousness, insomnia, hyper-alert, etc. – these seem to be the same for over-methylation too. I’m also trying to follow the protocol as much as possible (it’s hard to unlearn 65 years of poor eating habits!) with mostly organic, mostly gluten free, more veggies, electrolyte supplementation, adrenal support etc. Any suggestions regarding dosing or how one can recognize what specific action to take would be appreciated. Even though I’m not sure that I have found my “sweet spot” with dosage, I will say, at this point with my supplementation, I’m so much better than I was and am extremely grateful for your website and information regarding MTHFR – it really explains a lifetime of physical (and mental) unexplained issues. At least now, instead of every day and multiple times per day, my symptoms seem to occur only occasionally – for that, I’m eternally grateful. Warmest regards, Linda in San Antonio

    • Aron May 7, 2015 at 6:21 pm #

      Hi Linda – This is a great question. First off, great job being self-aware and taking proactive steps with your health. It sounds like you’re really making a concerted effort to eat well and support yourself.

      Since you’re posting in this article, you may have already listened to Dr. Lynch’s podcast titled “How much to take?”. As you have already pointed out, dosage needs to be approached carefully with methylation issues.

      Ideally, you are working with your doctor to find dosages that work for you.

      Generally, you know when to dose or skip based on the absence or presence of symptoms. You have to ask yourself, “do I need this right now?” For you in particular you could ask yourself, “Is my anxiety level high enough that I need this right now?” If not, then you may go days without having to supplement. And of course, start low and go slow is a safest bet as taking too much can also cause those symptoms. It will take some trial and error, so when in doubt, start with less.

      Best of luck!

      • Linda May 24, 2015 at 6:02 pm #

        Thanks, Aron, I do work with my doctor/nurse practitioner regarding dosing, but based on our discussions and all of the reading, it definitely isn’t one size fits all. I’m now following your advice about listening more to my body. I’m reducing my dose to see if that will make me get to the point that “I feel really good”. Also, I’m skipping doses once an awhile. This takes some getting used to as I’m a pretty regimented individual, but I’m working on it. Sure do appreciate reading everyone’s input and experiences – nice to know one is not alone.

        Linda

  124. Linda April 29, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

    Linda again – and I wanted to add the only symptom that seems to recur is the dizziness/swimmy head – all others have mostly resolved. Most days I feel pretty good. Thanks again,

    • Michael_Dowdy May 21, 2015 at 3:25 am #

      Hello Linda. I’m 55 and dizziness seems to be part of aging for many. A giraffe doesn’t fall down when he raises his head quickly. Here’s a fascinating read that discusses vasovagal syncope and I hope you enjoy: http://europace.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2015/02/05/europace.euu367

    • Michael_Dowdy May 21, 2015 at 3:40 am #

      Hi Linda. The article made me think a bit. I’ve never fainted as some do. But I have a double MAO A mutation. The gene is referred to sometimes under different names like “Fight or flight” or the “Warrior” gene. I hope you find the article as interesting as I did. Maybe there’s some possible connection to fainting and the gene.

      • Linda May 24, 2015 at 6:06 pm #

        Thanks, Michael, so far the only gene that I know of that is messed up is the MTHFR – I haven’t had any other tests at this point. However, based on your comments and my anxiety issues, I wouldn’t be surprised if I also have the fight or flight problem. Fortunately, I don’t faint, just get swimmy head. Linda

  125. Melita May 4, 2015 at 12:21 am #

    Hi Bea,
    I read what you posted above. I’m having severe brain fog with B12 and folate as well. I was considering glutathione IV, but after reading what you wrote, I realized it would be a disaster. Thank you for your post. I get dull constant headaches with sulfur containing foods and supplements. It seems to be getting worse. How are you feeling now? Did the Calcium D Glucanate help? Have you ever been tested for heavy metals, or tried chelation? Any of your input would helpful. Thanks. I just started Thiamine and Molybdenum.

  126. Pam May 6, 2015 at 11:34 pm #

    I have been taking B12 and methylfolate (along with the other B vitamins) for almost a year now. In the past few months, I have felt incredibly exhausted–even more so than usual for someone with CFIDS who always feels incredibly exhausted. I never “primed” my body in advance of beginning the methylated vitamins and am wondering where to go from here . . . stop cold turkey for weeks? Months? Then prepare my body with the supplements above before resuming methylcobalamin and methylfolate? Having a doc test my levels of the above-mentioned nutrients is not an available option right now, as no one in my region is MTHFR-friendly. Thank you.

    • Pam May 7, 2015 at 12:48 am #

      I should also add that, in addition to the above, I experienced sudden weight gain and an inability to lose weight several months after switching to methylcobalamin and methylfolate (I was previously always able to eat anything and lose weight very easily), and now, almost a year into things, I’m experiencing arthritis-like symptoms in my arm, hand, and upper back at age 35. These could all be unrelated issues, but I wanted to mention them in case they are a clear indication of some sort of deficiency or side effect of opening the methylation pathways inadequately. Thanks, again!

  127. nicole May 9, 2015 at 11:42 pm #

    Hi Dr Lynch,
    Thank you for your generous work… I have been on my healing quest for the last 9 years and am sad but relieved (and also grateful) to have recently found out I am Heterozygous for C677T and A1298C. I have been following the GAPS protocol for the last 2 years, and in the last 2 months added in the Autoimmune Protocol with plans of re-introducing potentially problematic foods in another month. I have three questions for you:
    1. Would you recommend that I modify the AIP at this point and remove cruciferous veggies as well? My concern is that it’s already such a limited diet that I may not have a varied enough diet without some of those items, but I will absolutely do it if you recommend it (why not at this point).
    2. I would say my gut is in pretty good shape, and I have already tackled many of the life change recommendations you have made, however I had a bout with stomach flu a few weeks ago that was pretty intense and my gut seems to be sensitive now to things it wasn’t before such as bacon fat and also dried fruit… I was super dehydrated and very very week during this flu and recovery has been slow… I’m wondering if it’s smart to start your supplementation regime or wait until I feel my gut has normalized?
    3. Please let me know your thoughts on the use of grass-fed ghee? I have looked around and can’t get a clear answer…
    Many, many, many thanks. I will pass your generosity along…

  128. Tracy May 28, 2015 at 3:15 am #

    Dr Lynch
    I started Methylpro 10 a few weeks ago and felt the best I had felt in a long time. Now all of a sudden I’m exhausted, muscle pain, weak and my head hurts it feels like I have inflammation in my head! Not like a regular headache just a weird feeling. I’m all new to the MTHFR. Was just diagnosed a few weeks ago with compound heterozygous C677t and 1298c. I really don’t even know what all it means. I have Hasmitos and Behcets so I have lots of inflammation and been dealing with the side affects of those and was diagnosed with MTHFR. I finally have a great doctor and am taking great supplements for ally deficiencies. Should I stop taking the Methypro or just start some niacin? Thank you for all your work and your sharing of your knowledge.
    Tracy

  129. Stacey June 1, 2015 at 8:45 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,
    I am the same MTHFR type as you are (compound heterozygous) and can’t quite figure out my personal dose. Right now I am taking Pure Encapsulations B complex plus two times a day. Felt like my energy was getting up and then I added 1 pill of Methyl Guard plus and that wasn’t good at all; I could barely sleep last night. I am thinking about cutting down to just 1 pill of B-complex plus for now see how I do. I noticed in the article you said that you don’t take methyl folate at night, so if I am to take 2 pills a day – when should I take the second one or should I only take one or two in the morning? My electrolytes are ok and I am also supplementing with a bit of glutathione in the morning.

  130. CC June 6, 2015 at 10:04 pm #

    I have experienced exactly what you mention. Had routine morning anxiety attacks and overall stress before took MTHFR. Then took it and felt like it was a miracle cure, felt so much bettter. No attacks for weeks and a sense of calm + well being I’ve never had in my life. Then started to slide into increased anxiety. So I started a cycle of going on an off the 1mg supplement. I even bumped it up to every 5 days. At first the cycle somewhat worked. I’d get a buildup and feel horrible, then have a few pretty good weeks. But lately I’ve been off for 2 weeks and still felt very anxious tho no attacks til this morning. Thinking my system had depleted the MTHFR I took a small amount, 200 mcg and have had 4 anxiety attacks already. This is hell for me. Is there one of the supplements you recommend more? I’m afraid to take anything that will make me worse. I tried potassium but am afraid to take too much. I just want to get back to feeling good and functioning. Thanks!

  131. Robin June 11, 2015 at 1:05 pm #

    Dr. Lynch, Thank you for all you do! I have been doing your protocol + some things my ND has recommended. Recently I have experienced some strange things. I was taking the Methylfolate 1000mcg every Tues and Thurs and the last two time within a half hour of taking it I experienced severe anxiety and was really irritable and my brain seemed to be foggy. I took niacin and not to long later the anxiety was better. Also I started taking lithium orotate a few months ago in the morning and wanted to go to sleep almost immediately after taking so I switched to night and it was fine until this last month when I took it and could not go to sleep. After two nights I stopped the lithium and realized it was that. I originally was taking 5htp at night and could not get to sleep and then I started taking earlier in the day and after a couple months it started causing me to be sleepy to so I now take that at night. So I am wondering could my liver be taxed to much or something? Is it normal to have one reaction and then have it change? Thank you for your help.

    • Alyson June 14, 2015 at 10:53 am #

      If methylfolate is making you feel bad, STOP. I started out with severe anxiety and panic attacks on methylfolate. My doctor called it detox and gave me a few more supplements like yucca and other junk. Over a couple of months it developed into psychotic anger, tremors, and dementia-like confusion. I thought I must be doing something wrong with the protocol. It turns out I have B12 anemia. I was somewhat deficient in B12 to begin with, and too much folate can worsen B12 deficiency. So this doctor made me sicker. I now struggle with neuropathy, tremors, spinal pain, absolute lack of appetite, balance issues, cognitive decline and psychiatric changes. The last memory I have of feeling clearheaded is sitting in the doctor’s office as she sang the praises of methylfolate. After that, all I can remember of the past year is psychosis. I am now with a new doctor, an excellent one, and taking weekly B12 shots and oral B12 (neither is rhe methyl form) My symptoms lessen slightly for a few days after each shot (but never return to normal), then decline again. I have suicidal ideations by the hour. I feel like I’ve lost my brain. I can’t remember what my skin, body, or muscles should feel like.

      As far as I am concerned this methylation NDs are quacks. If supplement protocols make you sick, something is NOT RIGHT. They don’t have the full picture of what they are prescribing. We are guinea pigs. Messing with B vitamins is like playing with fire. Don’t do it unless you KNOW what you are doing. Otherwise the results could be devastating.

  132. Margaret June 14, 2015 at 9:47 pm #

    Sorry to hear of your bad reactions. I was having trouble tolerating methyl folate and B12 but my MD decided to see if I had heavy metals interfering with my methylation cycle. You know lead and aluminum can block the cycle at critical points. Not to my or her surprise I had a toxic build up of lead. After the first chelation I was able to tolerate the methyl groups . I assume because the toxic load of lead was lessened. I am presently chelating more lead out. She wants me to do 10 chelations total. I am feeling really good after 6 chelations and I am taking the methylated supplements. Find another physician perhaps.

    • Alyson June 14, 2015 at 10:53 pm #

      I tested fine for heavy metals. I’m not certain about the validity of heavy metal testing or chelation at this point.

      I don’t understand why heavy metal testing isn’t done as a matter of course before methylation supplements, if it is important. Doctors should be testing gut health prior as well, IMO.

      Interesting to hear your experience. Do you have more info about how metals block methylation? I have not heard this.

      • Margaret June 16, 2015 at 12:59 am #

        Alyson,
        search online for a methylation diagram. I found one at heartfixer.com/AMRI-Nutrigenomics.htm#MTHFA1298C A picture is worth a thousand words. My physician has a huge chart with all the sites that affected by lead, and aluminum. Lead and aluminum block the BH4 cycle at DHPR. Lead blocks the Urea cycle at NOS. Lead blocks the Methionine cycle at MTRR I am sure there are others too.
        It is not easy to unravel all of this. This journey is not for the faint of heart. I have been working on this for 15 plus years.

        • Alyson June 16, 2015 at 10:03 am #

          Thanks Margaret,
          I’m sure I may have some blocks in the methylation cycle, but I don’t know how thoroughly they affect me. I think the bulk of my bad reaction came from the interaction of methylfolate and methylcobalamin with my gut flora.

  133. efrat June 14, 2015 at 10:15 pm #

    What in particular did you take regarding the chelation? Thank you.

    • Margaret June 16, 2015 at 12:46 am #

      Efrat
      CaEDTA was the chelating agent. A challenge chelation was done and a 6 hour urine specimen was collected to test for heavy metals. Bear in mind if you have any dental amalgams you should not chelate. This is a long journey toward figuring this all out. I have been at it for 15 plus years. Listen to your body and educate yourself as much as possible. Clean up your diet, exercise moderately. You can’t do it all at once. It is important to find a qualified integrative medical doctor that you can work with. Ask questions and prepare to do your own homework.

      • Margaret R October 1, 2016 at 4:20 pm #

        Margaret, your posts remind me of my issues which also revolve around elevated lead. However none of the functional med Drs I’ve seen are comfort With trying EDTA with me. I’m in nys where things are pretty conservative so I’ve been thinking of making an appoint With the heart fixer. Can I ask who you dr is and also an update on your progress with lead? I’m CBS +/-699 and MTHFR c677t+/-

  134. Ally June 15, 2015 at 1:48 pm #

    Alyson – I may have asked you this before, but did your dr do a Spectracell test or check any intracellular b12 or folate levels before starting methylcobalamin or methylfolate?? I am borderline low on b12, so my dr has me working on that first before starting methylfolate. We also did a comprehensive stool analysis to check for leaky gut, parasites, SIBO, etc. We didn’t discuss heavy metal testing because she said she wouldn’t do anything with the info anyways, especially since I’m still breastfeeding. I’m up to 500mcg of b12 right now….going VERY slow!

    • Alyson June 16, 2015 at 9:48 am #

      Hi Ally,
      No, she didn’t check those. Somehow, out of all the tests she ran, I missed that those weren’t on there. Also, we didn’t truly heal my gut. Her idea of healing my gut was two months on the blood type diet. She thought methylation would heal my gut. After the methylfolate made me worse, we did a stool test. High numbers of klebsiella and e coli. I’ve found info that B12 feeds klebsiella. So the methyl vitamins were gasoline on the fire in my gut. Hence the increased swelling, joint pain, confusion, horrendous acne. Methylating and detoxing were distractions. It’s taken me so long to figure this out. I will share all my info in the forum soon.

      • Kim June 25, 2015 at 4:17 pm #

        Alyson, did your doctor run a Methylation panel on you at all? Just curious how it was determined that you needed MF/B12, etc?

        • Alyson June 27, 2015 at 5:57 pm #

          She had me tested for MTHFR and that was it. I tested homozygous for A1298C. No other genes were tested. My homocysteine and methylmalonic acid were normal. She never tested folate. In the months before I went to her my B12 was in the normal range but I was beginning to have tremors in my hands.

          Based on the A1298C homozygous alone, she started me daily on some 600 mcg folate, 2,500 mcg methylcobalamin, and 1000 mcg hydroxocobalamin. It sounds insane now. She never tested my folate or B12 to follow up. I was completely new to this and trusted her. She had all sorts of explanations for inflammation and detox and methylation and they seemed to make sense at the time. I was sick and desperate.

          Somehow she based her treatment on her interpretation of Lynch and Yasko. She certainly wasn’t following the standard of care for supplementing B vitamins. It was all a terrible mess.

          • Alyson June 28, 2015 at 3:53 pm #

            Hi Michael,
            As far as I know I’m the only Alyson with a y here! My understanding of what’s happened to me has been evolving over the past several months, I hope I’m not spreading poor information. It’s just nothing I was ever told or read prepared me for these bad reactions. If people get these sort of bad reactions something must be wrong with the way care is being carried out.

            As far as I know lots of people have e. coli to some extent, the issue is the overgrowth of bacteria in general for me. I had too much “bad” bacteria but also too much “good”. Just too much, and in unhealthy proportions.

            Part of this was due to undiagnosed celiac. I also have a long history of antibiotic use. I was showing clear signs of malabsorption and B12 deficiency, which the doctor disregarded.

            My doctor’s idea of healing the gut was the blood type diet and a ton of probiotics. This was both worthless and harmful. What I really needed was a celiac gf diet. She didn’t actually run the stool tests until after my bad reactions to methyl b vits.

            Incidentally, some bacteria overgrowths can raise your folate levels. Mine are still high, and I’m not taking any folate. So that means I was doubly overdosed on the methylfolate!

            This is why I’m concerned about anyone who advocates treating to a gene and not the individual patient’s labs.

      • Michael_Dowdy June 28, 2015 at 5:58 am #

        Hello Alyson. What was the source of the e coli? That’s serious. Was your drinking water checked? If you have the answers figured out please don’t leave us wondering too long.

      • Michael_Dowdy June 28, 2015 at 10:57 am #

        Hello Alyson. I’m not sure how many Alysons are commenting. If it’s only you I would like to ask you about your statement “High numbers of klebsiella and e coli.” When was this found and do you know how long you’ve had this problem? I have to wonder how much of an impact this was having on you overall health and whether or not it may be associated with the severe acne problem you’ve been discussing. I am wondering about the timeline of your events so might you be able to clarify a little? I’ve fought a bit with edema in my legs and feet also for about the last nine or ten years and I’m unsure of the exact cause. Thanks, Michael M. Dowdy

        • Alyson June 28, 2015 at 4:16 pm #

          Hi Michael,

          It was found by stool test. I have had the symptoms of bacterial overgrowth and malabsorption throughout my life. I now know I have celiac, but had a false negative a few years ago. My problems worsened after abdominal surgery a few years ago, and this led me on a quest for treatment. Several specialists attributed it to stress. When the functional med suggested MTHFR, I thought, what have I got to lose? Turns out I lost more of my health.

          My doctor was so focused on methylation and detox she forgot to look at me as an individual. Had she done so, she would have realized my folate was high and my B 12 low due to malabsorption.

          The additional methylfolate only worsened the B12 deficiency. So gut health gets worse. Neuro and psych problems get worse. And that takes a looong time to heal.

          Her idea was that “getting me methylating” would clean up my gut health, which turned out to be nonsense. The megadoses fueled even more overgrowth. They didn’t treat the cause.

          Instead, what I needed was careful B12 supplemtation to improve a deficiency, and no excess folate. I’m really skeptical of over supplementation now, it can throw your whole body out of whack. That’s not “detox”.

          The malabsorption can lead to all kinds of problems all over the body. It’s important to try and treat the malabsorption instead of pumping you full of supplements. If a doctor knows what to look for, they can find evidence of malabsorption when screening a patient.

          I have had edema too in my lower legs since childhood. There are many possible causes, like protein deficiency, thyroid problems, high blood sugar, etc. Only a doctor can diagnose it in context with your other symptoms.

          • Michael_Dowdy June 29, 2015 at 12:31 am #

            Hello Alyson. I agree that megadoses are likely harmful. I’m sorry to hear of your bad experiences. My initial experience with Metanx was almost horrifying. Dr. Ben’s site proved very helpful to me. My feelings about adding further supplementation to address new problems that show up is a little different than those presented here. I believe in first reducing supplementation and waiting for the body to stabilize itself as the first attempt to correct the problems. If your water source is in question it’s certainly something you should look into. If you have a well it can become contaminated with toxins and bacteria at any time so make sure you’re getting good clean drinking water so your body can detox itself. Avoid paracetamol to protect your liver. Paracetamol depletes glutathione and folic acid is very questionable, and these two are difficult to avoid. Dr. Lawrence (Larry) Wilson’s information may prove beneficial to you – although I totally agree with Dr. Ben Lynch that folic acid needs to go so do your best to avoid it. Here’s a short article which deserves to be carefully studied; http://www.naturalhealingnews.com/trimethylglycine-tmg-to-the-rescue/#.VZCHORtViko .Methylation level is not easy to determine and neither are brain chemical processes and these studies are constantly advancing. Supplementation with L-5 MTHF or 5 MTHF seems to be filled with problems but Dr. Ben is working on solving these problems and making progress. You and I experienced significant problems. I’m comfortable now that I have found an effective combination for myself and I hope you’re able to do the same. Best Wishes, Michael Murray Dowdy

  135. efrat June 16, 2015 at 12:47 am #

    Thank you. Good luck with everything!

  136. Ashley June 16, 2015 at 6:49 pm #

    Hi, I was just wondering how you test for B12 levels inside the cell? My doctor has just done serum B12 blood tests to test mine. He said that if you have high serum levels of B12 (1500), then you won’t have a deficiency of B12 in the blood cells. Any feedback would be much appreciated (I live in NZ).

  137. NickyMy prac June 17, 2015 at 3:16 pm #

    Dr Lynch
    Could following a low sulphur diet affect your energy and mood?
    I havesevere CFS and am working on methylation. I am only heterozygous for C677T but have COMT and MAO A snp’s amongst others. I have a history of severe depression and labile moods, self harm etc. I have been ok for the last 10 years or so mood wise and haven’t been on medication for several years.
    My practitioner is convinced I have sulphation issues and I have started following your suggestions re CBS (molybdenum, B1 and low sulphur) I am on day 5 and am having to stop it because I feel so awful. My energy has been v low recently but it’s got even worse and I am really struggling both mentally and physically.
    I wondered if you had come across low sulphur causing this sort of effect or if it is just a coincidence and I need to look elsewhere.
    Many thanks for all the time and information you give.

    • Nicky June 17, 2015 at 3:18 pm #

      Sorry about the typo on my name.

  138. Maria C June 19, 2015 at 9:42 pm #

    I found this forum because I was searching for symptoms of over methylation… I read through the posts and learned so much, but I also noticed that Dr. Ben doesn’t respond anymore. I can’t tell if Dr. Ben still reads these posts or if someone is acting as the admin. At any rate, I’ve spent enough hours to earn at least an Associate’s degree learning about my 2 copies of MTHFR a1289c and after reading Dr. Ben’s excellent account in this forum, I’m not sure I’m doing anything correctly. My physician doesn’t really understand it and I can tell that she is exasperated with me, but I need answers to better understand myself. In 2007 my body broke down and I was able to get great support with adrenal fatigue – the wonderful physician didn’t want to begin treating my hypothyroidism until the adrenal were on the road to recovery. Unfortunately, we moved 1049 miles away and at the same time, he passed in a tragic accident.

    The physician I ended up with purported to understand adrenal fatigue and bio-identical supplementation, but I knew much more than she. She started treating me with Cyanocobalamin and Armor. When I asked about iodine, she told me it was dangerous to used iodine. When she told me to go to the pharmacy to get over the counter cortisol I knew it was time to find someone else, which I did. My current practitioner changed me to Synthroid, added iodine and selenium and increased D3 to 10,000 IU/day. I started feeling better, with some not-to-serious ups and downs. She also had some DNA testing done, without my knowledge, and didn’t go over the results with me until I noticed them on lab results – 2 years later, and 6 months after my thyroid started going wacky again!

    At any rate, I learned that I have 2 copies of A1289C and until this ripe age of 62 I have avoid most of the chronic illnesses associated with it – so I thought! I now know that I have immediate and delayed histamine reactions (always had the symptoms but never knew why; always had markers for unspecific inflammation that was poo-pooed by doctors). Ironically, I learned how bad the histamine response was after I got a my food allergy results (allergic to foods I’ve eaten all of my life, plus some that I’ve never eaten) and removed the foods from my diet. Now, even those foods that were “safe” are causing histamine responses.

    My physician told me to take methylfolate and to change to methyl B12 injections. I started with 400mcg of folate and had a terrible week+ getting used to it. After a month, I was able to increase it to 800 mcg, and since methyl B12 serum is unavailable until August, I started using 1,000 sublingual/daily. No reaction to the 800 mcg of folate, but the sublingual B12 wasn’t enough. I’ve increased the B12 to 5,000 most days, and 10,000 some days. A mistake?

    I take:
    selenium 200 mcg
    iodine 12.5 mg
    D3 10,000 IU
    B5 500mg
    B6 100mg
    Folate 800 mcg
    B12 5,000-10,000 mcg
    C 1,500 mg
    E 1,000 mg
    l-theanine 200 mg
    DHEA 20mg
    Calcium 2,000 mg
    Progesterone 100 mg
    Synthroid 137 mg
    Estriol/estradirol 1.5 sublingual
    aspirin 162 mg
    DAO if I suspect a histamine reaction

    I started the L-theanine after my neurotransmitter results supported what I already knew – anxiety and depression. It suggested that my cortisol may be off, but the saliva test results indicated only a mild drop early evening. I couldn’t believe that, since I’ve had a hard time getting myself going in the morning. The L-theanine AND pink salt/water definitely have made a difference (my husband is still alive LOL).

    Now, I learn that I should not be supplementing every day (but, how often?) and that I should have had a regiment before I began methylating.

    What do I keep taking daily and if I don’t taking the Vitamin B family daily, when do I take them, and am I taking enough, too little or too much?

    I am also searching for a knowledgeable practionioner south of Atlanta, Ga. Any suggestions?

    I appreciate any input!
    Thank you!

    • Dr. Aron June 29, 2015 at 3:14 am #

      Hi Maria – Please see the physician directory to find a practitioner who has completed training with Dr. Lynch. http://seekinghealth.org/physician-directory/

    • Linda R. July 4, 2015 at 3:53 pm #

      Hi, Maria, like you, I was also in my prime at 64 when I found out that I was homozygous for C677T. Also, like you, I have managed to avoid all of the associated medical problems except anxiety, hypothyroid, lots of dizziness and sleep issues. My doctor and nurse practitioner recommended that I take 4 mg methylfolate and extra methyl B12. I tried to get the dose that high on the methylfolate but have found through trial and error that my body is happier at around 2 mg methylfolate and 7 to 9 mg methyl B-12. I’m also experimenting with hydroxo B-12. As for taking some time off of the Bs, I’m concerned that if I take too much time off, it will be like starting over and I will suffer the dizziness and other symptoms that I experienced previously. Somewhere is the fine line/sweet spot. Right now I still take the B-12 on Saturdays, but reduce the methylfolate to what is in my multivitamin. My primary issue is that I want to ensure that I take enough to be a therapuetic dose but not so much that I’m overmethylating. It is unfortunate and frustrating that the symptoms are similar. Good luck with your protocol. Regards, Linda

  139. Rachelle June 23, 2015 at 1:17 am #

    Don’t forget how important sodium is…..most people including myself are under great stress and in actually when you drink water and immediately have to go to the bathroom a bunch of times over and over its not because of low k its because of low sodium, by diluting your sodium through drinking water you caused your body to go into a state of water dumping until the bodys sodium to water balance is reestablished….I have this exact problem along with low aldosterone which is telltale of adrenal issues including high cortisol especially at night…..my sodium to potassium ratio is always low…..so primary point is…don’t always assume everyone is high in sodium….many just by the fact that many have low stomach acid, a common byproduct of low sodium, are actually needing healthly forms of sodium such as unrefined sea salt…..fyi magnesium can also contribute to low sodium since it displaces it and contributes to more adrenal issues…..best to be aware of your bodys constitution…we all need different things….

  140. Bridgette June 26, 2015 at 7:42 pm #

    I have recently been diagnosed homozygous MTHFR with a high homocystein level AND I’m trying to get pregnant. The doctor put me on a dose of 3mg folic acid per day – I see now that this is not right – I told her and she said folic acid and folate are the same thing. I disagree with this. Would 3mg of methly folate be equivalent to the 3mg folic acid she assigned? and do I need to detox from folic acid before I begin the methly folate regimen?
    Thanks!

    • Dr. Aron June 30, 2015 at 5:54 am #

      Hi Bridgette – Dr. Lynch has a short 5 min video on why you want to avoid folic acid which you can find here: https://youtu.be/oZzR1NMg0hM. 3mg of methylfolate would NOT be the equivalent of folic acid. Methylfolate is a biologically active form of folate and is therefore more potent. There is no special detox procedure for eliminating folic acid besides avoiding it in supplements and processed foods and continuing to eat well and getting proper amounts of physical activity.

    • Michael_Dowdy July 6, 2015 at 8:18 am #

      Hello Bridgett. Since you are a homozygous MTHFR patient, and you have high homocysteine, you may wish to ask your partner to be tested as well. It may be a good idea for the both of you to consult a doctor familiar with both of your genetic mutations and speak with them about your pregnancy planning. Three milligrams of methylfolate is well over the maximum daily tolerable amount of one milligram as discussed in “Application A566” documents for food standards in Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) dealing with the use of L-5 MTHF calcium salt as a food additive. You may wish to ask your doctor about this. Your doctor may wish to lower your dosage of methylfolate once your homocysteine level becomes normal. Since many doctors are not up-to-date on these topics you may wish to do you own studies so you can help make decisions for yourself after first consulting with your doctors. MTHFR.net is a great place to learn. The terms “folate” and “folic acid” are not descriptive enough to be exactly sure of what you’re actually taking. In fact, they’re sometimes used interchangeably and/or incorrectly. I’m not a heathcare professional so be sure to talk with a qualified doctor. I would suggest that you see a hematologist about your homocysteine level since it can lead to and cause life threatening problems. Trimethylglycine can be used as an alternative or additional methyl donor to lower homocysteine. This may be helpful if you’re unable to tolerate the high dose of methylfolate. Best Wishes, Michael M. Dowdy

    • Ally July 6, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

      Bridgette – what was your homocysteine level? If it’s very high, I would definitley wait until it’s lowered before trying to conceive.

      • Bridgette July 7, 2015 at 12:26 am #

        I am not sure, they didn’t give me a number, just said it was high. I am waiting to be referred to a geneticist where I will hopefully get the info I need. In the meantime, I have had to have surgery for endometriosis and my husband has been diagnosed with Low T…we are at a stand still right now – I guess that is a good thing considering.
        I have been on a prenatal vitamins for 2 years and had no idea I was poisoning myself. My hair has fell out and acne has taken over – but I believe that I am at least on the right track now – thanks to the information and caring people I have found on this site and others. I really do appreciate from the bottom of my heart the advice and the shoulder to cry on. 🙂

  141. Ashley June 28, 2015 at 6:39 am #

    Just wondering where the latest comments are shown – can’t seem to see past June 23rd?

  142. Rita July 10, 2015 at 7:39 pm #

    Thank you so much for your article, it was very interesting and informative. You are awesome!

    • Dr. Aron July 20, 2015 at 8:48 pm #

      Rita, thank you for the feedback!

  143. morgan July 12, 2015 at 6:12 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch.

    I have the double mutation of MTHFR c677t which was discovered after 5 miscarriages. I have been working with a nutritionist who specializes in MTHFR as I have been feeling fatigue and anxiety and an increase in heart palpitations. My GP has me taking a very low does Metoprolo ER (12.5 mg which is half of the lowest starting dose of 25mg) to control the premature beats he has done a full study and says they are present but benign. I find they increase when my body is stressed in any way i.e. pms, not enough sleep, not eating balanced meals etc.so am convinced i can resolve this naturally and am dedicated to doing so.

    I started taking magnesium (3 capsules 360 mg) and zinc (1 capsule 30 mg’s) and probiotics a month ago. I also take a baby aspirin, vitamin d, and omega fatty acids daily. I added one pill of Methyl Guard last week. The first day was amazing it felt like my body united after feeling fragmented for months and i slept one of the best night sleeps in a long time 9.5 hours. But since then i have been feeling worse. More depleted energy and agitated. My question is where do I go from here? Do I stop the methyl guard or push through? Or start a different regimen? What am I missing here?

    Other methylation snp’s i am homozygous for:

    FOLR 2
    FUT 2
    MTHFS
    NOS2
    SOD2
    SOD3

    Thank you for your help!

  144. morgan July 13, 2015 at 10:58 pm #

    p.s. I just received your SOD and Optimal electrolytes as you suggest above and am starting to take them. But have stopped the Methyl Guard for now.

    Can you let me know what you think the best next step would be for me? Do I restart the Methyl Guard with the SOD and Electrolytes and other supplements I mention in my original email above and re-pasted below?

    And should I add the Glutathione as you suggest above. I just don’t want to take more and more supplements before understanding what the best protocol is for me?

    [ORIGINAL EMAIL]

    Hi Dr. Lynch.

    I have the double mutation of MTHFR c677t which was discovered after 5 miscarriages. I have been working with a nutritionist who specializes in MTHFR as I have been feeling fatigue and anxiety and an increase in heart palpitations. My GP has me taking a very low does Metoprolo ER (12.5 mg which is half of the lowest starting dose of 25mg) to control the premature beats he has done a full study and says they are present but benign. I find they increase when my body is stressed in any way i.e. pms, not enough sleep, not eating balanced meals etc.so am convinced i can resolve this naturally and am dedicated to doing so.

    I started taking magnesium (3 capsules 360 mg) and zinc (1 capsule 30 mg’s) and probiotics a month ago. I also take a baby aspirin, vitamin d, and omega fatty acids daily. I added one pill of Methyl Guard last week. The first day was amazing it felt like my body united after feeling fragmented for months and i slept one of the best night sleeps in a long time 9.5 hours. But since then i have been feeling worse. More depleted energy and agitated. My question is where do I go from here? Do I stop the methyl guard or push through? Or start a different regimen? What am I missing here?

    Other methylation snp’s i am homozygous for:

    FOLR 2
    FUT 2
    MTHFS
    NOS2
    SOD2
    SOD3

    Thank you for your help!

    FYI..I am eating all whole foods snd reducing, gluten, sugar, and completely eliminated caffeine.

    Thanks so much for your help!

    • Dr. Aron July 20, 2015 at 8:54 pm #

      Hi Morgan – It’s tough to make individualized recommendations in this setting. Are you working with a doctor? If not, the physician directory is an excellent place to find a doctor in your area that can help you come up with a specific plan just for you: https://seekinghealth.org/physician-directory/. Wishing you the best!

  145. Allegra Garcia July 14, 2015 at 2:55 am #

    Can I have Taurine with a CBS mutation? I’m also Hetero MTHFR A1298C. My ND told me to continue with the 800 mcg methyl folate and methyl B12 after I told him how horrible I felt. I stopped for two weeks then tried again with a tiny bite and felt horrible. Depression, sadness, fatigue, Anger. I also have Fibromyalgia, I read to start with electrolytes? I noticed that it has Taurine in it. I can’t seem to get an answer and I’m desperate to feel better.
    I appreciate the help.

    Allegra Garcia

  146. donna July 18, 2015 at 4:24 pm #

    I am 34 yrs old and hetero for the c677t …My Dr suggested I take active B12 w /L-5-MTHF once a day. I took for a week or two and didn’t notice any symptoms. Now I feel weak in the knees randomly, have a lot of pain in my neck and shoulders, feel tired and fatigued, some nausea and headaches and cannot think/ concentrate well.

    I take a triple mag complex supplement 400mg every night.
    Do you have any suggestions what I may need. I don’t know if I should discontinue using the b-12 mthf or add something else.
    I cannot gain weight, but try to eat well balanced and healthy. I am 5ft7 and am 105lbs. feel achy and sick a lot of the last few years, and would love to feel healthy and vibrant. I also seem extra sensitive to any kind of supplement, possibly due to my low body weight ?

  147. Michelle July 21, 2015 at 1:43 am #

    Dr Ben, I find much of the information on this website confusing for me, so I’m trying to work out an easier way to ensure electrolytes are present before methylation treatment and to prevent any side affects from trating with methylfolate and B12.

    The problem, once you start taking magensium and other minerals you’re going to create imbalances in other areas, particularly if you don’t already know you’re mineral status. Zinc, manganese and potassium are all related in some way and things can get out of balance.

    So wondering if anyone has tried using superfood sources to replenish electrolytes and allowing the body to excrete what it doesn’t need. For example chlorophyll alfalfa liquid supplement? Has anybody tried using this before MTHFR treatment begins? Would this be ok? I’m guessing there are way more essential nutrients AND amino acids in alfalfa chlorophyll or chlorella than are present in a supplement. In fact, the chlorophyll liquid has many essential and semi-essential amino acids that are found to be deficient in methylation challenged patients eg arginine. Wouldn’t these help?

  148. Clare Albinson July 21, 2015 at 11:17 am #

    2000 became vegetarian
    2006 became hyperthyroid
    2006 carbimozole depressed thyroid function – became hypo
    2006 stayed hypo – I thought.
    Spent years trying to sort out thyroid and poorly functioning adrenals. I supported my adrenals with licorice with daily check on BP to keep dose correct.
    2014 Went to naturopath – treated me for candida. Some symptoms went, but still ill.
    Naturopath suggested 23andme. It showed double mutation of MAO-A R297R, MTR A2758G, MTRR A66G and single of COMT V128M/H62H/P199P, VDR Taq, VDR bsm, MTHFR C677T, MTHFR A1298C, MTRR A664A.
    Began methylation, BP high, so cut out licorice. Then used BP to judge methylfolate dose, which seems to work well. If it’s about right I take none, if lowish a small dose, etc.. Naturopath first suggested 1/8 tablet of hydroxocobalamin (5mg/8) sublingually, then changed to Bio 3B G (6mcg methyl cobalamin). The former ran out, so I substituted them with the Bio 3B G and methylation no longer worked. I realised I must be very low on B12. Then I checked my symptoms against B12 symptoms and every single one of them could be attributable to a B12 deficiency. I’m currently taking 10 mg of hydroxocobalamin daily and have ordered some methylcobalamin. There are improvements, though I read it can take weeks or months to recover and some symptoms may be permanent.
    Am also taking magnesium, vit C, ubiquinone, garlic, probiotics and salt if I get cramp.
    Any thoughts/advice?

  149. Domenico July 23, 2015 at 7:21 am #

    Hi Dr. Ben,
    please pay attention to my question.
    while I was looking for information on the cycle of homocysteine, I’ve found
    out your site, and I must say there are very effective and well-informed articles on this area of medicine, and I congratulate you on it!
    First I have to understand if I am undermethylated or overmethylated, I must also get tested for the MTHFR mutation, I only know that three years ago my homocysteine level was 17. Many doctors and you as well, like to see homocysteine for adults around 7 to 8 micromoles/liter.

    IF I COULD CONVERT HOMOCYSTEINE EXCESS VIA THE TRANSULFURATION PATHWAY I MIGHT LOWER HOMOCYSTEINE LEVELS AND SUPPORT DETOXIFICATION AT THE SAME TIME, BY RAISING GLUTATHIONE AND METALLOTHIONEIN, IS IT RIGHT?

    At this address:
    http://www.alternativementalhealth.com/commentary-on-nutritional-treatment-of-mental-disorders/
    there is a wonderful Commentary on Nutritional Treatment of Mental Disorders by Dr. William Walsh.
    It contains extracts about methylation, metallothionein, heavy metals poisoning, imbalances in metabolism of metals, along with his advices of nutritional treatment to rebalance them.
    IT IS THE RESULT OF MANY RESEARCHES CARRIED OUT FOR MORE THAN 25 YEARS BY CARL PFEIFFER, MD, PHD OF PRINCETON, NJ, WHO WAS A PIONEER IN THIS FIELD, AND BY HIS ASSISTANT DR. WALSH. THEY’VE TREATED MORE THAN 20,000 CASES, SO THEY HAVE SOME EXPERIENCE…

    About SAM cycle Dr. William Walsh says:
    “SOME PRACTITIONERS LIKE TO TINKER WITH THE SAM CYCLE TO PROMOTE CONVERSION OF HOMOCYSTEINE TO METHIONINE, SUPPLEMENTING WITH METHYLFOLATE OR METHYLCOBALAMIN, BUT THIS CAN DEPLETE THE CYSTATHIONE PATHWAY AND RESULT IN DEFICIENCIES OF GLUTATHIONE, CYSTEINE, ETC.
    UNDERMETHYLATED ADULTS TYPICALLY REQUIRE 2,000 – 3,000 MG/DAY OF METHIONINE FOR SEVERAL MONTHS TO SEE GOOD RESULTS. ALSO, AUGMENTING NUTRIENTS SUCH AS CALCIUM, MAGNESIUM, B-6, AND ZINC ARE ESSENTIAL.
    TMG IS A GREAT WAY TO TREAT INDIVIDUALS WITH DANGEROUSLY HIGH HOMOCYSTEINE LEVELS. TMG can be very useful in augmenting methionine therapy along with B-6/P-5-P , serine, etc.
    THE CHALLENGE IS TO SUPPLY ENOUGH METHYL GROUPS TO HELP THE PATIENT, WITHOUT CREATING DANGEROUSLY HIGH LEVELS OF HOMOCYSTEINE. Use of TMG is an “insurance policy” against this happening.

    A quick way to test for need for methylation therapy is to carry out a cautious trial of SAMe. Within a week or two you should have your answer. If a patient clearly is improving on the SAMs (which is frightfully expensive)….. you can get usually the same benefits (albeit more slowly) using methionine plus calcium, magnesium, and B-6. This should be side-effect free unless (a) the methylation is begun too abruptly or (b) the patient has a rare genetic enzyme disorder which disrupts the SAM cycle.
    WE’VE FOUND THAT DIRECT METHYLATION IS USUALLY MORE SUCCESSFUL THAN TINKERING WITH THE SAM CYCLE. THE PRIMARY WAY HUMANS RECEIVE MOST OF THEIR METHYL GROUPS IS FROM DIETARY METHIONINE. It’s often hard to improve on Mother Nature.”

    I am particularly concerned about the b) issue: unless the patient has a rare genetic enzyme disorder which disrupts the SAM cycle. AND IF HE WAS REFERRING EXACTLY TO THE MTHFR MUTATIONS?
    I have yet to understand whether having one or more MTHFR mutations means to be undermethylated or overmethylated.
    IN YOUR OPINION, HOW DOES A DOCTOR HAVE TO ADDRESS AN HETEROZYGOUS MTHFR MUTATION, FOR EXAMPLE?
    IT MAY MEANS THAT THE MTHFR ENZYME IS REDUCED BY ABOUT 50% IN FUNCTION, THEN THE METHYLATION CYCLE IS WEAKENED AND A PERSON IS UNDERMETHYLATED?
    I should like to thank in advance you, I hope you will answer me.
    Best Regards

    • Michael_Dowdy July 23, 2015 at 5:49 pm #

      Hello Domenico. I’m sure Dr. Ben will answer your questions very soon! Can I ask why you and/or your doctor/doctors haven’t followed up on your high homocysteine level in three years? Don’t you or they know this is advancing and changing science and medicine that needs to be kept up with and that a high Hcy level is damaging? Do you understand that’s there are numerous methyl donors, at least that’s what I’ve been told by some of the world’s most educated and respected doctors? It really bothers me that you haven’t thoroughly followed up on your potentially life threatening condition or even had a genetic study done. You seem to have done some study but still seem to be totally lost. You can get methionine from beer – but I’m not recommending that! As far as determining methylation level I too have that question. How can it be determined with accuracy? Michael M. Dowdy

      • Domenico July 25, 2015 at 10:31 am #

        Hi Michael M. Dowdy, thanks for the answer, so far no doctor has responded to my post, although my request opens a debate on what is best to treat undermethylation or overmethylation.
        You’re right, I did not consider essential that level of homocysteine, but I can assure you that there are people who have insanely high Hcy levels, as 30 or even 45!
        In Italy there is not much knowledge of this new field of medicine, methylation is almost ignored by most health practitioners.
        I had to seek information online on my own, and on foreign sites..

        At the following link there are highest in Methionine Foods, the richest of whom is Egg, white:
        http://nutritiondata.self.com/foods-000084000000000000000-w.html

        About your question
        “How methylation level can be determined with accuracy?”

        Read this text from Dr. Pfeiffer:
        “Histamine is a neurotransmitter itself, and Carl Pfeiffer originally believed histamine That innate abnormalities in the brain were responsible for many mental problems. However, it now Appears That whole blood histamine is really a “marker” for methylation, in an inverse relationship. High bloodhistamine Indicates undermethylation, low serotonin levels, etc … .. low blood histamine the opposite.
        We use whole blood histamine as a marker for methylation. Persons with high histamine (> 70) are believed to be undermethylated; persons with low histamine (<40) are considered overmethylated.
        Effective "markers" for methylation are (1) whole blood histamine (ref. Levels 40-70 mcg / dL), available from Quest and LabCorp; (2) Absolute basophils (ref. 30-50 levels), available from Direct Healthcare, Inc in the Chicago area.
        Elevated histamine and / or elevated basophils indicated undermethylation. Review of symptoms and medical history can bolster the diagnosis. For example, most persons undermethylated exhibit seasonal allergies, perfectionism, strong wills, slenderness, OCD tendencies, high libido, etc. Overmethylated persons Generally exhibit anxiety, absence of seasonal allergies, presence of food / chemical sensitivities, dry eyes, low perspiration, artistic / music interests / abilities, intolerance to Prozac and other SSRI's, etc."
        Conditions Associated with undermethylation: Anorexia, bulemia, shopping / gambling disorders, depression, schizo-affective disorder, delusions, oppositional-defiant disorder, OCD.
        Conditions Associated with overmethylation: Anxiety / Panic disorders, anxious depression, hyperactivity, learning disabilities, low motivation, "space cadet" syndrome, paranoid schizophrenia, hallucinations. (Oct 3, 2003)
        Please note that whole blood histamine is a marker for methylation innate tendency, but is not an indicator of wellness or the degree to Which Has Been undermethylation overcome."

        Regards

        • Alyson July 27, 2015 at 2:00 am #

          It seems the good Dr. isn’t responding to many questions lately. Overmethylation vs undermethylation seems like an interesting theory. I wonder how sound it is.
          Methylfolate and methylcobalamin made me remarkably paranoid almost to the point of hallucinating. It made me so anxious and frantic nearly to the point of violence. It made me feel like I was on some sort of street drug. Horrendous. The absolute worst experience of my life. Doesn’t matter how “low and slow” I go. Hydroxo and cyanocobalamin do not do this.

          If I had know that was going to happen to me, I would’ve said forget it. I’m so angry my doctor told me it had no side effects and was the form my body needed. I’m so angry that Lynch hasn’t made this a bigger part of the conversation. To read his two posts on side effects, it seems like he blames the side effects on the patient for not preparing with other supplements first (all Seeking Health brand, of course). I did all that stuff, it didn’t make a difference. Methylated vitamins are absolute torture for me. I know they’re absolutely lifesaving for others, but the serious adverse effects need to be a big part of the conversation, even if the research on under vs over methylation isn’t there yet.

          • Domenico July 27, 2015 at 6:22 am #

            Hi Alyson, after reading the theories of Dr. Lynch compared with those of Dr. Pfeiffer, I would give a chance to the treatment proposed by Dr. Pfeiffer. Not just because Dr. Lynch is addressing this issue relatively just recently compared to Dr. Pfeiffer, but because Dr. Pfeiffer and his collaborator Dr. Walsh, who is continuing his work, have treated tens of thousands of cases, and they know which nutrients their patients need, depending on their predisposition, if undermethylated or overmethylated.
            I would recommend you to test your whole blood histamine which is really a “marker” for methylation, in an inverse relationship. High blood histamine Indicates undermethylation, low serotonin levels, etc … .. low blood histamine the opposite.
            If you don’t tolerate Methylfolate and methylcobalamin, you’re probably under-methylated since you don’t need extra Folate.
            Dr. Walsh says:
            histadelic (undermethylated) persons, who thrive on methionine, SAMe, Ca and Mg but get much worse if they take folates & B-12 which can increase methyl trapping. I guess the bottom line is that undermethylated persons generally exhibit very elevated folate levels…. and these persons get worse if additional folate is given.

            After you have tested your whole blood histamine, you can read this page on how to adjust your nutritional imbalances that have led to your condition.
            http://www.nutritional-healing.com.au/content/articles-content.php?heading=Major%20Mental%20Illness%20Biochemical%20Subtypes
            Read this page too:
            http://www.alternativementalhealth.com/commentary-on-nutritional-treatment-of-mental-disorders/
            Only the sections you’re interested in, as Histamine, Methylation.

          • Michael_Dowdy July 27, 2015 at 1:56 pm #

            Hello. I’m tryiing to understand some of the exact questions being asked of Dr. Ben here. Domenico and Alyson, are you asking how to determine over or under-methylation of DNA and which methyl donors affect DNA methylation? If so, this gets into cancer studies. My initial experience with methylated B vitamins was filled with problems but I’ve worked through most of them with personal study, trial and error, and also with help from this site. I have 2 copies of the 677CT mutation. Alyson, I’m sure you’re horribly upset, but have you considered that some of the issues you’ve had might exist because of the presense of folic acid combined with the methylated vitamins? I’m not saying it is, only that the possibility exists. I’ve read that folic acid has even caused some of the MTHFR mutations. Thankfully Dr. Ben has addressed a lot of these issues and much information is still emerging. I learned that dosage is a huge issue. Take your time and read through the FSANZ Application A566 documents, particularly the final and explanation, and you will learn what the maximum daily tolerable amount of methyl folate (L-5 MTHF calcium) is and you may be totally shocked. Alyson, I have skin issues also so if you have a 23andMe account then you can request that I share information and reports with you. I have absolutely no problem with doing this if you think you may benefit from it. I wish you the best. Michael M. Dowdy Florida cellular 321-443-6597

          • Alyson July 29, 2015 at 9:49 pm #

            HI Michael,

            Thanks for your attention. I don’t take folic acid and wasn’t taking any with the methylated vitamins. My folate is naturally in a good to high range.
            My skin was absolutely perfect prior to supplementation, in fact the doctor complimented me on it.

          • Alyson July 29, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

            HI Michael,

            Thanks for your attention. I don’t take folic acid and wasn’t taking any with the methylated vitamins. My folate is naturally in a good to high range.
            My skin was absolutely perfect prior to supplementation, in fact the doctor complimented me on it. Now it’s back to its calm state, plus a ton of scars that will last a lifetime. I’m not happy about that.
            My water source is very clean.
            I’m upset because I went to a doctor who had learned from the Seeking Health Institute. And her treatment was basically to tell me that since I had A1298C homozygous, I needed large doses of methylfolate and methylcobalamin. She wasn’t too concerned when I developed hypokalemia.
            Then, when I realized it was the methyls making me feel like I had wasps under my skin, she told me to take niacin to “quench” it, as Dr. Lynch recommends.
            She failed to diagnose my blood sugar issues. Too much niacin can trigger prediabetes to get worse. 7 days after starting the niacin I went to the ER for constant urination and thirst. A year later I have highly symptomatic prediabetes and must take medication.
            Am I missing something? Does Dr. Lynch ever talk about over or under methylation and that two people with the same SNPs might not need the same dosage? Does he ever engage with other theories or claims like those of Dr. Walsh? Does he ever not recommend methylfolate?
            I wasn’t self-treating. If I self-treated and got myself sick, I’d be to blame. I went to a doctor. I discussed everything and tried to learn. A year later I am very sick.
            Dr. Lynch’s lens is too narrow in my opinion. I think he encourages people to self-treat too much and doesn’t talk about the risks.
            If I had come upon his site on my own, I would’ve said it’s not ready for primetime and too many people are having adverse reactions. Instead I came to it through a doctor who had learned from him. I am very uneasy about this whole thing.

          • Alyson July 29, 2015 at 10:15 pm #

            Thanks Domenico,
            I appreciate the links. Just looking at the lists I fit both.
            I really never wanted to try and fix my brain or my liver or whatever with vitamins. I didn’t want to biohack or anything like that. I was sick and I just wanted to be checked for anemia or what have you and understand why my periods and appetite were so off. If I was deficient I wanted to make sure I replaced it. I went to doctor to run some tests.
            Somehow I ended up with this. Then once the damage was done I just never felt like myself again.
            I’m sick of conventional doctors not having the time or attention to treat me properly. I’m sick of naturopathic doctors turning themselves into a brand and promoting new diseases that aren’t recognized. I’m sick of them cherry picking data to support their products. I’m sick of being told some vitamins are safe, and ending up with liver or nerve or skin damage. There is no clarity in nutrigenomics. I’m not asking for a cure, all I’m asking for is sound information. It seems like orthomolecular medicine is a rabbit hole right now.

  150. Maria July 27, 2015 at 3:11 pm #

    Hi Michael,

    May I ask you a question, since it seems you have been “down this road” longer than I have.

    My intracellular B levels have always showed low, so my health coach, knowing that I have MTHFR mutation (compound Heterozygous), still has me supplement with BodyBio B Vitamins. BUT, I’m not sure if THAT is the REASON that I struggle with anxiety about 1 1/2 to 2 hours after I take all of my vitamins. It’s very hard to narrow it down.

    I did do an experiment recently and completely stopped all vitamins for 7 days…and boy, oh boy, did I feel soooo much better (more relaxed, less worried, anxious, etc.)

    Sooooo, I’m very confused on HOW TO GET MY B vitamins raised intracellularly if I can’t take B vitamins! Might you have any insight into this, Michael?

    I ask you because I’m not seeing Dr. Lynch answering questions on this thread anymore.

    Thanks so much!

    • Michael_Dowdy July 29, 2015 at 2:04 am #

      Hello Maria. I’m actually very new to this. If you take something that makes you worse I’d stop and try to find out why. Diet is the best way to get nutrients. I won’t take supplements without food since that is closer to the normal way to get them. Are you taking them on an empty stomach?

  151. Maria July 27, 2015 at 3:31 pm #

    Hello Alyson,

    Your experience with B’s sounds very similar to my experience.

    After a year of anxiety, fear, low grade depression, I’m realizing it’s probably my Body Bio B Vitamins that my health coach has put me on. I’m also on a “formula” that is supposed to help with Methylation (Systemic Formulas Mors) and with cellular exchange (Systemic Formulas eNRG)….but, I’m beginning to question if these 3 supplements together are causing me to have irritability/anxiety issues 1 1/2 to 2 hours after I take my supplements.

    I take so many supplements at one time several times a day that I never knew IF it were the vitamins causing my problems…but, reading through this thread has made me question my supplement intake now.

    I will experiment this week and see if my anxiety lessens by omitting the B’s, eNRG, and Mors.

    All that to ask you, what supplements are you now taking?

    Thanks so much!
    Maria

  152. Teri July 27, 2015 at 8:20 pm #

    I appreciate and sense your feelings and expressions. There are far more mutated genes at play in ALL of us affecting individualized methylation making it very difficult to treat successfully. Since this is relatively still new on the horizon, Dr Lynch has cautioned on numerous occasions to be wary of those claiming to know it all. In fact his words are ” RUN” from such drs! Dr Lynch has changed his own criteria for drs he will allow listed with his recommendation since so many people are being treated in ways that border on malpractice and negligence.

    Having followed this thread from the beginning (including all the comments),having been overmethylated by an “all-knowing” Dr, having mthfr677 +/+, having numerous other serious mutations that affect that, determining which ones are “expressing”, having one type of cancer, trying to prevent a second cancer, leaving a trail of fired drs (both traditional and Integrative natural drs), having worked with homeopathy for 30 years now and employed in healthcare, there are many assumptions being made here that are false.

    The good Dr Lynch (who saved my life and is awesome) is legally limited to what he can and cannot do and/or say. He is NOT your treating physician and cannot respond to the vast majority that is posted here. Nor is he responsible.
    I’m grateful he shares his experiences and knowledge. I was grateful to have him do some blood work on me providing priceless insights and thoughts. He does NOT have access to my health records or my genetic reports. It would be ludicrous to expect him to answer my questions without my entire background and with a very fragmented picture as research and information are still revolving. He was very clear about the requirement to work with my treating Dr. I am saddened he now longer offers the lab work services. I have not found any other dr or research who understands the dpths he does let aline able to translate it into patient care and health. His supplements are well researched and very high quality. I greatly appreciate the fact most are single ingredients as it should be an individualized approach to treat individuals. Something big pharma and traditional medicine completely missed the boat on. However traditional drs know nothing about nutrition and our broken Big Pharma run medical schools which teach basic anatomy, bodily functions, how to take a few symptoms and prescribe which money making, patented big pharma chemical, to treat symptoms, creating more side effects, never addressing the actual origin of the illness, disease, and or complaint. Thank heavens for inquisitive drs who want to know and search it all out and jokingly refer to themselves as “geeks” 🙂 they “get” it!

    There is also increasing pressure on the Integrative Medical Professional as traditional drs and big pharma see people turning to more natural healthcare areas. There are tremendous persecutions going on and the wise practioners are cautious with what they say and how they say it. It’s cut throat and becoming worse, legally and professionally. You have no idea.

    Having dealt with the public in the medical arena, it never ceases to amaze me how we hold others responsible for our health and well being. NO one person knows it all. We live in a fabulous day and age where we have research and resources available to us as individuals no other generation has had some access to.No one but you lives in your body and will feel the effects long before any practioner will know but the public in general does not know how to listen to their body and what it’s SCREAMING. Many people continue “acceptable” practices further deadening their ears, minds and hearts. For example: One use caffeine and monster drinks to function on a daily basis then has issues with mood, anxiety, insomnia, energy, and major adrenal issues. So they see a “Dr” and say fix me, ie give me something. I have fallen into that gulley a few times. Quick fixes are diseasterous and create a domino effect never healing and usually destroying health. Dr Lynch advocates one always evaluate their own environment as that is a major part of health and well-being. That includes what one puts into their body, on their their body, surroundings, jobs, and what one chooses to think and say. Continued anger and resentment carried from bad experiences, health or otherwise, serves no purpose and continues to make the one harboring it very sick.

    Dr Lynch offers incredible insights and spends much of his time giving. He is not liable as your physician. To hold him responsible for others actions, including our own is insane. The blame game is part of the problem, not part of healing. We need to take more responsibilites for ourselves and our own health. No one said it was going to be easy. In fact, it will be the hardest thing you ever do but also the most fulfilling You have a finite amount of energy and sometimes we waste that precious energy holding on to bitterness when we need the energy to be directed to healing. There is a silver lining to every cloud and experience. What you do with it determines your health as well as your future. You are in charge of you.

    Given some of the negative and angry tones in threads by people hurting, I realize this post will be viewed and interpreted that way. That’s not my intention. I wish I had a thumb drive and everyone had a USB port to install my true feelings from my heart from my experiences. Communications with words are so limiting. We each learn from our own experiences. I know firsthand how short life is, what quality verses quantity of life is, the fear, the anger, the resentment, the frustrations… I know…
    I can’t heal you or make you better. I can tell you you are not alone. I can’t tell you it gets better. I can tell you its hard but worth it. I can’t tell you that you’ll ever be whole again.I can tell you this is what builds your character which will pull you through it. Only you can choose your thoughts, feelings, and actions.

    I choose NOT to be a Vctim. NOT to be a Survivor. I choose to be a Thriver.
    I

    • Dr. Aron July 27, 2015 at 9:07 pm #

      wow, Teri. Thank you for this insightful, heartfelt comment.

  153. Teri July 27, 2015 at 9:36 pm #

    Maria,
    Look very carefully at Systemic Formulas. Their “mega doses one size fits all” supplements are loaded with contraindicated supplements, herbs, and such …. These are the examples and exactly what overmethylatedd me, totally screwed up my Thyroid bloodwork…. These are classic examples of why you need a Dr who us familiar with individual needs and requirements.
    I know too many people who became very sick in Systemic Formulas… Including me.
    They throw the whole kitchen sink at you, contraindicated for ppl with COMT, CBS, MTR, and a few more mutations.
    Good luck! Glad you have sense enough to recognize your symptoms before they worsen!

  154. michelle July 29, 2015 at 1:04 am #

    This is a great discussion and a lot of useful information is coming up. I think Alyson has a right to question the method and madness of any protocol, particularly when some practitioners claim to be following a protocol and make her worse and don’t bother to change strategy.

    What I can say after researching a lot about not just methylation, but the liver in general and metabolism, nutrients and heavy metal toxicity is that the “MTHFR problem” may not be directly related to MTHFR genes themselves, but could be a byproduct of accumulation of toxins and synthetic supplements, causing the methylation cycle to act abnormally, slower or faster, depending on your genes. This is the reason that there are so many variations of treatment under Dr Lynch’s protocol and why so many people do so badly on methyl’s, especially metafolin.

    I suspect that together the pyrroluria, gilberts syndrome, synthetic folic acid, synthetic niacin, mercury, lead and aluminium, the liver is not working efficiently, the mercury in particular is making all the enzymes go haywire and genes are being switched on and off at various times during treatment, when the lacking minerals are introduced.

    If you look at the methylation cycle, there is transmethylation and transsulfuration, I would first check sulfur/sulfite levels together the B12, B6 and folate levels. Then work out if we have a problem with pyyroles excreting B6, Zinc and essential oils, or is it a mercury/aluminium toxicity affecting the methylation cycle. The treatment would either be a choice between a) methyl B12, B6 P5P and Zinc (which would help transsulfulation and pyrroluria sufferers) or b) methyl B12, methylfolate and Dr Bens protocol. Note that in treatment a) there is no need for extra methylfolate as it’s not needed, even with 677/1298 defects (could be switched off), as this could overstimulate the methylation cycle and is not. Treatment b) is used to stimulate the methylation cycle where there is a partial block and corresponds to Dr Lynch’s protocol.

    I find it interesting that the first step in the MTHFR protocol is to topup essential minerals such as Zinc, Magnesium, Potassium etc, maybe this is the only problem in the first place. Copper toxicity (low zinc) and High Mercury (many problems) need to be considered primary causes too.

    Important to note that B12 can be taken alone, whereas once you take metafolate you must also take B12 with it. These appear to be separate protocols as far as I’m concerned – separate causes and treatments. Stay away from Mg Citrate it is very corrosive and can give stomach problems, especially to young children, choose other forms of magnesium.

    good luck.

    • Michael_Dowdy July 29, 2015 at 1:50 am #

      Hello Michelle. Great comment! People really need to protect the means that the body removes toxins, including primarily the kidneys and liver, but as likely in Alyson’s case even the skin can be another critical means. I always encourage everyone I know to avoid paracetamol to protect their liver and prevent depletion of glutathione. People have been lead to believe that paracetamol is safe when it absolutely isn’t when over-used. It’s almost as hard to avoid paracetamol as it is to avoid folic acid in countries where it’s mandated. Thank you for your careful and well thought-out comment.

    • Michael_Dowdy July 29, 2015 at 3:55 am #

      Hello again Michelle. I couldn’t help but notice your comment about magnesium citrate. I’ve heard recommendations that magnesium should be taken at night. My belief is really the opposite since our main source of magnesium should be in our diet to begin with. I take a magnesium supplement (a combination of several types including citrate) once a day at the advice of my cardiologist to prevent my problem with intermittent PVC’s. My heart signal was corrected with the addition of magnesium, not to mention I felt better over-all. I try to use as few supplements as possible in as low of a dose as possible. I disagree with taking magnesium at night and your comment seems to bolster my thoughts about when and how to take magnesium since you state it can be rough on the stomach. I take it only with food in the morning contrary to other’s beliefs of when it should be taken. It’s worked well for me without stomach irritation. What are your thoughts and feelings about this?

  155. Michelle July 29, 2015 at 6:36 am #

    Hi Michael, what I’ve found personally with magnesium and many other minerals and supplements is you need to be careful how much you take, how long you take them and at what times you take them. I guess there is no consistency, some practitioners have good ideas, but I go with how my body feels and that of my children.

    The Mg Citrate from Solgar should have been an easy choice, but since it’s fully citrate it did cause an upset stomach when taken alone or at night, I took it for a few years then switched, luckily. I have a mixed magnesium now without citrate of any kind. If you want to avoid that by taking it with a meal that’s probably ok, but I’m guessing some corrosion is happening that you don’t notice.

    I prefer to try different magnesiums supps on an empty stomach and work out which is gentler, then take it 1 hour after dinner from then on. May depend on what else you are taking. The less supplements you take the better for me, I try to get them from real foods.

    Many antacids are made of magnesium compounds so I assume magnesium can neutralise acids, therefore I don’t take it with meals or before meals, only 1 hour after dinner, works fine. I also read that long term Mg use can dilute stomach acid, not sure if that’s correct either. I don’t take oral Mg much anymore instead using magnesium chloride baths which are much better for children, despit some online doctors not recommending it.

  156. Domenico July 29, 2015 at 7:40 am #

    Hi Michelle,
    finally a person who thinks like me!
    I agree especially with this:
    “Note that in treatment a) there is no need for extra methylfolate as it’s not needed, even with 677/1298 defects (could be switched off), as this could overstimulate the methylation cycle and is not. ”
    You have unwittingly responded to my question:
    I have yet to understand whether having one or more MTHFR mutations means to be undermethylated or overmethylated.
    IT MAY MEANS THAT THE MTHFR ENZYME IS REDUCED BY ABOUT 50% IN FUNCTION, THEN THE METHYLATION CYCLE IS WEAKENED AND A PERSON IS UNDERMETHYLATED?

    As I wrote a few comments above, the difference is between those who are under-methylated and those who are over-methylated, despite MTHFR defects.
    Those with MTHFR Gene Mutations may be confused about the treatment to follow and thus automatically follows the protocol to raise methylation cycle.. that often is wrong

    I repeat what said by Dr. Walsh, colleague of the great Dr. Pfeiffer
    “SOME PRACTITIONERS LIKE TO TINKER WITH THE SAM CYCLE TO PROMOTE CONVERSION OF HOMOCYSTEINE TO METHIONINE, SUPPLEMENTING WITH METHYLFOLATE OR METHYLCOBALAMIN, BUT THIS CAN DEPLETE THE CYSTATHIONE PATHWAY AND RESULT IN DEFICIENCIES OF GLUTATHIONE, CYSTEINE, ETC.
    UNDERMETHYLATED ADULTS TYPICALLY REQUIRE 2,000 – 3,000 MG/DAY OF METHIONINE FOR SEVERAL MONTHS TO SEE GOOD RESULTS. ALSO, AUGMENTING NUTRIENTS SUCH AS CALCIUM, MAGNESIUM, B-6, AND ZINC ARE ESSENTIAL.
    TMG IS A GREAT WAY TO TREAT INDIVIDUALS WITH DANGEROUSLY HIGH HOMOCYSTEINE LEVELS. TMG can be very useful in augmenting methionine therapy along with B-6/P-5-P , serine, etc.
    THE CHALLENGE IS TO SUPPLY ENOUGH METHYL GROUPS TO HELP THE PATIENT, WITHOUT CREATING DANGEROUSLY HIGH LEVELS OF HOMOCYSTEINE. Use of TMG is an “insurance policy” against this happening.”

    About magnesium read this two pages, the best form is magnesium glycinate, followed by magnesium malate..
    http://fixyourgut.com/magnesium-most-overlooked-mineral-for-improving-health-2/
    http://fixyourgut.com/magnesium-most-overlooked-mineral-for-improving-health-6/

  157. Michelle July 30, 2015 at 12:57 am #

    Alyson, out of curiosity can you advise in which city your MTHFR trained practitioner was in? Fine if you can’t say.

  158. Alyson July 30, 2015 at 5:25 am #

    It was in western NY state.

    • Alyson July 30, 2015 at 5:40 am #

      I will add I was never warned of side effects, particularly not serious ones, underlying health issues were misdiagnosed, side effects were misattributed, she encouraged me to keep taking the methyl when I reported side effects, follow-up was normally scheduled for 3 mos which is far too long, 2 months only were spent on gut healing, “low and slow” meant a week to increase to the full dosage, dietary advice was ridiculous, everyone got virtually the same protocol to start with. Oh and b12 was never tested and folate was tested only after I had side effects (had to wait a month bc the Seeking Health lab sent me the wrong test twice).

      In short, everything was as messed up as it could be. I didn’t know, I thought it was safe and non toxic. I had had a long talk with her about my sensitivities and desire to do things safely. She said the doses were not high. I’m not sure if she learned at my expense.

      Licensed Dr, not a naturopath. Would NOT recommend.

  159. Alyson July 30, 2015 at 5:50 am #

    Dr. Lynch, could you clarify what start low and go slow means in the context of tablets containing 100s or 1000s of mcg? What is low? 1/8 of a tablet? 1/2 tablet? What is slow? Every other day? Every week? If you discuss that somewhere could someone point me to it?

    Also I notice some warnings on the bottom of the find a doctor page. I’m not sure if they are recent. Why not put them front and center on the home page?

  160. Holly August 4, 2015 at 2:15 am #

    Hello I have the MTHFR gene mutation and have recently started taking the Thorne Methyl guard plus formula. I seem to be having side effects from the methyfolate in it. My allergies have gotten out of control. I have all the symptoms you have also listed about lacking electrolytes.
    I have had clots in the past so I need something that will assist the clots and also help my folate deficiency. What supplements would you recommend?

    • Missy2 August 15, 2015 at 10:09 am #

      Hi Holly,
      My allergies are currently out of control as well. I had linked allergy issues with either methylfolate or methylcobalamin (from this article, seems that methylfolate is the issue?). Earlier this week, I had tried very small doses (twice) of a multi that had those ingredients, allergies acted up, stopped taking them again. But they are still out of control. I had kale and spinach salad all week.

      Hope allergies settle down for both of us soon!

      I can’t answer your question directly but there are some multi’s that don’t have methylfolate and methylcobalamin that I’ve been using.

    • Michael_Dowdy August 16, 2015 at 5:12 am #

      Hello Holly. When you say you’ve had clots in the past are you saying you’ve been diagnosed and treated for clots or embolisms? Are you under the treatment of a hematologist or M.D. and if so what treatment plan are you on? Clots will kill you quickly! Anyone would put themselves in a precarious position to advise against an M.D.. Get the advise of a qualified doctor and start from there. If you are not comfortable with their advice and direction that’s up to you, but be careful and thorough with your research because your life depends on the decisions you make. I treat my clot risk differently than standard protocol, but I have to take responsibility for my own decisions just as you must do if you vary from your doctor’s advise. If you’re having bad side effects from supplements this is a great site to study. As for myself I stay as far away as I can from folic acid, paracetamol, and sodium warfarin. I think there are safer methods, medications, and supplements. Nor will I take high doses of methylated B vitamins after the research I’ve done. Dr. Ben and his site have been an indispensable help to me. Best Wishes

      • Ally August 16, 2015 at 2:22 pm #

        Michael- Just curious as to why you won’t take high doses of the methyl b’s and also what you consider a high dose. Thanks!

        • Michael_Dowdy August 16, 2015 at 8:50 pm #

          Hello Ally. I had a really bad experience on the 7.5 mg dose, nearly going to the ER. I have discussed it all on this site. It was the dose primarily. I use a low dose and TMG anhydrous now. You are welcome to call preferably on my cellular number. I consider anything over the maximum daily tolerable amount a high dose. A higher dose can be taken as a corrective dose temporarily but should be reduced to individual needs.

  161. Missy August 4, 2015 at 10:36 pm #

    Hey Dr. Ben,

    I’m homozygous for c667t MTHFR. I also have a minor CBS mutation (hetero for A360A) my COMT mutations are all “normal” or “good” (no problems breaking down stuff). I am heterozygous for all of the bad GAD mutations, though.

    I just started taking Optimal Start and nothing else and am feeling some overstimulation.

    I have only taken 1/4 of the dose so far (1 capsule). I had similar reactions with taking the methyfolate, kind of a buzzy feeling in my head. I don’t have the same issue when I take B-minus, so I’m wondering if it’s one of the non-mineral components. I also don’t seem to have this problem when taking NAC, so I don’t think it’s a sulfur issue.

    Do you think it’s just a temporary thing and will slowly calm down as my mineral levels balance out? Or possibly that I need to do something else?

    I am working with a naturopath who claims she studied with you at Bastyr and follows your work, though I don’t think she has been through your training.

    Thanks!

  162. Missy August 4, 2015 at 10:51 pm #

    Ahhh…I think it’s the ginseng.

    http://www.askdrmao.com/questions-and-answers/hazards-to-taking-ginseng/

  163. Missy August 4, 2015 at 11:01 pm #

    For those who feel a buzzy when taking this, here’s more on ginseng:

    http://www.raysahelian.com/ginseng.html

    http://www.livestrong.com/article/70528-side-effects-red-ginseng/

    Please, Dr. Ben, could you eliminate the ginseng on the next batch? Ugh. I haven’t had any of these issues on any of the components of the Optimal Start, except that I’d never really tried ginseng, or shilajit. Ashwaganda is extremely calming, usually, so I’m really bummed about the ginseng. I feel like I’m on speed.

    Wow.

    • Morgan December 13, 2015 at 8:18 pm #

      Yes the same thing happened to me when I tried the optimal start which was disappointing. I ended up stopping after a week because I got too reved up and I also concluded it was the ginseng. Please let us know if you make a version without the ginseng?

  164. Lela August 29, 2015 at 2:26 pm #

    Dear Dr Lynch
    After completing 2 nd Organic acids test
    We still show yeast and will treat with nystatin
    Low B6 and low Seratonin. Our Dr prescribe Metanx
    2 caps per day, and Nac.5HTP 100 mg 2X day
    Our 19 year old still shows symptoms of anxiety
    With driving and speaking with new people.
    Should we see these symptoms lessen with this
    Support? Thanks for alll you do!

  165. Michael_Dowdy September 3, 2015 at 8:21 pm #

    Hello Dr. Ben. I just wanted to thank you in advance for your webinar on methylation this evening. Respectfully, Michael M. Dowdy

  166. Liz September 4, 2015 at 8:55 pm #

    Great article throw in my hemochromatosis and I need to put my head in the oven Thx

  167. abc September 5, 2015 at 8:40 am #

    Why does taking molybdenum make me feel so incredibly sick with headaches and nausea? I am compound heterozygote. Wondering if I should invest in liposomal gluthathione.

  168. Laura September 9, 2015 at 9:18 pm #

    Hi there,
    After again experiencing nausea and vomiting with your Trace Mineral complex I am searching for answers regarding this side effect. Since I have taken some of the minerals individually with no negative side effects I am not concerned about magnesium, zinc, Iodine, chromium, potassium, vandium or silicon.
    However, I am concerned about the Copper, Molybdenum, manganese and boron. I eat a fish based paleo diet with an emphasis on vegetables and some fruits. I seem to have digestive sensitivities to high histamine foods so I follow a low histamine protocol within that. I also use digestive enzymes and betaine timed and in proper order if needed (high protein or dairy meal) Are there any other answers or protocols with this product that would allow me to take it once or twice a week without the fear of nausea and vomiting?

    PS I have followed many of ideas and taken many other of your supplements without problems. I feel that minerals are important but don’t understand how they compliment each other and how they react with each other.

  169. P. Kates September 14, 2015 at 2:39 pm #

    The more I read and research the more confused I become. I can’t afford all the tests and all the supplements needed., but thanks for all the info!

  170. abc September 18, 2015 at 12:43 am #

    Laura. It’s probably the molybdenum. There are many of us out there who get sick from that supplement. I don’t take it anymore. I am also high in copper. At the moment, I take LGG probiotic, s. boulardii, zinc picolinate, magnesium glycerinate, betaine hcl (heavier meals), liposomal vit. c, Thorne methylguard (just one per day as the side effects of taking more were too much). I am a little low in iron even though I eat red meat…iron bisglycinate also makes me feel a little illl, but nothing like the molybdenum…I am seriously unable to function when I take that supplement (severe nausea, vomiting, extreme headaches, fatigue).

  171. Judith Fenton October 1, 2015 at 5:44 pm #

    There are geneticist that do not believe one should be tested for the MTHFR polymorphism as it is too complex to truly understand its implication in diseases. To rely on a test to determine an illness is reductionism, We are not a Vit. D level nor are we a gene polymorphism. The MTHFR genetic was probably our ancestors way to survive famine, cold and extremes. Who knows we may be protected with a variant. I take umbrage when you sell supplements for something so individual.

  172. G October 6, 2015 at 9:52 pm #

    Hi i was wondering if a person has PKU, would these supplements be ok for them to take?
    thanks

  173. Paul October 9, 2015 at 2:10 pm #

    Hi,
    Not sure if this post belongs on the histamine intolerance page or here but it would seem to be all related. Excuse the longish back story but hopefully someone won’t repeat my most recent mistake as a result. My issue is that I am struggling big time with a histamine overload at the moment.
    I originally stumbled across mthfr.net having visited a primary care physician (the only one here in Ireland addressing methylation imbalances in mental health issues) with massive anxiety, intolerance to stress, depression and feeling absolutely toxic under my skin. He tested me primarily for whole blood histamine, zinc, copper and pyrrole compounds in urine.
    He follows the Dr William (Bill) Walsh / Dr Carl Pfeiffer protocol which uses high blood histamine as a marker for under methylation. I had histamine of 13.5 where max normal range was 8. As it happens my copper was also high and I had pyroluria meaning I was also deficient in b6 and zinc by definition.
    At this time I was so desperate for some relief (the above test results were still 4 weeks away) I also went to see an excellent naturopath who follows Dr Ben’s work closely who also began to treat me for a methylation cycle block.
    I began taking a lot of supplements including methyl b12/folate, p5p, glutathione, minerals, amongst others and began using an infra red sauna regularly for detox support (which helped hugely).
    Shortly after I began the treatment, with the benefit of the whole blood histamine test result I put 2+2 together. I had been experiencing itching and insomnia/anxiety after certain foods for over a year and an experiment with an anti histamine one night made me wake up feeling like a totally different person (in a good way!). I now knew I had histamine intolerance and it was contributing to a lot of my symptoms.
    The approach was to be 2 pronged: restore methylation balance, lower histamine and fix the gut. Unfortunately in my case I had been working on the gut for 7 years and never resolved it. I had done anti candida cleanses, low carb diets, taken multiple herbal anti microbials but then 9 months on the GAPS diet pushed me over the edge in terms of my histamine burden. This meant I would need to improve my methylation status before being able to have another crack at fixing my gut as I was unable to detoxify anything now it seemed, never mind die off from probiotics or anti microbials. My body had just totally jammed up.
    Initially my Methylfolate experience was great (for about 5 days!) and then I had a month or so of difficulties until I got my b12 and b6 (and probably other things) up and implemented some of Dr Ben’s other reccomendations (electrolytes and SOD) and then I found I could tolerate it better. Then over the next month or 2 the itching would be a lot more noticeable resulting in some nights of total insomnia and in the past week or two my energy has just plummeted and my mood has gone through the floor. I should say that overall my mood has improved during this time although I did need the additional support of St. John’s wort and sometimes 5-htp.
    It would appear (to be confirmed!) that the mistake I made was not supplementing with methionine on my self made assumption that because I was a meat eater I wouldn’t need it. Dr Ben specifically mentions methionine (or protein) in his Methylfolate side effects article. Possibly my gut issues meant I wasn’t breaking protein down, or else my naturopath felt there could be an issue with my MAT enzyme which I understand is involved in conversion of methionine to SAM-E and uses magnesium as a co factor.
    Either way, the lesson here would appear to be make sure you are getting enough methionine (from protein or supplements) if you already have histamine issues and are taking Methylfolate, as SAM-E (which is made from methionine) is an important co factor in HNMT which breaks down intra cellular histamine.
    I seem to be dealing with such an overload at the moment that I am now taking SAM-E directly for the first time because I don’t have the luxury of the peace of mind to wait around to see if methionine supplementation will in fact convert to SAM-E quickly enough to get me over this difficult spell.
    Hopefully I can taper down the SAM-E in a few weeks and go back to methionine because my naturopath is of the view that taking SAM-E directly can inhibit other parts of the methylation cycle.
    It truly is a mine field this area and a difficult jigsaw to keep together!
    Hope this helps somebody.

  174. Paul October 9, 2015 at 2:11 pm #

    Hi,,
    Not sure if this post belongs on the histamine intolerance page or here but it would seem to be all related. Excuse the longish back story but hopefully someone won’t repeat my most recent mistake as a result. My issue is that I am struggling big time with a histamine overload at the moment.
    I originally stumbled across mthfr.net having visited a primary care physician (the only one here in Ireland addressing methylation imbalances in mental health issues) with massive anxiety, intolerance to stress, depression and feeling absolutely toxic under my skin. He tested me primarily for whole blood histamine, zinc, copper and pyrrole compounds in urine.
    He follows the Dr William (Bill) Walsh / Dr Carl Pfeiffer protocol which uses high blood histamine as a marker for under methylation. I had histamine of 13.5 where max normal range was 8. As it happens my copper was also high and I had pyroluria meaning I was also deficient in b6 and zinc by definition.
    At this time I was so desperate for some relief (the above test results were still 4 weeks away) I also went to see an excellent naturopath who follows Dr Ben’s work closely who also began to treat me for a methylation cycle block.
    I began taking a lot of supplements including methyl b12/folate, p5p, glutathione, minerals, amongst others and began using an infra red sauna regularly for detox support (which helped hugely).
    Shortly after I began the treatment, with the benefit of the whole blood histamine test result I put 2+2 together. I had been experiencing itching and insomnia/anxiety after certain foods for over a year and an experiment with an anti histamine one night made me wake up feeling like a totally different person (in a good way!). I now knew I had histamine intolerance and it was contributing to a lot of my symptoms.
    The approach was to be 2 pronged: restore methylation balance, lower histamine and fix the gut. Unfortunately in my case I had been working on the gut for 7 years and never resolved it. I had done anti candida cleanses, low carb diets, taken multiple herbal anti microbials but then 9 months on the GAPS diet pushed me over the edge in terms of my histamine burden. This meant I would need to improve my methylation status before being able to have another crack at fixing my gut as I was unable to detoxify anything now it seemed, never mind die off from probiotics or anti microbials. My body had just totally jammed up.
    Initially my Methylfolate experience was great (for about 5 days!) and then I had a month or so of difficulties until I got my b12 and b6 (and probably other things) up and implemented some of Dr Ben’s other reccomendations (electrolytes and SOD) and then I found I could tolerate it better. Then over the next month or 2 the itching would be a lot more noticeable resulting in some nights of total insomnia and in the past week or two my energy has just plummeted and my mood has gone through the floor. I should say that overall my mood has improved during this time although I did need the additional support of St. John’s wort and sometimes 5-htp.
    It would appear (to be confirmed!) that the mistake I made was not supplementing with methionine on my self made assumption that because I was a meat eater I wouldn’t need it. Dr Ben specifically mentions methionine (or protein) in his Methylfolate side effects article. Possibly my gut issues meant I wasn’t breaking protein down, or else my naturopath felt there could be an issue with my MAT enzyme which I understand is involved in conversion of methionine to SAM-E and uses magnesium as a co factor.
    Either way, the lesson here would appear to be make sure you are getting enough methionine (from protein or supplements) if you already have histamine issues and are taking Methylfolate, as SAM-E (which is made from methionine) is an important co factor in HNMT which breaks down intra cellular histamine.
    I seem to be dealing with such an overload at the moment that I am now taking SAM-E directly for the first time because I don’t have the luxury of the peace of mind to wait around to see if methionine supplementation will in fact convert to SAM-E quickly enough to get me over this difficult spell.
    Hopefully I can taper down the SAM-E in a few weeks and go back to methionine because my naturopath is of the view that taking SAM-E directly can inhibit other parts of the methylation cycle.
    It truly is a mine field this area and a difficult jigsaw to keep together!
    Hope this helps somebody..

    • Viktoria January 5, 2017 at 12:30 pm #

      Thank you Paul! Interesting and very helpful information

  175. Denise October 10, 2015 at 5:41 am #

    If you have both the MTHFR mutated genes and also SIBO would it be better to Fix the SIBO first or the MTHFR????

  176. bunny October 10, 2015 at 5:50 am #

    How long should you supplement with electrolytes and glutathione supplements before starting l-methylfolaye?

  177. Margaret Sarver October 15, 2015 at 10:37 pm #

    I have a mthfr Support Variant Report. I need help understanding it. I am assuming red colors are problematic and green and yellow are not. Is it ok to post my results for feedback? Thanks

    • Dr. Aron October 21, 2015 at 11:02 pm #

      Margaret – Not every variant will be clinically relevant to your current situation. I recommend seeking help from a doctor who has completed training with Dr. Lynch: seekinghealth.org/physician-directory/

  178. Justin November 14, 2015 at 11:44 pm #

    I am both c677t homozygous and homozygous for SOD2 snps, among other things. I’ve slowly gone from having, say, 10% of normal energy to anywhere up to 40%. Learning about MTHFR has given me a great deal of hope, but boy is it confusing.

    I’m wondering if it’s ever possible for someone with our kinds of genetic mutations to do without supplements? Can it be overcome naturally or is it a lifelong dependency?

    Many thanks to Dr. Lynch for his inspiring research.

    • Dr. Aron November 16, 2015 at 9:02 pm #

      Justin – I agree it can be confusing. However, the foundational pillars of health–proper diet, sleep, exercise, decreasing stress, environmental toxin exposure etc.–will decrease the need for supplementation. Supplementation is then used to fill in the gaps. Supplementation without a solid foundation is like building a skyscraper on quicksand. Take a look at the Basic Protocol. This will give you ideas about where to start. Getting the foundations of health right will do wonders.

  179. CherylAnn December 3, 2015 at 7:44 pm #

    Obviously your are well educated in biomolecular life sciences; I appreciate your knowledge, as I do you.

    But…if we could possibly choose the ‘kiss’ method of understanding our bodies (keep it simple silly), plus lots of love & care, we may grow to understand how
    miraculous we really are.

    Our bodies are truly & generally smarter than we allow; fighting against or attempting to control ‘miraculous healing’ is rather oxymoronic.

    I thank you (me with the dbl + mutation), who has been challenged in this body for 55 years, but I give up…I surrender! To the source of my divinity. I’m learning to listen & just be:

    All of the organic elements/chemicals you have listed above, are available intrinsically & within our natural environment. I can’t buy any more stuff. This was the method of protocal I used all of my life; research, buying, taking & wasting, to no permanent efficacy; game over!

    Godspeed & much love to you all. And thank you author for your loving time & effort!

  180. Stephen Thompson December 16, 2015 at 12:36 am #

    Dr Lynch.

    I’ve started using B-Minus.

    One of the listed ingredients is:
    Niacin (as inositol hexanicotinate and niacin)
    giving 180mg of Niacin.

    Can you please tell me how much Inositol that gives?

    Thanks, Steve.

    • Dr. Aron December 17, 2015 at 9:40 pm #

      Stephen – For questions about specific Seeking Health products, please reach out to the seekinghealth.com customer service team.

    • Morgan December 17, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

      I have started using b minus also and was wondering if you could speak to the amount of niacin in it? What is the reason for such a high dosage on a daily basis?

  181. Lynette G December 20, 2015 at 4:47 am #

    I just found out that I am homozygous C 677. I have severe depression, lethargy, brain fog, and digestive issues. I am having difficulty trying to figure out what I need to do first, there’s so much information on this website! Far as I can tell before I do methylation I need to follow the four steps listed above. My question is I have a sulfa allergy, I get hives. Will I be able to take liposomal glutathione? And after I treat myself with the four steps above how long do I wait before I start the methylation protocol? Thank you so very much!

  182. Jeremy Jones December 25, 2015 at 1:35 pm #

    I am compound het for both mutations and struggle with an abundance of disturbing symptoms and hope one day to live a normal life but in the meantime I’ve gone to the doctor and he told me my testosterone levels were below the low end range of recommended levels. He was going to administer a dosage to get me back to normal but wanted me to make sure I was safe doing so considering my condition. Does being compound heterozygous put me in danger for supplementing with testosterone? Will it make me more prone to clotting etc. I don’t have any blood problems now, but one person said that it thickens your blood and being compound heterozygous makes me more prone to blood clots. Is that true? Thank you!

  183. Jeremy Jones December 25, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

    Doesn’t look like he responds anymore from looking at the dates. Bummer

  184. krista December 29, 2015 at 12:54 pm #

    Is there any science behind turning off the MTHFR gene through methylation. I read this article easy to read http://drpompa.com/additional-resources/health-tips/r5-reestablishing-methylation-turning-genes-on-and-gene-expression on this topic and several of the heavy science articles. I’m not one to live in fear once i discovered I had this gene and several other bad ones as well for detox etc. Thoughts? Here are a few science base artilces I have read.

    http://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpage/the-role-of-methylation-in-gene-expression-1070
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1943996

  185. Christy January 27, 2016 at 1:42 am #

    My question is, can you over methylate or have side effects from taking folinic acid instead of methylfolate? I want to try a small amount, but am concerned about it. thank you!

  186. Paulette Littlefield January 31, 2016 at 2:13 am #

    Dr Lynch,

    Do you see patients? I saw a doctor recently that for methylation deficiency at a Neurosensory Center. He did not do any blood work to test if I had it or which one. he did some hearing, balance test etc. on me. Tested my thyroid for autoimmune which I was very thankful for as the endo. didn’t. Found out I do have Hashimotos.

    He prescribed methylfolate supplements, increased my levothyroxine, instructed me to go on a gulten free diet.

    The first week I felt GREAT!!! noticed a lot of odd symptoms I had go away and other more obvious ones. But then I had other symptoms I never had start. I was just as sick on it as off of it. Just different issues.

    I don’t know where I should go from here. I could try and implement your suggestions in the above article but would rather I had direct guidance from a practitioner. The doctor I saw doesn’t believe there is such a thing as over methylation. Now that I have discontinued taking the methyl products I’m getting too sick to do all this research etc. for myself.

    sincerely Paulette

    • Dr. Aron February 22, 2016 at 1:25 am #

      Paulette, Dr. Lynch no longer works with patients one-on-one. However, there are doctors who have completed some training from Dr. Lynch in the Physician Directory.

  187. Mary February 7, 2016 at 9:54 pm #

    Dr. Lynch, I have MTHFR (A1298C) and it reads A/C (~30%).

    I also got a “Spectrox” test and it showed my antioxidant levels needed daily supplementation of:
    Glutathione: 600 mg as NAC
    Cysteine but the NAC should be sufficient
    Vit E: 200 IU
    Selenium: 50 mcg
    Coenzyme Q10: 30 mg
    Lipoic Acid: 50 mg
    Vit C: 250 mg

    This same series of tests also showed individually the above nutrients were within the normal range, but for the portion of the Spectrox test, overall it recommended this supplementation.

    A year ago or so I was taking Methyl Guard Plus with methylfolate and it helped. I was on it for 2-3 months. Perhaps I could have felt even better by adjusting the dose, but because you seem to be disinclined to using it, I’m not sure if I should start back up. Actually I was going to start MoRS and see if works even better. Do you think taking MoRS would be okay or to go by your above protocol?

    Thank you!

  188. Mary February 7, 2016 at 10:41 pm #

    Also I might add to the above that I have extreme food sensitivity and extreme constipation. I can usually only go to the bathroom with an enema. When I am going through detox symptoms, which can be several times a month, I have headaches that feel like an ice pic on the side of my head and last 2-3 days and nausea. The thing that always makes me feel better and helps the symptoms dissipate is being able to BM, but due to the extreme constipation it can be difficult for it to feel complete. Other symptoms are that I sometimes won’t sleep more than a few hours a night, which can last months, but the most distressing symptom is having various odors emit from my body. So if I eat sugars or gluten, even if I just eat a little over a couple of weeks I will start to emit a fishy odor and and then a gassy odor. The odor is pretty constant but intensifies incredibly when I eat the wrong things.

  189. Stephanie February 8, 2016 at 7:19 pm #

    I am taking a multivitamin from Dr. Axe with whole food folate. Because I have the MTHFR mutation, does my body not break down the whole food folate either? Or is it just folic acid that is the issue? And if I begin the protocol above with the electrolytes, glutathione, SOD, methionine, etc. Do I still take the Dr. Axe multi I am on and add your protocol slowly beginning with the electorlytes? Or do I not take it due to the folate and B12 that is in it…
    Is my body not utitlizing the multi I am on? Do I have to use the methylfolate?

  190. Nikki February 11, 2016 at 4:01 am #

    Hi, I’m currently doing worse taking methylb12 and methylfolate…ended up in ER with back pain and numbness around spine. I would like to quit taking it, but my vision becomes impaired without it. Any thoughts? It’s like it helps but is also hurting.

    • Dr. Aron February 22, 2016 at 1:54 am #

      Nikki – Sorry to hear about your experience. Are you working with a physician who can do a full evaluation of your health? It does not sound like methyl B12 and methylfolate are getting to the root of the problem. Please check seekinghealth.org/physician-directory/ for doctors who could help.

  191. Gwen February 22, 2016 at 8:37 pm #

    Dr. Lynch, Eighteen months ago I was floxed by the antibiotic Cipro. I am MTHFR homozygous and cannot detox the Cipro. I feel that it is because of my mutations. I have been to several doctors but have not had anyone that will start me on a plan that will help me start the detoxing process. I don’t know if you are familiar with these antibiotics but they can be devastating to the body. I need help!! I have been debilitated for 18 months now. I still feel poisoned and I feel it’s because my system cannot detox. I don’t know where to start. Can you please help me? I’ve exhausted all my resources. You are my only hope. I am desperate.

    • Dr Lynch March 8, 2016 at 6:57 am #

      Hi Gwen –

      Cipro may affect complex 1 of the mitochondria.

      NADH + CoQ10 supports the mitochondria. If you choose to try this, please use only 1/2 lozenge taken upon waking – while still in bed. No more and never around food.

      Also consider the Optimal Electrolyte (before breakfast – in a glass of filtered water) and Adrenal Cortex (with breakfast)

      Please do try to find a doctor to work with – you may find one in the directory here on this site.

      Do be careful with Cipro – appears you should not take it again. Do tell your prescribing doctor that you reacted poorly to it.

      These nutrients may support your mitochondria and help get them going again.

      Also – you may be low in glutathione. Optimal Liposomal Glutathione< /strong> helps restore glutathione levels. Do start very low if you want to try this – I’m talking about a few drops at a time once a day – about 20 min before breakfast.

  192. Trina Keene February 24, 2016 at 7:11 am #

    Boy I am so confused by all of this. I’m too afraid to start taking the I-Methylfolate because you’ve mentioned that there are several other pills/vitamins/supplements that should be taken as well….but then again maybe not…honestly how is someone supposed to manage this?? I’ve been on Welbutrin and Paxil for 18 years and I don’t know if it’s a good idea for me to be messing with mood stabilizers (B vitamins and this methylfolate) plus take the meds. How will I know what is causing improvement? Just getting off of sugar and carbs has lifted my mood tremendously over the past 3 weeks. I also started a vita packet by metagenics called Wellness Essentials Healthy Balance and that has a methylsomething in it. Could I overdo it by taking that plus starting the 400mcg my doctor recommended of the
    I-Methylfolate? This seems way too complicated for people to handle on their own but it doesn’t seem doctors know enough to help?? I honestly can’t afford all these pills and supplements either!

  193. jairo February 24, 2016 at 6:55 pm #

    Hi DR.Lynch!

    fisrt of all, tnx for your huge research and for spending time answering all those
    questions….

    second: i have an extreme hypersensitivity to supps, i take 10% of lower doses indicated and feel a lot. (maube due to b6 deficiency?)

    my blood test only indicates low testosterone and normal-to low LH and FSH levels (when shoul being elevated trying to fix the low test)

    so i was sticky in adrenal problems, very disturbed with that and even obsessed with it, tested cathecolamines, cortisol acth etc and all fine..in the normal range.

    i dont have yet my genetic test results, but i were suspecting that im undermethylator, due to histamine intolerance and more suspects…so im taking :

    TMG (without seide effects)
    magnesium dysglycinate
    chromiun picolinate
    milk thistle
    vit c (no ascorbic acid)
    maca (to support adrenals)

    and tried inositol as a methyl donor (discontinued due to weird feeling and inpleasant euphoria) , glutathion (discontinued due ti HUGE euphoria, like amphetamines or similar), b-complex (discontinued for extreme euphoria, it contains all b-series in 1000% RDA etc)….

    the fact is that for some reason i decided to try folic acid and cyanob12 acid at 400/2 micrograms……
    and first felt some disconfort and euphoria but at the end of the day and following days i felt an amazing improvement, recovering my mood as before to all those problems…

    i dont feel the suppossed adrenal issues, like as low blood pressure, bradicardia, low stress tolerancy, insomnia after 3 hours to fall asleep etc (wich supposed ny cortisol , aldosterone and melatonin issues)…

    reading your article makes me fell afraid, because the folic acid makes me feel great, and as i know folic acid acts as a serotonin reuptake PROMOTER…. so the question is:

    all my issues were by metylation problems?
    my real issue is just a serotonin inbalance?
    what should i do with the small b12/folic acid im taking? should i take EOD or so? should i stop and start for B-complex without them?

    as well i were avoiding potassium due to the supposed adrenal issues in wich sodium is more than needed and potassium could cause more low blood pressure… im wrong with all that?

    any suggestion?

    tnx a lot DR…. your work is just AMAZING!

  194. amy March 21, 2016 at 6:48 pm #

    Hi Dr Ben i have 2 daughters one is 5 she has mthfr 677t (2 copies) she is nonverbal. I have a baby thats 1 she had mthfr 677t (1copy) the dr recommended active b12 with mthf 5, i ordered from seeking health. My question is i started my baby out on 5 drops and my 5 yr old on 10 drops. Do you recomend this? Should i try a viatmin first i dont want them to have side effects but neither of them talk so i would not know if they are. Any advise?

  195. Jacky April 8, 2016 at 2:56 pm #

    How can l get tested for MTHFR and will l get this test in the uk.
    Have had chronic fatigue for 30 years with no help from doctors just tested for routine blood tests.

  196. jazmine April 14, 2016 at 11:46 pm #

    Hi Dr. Lynch,

    Thank you so much for your extensive info. Truly life changing.

    I am homozygous for CBS 699 and hetero for several mtrr and mtr.

    After developing horrible anemia but having normal labs, I finally connected the situation to my SNP’s. Methylcobolamin wasn’t feeling good so I started hydroxocobalamin, 100 mcg, which helped but not fast enough. (couldn’t take more because managing the ensuing hypokalemia was scary). I stumbled upon an article mentioning that B12 needs adequate lithium to be delivered to the cells. Checked my hair analysis and have a .004, when .2 is normal. So in an effort to do things in the proper order, I began taking the Yasko All in One before adding lithium and hydrox. Yesterday was the first day. I took 1/20th of the capsule and was up all night with horrible potassium deficiency. Very precarious.

    I guess my question is… is this normal? Of course normal is relative, but having such major reactions to such minuscule amounts of nutrients is a little daunting. Does this equalize at some point and become less overwhelming and more manageable?

    Thanks for everything…

    -Jazmine

    • Dr. Aron May 2, 2016 at 9:50 pm #

      Jazmine – If you are finding that you are very sensitive to such small amounts of nutrients, those nutrients may not be what you need, it may be too much, or there is some other underlying cause that is not being addressed (e.g. mold, underlying viral infection, heavy metals, etc.).

  197. Jim April 16, 2016 at 10:31 pm #

    Hello Dr.

    I have read much of the material on the methylation pathway, but still find some of it difficult to fathom. In any event I have suffered from a post Lyme disease chronic fatigue type of syndrome for 20 years (it waxes and wanes but is ever present). I have homozygous mutation of MTHFR C677T, same for COMT V158M and COMT H62H, and heterozygous for VDR bsm and VDR Taq. I recently tried Methyl Protect in very small quantities (1/4 capsule) with Hydroxy B12. The latter seems to have no effect, but the Methyl Protect even in this small quantity causes an almost immediate adverse effect amplifying my symptoms–extreme fatigue, irritability, brain fog and something like an adrenaline rush–horrible. Should I continue with the Methyl Protect (with maybe some small amount of niacin) and hope it starts to work or should I stop?

    Thanks.

    Jim

  198. Julie May 18, 2016 at 4:44 pm #

    I have a compound heterozygous MTHFR mutation. I have Hashimotos and have been on synthroid for the past 9 years and was up to 175mcg a day. I began taking 2 methylation support pills a day along with NAC, liver support and vitamin C. Within 2 months, the methylation began working and because I was taking the methylation along with the 175 mcg, I began dealing with hyperthyroidism as my TSH levels went down to 0.1. I stopped taking the 175 mcg and continued taking methylation. Which I understand now that it was too extreme to go from 175 mcg to nothing as I began dealing with hypothyroidism. During this time of my thyroid levels going up and down as well as being on methylation I began spotting between my menstrual cycle and when I did get my period it was extremely heavy with heavy clotting and it lasted 20 days. I typically had a 28 day cycle that lasted 3 to 4 days. My thyroid had fluctuated about a year ago but my menstrual cycle never changed. My question is could this change in my cycle be due to the methylation? If so, should I reduce the methylation. I don’t want to stop taking it as it is helping my thyroid issues and it makes me feel so much better.

  199. Philippe May 23, 2016 at 5:27 am #

    everyone is asking about what to do when you get side effects from methyl donors as a result from COMT mutations. please address that?

    • Dr Lynch June 9, 2016 at 6:22 am #

      How do we know people are getting side effects from methyl donors because of COMT?

      Many get side effects from methyl donors with or without COMT met/met polymorphisms.

      This one dimensional thinking needs to stop.

      What I will say is this:
      – COMT polymorphisms slow the ability to eliminate/breakdown estrogen/norepinephrine/dopamine and epinephrine.

      COMT cofactors are magnesium and SAMe.

      It’s a balance to be able to support and balance neurotransmission.

      Some people can take SAMe before bed and sleep like a baby – and they have COMT issues.

      Others without COMT issues take SAMe before bed and have insomnia.

      It’s multifaceted and multidimensional.

      Watch this video to hear some explanations in detail
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VexwhkbnPo

  200. Jane June 11, 2016 at 12:38 am #

    Dr Ben, my daughter is 26 and has not felt well in 11 years. Greatest concerns are depression and CFS. She is homozygous for SOD2 in 5 areas. Also homo for FOLR2 and ALL FUT2 and homo in 5 of GAD1. Many areas are hetero….MTHFR C677T and MTRR A66G seem most important. Should we follow your protocol withOUT the B vitamins at first? Start with Tempol? Seems she has an affinity for B12, but we shouldn’t start with that? When she went downhill, she had strep throat and even with antibiotics never felt well again.

  201. Krisitne Rutkowski June 26, 2016 at 3:22 pm #

    I am sure my sulfite pathway is not working, rotten egg gas 🙁 I have been using some molybdenum, part of your capsule, and taking 1 thiamine/B1 a day but the gassy issue is still there. How much should I be taking and how long does it take to clear?

    • Dr Lynch July 2, 2016 at 6:26 am #

      You may have some hydrogen sulfide producing bacteria which may need to be eliminated. Talk with your doctor about getting a digestive stool analysis done.

  202. Rene July 12, 2016 at 6:11 pm #

    I am heterogenous for C677t. I’ve had chronic insomnia for 8 years, and have patiently tried everything I know of (If I made a list, it would be pages long). Currently, I am using glycine, inositol, and melatonin, and am still not sleeping more than a couple of hours. It didn’t occur to me that these should cause any problems for me. I just started using them about 2 weeks ago, but read that it can take a few weeks, so I am just waiting for results. Can you tell me if these are okay for me to be using?

  203. maiken nielsen August 3, 2016 at 8:47 am #

    I am posting here, hoping to get in touch with Alyson. I have been looking for so long, for someone with a situation close to mine. If you are still checking this forum, Alyson, could you please write me (maikent4@hotmail.com), I would so like to learn from your experience

  204. Anna August 11, 2016 at 8:41 pm #

    Being completely new to all this the information provided is way over my head. My psychiatrist did a genetic test and it showed that have MTHFR gene mutation. She told me to take methylfolate and active B12, titrating methylfolate from 1mg to 7.5mg in prescription form going up by 1mg each week. She didn’t mention any possible side effects, and told me to research the condition online. I’ve been recently put on lamotrigine, apparently it affects folate absorption as well. Finding this website has created major anxiety and confusion. What to take, how much to take? I suffer from depression and anxiety, possibly bipolar II and relief doesn’t come fast enough. I can’t imagine trying out all of the supplements recommended here BEFORE even trying methylfolate and figuring out how each of them affects. My emotions are in a constant state of upheaval, I doubt I’d be able to tell the difference. Any advice? My psychiatrist is extremely busy and won’t be able to see me for another month and I don’t even know if she is aware of all of these nuances. I’ve found another supplement on Amazon that claims to control the side effects of methylfolate all in one pill: Nutra Core Advanced Blend MTHFR BPLEX-PRO|B12 Methyl, B1, B2, B4, B6 and B7|Patented Quatrefolic* 5-Methylfolate and Intrinsic Factor for Absorption|60 Stearate Free Veggie Capsules. Are you aware of this one, is it a possibility?

  205. Laura August 22, 2016 at 9:28 pm #

    I have just been diagnosed with MTHFR homozygous 1298cc. I have hypothyroidism, aching joints, anxiety and depression. I also have great difficulty losing and/or keeping weight down. I am altering m y diet and taking methylated B’s now so I am hoping I will begin feeling better. Time will tell. If I am homozygous, does that mean that both of my children will have this? I don’t want my boys to experience the problems I have had.

    • Dr Lynch August 25, 2016 at 11:59 pm #

      You will pass the MTHFR polymorphism to your children. Keep in mind that a gene is MAINLY controlled by one’s environment and lifestyle choices. So passing on MTHFR is not a big deal IF you understand what you must do and what they must do – and that is lead a life which reduces exposures within reason. I have two copies of MTHFR myself – and so do my kids – and we’re all ‘good’

      Lifestyle choices first.
      Polymorphic genes such as MTHFR affecting you negatively second.

  206. Jen September 12, 2016 at 5:59 pm #

    Dr Lynch,
    I was tested a year ago and told I have two copies of the A1298C mutation. We are currently trying to get pregnant and our dr told us to take Deplin, previously I took Metanx, but due to preeclampsia ended up with a still birth. Do you recommend taking Deplin to increase my lmethylfolate or is Metanx better? I see a lot of posts saying I need a B Complex as well, so am unsure of what exactly I need to be taking. If I should be taking Deplin, is it ok to split a 7mg capsule or do I need the full amount?

  207. David September 22, 2016 at 3:11 pm #

    Dr Lynch,
    I know a have a lot of problems with sulfur containing products, therefore I also can’t handle Lipsomal Glutathione. I have been on B1 and molybdenum for a week with no results yet. Do you know of Glutathione patches (by LifeWave)? They are mentioned on different websites for people with CBS or Sulfur pathway issues who also have low Glutathione. I am thinking of giving them a go…but am a bit worried if it’s ligit.

  208. Rachel R. September 28, 2016 at 2:26 pm #

    My apologies if this is a duplication; I thought I’d asked this already but I can’t find it, so think maybe it didn’t go through.

    According to Dr. Yasko, I shouldn’t take methylB12, but should stick with adenosyl/hydroxyB12, because of other mutations. I took these for a while before beginning methylfolate — and then took ONE half-dose of the methylfolate and it kicked my butt. I felt drugged.

    Do you know whether these other forms of B12 may not provide the necessary foundation for methylfolate supplementation that methylB12 does? Or is that probably not the issue?

  209. Ruth Kongaika October 8, 2016 at 7:21 pm #

    Dr. Lynch: I am 1298 Hetero and take Deplin 15. I saw that you do not recommend it. Please let me know what is better for me.

    I take Glutathione daily and B12 as well as Vit D, Vit E. I feel better than I did before (anxiety, depression) My biggest problem now is insomnia.

    Please advise what I should take instead of Deplin and if my supplements are adequate. Thank you.

    • Dr Lynch October 10, 2016 at 1:48 am #

      Hi Ruth –

      The insomnia is likely caused by the Deplin.

      It has you wired.

      Work with your doctor to find the right dose of methylfolate.

      It may be 7.5 mg – it could also be 1 mg every other day or 400 mcg in a multivitamin – or a variation. Have to play with it. With your doctor.

  210. Zee October 18, 2016 at 10:47 pm #

    Dr.Ben,
    I found an Naturopath through your website. I could no reach him yet, so I wonder if you could help. I am heterozygous c677t and comt val15met. I started taking L-Methylfolate couple months ago, 15mg. I told my Physician that I was feeling a bit strange, simething similar like when I was taking fluoxetine (stiff neck, agitation). So she told me to take half. Then I became skeptical, and started reading about these mutations. I found tour website, and talked to the Naturopath. He prescribed supplements, and said that I was taking too much L-methylfolate, and that I needed to also take Methyl cobalamin. I had a blood test prior to a surgery back in May, at Mayo, and they told me to stop taking b12, because test showed that it was high. But then I started taking again a few days ago, because Naturopath said that L-Methylfolate needs B12 to work better. I was feeling ok for the past days, maybe too energetic. This moring, after taking all supplements, I started to feel super hot, with tingling sensation on arms and head. I felt super dizzy and then I looked to my arms and I had bumpy hives all over me! Even my scalp! I called my neighbor, I had a panick attack, i could not talk well, as I felt my tongue stiff. I remeber that Naturopath said to take Niacin, and I took 100mg. The rash went away, but I have palpitations, headache and I had high blood pressure. I went to a clinic, and nothing they did. They told me to go to the ER if I get worse. I am very frustrated, feeling so miserable. Do you have any ideas for me? What am I doing wrong? Thanks so much.

  211. fiona October 22, 2016 at 6:52 pm #

    Dr Lynch i would apppreciate your advice please
    I have recently found out im hetero c677t and have been ttc for 7years! I tried taking Solgar methylfolaye 400mcg but had difficulty breathing and a very tight chest. My doctor then prescribed 5mg folic acid but i wonder if this is the right thing for me? Or do you have any suggestions? Im interested in your Prenatal powder but unsure if i would tolerate this?

  212. Lynn October 27, 2016 at 4:18 am #

    Dr Lynch,
    I’m curious what the reasoning is behind starting the l-glutathione slowly? I ask because I began l-glutathione (a single full dosage, 1 tsp I believe, mixed in water) today and about an hour after had a panic attack. I took it along with several other supplements, but none of them new to me. I’ve been on a methylation support supplement for approx 4 months and my follow up methylation test showed significant improvement in methylation, and blood work showed high B12 levels. Should I stop the methlyation support supplement?
    Thank you

    • Dr Lynch November 4, 2016 at 12:31 am #

      Hi Lynn –

      Sorry to hear this. It is because I know many respond or react poorly to glutathione at times for a variety of reasons and some unknown.

      It’s powerful stuff.

      It could be because you have low molybdenum and increased your sulfites which increase glutamate. Consider molybdenum.

      I’d cease or reduce the use of glutathione for now – for about a week. Support with some molybdenum – about 75 mcg or so – for about a week and then reintroduce the glutathione at a few drops in an ounce of water.

  213. Charity October 31, 2016 at 4:48 pm #

    What’s stressful is all the things I’m supposed to do to manage this. It’s not sustainable if I want to do anything else with my life. It’s exhausting. I can only manage to stay on top of it for a max of maybe 6 weeks at a time and then I lose steam; my energy and motivation drops, I miss a meal or two and don’t eat like I should, I stop taking all my supplements like I’m supposed to, then my immune system drops. This is a lot of work, how is a person supposed to sustain it all long-term and not get stressed out from it?

    • Dr Lynch November 1, 2016 at 5:08 pm #

      Lifestyle choice. It is sustainable. Thousands and millions of people across the planet are working hard to maintain their health. It is a daily struggle – absolutely. The first thing to do is REMOVE things that exhaust you and ADD things that you love and thrive on. I’m not talking about supplements here.

  214. Sierra November 1, 2016 at 4:53 pm #

    Are there consequences to taking methylfolate every single day? My mom has been taking it every day for a couple weeks but now she is starting to act strange; like her personality is completely different since she started taking it. It seems like everything is a crisis if it doesn’t go her way. Are there any side effects that I should know about that relate to her personality change?

  215. Jaden November 4, 2016 at 3:52 pm #

    Greetings,

    I have methylation issues – that’s why I’m here! I am SEVERELY sensitive to ANY supplements that get the process going. I have read and taken to heart “Preventing Metylfolate Side Effects” and am trying to start at the very, very beginning with Molybdenum.

    One 100mcg capsule is a HUGE dose to me. So I tried a tiny 10mcg amount. Still too much sulfur detox symptoms (brain fog, can’t tolerate any sound, can’t focus, feel as though I just ate something with sulfur). So I’ve been “sprinkling” a few crumbs here and there.

    The problem is, it’s making me feel much more LOW histamine when I take any. I also realized this is why I’ve been craving vinegar, tomatoes, fermented foods etc. because they are high histamine.(I stay away from high THIOL foods of course).

    My question is – should I supplement with L-Histadine while building up my molybdenum dose to clear the sulfur out of my body, or would that HURT the methylation protocol? I feel terrible and depressed when I take the molybdenum. I also have had an ABSENT libido for nearly a decade and I’m only 23 yrs old. Mind boggling. But I think it may be related to low histamine.

    Any insight would be greatly appreciated! I am a HUNGRY researcher and always lift my own weight trying to figure these things out for myself. But I have come to a roadblock and need some advice.

    Thank you and best regards,
    Jaden

  216. Dale November 5, 2016 at 8:01 pm #

    I hope this is not too off-topic. I am taking 1600 mcg of folic acid per day as part of a protocol for overmethylation. This for about 2 months. In that time, I have developed skiin tags, and similar growths. Now I am thinking it is due the folic acid.

    1) any way to speed up clearance of excess folic acid from system?

    2) Will switching to methylfolate be better?

    Thanks for any input.

    • Dr Lynch November 6, 2016 at 7:27 am #

      That doesn’t make any sense to me. Why would one take folic acid to reduce overmethylation? Thinking that one will use up methyl groups to convert it to MTHF? Who told you to do that?

      Yes -you’d want to stop using folic acid. You’re living is not pleased with it apparently. Skin tags are a sign of cholesterol levels being off.

      And how do you know you are overmethylated?

      Frankly I am tired of hearing these terms as they mean really nothing.

      Not directed at you at all 😉 – not generally tired of hearing it. I was guilty of it to for awhile but it is inaccurate.

      • Dale November 6, 2016 at 2:38 pm #

        Thanks so much for taking the time to answer. Folic acid is part of a regimen that includes niacin (1g per day) b12, b6, zinc, C (2g daily), E (400 iu daily). – Walsh protocol. I made a mistake on folic acid, it is 2400 mcg per day.

        ‘Diagnosis’ based 1st on symptoms (too much ‘adrenaline’ all the time, hyper, increasing sleep problems, over-reactivity, etc) – Took whole blood histamine and was pretty low.

        Treatment has had outstanding success in my case after trying many other natural treatments for years. After about 8 weeks of this regimen however, good effects began to regress during a time of increased stress, and eventually went back almost to square 1. After adding magnesium to regimen, and a few days of natural methods to boost GABA and block cortisol, got over the hump and now have regained much of the ground that was lost. Still not back to where I was a few weeks ago with almost zero jitteriness and great calm under pressure, but much better than before the protocol.

        Thanks for providing this service Dr Lynch. I will have to dig into your research more as I have mostly read about the Walsh/Pfeiffer approach to methylation.

  217. Ashley Atkerson November 9, 2016 at 10:32 pm #

    When I found out that I had MTHFR, my homosystine was really really high. I was then put on 5,000 mcg of MethylLife-Methylfolate. I am not sure when the skin issue started in relation to starting this but I have been suffering for about a year with SEVER dyshydrotic eczema-little itchy fluid filled blisters under my skin on my hands and feet. Do you think it could be due to this?

    • Ashley Atkerson November 9, 2016 at 10:34 pm #

      And I am now currently on 10,000 because my homosystine was still high on 5,000. I have now stopped taking it completely after learning about this, but I was just curious if this could be part of the eczema problem. I also have Candida-which I know is an issue with skin.

  218. Lyne Verbunt November 10, 2016 at 4:48 am #

    My test showed A1298C Heter.Have suffered migraines with aura since teenage years plus muscle tension & some anxiety controlled by exercise & meditation. In April 2016 I was diagnosed with transient global amnesia following a severe migraine attack. Following an MRI which showed non specific white matter in both cerebral hemispheres. Seen by a neurologist who said I have small vessel disease of the brain. On blood pressure, cholesterol medication plus asprin. Taking COQ10.Not taking any B vitamins should I see a naturopath or discuss this with my GP.

  219. Jane November 18, 2016 at 8:35 pm #

    Thanks do much for the fantastic article. Just one question: can you point me to any research or to any pathways that might help to explain a severe intolerance to B6? I was on Metafolate, B6, and Zinc for a couple of years and now can’t tolerate any foods with B6 at all, except Tuna. I think it causes a temporary overproduction of Dopamine. Tuna is tolerated, presumably because of the Niacin content. Vitamin C seems to help metabolise the Dopamine very effectively. But I’d like to understand the pathway involved in the sensitivity to B6.

  220. Natalie December 16, 2016 at 2:54 pm #

    Dear Dr Lynch,

    Thank you for a fascinating article, I’m a Naturopath UK trained. Say no more!

    My question:
    With someone who has alcoholic issues & insufficient b12 is it dangerous to give b12 methyl injections & Folate with-out giving a vitamin & mineral protocol first?

    He’s on beta-blockers for serious high BP.

    Thank you for your time Dr Lynch.

    • Dr Lynch December 17, 2016 at 2:42 am #

      I wouldnt think it is dangerous. I would suspect they’d benefit from electrolytes prior to giving the B12/folate injection.

  221. Gail December 20, 2016 at 11:09 am #

    Your link to the podcast mentioned in the article does not work

  222. Christine December 30, 2016 at 10:12 am #

    Hi,

    I had a high homeocystine and after 5 days of taking methyl cpg I developed fibromyalgia type symptoms. I now have joint pain , nerve pain, and my skin hurts. It has been 4 days since I stopped the methyl cpg and symptom aren’t gone yet. I didn’t have these symptoms before. Will they go away? What should I do?

  223. Jaden January 9, 2017 at 2:07 am #

    Greetings Dr. Lynch,

    Does having impaired methylation have anything to do with sensitivity to eggs? I have pretty bad brain fog when I eat them. I am now egg free and do not experience it.

    I have no folate in my diet. I have been taking small amounts of molybdenum (I am up to 30mcg at each meal) to get my body ready for methylfolate, which I cannot tolerate at all.

    Your feedback is greatly appreciated!

    Thank you

  224. LIz January 18, 2017 at 5:56 am #

    Dr Lynch,
    What would you suggest for someone who doesn’t tolerate electrolytes, especially magnesium, well?

    Specifically, after a bout of gastroenteritis any magnesium supplementation (even as as low as 15mg a day) causes excessive urination, anxiety, hypoglycemia, and increased fatigue. I haven’t been able to find a good explanation on why or what to do about it!

  225. Natalie January 19, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

    It’s hard to know where to start, but I would really appreciate some of your advice. I went to a natural doctor for help with flat mood bad apathy ADD, and big list of food sensitivities and reactions. Ever since lowering my antidepressants to lowest dose possible I developed all kinds of food intolerance’s. I actually lowered my medicine incredibly slow. I realize that antidepressants have antihistamine properties and my body may have got used to antihistamines being in my system. I lowered my medicine in the first place because I felt like i had a underlying apathy and I wanted to get to the bottom of it. I have a very flattened mood, and I know its not my personality in the past I was actually quite full of life, but it was because I felt good. I haven’t felt that way in a long time. I feel very dried out in my mood. It feels like I’m sick and my body isn’t producing the neurotransmitters I need. Anyhow when I got to lowest dose of antidepressants. I started getting extreme brain fog, pressure in head , neurapathy like numbness, pins and needles, and burning skin as well as severe anxiety. These all happened after eating certain foods. I have switched to a whole foods diet with no added chemicals. I completely stopped gluten and I realized that was what was causing the severe brain fog where I couldn’t even get the right words out. It also stopped the neurapathy. I now only get tolerable brain fog that isn’t bad. My reactions have lowered down to just the red flushing face, burning skin, and anxiety. I found out I am reacting to salicylates. A few foods I can point out I have reacted to chocolate, strawberries,kiwis, red dye,, just basically most anything artificial,as well as cheese, yeast, black pepper. The list is pretty long. I am naming very few. The foods seems to fall on either the salicylate list or the histamine list. I started taking S-acetyl glutathione and surprisingly it has helped quite a bit with the anxiety reaction I would get from some foods. I was just trying to support my liver because I heard it helped with depression.. My natural doctor gave me a vitamin supplemennt called even keel 9 it has quatrefolk 5 methyletrahdrofolate. I tried taking it and it made me worse. I got severe anxiety from it. I would stop taking it for awhile then try again and would again get the severe anxiety. It would make my food reactions worse. The anxiety would last all day and be extremely severe. I stopped taking it and the anxiety attacks left. I was encouraged to hear from you article that some people need assistance with other supplements to be able to process the methyfolate. I plan to take the 23 plus me test to see what that may tell me and go to your site to help translate them. I don’t know if their are any other tests you might recommend, or to just take that test and go from their. I also would like to note that my food allergies get worse week or so before period and during it.

  226. Natalie January 19, 2017 at 9:56 pm #

    I guess I should add that I am 35, and also I have had an acne problem since I have been a teenager that has never left. anyhow I would really appreciate a response I am very open to any possible advice. I have been really trying to figure out what to do.. with food reaction along with apathy problem…

  227. Courtney Mothershead February 3, 2017 at 1:47 am #

    I feel very good initially on a a methylated b complex regime but after about a week I get an extremely itchy scalp along, swollen calves and pretty severe chest pain. I went to the doctor and everything checked out normal. All the symptoms stop after I stop the B vitamins but my mood is way better when I’m on them. Is this a histamine reaction?

  228. Joe February 9, 2017 at 1:14 am #

    Dr. Lynch,

    My Nutreval showed extremely low glutathione levels. My cysteine and glutamic acid were normal but my glycine was low. My ND gave me Pro SOD / Catalase along with a glycine supplement and says this will increase glutathione. We may also add a Nrf2 accelerator later. Do you think this treatment plan will effectively boost glutathione, rather than taking glutathione directly? Thank you.

    • Dr Lynch February 24, 2017 at 2:17 am #

      you can try this route. I’m a big fan of liposomal glutathione as it gets right into the cell. It is not easy to have your body make glutathione.

  229. Tania Stainkamp February 10, 2017 at 1:42 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,

    Last year I was taking methylfolate and methylcolbamalin with niacin but then stopped for a while. When I added it back, I had migraines and anxiety but It’s possible that could have been from something else. Dr. recommended that I stop all supplements for 1 week to see and I felt good so I stopped everything for about a month. (symptoms did came back a few times even without taking supplements to that leads me to believe it was something else)
    Fast forward, I am now taking B minus, Ubiquinol with PQQ, Krill oil, D/K2, and Zinc. I added in 500mgc of your Active B12 upon waking almost a week ago. I feel fine taking it, no symptoms. I wanted to start taking Glutathione so I can eventually add in methylfolate. I’m not sure if it’s ok to take the Glutathione after I have started the B12?
    I don’t know how to tell if I have a sensitivity to sulfur. I eat eggs daily and while it’s not recommended, I eat dairy. Is it ok to start with the Glutathione without removing the Active B12? I have Molybendenum but have never taken it.
    Should I add in the Molybendenum and keep taking the B minus before taking Glutathione?

    • Dr Lynch February 24, 2017 at 2:13 am #

      Molybdenum can be useful if you have issues with sulfur / sulfites.

      Dairy should be removed – at least as a trial for 2 weeks.

      Gluten as well.

      We also have Optimal Start which has a lot of what you need to support methylation. The PQQ is great as well. Adding in a few drops of liposomal glutathione is a good start – it’s a potent nutrient. I also like to pulse it – use a few times a week vs daily.

  230. Justin February 15, 2017 at 7:13 pm #

    My primary side effect from Methylfolate is sore muscles/exercise intolerance. Today, I was running intervals. Without any supplementation, I could not run 9:00 pace. With each 400 mcg pill, I got better and better until I hit sub-6:00 pace at 2000 mcg. However, at 2400, I was noticeably weaker immediately after taking the pill and slipped to the 6:30 range. If I had kept increasing, I would have been back to 9:00+ by 4000. What’s up with this sensitivity? To make matters worse, the sweet spot does NOT stay constant. I’d like to try MTHFRade but am wary of the taurine because I am CBS+. Can it be made without it? Any other ideas?

    • Dr Lynch February 24, 2017 at 2:10 am #

      Taurine is needed.

      The CBS issue is very overrated and incorrect.

      Please watch this – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZxjLxnByco

      • Justin February 24, 2017 at 5:33 pm #

        I was COMPLETELY intolerant to taurine but have recently discovered that molybdenum may have opened a part of the transulfation pathway that was blocked and it must be taken with active B-12. The Optimal Electrolytes appears to be tolerated now. As for the sensitivity to methyl folate, a pinch of PABA (folic acid precursor) seems to take care of that but I must be very careful not to take too much. Does this make sense? Have you ever seen a significant difference between taking 2000 mcg vs 1600 or 2400?

  231. Lisa Mancin February 21, 2017 at 4:19 am #

    Hello! I am sorry if you have already addressed this issue on here but I did not see it. I am compound hetero for the two MTHFR genes. I am also hetero for the two CBS C699T abd A360A genes and homo for BHMT1. I had been taking your MTHF/B12 sublingual supplement but then I read that one should NOT take folate and B12 or glutathione or NAC with a CBS issue. It is very confusing. I also know that I have heavy metal issues, but how do I get rid of those if I should not take glutathione ? I would appreciate any information on the combination of MTHFR with CBS. Thanks so much!!

  232. Jack L February 25, 2017 at 6:22 pm #

    Dr Lynch, I would greatly appreciate a reply.
    My baseline anxiety is BAD, when I take B vitamins and Folate, the anxiety is TORTUROUS, I am not over stating, its hell on earth.
    I didn’t really have too bad ‘baseline’ anxiety until I had to take Methylprednisolone (Medrol) a stertoid for months. This drug started my mental health issues, this drug also tortured me – immense anxiety, constantly crying.
    Now I know steroids can cause problems for people, but is the fact that this steroid had a methyl atom attached to it of any significance at all? and does my experience with folate make any sense at all? can it really be that bad of a reaction for people in your experience? because it really is for me.

    • Dr Lynch February 27, 2017 at 8:57 pm #

      Steroids can really increase anxiety – as you’ve unfortunately notice.

      It has to do with increased stress hormones – cortisol – which then fires other neurotransmitters.

      Please talk with an integrative health professional who understands the connection of steroids and stress / anxiety. Things like LDN – low dose naltrexone – may be a more subtle choice for you. Again, talk with your doctor.

      Hope that helps!

  233. Cindy March 3, 2017 at 5:50 pm #

    Hi Dr. Ben
    I am compound heterozygous c677T A1298c have Just found out pernicious anemia. B12 very low. Took Methl CPG 3 months did not help b12 level. BUt no adversely affect. DR mats to try methylocbalamin injections. What are your th thoughts?

    • Dr Lynch March 8, 2017 at 5:34 am #

      Could help. There is also liposomal B12 which is high absorption and easy delivery. Talk with your doc about this option as well.

  234. Mariola March 5, 2017 at 9:53 am #

    I recently got pregnant and started taking 800mg Quatrefolic daily with my prenatal vitamines. I have never taken it before and I am about to test for mthfr as I suspect having it. I seem to be having several side effects like irritability, nausea, mild anxiety and acne. But all of those are also very common symptoms of an early pregnancy. How can I make sure I don’t confuse one with the other? I wouldnt like to cause any harm to myself but also wouldn’t want to risk any birth defects by not taking folate.

  235. Amanda March 17, 2017 at 4:13 pm #

    I slowly started taking methionine and glutathione but I am getting immediate (10 min.) symptoms like plugged ears, migraine, and tight neck. How do you support methylation without raising histamine levels?

    • Dr Lynch March 18, 2017 at 1:08 am #

      Amanda –

      You cannot add things like methionine without making sure downstream pathways are opened up and letting histamine out. Please read this – histamine intolerance

  236. Leigh March 17, 2017 at 5:32 pm #

    I used to get nauseated when I took my methylfolate (400 mcgs. at a time). Now I take a tiny bit of niacin (nicotinic acid, 40 -50 mgs.) with it…..no more nausea!

    • Dr Lynch March 18, 2017 at 1:05 am #

      Awesome! Thanks for sharing

  237. Lauren March 23, 2017 at 3:47 pm #

    I’m beginning to work with a functional practitioner to figure out my fatigue issues. It’s a slow process and I’m working with a very busy practice so my appointments are spaced pretty far apart. I’ve been to multiple doctors for fatigue. So far the only definitive answers I have are that my ferritin (was 13 and is now about 35) is too low and my B12 is too low (316). I did the genetic genie thing and am heterozygous for MTHFR. I was told to start taking a methylated B complex. I slowly added a B12 lozenge to it in pieces over a few days in case I have an absorption issue After a couple of days of it I can’t sleep AT ALL. I’m literally awake all night long feeling like I’m sweating even though the room is cold.. Last night was so bad I had to take an old benzo I had in the house just to knock myself out to get some sleep. I don’t know if it’s the methylB12, the methylfolate, or both. My next appointment isn’t for another few months and I don’t know what to do?? I know I need the B12 because of my symptoms but I can’t seem to tolerate it. This is really important to me because I’m trying to get pregnant and have been unable to for a year.

  238. Terra Santos April 11, 2017 at 6:23 pm #

    The “how much to take” link is no longer working. Where can we find info on how much niacin to take to offset problems?

    (The non-working link: https://www.seekinghealth.com/natural-health-podcasts/podcast-6-how-much-to-take.html)

    Thank you!

  239. Julie April 19, 2017 at 1:20 am #

    I bought the liposomal glutatione.. Took 4 drops and soon after I had a gut ache.. Tried it again the next day.. 8 drops and the same reaction. I am fine with cruciferous veggies and dried fruit and eggs..so not sure what to do.?

    • Dr Lynch May 29, 2017 at 5:09 am #

      Hi Julie – perhaps your gallbladder isn’t work to its potential? Consider Liver Nutrients, Taurine or Ox Bile to support your gallbladder and liver.

      Liver Nutrients would be my first go to – taken with lunch and dinner.

  240. Sherry April 21, 2017 at 5:11 pm #

    Thank you Dr. Lynch for all your insight. My 18-year old son has been mildly depressed for a couple of years. We recently discovered he is Heterozygous MTHFR c677t. He has been taking 15 MG L-Methylfolate Calcium (Rx from Virtus) for almost 3 months now. He said he felt better within a week or so and continues to feel great without any side effects The only recent complaint is that he is having difficulty falling asleep – could this be related? My question is what, if anything, additional should we be doing and do I need to worry that the L-Methylfolate will stop being effective and he will start to “not feel happy” again. He is attending college in the fall and I’m worried I won’t be there to help him. Thanks,Sherry

    • Dr Lynch May 10, 2017 at 2:26 am #

      Hi Sherry – Awesome 😉

      Yes – absolutely related. No question. There is a ‘loading’ dose where he needed a lot. Now maybe he only needs 7.5 mg of Deplin vs the 15 mg. Or maybe he needs it every other day.

      What you’ll see is first difficulty falling asleep – then it will progress to anxiety then irritability.

      So yes- need to reduce the amount.

      The good news is you know it is working – so if he slides and gets depressed again – you can move the amount back up. It’s a balance. Days he is more relaxed and eats well – he’ll need less. On days he’s stressed, studying hard for exams or sick, he’ll need more. Dosing should not be static on a nutrient like this.

  241. Annie Spencer April 22, 2017 at 11:58 am #

    You mention that methylfolate could trigger autoimmunity in the wrong setting. Can you say any more about this.

    With a new diagnosed of an autoimmune disease, for example Celiac disease, is methylfolate contraindicated?

    You tell us that you do not take methylfolate everyday. You take it when you feel mentally slow or need to use a lot of brain power. Do you recommend that people refrain from their methylfolate dose if they are fighting a cold or flu?

    • Dr Lynch May 10, 2017 at 2:23 am #

      It MAY contribute further to autoimmunity issues but it is not proven. We need methylfolate – just needs to be balanced. Many are taking TOO much of it. It’s the amount I am concerned about – not the nutrient itself.

      If fighting the cold and flu – they may need more folinic acid vs methylfolate. Folinic acid is supportive of immune cells more than methylfolate.

      • Annie Spencer May 21, 2017 at 7:59 pm #

        Irresponsible to be putting patients on this supplement when you haven’t tested to see if they have the genetic makeup for autoimmune diseases. Who’s to say what turned my celiac gene “on” at the age of 37; stress, infection but also from what you’re saying Ben, POSSIBLY the high dose of methylated folate that I was taking, daily for 3 years, could’ve been part of the culprit. Over the past 3 years, I saw three different practitioners that wanted me on a methylated folate after testing positive for one of the MTHFR mutations but they all had me on a different dose. One of them said “oh, that dose is way too high”. And Ben, you state that you do not take the methylated folate supplement everyday. This option was never part of the patient teaching when they started me on this supplement.

        As a medical professional, it appears clear to me that unless you are under strict supervision of a practitioner who does lab work regularly and sees you in person on a regular basis, this supplement should be contra indicated. This is just not enough research.

        What if taking a high dose of methylated folate for a prolonged time was part of what turned my celiac gene on? Shouldn’t someone have thought about this before hand, and tested to see if I had the genetic makeup for an autoimmune disease before putting me on this methylated folate?

  242. Phoenix May 8, 2017 at 3:26 am #

    Hi Dr Lynch,

    Although the ketogenic diet is an amazing thing, not only for people but also for pets, there are a few contradictions. As the article says, most of the contraindications are for congenital issues, however porphoria is not congenital.

    Here is the link to the list of conditions which contrandicate the ketogenic diet and it is offered at http://www.ketogenic-diet-resources.com :

    http://www.ketogenic-diet-resource.com/support-files/who-should-not-follow-a-ketogenic-diet.pdf

    I am wondering if there is a potential connection between Porphyria and Pyroluria?

    Also, since people who develop MTHFR related issues are under stress, would it not stand to reason that the likelihood of having pyroluria is greater for a person who is suffering from issues from MTHFR ?

    Also, although some say 1298 aberrations will cause more “mental health” issues, it seems that regardless of which body system or organ is effected, the methylation issues develop from either 677 or 1298 would put the body under stress if not addressed and thus pyroluria may be an issue regardless of 1298 or 677.

    May i please have your take on the issue of porphyria and pyroluria being potentially related and are both 677 and 1298 MTHFR aberrations?

    Wishing you and yours the very best and thank you!!!

    • Phoenix May 8, 2017 at 3:34 am #

      Sorry, the question was suppose to read:

      “May I please have your take on the issue of porphyria and pyroluria being related, and would issues arising from methylation regardless of which aberration, make a person at risk for pyroluria?

    • Dr Lynch May 10, 2017 at 1:32 am #

      I haven’t looked into it enough to understand – thus I cannot comment on it yet. It’s on my list to suss out.

  243. Phoenix May 9, 2017 at 7:51 pm #

    Praying for you, your family and all the people in the Washington area and hoping noone is harmed by the Hanford incident!

  244. Ash May 10, 2017 at 1:21 am #

    Hi,
    I’m homozygous for C677T and I’m really scared, because I’ve read several studies that say it is associated with ALS. Is it common to be homozygous? Everyone with it can’t possibly get ALS, right? I am terrified that having this mutations means I’ll get it…I’ve started taking methylfolate and methyl B-12, hoping it will help lower any high homocysteine levels…I’m just really worried. Is my chance of ALS really high regardless, because of this gene?

    • Dr Lynch May 10, 2017 at 1:31 am #

      It’s one gene out of 19,000. Definitely don’t be scared – be empowered that you know you have this gene so now you can take action on it – and you already are. You definitely need to avoid folic acid and use great types of folate – such as folinic acid and methylfolate. Do read this article well – and many of the others found here. After you read the ‘Preventing methylfolate side effects article – do read this one. http://mthfr.net/mthfr-c677t-mutation-basic-protocol/2012/02/24/

      I highly highly recommend you consider the electrolytes. Without electrolyte balance, side effects from methylfolate and folate in general are common. Optimal Electrolyte is one I formulated and it works quite well.

  245. Christi L June 8, 2017 at 2:14 pm #

    My daughter (MTHFR, age 12) was prescribed 15mg Deplin. She took daily for a month. She suddenly developed an issue with her vision in one eye…similar to an occular migraine except spot in field of vision remains constant. We immediately stopped the Deplin, as this was the only new change to her routine. It has been 4months. The spot reduced some, but has stabilized. Can this be an over methylation side effect? Can her vision be restored? Thank you in advance.

  246. Angela Altizer June 19, 2017 at 8:27 pm #

    Dr. Lynch,

    I stumbled across this article and felt like I had hit a goldmine when I read the part about people taking methylfolate for about a week and feeling great and then starting to go downhill. This is so me! Unfortunately it appears to be an old article and some of this links are expired. I was hoping to listen to the podcast entitled how much methylfolate to take. I am heterozygous for both 1298 C and 677T. I have been experiencing horrible fatigue, anxiety, depression since I was a teenager. I am now 45. When I first found out about these gene mutations and started taking methylfolate, I thought I had finally found my answer after all of this time, doctor’s visits, tests and supplements. Unfortunately, it was very short lived. I have tried going back to it several times and the same thing happens every time, where I get severe anxiety and fatigue and just feel miserable after about a week of feeling good. Can you give me any recommendations of where to start and how I know when I am taking the right dose? I would so appreciate any direction and advice you can give me. I am so tired of feeling so lousy!

    Thank you for your time!

    • Kate July 6, 2017 at 11:19 pm #

      Any updates? I have the same problem.

  247. Pramod June 29, 2017 at 1:30 pm #

    Dear Dr. Lynch,
    I am dealing with chronic brain fog, fatigue and distrubed sleep for my lifetime and considering this I did genetic testing from 23andme. I request your help to address this chronic health issue.
    Please find my SNP as below.
    COMT H62H +/+
    COMT V8M +/-
    VDR Bsm +/-
    VDR Taq +/-
    MTR A2756G +/-
    MTRR A66G +/-
    CBS A360A +/-
    I tried L-Methyl Folate as I could see heterozygous A1298C but it made me worse.
    I tried anhistamine (H1 blocker) to check if I am overmethylator and it made worse.
    So considering this I have started taking 500 mg Niacin (Nicotinic Acid) after dinner and I could see much better improvement in my brain fog.
    This concluded that I am overmethylated however I could still see ups and downs in my brain fog and still there is brain fog and fatigue.
    I have tested my homocysteine 1 year back and it was high on scale @ 18 and also I was low on B12 @ 110 but after taking 6 Hydroxycobalamin jabs it went up but still symptoms persists.
    Could you please suggest what other supplement I have to make it better?
    ZInc and B6 supplementation might help to lower the Homocysteine (when there is MTR SNP mutation), so is it recommended here?
    What all supplements would you suggest for patient like me for optimum brain health?
    What about your view on Acetyl CoA for increasing histone acetylation?

  248. wolf max July 6, 2017 at 11:14 pm #

    in this 11/2014 article you wrote: “I am compound heterozygous MTHFR myself which means my MTHFR enzyme is reduced by about 70% in function.” but i’ve mostly seen 50-60% cited since then. if it is now 50%, please somehow footnote the update. thnx

  249. Jodi Parker July 25, 2017 at 2:22 pm #

    Hello,
    I have a question in regards to the Liposomal Glutathione. Is Liposomal still considered the best form to take orally or is Acetyl Glutathione better? I’m seeing a lot of articles suggestion that Acetyl is a more stable oral form, but I’m not sure how accurate any of the information is since I can’t find anything more recently published than 2014. I’m am definitely deficient and want to make sure I’m getting the product most beneficial in helping to solve that issue.

    Thank you!

    • Dr Lynch September 9, 2017 at 6:24 pm #

      Hi Jodi –

      Exactly. There is little published on acetyl glutathione. Top lab directors that I work with prefer and recommend liposomal glutathione – and it is what I recommend to others. I could use s-acetyl glutathione but I don’t.

      Some people do not do well with liposomal glutathione. The reasons for that are a few and I believe I resolved most if not all of them with Optimal Liposomal Glutathione Plus. If you do not do well with liposomal glutathione, consider this one.

  250. Erin July 26, 2017 at 1:29 am #

    I am deeply impressed by your knowledge of the body and its processes. Do you belong to an association of like minded and enducstrd doctors? These processes and our bodies are so complicated and individualized that having a doctor who was knowledgeable would seem to be the only way to know how to proceed with any of these supplements. It actually sounds like to have real health, one would need to know and understand all of this, whether you have a MTHFR mutation or not. I’d really love to try to find someone local. Thank you!

  251. Tegan July 30, 2017 at 6:10 am #

    Hi Dr Lynch, I hope you are well. This is probably the worlds dumbest question but I’m going to ask it anyway. I have been suffering on and off for over 20 years, have not been able to kick Lyme, CAEBV and many other illnesses, turns out I have EDS and POTS as well. And a couple of years ago found out I have a lot of mutations with CBS, MOA, COMT and MTHFR, the 2 of most interest to me at the moment are the homoz C667T and all of the CBS ones, as I feel that these are giving me the most trouble. SO my question… I feel that rotating my supplements would be beneficial? I react severely to everything I’ve tried but I’m wondering if there is a smart way to rotate my supplements to avoid these reactions and have the pathways clearing more effectively? I rotate my foods as I have discovered that I can tolerate sulfur foods as long as I only have them every 4 days. Does this make sense? My main issues which I require supplements for are the migraines, homocystein currently at 79.6 (has been increasing over the past 2 years), POTS, chronic, constant pain, fatigue and nausea. I’m no longer bed ridden at this stage, however I still cannot tolerate exercise, baths or saunas. I do have copper, mercury and lead toxicity and a few other issues which I need to sort… when I can tolerate detoxing. Thanks for reading my novel! Take care. T

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  1. a turn-hard to the right | facing off with the big d - May 23, 2017

    […] where to go from here? i stopped taking the methylfolate, yesterday. i’m hoping to get back to that place of midline stability. will i try again? yes. it showed such promise. this time paying more attention on how to avoid the side effects of methylfolate. […]

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MTHFR is NOT an easy topic to discuss. Last week, Sean and I began recording our conversation about MTHFR. It...

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