What Is The Best Dosage of Methylfolate & Methylcobalamin?

Dosage

Offering our experience based on research and partnership with our doctors' clinical findings. 




What are the best dosage amounts of L-Methylfolate and Methylcobalamin for me?

PLEASE NOTE:  We are not doctors and cannot provide any medical advice or recommendations. We simply offer our experience and what we’ve researched and discovered from the doctors out there who are making recommendations. Check out our Methylation Protocol page which provides four different symptom-based protocols to choose from - so you can supplement based on your specific health needs.


These protocols give detailed and step-by-step instructions regarding what nutrients to take, what specific amounts need to be taken and when, what order the nutrients can best be taken in as well as particular products that can be purchased.


At the end of the day, L-Methylfolate dosage is not a one-size fits all approach, nor is it based on age, size or weight as to how much is optimal for someone to take.  Instead, it's much better based on one's genetic and symptom-based needs.  If you haven't already, check out the video above to learn more.

Thoughts from Methyl-Life™

As with any supplement or medication you take, you will want to talk to a healthcare professional about your personal situation and maybe even a pharmacist as well to ensure there are no possible interactions with any medications you are currently taking. 

If your doctor does not know how much methylfolate you should take, don’t be alarmed, this is not terribly uncommon as many doctors are unaware of the extent to which methylfolate and/or MTHFR can affect a person’s quality of life. Everyone has different genetic challenges and disease processes that factor into the mix of symptoms they experience. It might be worth your while to find a doctor who is familiar with MTHFR, this could be an MD, but may also be a naturopath, or you could consider consulting with a doctor or expert that knows more about methylation, nutrition and MTHFR. 

Why doctors do not know how much methylfolate you should take?

Essentially, it takes about 18 years for a known medical fact to become a part of the ‘typical medical practice’ (and we are just not there yet with the genetics - and the introduction of methylfolate to the world). If you are conducting research on this topic, you are ahead of the curve and may find some early answers to several long-term issues you have been fighting.

In my research, I have discovered that there seems to be two schools of thought regarding dosages; specifically I have heard them through Dr. Rawlins (MD – Gynecologist) and Dr. Lynch (Naturopath).

  1. The MD, Dr. Rawlins, talks in terms of the prescription versions of methylfolate available today, which are often considered "high dose" options (3 mg, 5.6 mg, 7.5 mg & 15 mg). There is lots of research as well as clinical trials behind these dosage levels and of course they are FDA approved.
  2. The Naturopath, Dr. Lynch, talks in terms of "lower dosage" options regarding methylfolate amounts, typically more like (800 mcg – 2 mg). He has found this appropriate for people unable to tolerate larger doses (due to a heavy toxic burden or over-methylation challenges related to other genetic issues).


Dr. Rawlins’ shares his very educational 4-part video seminar where he also discusses a comprehensive nutritional protocol for optimizing methylation and treating MTHFR.
What if you have other genetic factors along the methylation pathway that make tolerating the methylated nutrients a challenge?


Well, if you are serious and you don't mind spending a bit of money, you can get a $500 full methylation panel test (Dr. Amy Yasko provides this and she specializes in treating Autism from a genetics and nutritional basis.  

If you want a detailed list of supplements to take, forum & online support system – &/or have Autism in your family), I would recommend this test – holisticheal.com). It takes about 12 weeks to get your results back, but when you do, you will get a specialized protocol detailing what vitamin forms are the best for your body’s health based on each of the gene defects that is uncovered in the test. 

Alternatively, if you would like to spend less money and do a lot of your own research, you can go to 23andme and have a much larger genetic panel run. You will have to use a service like the one you can find on mthfrsupport.com (I believe these folks are even reporting on COVID-19 genetics already), livewello.com, geneticgenie.org or doctorsdata.com to “transform” your raw data into a much more 'readable' file. This will give you the ability to quickly understand your specific genetic SNPs (whether you have no mutation - green, a single mutation, yellow, or a double mutation, red). To learn more, check out our Get Tested for MTHFR page.

If you do not have the desire to spend the time or money to do the full test, then you might just decide to experiment on yourself with the doses of the key nutrients (methylfolate and an active B12 like hydroxocobalamin, methylcobalamin and/or adenosylcobalamin). This is what I did (I knew I had an MTHFR mutation, but didn't know what my other methylation genetics surrounding it were - the things that might affect how well I would tolerate the methylated nutrients, like COMT or CBS or SUOX SNPs). 

So in 2011 I started by dosing myself with a pretty small amount, 400 mcg of methylfolate for a couple of days, then went up to 1 mg for the next couple of days, then I went up to 2 mg after that, and then I moved to 3 mg (you’re seeing a pattern here, right?). I did this until I hit 5 mg a day and after my second day at this dose, things felt very different for me and I have pretty much stayed between 5 mg – 7.5 mg a day ever since. This is personally my sweet spot.  And this is what you want to do, find your own sweet spot.

How much methylfolate and/or active B12 should be taken?

It is worth noting that some people may never feel a big change like I did right away, Dr. Rawlins says it may take some as many as 4 months (at a therapeutic dose - for some that is as much as 15 mg) to notice that they are actually feeling better. 

Some people may just take methylfolate because it is recommended for them and reduces their homocysteine levels as well as disease risks (i.e. heart attack, miscarriage etc.), they may not notice much of a difference in their everyday quality of life as far as how they "feel". 

Others may take it to help clear toxins/metals/BPA out of their system better (methylfolate boosts glutathione - your body's greatest antioxidant which can help you get rid of these bad guys). 

Some take it to increase their serotonin levels because they're depressed or suffering from mental health challenges.  Normal serotonin range is 125-185, my serotonin level went from 85 up to 136 in just 3 months’ time after I started taking 5 mg of methylfolate a day, and after 9 months, my 12-year battle with IBS was finally over. I also tested “normal” instead of borderline anemic for the first time in my adult life. 

Methylfolate can have some profoundly positive effects on people. I cannot say what it will do for you, but I can say that if you do not know how much to take consider:

  • Starting slow and with B12 - this is a critical precursor nutrient you want onboard before you start taking L-Methylfolate (as methylfolate when taken on its own can mask a B12 deficiency - so it's recommended to start with some active B12 to prevent that). Most people both need and tolerate it very well (consider our Hydroxocobalamin or B-12 Complete products to begin with - Hydroxocobalamin is the most well-tolerated active form of B12). 
  • But, what if my blood tests show I have high B12 levels you ask?  Note: there is no good intracellular B12 test available today, they are currently testing B12 levels in the blood, but not how much of the B12 nutrient reaches your cells and can be used by them. So, even if your levels are high, your body may not be converting the B12 and it simply swims around unused in your blood and unable to get transported to the cells for use. Try one or all of the 3 active forms of B12 to get more of the B12 nutrient into your cells (hydroxocobalamin, methylcobalamin, adenosylcobalamin – note:  hydroxocobalamin converts into methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin within the body - so it is one of the most versatile forms to take). 
  • The high dose active B12 range is between 2-15 mg (with many falling in the 5-10 mg range).  Some doctors recommend 10+ mg for folks with certain health issues, i.e. Parkinson's or possibly anemia.  It's worth noting that some can get injections for as much as 25+ mg - of course this is not typically a 'daily' intake amount and is under a doctor's orders.  If you have MTR, MTRR and/or COMT mutations, you might need significant doses of this nutrient (I personally take about 6-10 mg a day, but I also have double MTR and a few double MTRR mutations as well as some COMT mutations).  Check out our Best Form of B12 page to learn more about what's right for you personally.
  • After you've got the right amount of active B12 onboard (and maybe it's only 500 mcg that works for you) ... introduce methylfolate and/or just one ingredient/product/dose increase at a time and hold it for a few days to see how your body does with it (Dr. Rawlins talks about this – it allows you to understand what your body is tolerating well or unhappy with so that you can make changes accordingly) – consider our B-Methylated II or a lower dose L-Methylfolate only product like Methylfolate 2.5 to start.
  • If you determine high dose Methylfolate is for you (those who suffer from depression or low serotonin find these therapeutic levels most helpful) or if you want to try to increase up to higher doses, the range for that is typically 3-15 mg daily (with many people falling into the 5-10 mg category, but some taking as much as 50 mg and I even saw a colon cancer study where they were dosed with over 100 mg a day. Of course I would NOT recommend this without being under the care of a prescribing healthcare practitioner). 
  • Today’s prescription level dosing for depression-level support is 7.5 mg - 15 mg of L-Methylfolate.  Again, increase slowly and hold each dose change for about 3-5 days to ensure things are going fine and that you are aware of any changes taking place in your body. As you increase your dosing of methylfolate, have Nicotinic Acid or Niacin (not niacinamide) on hand so that if you feel you have taken too much methylfolate and are having an “over-methylated” reaction (heart palpitations, agitation, feeling like you've had too much caffeine, anxiety, irritability, etc.).  You can counteract this 'over-methylation' experience quickly with Niacin (Dr. Lynch says 50 mg of Niacin every 30-60 minutes or so until your negative symptoms subside is the best way to neutralize over-methylation).

Possible side effects and what you should remember

Remember, these are vitamins, so the number and type of side effects are going to typically be much lower than they would likely be for a pharmaceutical drug. But be smart, if you’re very sensitive to drugs, vitamins and supplements, then do your research, start low and go slow (I personally am extremely sensitive to pharmaceuticals, herbs and supplements, but I had no problem with Methylfolate, and Methylcobalamin – however, give me a high dose B12 shot with the typical variety of B12 [cyanocobalamin] and I’m sick for 24 hrs).  Also, talk to your healthcare professional, and if you want to get additional testing done. 23andme.com may still do MTHFR SNP testing and they’re they are very affordable. Check out our Get Tested for MTHFR page for more details.

In the end, I believe it’s up to you to personally determine how much and what kind of dosage experimentation you want to try or not. You know your body best and if you leverage a program that helps you start low, go slow and take one step at a time incrementally, you will be able to find the right dose that works best for you.  

Again, check out our Methylation Protocols if you’d like to experiment with it. Know that any reaction you have will likely be temporary, as these B vitamins do not stick around in your system – what your body does not use will be peed out.  Moreover, if you have an ‘over-methylation’ experience Dr. Lynch recommends “50 mg of nicotinic acid every 30 minutes to 1 hr. As long as symptoms of anxiety and irritability are present due to excessive methylfolate or excessive neurotransmission – or over methylation”. He has found that people who have this kind of experience can stop the reaction in a very short amount of time with the nicotinic acid.

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