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Deplin (L-methylfolate) Medical Food?


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So I have been given a couple months worth of samples of Deplin from a Psych Doc. 


A recent genetic tests shows I am homozygous for MTHFR C677T and thus have a 70 percent loss of function in converting Folate to usable form.  Deplin is L-methylfolate, a form of Folate the body can use without conversion.


Unfortunately the capsules have some non-Whole 30 approved ingredients, such as: Glucose Syrup Solids, Soy Protein, Soy Lecithin, Sodium Caseinate (milk), among other questionable ingredients.


A nurse on the Deplin line informs me that the tablets you'd get from the pharmacy do not have Soy or Milk, it's only the capsules that do (and samples only come in capsule form).


This is an expensive pill, and one I haven't tried yet and would like to along with my Whole 30.  I'd like to be able to use the free samples. Do I take the pill despite the ingredients because it's possible benefits outweigh any downside from the minuscule amounts of soy and milk protein?  Or does it firmly go against the spirit of Whole 30 to take it?  If it matters, it is a prescription "medical food".



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Hello :) I'm also MTHFR C677T and I take Metagenics brand Metagen B12 folate & Hemagenics Iron Advanced (and I feel so much better!).


This is a medically required item as we can't process Vitamin B12 the way others can, it takes several steps and we can't complete some of them.

I would use the samples and see how you feel and while you're taking them I'd shop around for different brands, see if you can get a better deal.

I get mine from a naturopath, but they are "Practitioner" so here I can't buy them without a naturopath (Australia).


Two things to know if you haven't already been told:

  • Avoid nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and have this put in your medical file with your doctor and dentist (we don't clear it out of the body the way others do and in a worst case scenario it can be fatal. Make sure any hospital admissions are advised of this too.
  • It can affect the health of a pregnancy, talk to your doctor about this.

Note: doctors orders trump Whole30 rules - many people have medications which don't come in a compliant version or aren't available to them locally.

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Because minuscule amounts might matter if you are sensitive, taking the supplements might change your Whole30 results. The simple thing to do is delay starting your Whole30 until after you have finished taking the supplements. If you do both at the same time, you might be fine, but you might not.  

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@ Tom


Thanks for the reply.  I do understand that tiny amounts could matter if I have a sensitivity.  However, Deplin (L-methylfolate) is in a nebulous land between vitamin and drug.  It's not something that you take for a short term amount of time and then stop.  If it works, I could imagine being on it for life, given that my body doesn't process folate correctly.  I definitely don't feel like delaying Whole 30, I am ready to clean up my food intake!




It's interesting you take a B12 but not L-methylfolate?  I have been confused about weather I needed a B12 supplement with the Deplin, though the nurse on the Deplin line assured me I didn't.  I'm still skeptical though that Deplin may effect B12 levels.

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Research in MTHFR is still ongoing, it's a relatively new field and there are some correlations that need specific study (such as number of celiacs or gluten intolerant people who are also MTHFR), so even with the same gene, you and I may have different results (epigenetics). Even with the gene, some people show no symptoms at all. I do, my methylation is off and homocysteine is too high, my cells do not regenerate well without assistance (one symptom for this is skin which doesn't heal properly from basic injury). I'm still tweaking, the iron is a new addition (new formulation specifically for MTHFR and interestingly doesn't make me sick like every other iron supp I've ever had). My bloodwork clearly shows malfunctions in the methylation process (you need more than a single test for B12 to check this).


The best way to know which supplements work for you is to get some baseline blood tests, try the new supplement for a month or two and retest. I've tried a bunch and these are the ones working for me the best, but there are others I have not yet tried. I also take a bunch of other non-MTHFR items including Zinc and Vitamin C as I am chronically low in these too. I'm quite deficient in a number of things not because I don't eat them, but my level of absorption and volume of internal use means I just can't get enough through food.


B12 is a bit tricky in tests as we will often show as normal "in range", but it's measuring something that's pointless for MTHFR folk as it's the pre-conversion level they measure and we have conversion issues, so it's testing the bit that's fine and there's no direct test for our issues, you need a number of tests and someone knowledgeable to check the results across all the tests and see if they prove or disprove your methylation function.


I had improvements on converted B12 supplements even without Whole30 (injections did nothing for me the tablets didn't, but some people respond better to the injections).


Whole30 will give you other benefits but it cannot fix conversion issues if you have them, however I found dramatic improvements from both together, I'm off regular medication and have eliminated completely a number of health conditions, I would not have been able to do this without Whole30 :) Grains seems to be particularly problematic for me with absorption (and complete lack of nutrition), dairy seems to impact my immunity.


Agree with Tom, you might not get the best results taking these, but if you take them and feel better then it's worth shopping around for a clean version (hopefully cheaper too). If you take them with no improvement at all, it's possible one of the nasties could be holding you back. If you have a reaction, it could be to either the active ingredient or the capsules. As I've been through the buying-something-expensive-only-to-have-it-not-work, I understand why you'd want to use the free samples. They're not the best choice but they may be more practical due to the cost.

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I think I may have solved the issue.


I will be able to secure samples of Enlyte in the next week.  This has less L-methylfolate overall, but includes a range of B vitamins and omega-3 oil, and the pill has no artificial dies, soy or milk.  So I will give that a try.

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