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Unsure of where to post this since it seems to be such a wide topic. :)

So, I'll stick this here (after already having started a topic about it before, 'cause my partner suffers from depression, anxiety, and other issues and I was wondering whether an MTHFR mutation might have something to do with that).

So, in short, please give it to me straight: what health conditions can be caused by an MTHFR mutation?

I'm trying to separate fact from fiction here. Some of the most common things people have seem to be linked, which makes sense since I read somewhere that over half of all people have an MTHFR mutation, but I was also wondering if this is being overdone a bit, if that makes sense.

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So for example, and this is gonna be a long but not exhaustive list, I have read that all of the following conditions can have something to do with MTHFR mutations:

  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Other cardiovascular disease
  • Acne
  • Dry skin
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Migraines
  • Lack of energy/fatigue
  • Hard to concentrate and poor memory
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Down Syndrome
  • Autism
  • Bipolar depression
  • Cataracts
  • Edema
  • Pins and needles
  • Schizophrenia

And the list goes on and on... and on. You get the idea. A lot of the articles I come across aren't exactly from the most reputable sources, and those that are are harder to understand.

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Hi Lioness,

I'm sorry you're dealing with this right now and I hope you find the answers you are looking for.

I read the Steady Health article about why you should know if you have a MTHFR mutation, and I thought it made sense. It said something like, the gene mutation itself predisposes you to certain conditions, but it's the diet/how the mutation is treated that really plays the larger role in whether a person ends up with one of the conditions they are at a higher risk for.

They include, as this article said, a greater risk of heart disease, a higher risk of miscarriage in women, a higher risk of hearing loss with age, and then also gout, kidney disease, and certain types of cancer if you drink too much.

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Maybe MTHFR mutations are not as common as some people would have you believe. 

The NIH says that:

- around 25 percent of Hispanic people

- and around 10 to 15 percent of Caucasian people

have two copies of the C677T gene mutation. 

That is a lot, but it's less than the 50 percent you mentioned!

NIH also mentions that that particular MTHFR gene mutation increases your risk of having a baby with neural tube defects such as spina bifida, women with the gene mutation have a slightly higher risk of miscarriage, and men have a higher risk of blood clots. 

Those are scientifically supported facts. The list is a whole lot shorter than your one above!

 

 

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And to add, there is research that suggests that high homocysteine levels, which are associated with MTHFR mutations, lead to an increased risk of heart disease. The relation is still unclear and not well studied, however, and there is no indication that special diets reduce the risk so far. In fact, the American Heart Association does not currently have the position that MTHFR mutations represent a large risk factor for heart disease. 

That counts for something. Studies are still very much in their infancy and a lot more knowledge is needed before anyone make very many definite conclusions about the consequences of various MTHFR mutations. 

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Well, thanks for your reply and pointing me to the right resources as well. I tend to just Google stuff and click on it, which isn't always the best policy. Compared to what you just posted, certain things I have read on the internet are positively alarmist!!!

Can you do me a favor, and tell me how much is known about MTHFR mutations and depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues? Is that even true, then, that MTHFR mutations can cause mental health issues? If that's actually never been proven, I would very much like to know about it.

Thanks in advance!!!

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And thanks to you too, PINK! I did see the SteadyHealth piece and it was a nice overview but didn't offer all the info I was looking for. It did mention a whole lot less negative health consequences of MTHFR mutations than many others. The idea that diet or supplements mitigate the issue of MTHFR mutations also makes much sense, since the whole underlying problem is an enzyme not being processed properly.
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I think, basically, we still know very little about this. We can make up all sorts of things, but as long as things are not proven to be a scientific fact, we shouldn't get carried away. You can't get a straight answer to your question, because nobody knows, really. 

I know you get all these types of people that think they know it all, and connect fact B to fact Z, like, an airplane flies, a dragon fly flies, therefore a dragon fly is an airplane, but it's important to not get sucked in by people who don't know what they are talking. 

Not that I know anything about MTHFR mutations myself, but there is just a certain type of people that like to turn everything into potato mash, basically.

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Hi there

Reading the discussion here I did want to say that it is possible to have a MTHFR mutation and experience absolutely no symptoms at all. Most people probably fall into that category actually. Studies are still underway to determine what conditions are really linked to MTHFR mutations. I have heard that congenital heart defects, risk of stroke, Parkinson's disease, bowel issues including bowel cancer and IBS, and pulmonary embolism are all partially attributable to MTHFR mutations, to mention some that I think you have not mentioned yet. 

Again, having a MTHFR mutation does not mean you will have any of those things, but getting a test may be advised if you do experience any of these. 

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