Should diabetics take B-complex tablets having a higher folic acid content?
Q: My mother (60 years old) years has diabetes. In a TV show about diabetes, the doctor had advised that it would be beneficial that the diabetics take the following in addition to their diabetes medicines: B-complex tablets that have a higher folic acid content. He said that the normal B-complex tabs have only very small quantity of folic acid. Are these recommendations correct? If yes then can you please tell me a B-complex tablet that has a high content of Folic acid? Or is it better to take normal B-Complex tablets, Folic acid tablets and Neurobion tablets?
A:Folic acid is required during pregnancy to prevent neural tube defects in the baby. There is some evidence that diabetic women during pregnancy have a higher chance of giving birth to babies with neural tube defects. Hence while all women during pregnancy must take folic acid, the need is even more in pregnant women with diabetes. Since your mother is 60 years old, folic acid is of no particular use. Based on worldwide evidence and regulatory action, the Drugs Controller General of India has banned fixed-dose combination of B-1, B-6, B-12 vitamins (such as Neurobion) preparations. However some pharma manufacturers, in order to keep their sales intact, have made minor, inconsequential changes in the formula to evade the ban.