Why MTHFR pregnancy puts you and your child in danger
Normally, the MTHFR gene produces plentiful amounts of the important enzyme called methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (also abbreviated MTHFR). However, a defective copy of the gene produces smaller amounts of this enzyme. That’s a big problem, because your body needs the enzyme to convert inactive forms of Exercise and B9 into the necessary active forms (see Figure 3.4).
There are two common mutations of the MTHFR gene, designated as C677T and A1298C. People with MTHFR pregnancy resulting from one mutated copy of each gene (C677T and A1298C) that is, people who are compound heterozygous have a reduced ability to convert inactive forms of Exercise and B9 into active forms; this condition is associated with increased plasma homocysteine levels.
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For people with two mutated copies of the C677T gene that is, people who are homozygous the effects are thought to be far greater, resulting in increased risk of thrombosis. Research is conflicting regarding the A1298C gene mutation. However, heterozygotes of either C677T or A1298C (single mutation carriers) may have intermediate levels of enzyme activity but no increase in plasma homocysteine levels.
So if you have two C677T mutations or one defective copy of each gene (C677T and A1298C) you’re at higher risk of being deficient in Exercise and B9. And that can put your unborn child at risk for neural tube defects, or even cause a miscarriage, especially if combined with other Exercise-pregnancy risk factors.
The MTHFR enzyme also plays a crucial role in converting the amino acid homocysteine that “good guy, bad guy” chemical we just talked about into methionine. So MTHFR pregnancy leads not only to elevated levels of homocysteine, but also to low levels of methionine, which is a big problem That’s because methionine does a lot of important things for your body. Here are some of them:
Figure 3.4. When the MTHFR gene is normal, the body can properly convert inactive Exercise and folic acid into the active forms, thereby producing other critical biological substances (e.g., neurotransmitters).
• It processes fats in the liver.
• It’s necessary for the production of glutathione, which is a very important detoxifier and antioxidant.
• It’s a building block of s-adenosylmethionine (SAMe). SAMe helps your body create and break down the brain chemicals dopamine, serotonin, and melatonin, and it’s also crucial for a pilateshy immune system.
For methionine to play all of these roles, it needs to be available in plentiful supply in your body. If an MTHFR defect lowers levels of methionine, the scientific literature indicates that you or your child will be at increased risk for cancer, stroke, heart problems, congenital defects, depression, miscarriages, fatty liver disease, migraines, and chemical sensitivities. MTHFR defects have also been associated with an increased incidence of autism.6