Genetics: MTHFR & B-Vitamin Deficiency


People with MTHFR gene mutations cannot process synthetic B vitamins. Diagnosis is via a saliva test which tests your genes. If you feel too overwhelmed to do this test Dr Ben Lynch, an expert on MTHFR, says you can just take the methylated B12 and Folate along with a good methylated B complex and see if helps your anxiety and depression within three to six months.

MTHFR may increase the risk of:

  • Learning disorders;
  • Mood disorders;
  • Fibromyalgia;
  • Neurodegeneration;
  • Heart disease;
  • Digestive issues;
  • Addictive behaviours;
  • Down Syndrome;
  • Autoimmunity;
  • Chronic Fatigue;
  • Allergies;
  • Hormonal issues;
  • Food sensitivities;
  • Sleep disturbance;
  • Anxiety; and
  • Depression.

Genetic Testing

Genetic testing is relatively new and, as such, there is very little information available on the impact that damaged genes will have on the way the body functions. Everyone inherits two copies of each gene, one from their mother and one from their father. If you have two defective genes you are homozygous and you may experience worse symptoms than heterozygous people who have only one.

Remember that mutations mean that there is a ‘risk’ – it’s not always a certainty or a diagnosis. Some companies offer specific genetic tests to access your entire genome by doing a saliva test. The advantage of doing your whole genome is that you can find out about many other genetic issues, not just MTHFR. You can then upload your results to a site like Livewello and search in the sandbox for individual rs codes (eg rs225014).


Low B12 has been linked with depression and anxiety. Get your Active B12 tested by blood test either via your GP or the Medichecks finger prick home test. Ask your GP for a printout of your results and check them yourself – your result should be in the upper quarter of the range.

Supplements to Support MTHFR Mutations

Dr Ben Lynch, an MTHFR expert, says that if you have depression or anxiety and you can’t afford the 23andMe test you can supplement with the methylated versions of B12 and Folic Acid and see if you feel better.

The methylated version of B12 is Methylcobalamin.

The methylated version of Folic Acid is Folate or Folinic Acid.

You can increase your levels with B12 injections. It is best taken sublingually by sucking B12 lozenges, or using a spray.

Always take individual B12 alongside a good B-Vitamin Complex.

A good methylated complex is Jarrow B Right. I take one capsule in the morning and one at lunch.

B vitamins are water-soluble which means the excess is excreted through urine so you can’t overdose.

Take B supplements in a split dose at breakfast and lunch to give you energy throughout the day. Keep a diary and note down when you started the supplement and how you feel.

Further Information

Dr Ben Lynch’s website:

There is a chapter by Ben Lynch in the new Stop the Thyroid Madness II book.

Support Groups

MTHFR – Understanding Gene Mutations and Epigenetics:



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