Vitamin B9 (folate, folic acid) works with vitamins B6 and B12 (cobalamin) and other nutrients to control blood levels of the amino acid homocysteine.
Elevated homocysteine levels in blood are a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Although B vitamin supplementation has been proven effective to control homocysteine levels, current data from intervention trials have not shown that lowering homocysteine levels decreases cardiovascular disease risk. Researchers are not sure whether homocysteine is a cause of heart disease or just a marker that indicates someone may have heart disease.
A plant-based diet is a diet of any animal (including humans) based on foods derived from plants, including vegetables, whole grains, legumes and fruits, but with few or no animal products.
"Plant-based diet" has been used to refer to the following diets:
- Vegan diet - no food from animal sources.
- Fruitarian - consists primarily of fruit.
- Raw vegan - food is uncooked and sometimes dehydrated.
- Vegetarian - plant foods, may include eggs and dairy, but no meat.
- Ovo-lacto vegetarian - includes dairy and eggs.
- Ovo vegetarian - includes eggs but no dairy.
- Lacto vegetarian - includes dairy but no eggs.
- Pescatarian - diet with eggs, dairy and seafood.
- Semi-vegetarian - with occasional inclusion of meat.