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The 8 Best Nutrients for MTHFR SNPs

The 8 Best Nutrients for MTHFR SNPs

Whether you have MTHFR genetic SNP’s or not here’s the 8 best foods to optimize your health and give your body the zing it needs.

When it comes to foods eating naturally wholesome, fresh, and organic if possible is still the best!

  • Fresh is best. When it comes to leafy greens which contain the most FOLATE, raw, fresh and preferably organic is best.
  • Eat wholefoods over highly processed and take away foods that can be loaded with folic acid. Folic acid is synthetic and causes a potentially jamming up in the biochemical system, so avoid it as much as you can. In Australia as in other countries of the world, fortification of folic acid is mandatory in some of our processed foods namely breads, cakes, biscuits, cereals and pastas. So mind what you are putting in!
  • Get your electrolyte balance working in your favour. Staying hydrated and having your important minerals keeps your balanced. Drink at least 2 litres (min) of water daily.
  • Make sure you gut is working optimally – no leaky gut or dysbiosis (imbalance of bacteria to put simply). If there are infections, candida/yeast or parasites and are affecting your health, this needs to be sorted out. Seek a professional to do this properly.
  • Ensure your environment is ‘’clean” – minimizing and removing chemicals, heavy metals and toxins from your environment including EMF’s from the internet and WIFI that interfere with your health is whole-foods

The number one super aim is to keep your body working optimally through the most natural means possible. Not over taxing and not over doing it. Stress has a huge impact on health, from not digesting foods – as hydrochloric acid is minimized, cortisol rises, impacts energy and your sleep.

All foods, vitamins and minerals are to be included as part of a balanced diet so best not to over-do anything! The body is all about balance. If you over eat on one thing you are likely to be low in something else.

One of the most important things to do once you have removed your gut issues, have the electrolytes working well and toxins removed is to listen to your body. It is important with MTHFR. You will come to know when you need to supplement with folate or folinic acid as you progress.

  1. Get your Greens in! Folate is found in green leafy vegetables in its natural form. Folic acid is the synthetic version that needs to be avoided with MTHFR. It comes from the word ‘foliage’ occurring naturally in green leafy vegetables and is mostly destroyed in cooking.

Vitamin B9 (Folate) is vital for DNA metabolism and repair, methylation, differentiation of embryonic tissue, maturation of blood cells, reduces expression of chromosomal mutations, helps in processing serotonin, tyrosine, noradrenaline, choline, histidine and more.

High Folate foods (highest to lowest) 


  • Chicken Livers
  • Spinach and rocket
  • Chick peas, garbanzo beans
  • Broccoli
  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Artichokes
  • Flaxseeds
  • Beetroot
  • Salmon

The exciting thing about artichokes and asparagus is that they are also healing to the gut as well!

  1. Vitamin B12 – Starting here is what I always look at. Without B12 you can’t utilize folate properly. It is also surprising how many people are deficient. If you are vegetarian or vegan the chances are you will be low as this is found in animal and dairy sources.

B12 is crucial for your brain, nervous system, skin, mucous membranes, body fats and red blood cell formation. It is involved in methionine synthesis, cells expression, myelination of nerve and brain fibres. When it comes to B12 as a supplement the form may matter.

High B12 Foods (Highest to lowest)Foods-Highest-in-Vitamin-B12

  • Sardines
  • Chicken Liver
  • Salmon
  • Chicken
  • Lamb
  • Beef Grass Fed
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Dairy Milk
  • Eggs

magnesium foods

  1. Magnesium is an essential mineral and critical cofactor for over 300 biochemical processes including energy production, protein and DNA synthesis, carbohydrate metabolism, bone formation and nerve signaling, regulation of vascular tone and blood clotting. It may also assist as an immune modulator assisting in lowering inflammation (Braun, L & Cohen, C, 2015).

Foods high in Magnesium

Almonds, barley, brewer’s yeast, cashews, cocoa, eggs, figs, kelp, leafy greens, legumes, mineral water, molasses, parsnips, seeds, soy beans and wholegrain cereals (Osiecki, H, 2015, p. 182).

Small amounts are required of vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and Vitamin C in the body daily.  

  1. Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

You may notice that there is a common theme as we move through nutrients, your B’s are super important for health. As B-vitamins are water soluble they need replenishing on a daily basis.  Vitamin B2 is essential for energy production, reducing anemia, thyroid health, eye tissue, activates vitamin B6 and folate, maintenance of different cells throughout the body and can reduce and is a coenzyme in the respiratory system.

Get riboflavin from

Almonds, asparagus, avocados, barley grass, beans, currants, eggs, milk and dairy products including yoghurt and cheeses, organ meats, sprouts, wholegrain cereals, yeast, salmon, mushrooms, sesame seeds, tempeh, tomatoes (Osiecki, H, 2015, p. 33).

  1. Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine – the active form is referred to as P-5-P)

As we continue with the B’s you will notice how important vitamin B6 is. Are you noticing a pattern? It’s all about the B’s. Vitamin B6 is crucial for your brain, immune system, nerve function, red Vitamin-B6-Rich-Foodsblood cells, protein, fats & carbohydrate metabolism, hormone & neurotransmitter synthesis. It is a required cofactor for methylation and for homocysteine to be processed to its next form therefore assisting the methionine cycle (Braun, L & Cohen, C, 2015, p. 1079).

Foods containing vitamin B6

Asparagus, avocado, banana, beef, pepper, rice and wheat bran, broccoli, brown rice, buckwheat flour, cashews, chestnuts, chickpeas, chili powder, garlic, hazelnuts, kidney beans, lentils, molasses, paprika, peanuts, green peas, pistachios, potatoes, sesame seeds, spinach, sunflower seeds, chicken, liver (beef, turkey), pork, turkey, salmon, snapper, Yellowfin tuna. It occurs highest in meats, salmon, wholegrain products, legumes, eggs, vegetables, bananas and nuts (Gropper, S, Smith, J & Groff, J, 2009, pp. 364-365).

  1. Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)

A powerful antioxidant and more is used in times of stress by the adrenal glands. It is enhances the integrity of connective tissue, collagen & skin tissue formation and promotes healing processes.  It has anti-histamine properties, is required for blood, cell, bone and teeth growth, and detoxes some heavy metals. It improves immunity and sperm motility. As it is excreted daily and therefore replenishing is needed on an on-going basis. Yes, there are different forms; the one most complementary therapists recommend are the buffered form (less acidic on digestion).

Vitamin C is found

Blackcurrant, broccoli, brussel sprouts, citrus fruits – lemon, lime, oranges, guava, parsley, capsicum and peppers, rosehips, strawberries, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, kale, garden cress, mustard greens, kiwi fruit, papayas (paw paw), parsley, peaches, pineapple, potatoes, strawberries, sweet potatoes and thyme are all rich in Vitamin C.

  1. Why Betaine and Choline? What are the foods?

These are important to the methylation process, for liver & gall bladder health and homocysteine.

High Choline Foods (Highest to lowest)


  • Eggs
  • Beef Grass Fed
  • Sardines
  • Turkey
  • Broccoli
  • Yoghurt
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Chicken
  • Cabbage

High Betaine Foods (Highest to lowest)

  • Beetroot
  • Beef Grass Fed
  • Chicken
  • Cabbage
  1. Glutathione

The master antioxidant helping to reduce cellular stresses of the body. Several foods and supplements can assist in boosting glutathione levels. Increasing demand on the body occurs with stress, inflammation, aging, immune dysfunction, low protein intake, pollution and oxidative stress, ulcers, excessive exercise, smoking and alcohol.Your genes are not your destiny

The amount required from food on a daily basis may be small (100-150 mg) however think about the bombardment on our bodies on a daily basis coupled with potential genetic SNPS and your demand increases.

A healthy adult has about 10g of glutathione circulating in the body tissues. Thus, dietary intake comprises only 1-1.5% of circulating GSH (Klein, 2008-2017).

Foods that contain glutathione include

Avocados, asparagus, garlic, walnuts, whey protein, eggs, spinach, broccoli, cantoloupe, tomato, carrot, zucchini, strawberry, watermelon, paw paw, lemon, cauliflower and mango (Klein, 2008-2017).

Karen Green – Fully Qualified Naturopath, Nutritionist, Herbalist

Gaining Health Naturally Naturopathy Brisbane, Sunshine Coast Qld

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