Folic Acid May Benefit Sexual Function in Postmenopausal Women

Folic Acid May Benefit Sexual Function in Postmenopausal Women

Postmenopausal women often face sexual dysfunction, which can have a big impact on their quality of life. There are several different treatment options available (depending on the type and cause of sexual dysfunction) including hormonal and non-hormonal therapy, personal lubricants, sex therapy, and pelvic floor physical therapy.

Nevertheless, exploring other potential treatment options is a worthwhile pursuit, and a recent study explored the potential of folic acid to improve sexual function in postmenopausal women.

Folic acid is a safe and affordable supplement, and previous research has shown that it has benefits such as reducing hot flashes and improving endothelial dysfunction (the dysfunction of the inner lining of the blood vessels). It has been used to support men’s sexual functioning, but no study has looked at the effect of folic acid on female sexual functioning until now.

A total of 100 postmenopausal women participated in this triple-blind randomized controlled trial in Tehran, Iran, in 2020. All the participants were sexually active, had been postmenopausal for 1 to 10 years, and had no folic acid deficiency or anemia.

The participants were then randomly assigned to one of two groups: the folic acid group or the placebo group. Those in the folic acid group were instructed to take 5 mg of folic acid once a day on an empty stomach for 8 weeks. The women in the placebo group followed the same procedure with a 5 mg placebo pill.

Sexual functioning was measured for all participants at baseline, 4 weeks posttreatment, and 8 weeks posttreatment with the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI). The FSFI is a 19-item questionnaire that covers various aspects of female sexual function, including desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction, and pain during sexual activity.

In the end, the women in the folic acid group showed significant improvements in sexual function, including desire, orgasm, satisfaction, arousal, pain, and overall sexual function, compared to the women in the placebo group posttreatment.

However, lubrication did not show a significant difference between the two groups over time. No negative side effects were reported by women from either group.

The results of this study suggest that folic acid may positively impact postmenopausal women’s sexual functioning without adverse effects. This is encouraging because folic acid could be a safe and affordable option for enhancing sexual function in postmenopausal women. Nonetheless, it should not be viewed as a standalone option, and other strategies for improving sexual function in postmenopausal women should also be implemented.


  • Asadi, M., Riazi, H., Abbasinazari, M., Majd, H. A., & Montazeri, A. (2023). Effect of folic acid on the sexual function of postmenopausal women: a triple-blind randomized controlled trial. The Journal of Sexual Medicine20(9), 1180-1187.

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