Can deplin be taken without an antidepressant? (+3 facts)

This article will shed light upon the use of Deplin with or without an antidepressant. In this article, we will be discussing the important uses of deplin in conditions other than treating depression. Some common side effects of using deplin will also be discussed in the given article. 

Can Deplin be taken without an antidepressant? 

Yes, Deplin can be used without an antidepressant. Deplin is also prescribed for the treatment of many other conditions associated with low levels of folic acid in the blood such as anemia and pregnancy. Many schizophrenic patients are also given deplin as an adjunctive therapy.

Deplin is used as an adjunctive antidepressive treatment, particularly for patients with folate deficiency.   

What are the conditions for which Deplin is prescribed?

Folate deficiency and depression have a direct link with each other. L-methyl folate is an active form of folate that serves as a co-factor in the production of many brain chemicals. Reduced levels of these neurotransmitters lead to altered brain chemistry and cause depressive episodes (1). 

Deplin is also given to schizophrenic patients to overcome underlying deficiencies. These patients are also prescribed deplin as an adjunctive therapy to treat schizophrenia. Such patients commonly suffer from low blood folate levels for which deplin is prescribed. Research shows improved clinical outcomes in such patients after the use of deplin as an adjunctive treatment in schizophrenia (2). 

Another common use of deplin is for dietary deficiencies in pregnant women and anaemic patients. Due to insufficient nutritional diet in child-bearing women, the deficiency of folic acid leads to serious complications in the mother and the fetus. To overcome such nutritional deficiencies and further complications, pregnant and anaemic patients are prescribed deplin to produce an adequate amount of folate in their bodies (4).  

How does Deplin help in treating depression?

Deplin (L-methylfolate) is a prescribed medical food that easily crosses the blood-brain barrier and enhances the production of certain chemicals in the brain making it more responsive to neurotransmitters such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin (1).  

An adequate amount of folate in the diet or additionally added as a supplement helps in producing a sufficient amount of these brain chemicals. Therefore, the addition of deplin has clinically improved the symptoms of depression in patients with folate deficiency (3). 

In common words, deplin is not an antidepressant but helps in alleviating the symptoms of depression along with an antidepressant. 

What are the common side effects of Deplin?

Before initiating deplin, it is necessary to consult your prescriber and inform them regarding your allergies as severe allergic reactions are potential adverse effects of using deplin.

Some common side effects reported with the use of Deplin include (5): 

  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Allergic reaction
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Swelling of face, tongue, and throat
  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Gastrointestinal issues
  • Loss of appetite

Additionally, folate deficiency in many patients can lead to various symptoms based on their age, race, gender, and diet. Many patients face weight loss or gain based on their metabolism and other factors that need to be openly discussed with the prescriber. 

How to use Deplin?

To start using deplin for any health condition, you need to consult your prescriber first. For adjunctive treatment of depression, the adult dose of deplin is 7.5-15mg once orally along with a prescribed antidepressant. Serious potential side effects can occur with the overdose of deplin (5). 

 Different patients may respond differently to the use of deplin, therefore, proper monitoring of side effects is very necessary. In case of any side effects, immediately contact your prescriber and inform them about your health condition. 


In this article, we have discussed the conditions in which deplin can be used without an antidepressant. We have shed light on the relationship between folate deficiency, and depression along with its relation with using Deplin. The potential advantages and side effects of its use have also been mentioned in the above article. 


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Marian W. Roman & Fay H. Bembry (2011) L-Methylfolate (Deplin®): A New Medical Food Therapy as Adjunctive Treatment for Depression, Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 32:2, 142-143.


Roffman JL, Petruzzi LJ, Tanner AS, Brown HE, Eryilmaz H, Ho NF, Giegold M, Silverstein NJ, Bottiglieri T, Manoach DS, Smoller JW, Henderson DC, Goff DC. Biochemical, physiological and clinical effects of l-methylfolate in schizophrenia: a randomized controlled trial. Mol Psychiatry. 2018 Feb;23(2):316-322. doi: 10.1038/mp.2017.41. Epub 2017 Mar 14. PMID: 28289280; PMCID: PMC5599314.


Shelton RC, Sloan Manning J, Barrentine LW, Tipa EV. Assessing Effects of l-Methylfolate in Depression Management: Results of a Real-World Patient Experience Trial. Prim Care Companion CNS Disord. 2013;15(4):PCC.13m01520. doi: 10.4088/PCC.13m01520. Epub 2013 Aug 29. PMID: 24392264; PMCID: PMC3869616.


Greenberg JA, Bell SJ. Multivitamin Supplementation During Pregnancy: Emphasis on Folic Acid and l-Methylfolate. Rev Obstet Gynecol. 2011;4(3-4):126-7. PMID: 22229066; PMCID: PMC3250974.


Sarfaroj K. L-Methylfolate. 2022. Medicinenet.

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