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Health Tip: Why Take Folic Acid?

(HealthDay News) -- Folic acid is a type of B vitamin that's found naturally in foods including leafy vegetables and citrus fruits.

While you're pregnant, it's important to get plenty of folic acid to help prevent birth defects.

Here's advice from the Nemours Foundation:

  • Women need 400 micrograms of folic acid daily during preconception and during pregnancy to help reduce the risk of neural tube defects (defects of the brain and spine).

  • If you don't get enough folic acid in the foods you eat, take a folic acid supplement on the advice of your doctor.

  • Getting enough folic acid is especially important for women who have already had a child born with a neural tube defect.

Online Medical Reviewer: Louise Akin, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith, RN, MSN, FNP, CCRC
Last Review Date: 7/5/2013
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