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5 Things to Know about Folic Acid

You’ve heard about folic acid, but do you know how it benefits you? Find out here:

  1. Folic acid is the essential vitamin for every woman who’s capable of having a baby.
  1. It’s essential because it can greatly reduce your risk of having a baby with serious birth defects of the brain or spine known as neural tube defects. 
  1. A woman has to consume folic acid before she is pregnant for it to work!  These serious birth defects happen in the early days and weeks after conception -- often before a woman knows she’s pregnant.
  1. All women of childbearing age should take a multivitamin containing folic acid every day, AND eat foods that are fortified with folic acid, such as enriched grain products.  Also try to include foods that are naturally high in folic acid in your diet, such as leafy green vegetables and orange juice.
  1. Neural tube defects affect approximately 3,000 pregnancies each year in the United States.  Up to 70 percent of neural tube defects could be prevented if women of child-bearing age consumed folic acid daily.

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