In order to help prevent birth defects, women need to get enough folic acid every day, even if they are not planning a pregnancy. About 4,000 babies are born with neural tube defects (NTDs) each year, and many other affected pregnancies end in miscarriage or stillbirth. This is especially necessary during both pregnancy and infancy when cell growth is extremely rapid. Both adults and children need folic acid to make normal red blood cells and to prevent anemia. According to one study, only 10% of women know that folic acid should be taken before pregnancy.
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Folic acid is rapidly absorbed from gastrointestinal tract following oral administration. Peak folate activity in blood is 30 to 60 minutes after oral administration. Folic acid is needed for the development of your baby’s spine and brain in the early weeks of pregnancy.
Folic acid is also required for the production of DNA, which is necessary for the rapid cell growth needed to make fetal tissues and organs early in pregnancy. That is why it is important for a woman to have enough folic acid in her body both before and during pregnancy. Folic acid is a B vitamin used by cells as they grow and divide. The naturally occurring form, folate, is found in spinach and leafy green vegetables, dried beans, liver and citrus fruits. A higher dose of 5,000 micrograms (5mg) of folic acid is recommended for women who have previously had a baby with a neural tube defect, or are taking medicine for epilepsy. If you have a family history of neural tube defects then you should also take the higher dose.
Also Read: Iron and Calcium in Pregnahttps://parentinghowto.com/iron-and-calcium-in-pregnancy/ncy
Folic acid is responsible for assuring an adequate supply of thymidylate. Thymidylate is one of four nucleotide bases needed to construct DNA molecules. Folic acid is needed during the first few weeks, often before a woman knows she is pregnant. That is why it is so important to start taking folic acid each day, even when you are not planning to get pregnant.
Folic acid is generally thought of as a “good” nutrient. Mothers who get enough folic acid before and during pregnancy have a far lower risk of having a baby with a spinal birth defect.