Folic Acid

What is Folic Acid?

Folic (FOH-lik) acid is a B vitamin. It helps the body make healthy new cells. “Folic acid” and “folate” mean the same thing. Folic acid is a manmade form of folate. Folate is found naturally in some foods. Most women do not get all the folic acid they need through food alone.

Facts at a Glance

  • 70,000 Americans live with Spina Bifida.
  • All women capable of becoming pregnant are at risk of having a child born with Spina Bifida.
  • Half of all pregnancies in the United Stated are unplanned.
  • Spina Bifida occurs during the first 28 days of pregnancy, before most women know they are pregnant.
  • Spina Bifida affects approximately 1 in every 1,000 births in the United States.
  • Women who have already had a Spina Bifida affected pregnancy are 20 times more likely to have another affected pregnancy.
  • Spina Bifida and Anancephaly are the most common preventable birth defects.
  • If all women of childbearing age were to consume .04 mg of folic acid prior to becoming pregnant and throughout the first trimester, the incidence of Spina Bifida could be reduced by up to 70%.
  • Most importantly, it is recommended that all women between the ages of 15 and 44 should be taking 400mcg of folic acid, regardless of whether they are planning on becoming pregnant or not.

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During 2014 over 1500 women took the SBTX Folic Acid Quiz at the Bridal Extravaganza .  They learned the importance of folic acid in their daily diets and received free HEB multivitamins to get them started on the right path.