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Eat healthy folic acid

The Basics: Overview

Women of childbearing age (typically ages 11 to 49) need an extra 400 to 800 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day. Folic acid is found in vitamins and foods like breakfast cereal or bread that have folic acid added.

Why is folic acid important?
Everyone needs folic acid, but it’s especially important for women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant. Folic acid is a vitamin that can prevent birth defects.

Getting enough folic acid is important even when you aren’t planning to get pregnant. It’s needed during the first few weeks of pregnancy, often before a woman knows she’s pregnant.

Talk with your doctor about folic acid.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, your doctor can help you figure out how much folic acid is right for you. You may need more than 400 mcg folic acid if you have a health condition or are taking certain medicines.



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