Folic Acid Awareness Week, observed in January and sponsored by the National Birth Defects Prevention Network, is a time to increase awareness about the role of folic acid. Folic acid is a B-vitamin that is necessary for proper cell growth. If taken before and during early pregnancy, folic acid can prevent up to 70% of some serious birth defects of the brain and spine, called neural tube defects.
Folic Acid Awareness Week, sponsored by the National Birth Defects Prevention Network, highlights that the CDC and the U.S. Public Health Service recommend that all women between the ages of 15 and 45 consume 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid daily to prevent two types of neural tube defects, spina bifida and anencephaly. Since these birth defects develop within the first few weeks of pregnancy, it is important to have enough folic acid in your body BEFORE becoming pregnant and to continue getting enough folic acid during early pregnancy. Women need folic acid even if they are not planning to become pregnant since almost half of all pregnancies in the United States are unplanned.
Folic Acid Awareness Week Sponsor:
National Birth Defects Prevention Network
To learn more, visit https://www.nbdpn.org/faaw.php