If you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant then you need to be eating a healthy diet rich in nutrients to ensure that you remain healthy through your pregnancy and your baby grows well.
A normal healthy diet should be consumed; you really don’t need to be eating double sized portions or “eating for two”, but you do need to ensure that you consume the most important vitamin for a mum-to-be – folic acid.
In 2009 the BBC reported that incidents of spina bifida were on the rise in Scotland and it was reported by the NHS that, “Folic acid has been shown to help prevent birth defects, such as spina bifida.” In addition they reported that, “the chance of having a baby with a neural tube defect is reduced by about 75% if women take supplements prior to conception and for the first two months of pregnancy”
What is Spina bifida,
Spina bifida is a birth defect that can cause problems such as learning difficulties, and other physical disabilities.
So how do you take folic acid and where do you find it,
You can absorb the natural folate vitamin direct from your food. You will find the richest sources in dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach, cabbage and lettuce. You can also find it in beans and peas.
If you’re not keen on dark greens then you should be taking a vitamin supplement of 400 micrograms a day.
If you or your partner has a genetic history of neural tube defects then you may need to be taking more and your GP can advise you on this.