Benefits of folic acid, Your body undergoes many changes while you are pregnant. As your body gradually adapts to having a developing kid inside of you, physical and hormonal changes are probably the most noticeable. It is more important than ever to be eating the right foods and obtaining the right amount of vitamins that you and your baby require. However, folic acid, a component of one diet, plays a crucial role in the development of your child’s brain and spinal cord. All pregnant women should be aware of the following benefits of folic acid.
Folic acid: What is it?
Folic acid is a synthetic form of B vitamin folate. Folic acid is converted to folate once inside the frame.
Dark green vegetables and citrus fruits include naturally occurring folate, whereas fortified cereals and other foods typically contain synthetic folic acid. Everyone should take the benefits of folic acid, but pregnant women and those trying to become pregnant need it more than anybody else.
The Benefits of Folic Acid during Pregnancy
Folic acid plays a crucial role in the development of cells and DNA inside the body since those cells develop into hair, nails, skin, and other body tissues. However, the benefits of folic acid for a developing fetus include reducing the likelihood of following birth defects:
It can help prevent spina bifida and anencephaly for you.
A neural tube disorder called spina bifida develops when the spinal column of an unborn child does not completely close at some point during development inside the womb, leaving it exposed. The nerves that control the legs and other organs will consequently no longer function properly. Additionally, this may result in several conditions, such as learning challenges, bladder and bowel control issues, partial or total paralysis, and more.
Anencephaly is a different neural tube disorder connected to a folic acid deficiency at some point during pregnancy. A baby born with anencephaly is severely handicapped at birth and lacks parts of the brain, skull, and scalp.
As a result, the baby will be born without the cerebrum and frontal lobe of the brain, which are responsible for thinking and planning.
The best news is that you can prevent these neural tube defects by talking about the benefits of folic acid supplements (400 mcg) daily, preferably before and during pregnancy, which can help prevent them from occurring.
It might help you avoid having a cleft lip and palate. The facial and oral abnormalities of cleft lip and cleft palate can develop at any point in the first trimester of pregnancy. These abnormalities develop when there is insufficient tissue in the mouth or lip region, or when the tissue in those areas does not integrate properly.
While the benefits of folic acid is well known for helping to prevent the aforementioned birth abnormalities, studies have also shown that folic acid can reduce the risk of the following when taken daily:
- Premature start
- Little starting weight
- Unhealthy boom inside the womb
- Obstetrical complications
Folic acid has also been found to contribute to reducing the following hazards for mothers:
- Heart disease
- certain types of cancer
- The disease of Alzheimer’s
When do you have to start taking it?
Folic acid must be taken by all girls who want to get pregnant or are already expecting it. Make sure you start taking the benefits of folic acid as soon as you find out you’re pregnant if you weren’t able to before becoming pregnant. However, doctors advise taking folic acid tablets 3 months before trying to conceive and continuing to take it up until your twelfth week of pregnancy, at the very least, to receive the most benefit from it. This is because, throughout the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, your baby’s backbone is developing.
How much must you be consuming?
The doctor advises pregnant women to take 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid each day at the very least. The recommended dose of folic acid can be increased to 500 mcg up until the twelfth week of pregnancy if there is a higher likelihood of having a pregnancy that is terminated due to neural tube abnormalities.
In addition, if any of the following apply to you, you may be at higher risk:
- You or the baby’s dad have a condition affecting the neural tube.
- You or the child’s father have a family history of neural tube problems.
- You gave birth to a child who had a neural tube disorder.
- You’re diabetic.
- You are taking medication for inflammatory bowel disease, type 2 diabetes, lupus, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, or epilepsy.
- You are receiving dialysis because of renal disease.
- You have sickle cell disease.
- Your liver is unwell.
- You consume a few alcoholic beverages during the day.
- You should let your doctor know if you think there may be a risk that your child will develop a neural tube disorder so they can recommend a higher dose of folic acid for you. At some point during the pregnancy, the doctor may also order additional screening tests to rule out the possibility of neural tube problems.