Health Professionals:

Folate and Requirements

The U.S. Public Health Service and the National Academy of Medicine (formerly known as the Institute of Medicine) recommend that all women of childbearing age consume 400 micrograms of folic acid every day, from a supplement or fortified foods, in addition to consuming food folate from a varied diet. This recommendation also applies to teenage and younger girls who have reached menses.

The U.S. Public Health Service recommends that women who have had a previous pregnancy affected by a neural tube defect should see their doctor because they may need a higher amount of folic acid (4 milligrams or 4000 micrograms) if planning another pregnancy. Women should not try to get extra folic acid by taking more than one multivitamin per day as this might lead to unhealthy intake levels of vitamins and minerals.

Health professional

Folic acid, the synthetic form of the vitamin, is more readily absorbed by the body compared to food folate, the natural form of the vitamin found in certain foods.

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