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Why is folic acid important? 

Everyone needs folic acid to help promote healthy growth of new cells, but it is of particular importance for women of childbearing age.

Adequate amounts of folic acid before and after pregnancy can greatly decrease the risk of certain birth defects in the brain and spine. Because developing fetuses need folic acid, women should take 400mcg of folic acid up to a month before becoming pregnant and throughout pregnancy.

Most multivitamins and folic acid supplements contain 100 percent of a daily value of folic acid, but always check the label to be sure.

For more information on how to have a healthy pregnancy or to schedule an appointment with an East Jefferson General Hospital OB/GYN call HealthFinder at (504)-456-5000 or visit Woman and Child Services online at www.ejgh.org.

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