How to ensure youre getting enough folic acid
Over half of pregnancies are not planned, so whether you are planning to get pregnant or not, it is recommended that you take folic acid as a supplement every day, as well as maintaining a balanced healthy diet.
 
What is Folic Acid?
Folate is a B-Group vitamin that is essential for our bodies to make DNA and other genetic material.  Folic acid is a form of folate that is added to supplements and foods to enrich them. As folate cannot be stored in the body it's essential to ensure you are getting it either through your diet or supplements every day.
Folic acid is important for unborn babies as it helps develop the nervous system. It helps prevent Spina Bifida and other Neural Tube Defects. NTDs are birth defects of the brain, spinal cord and the spine. This can happen in the first month of pregnancy, often before you know you’re expecting. Folic acid also protects against other defects like cleft palate and lip.
 
How much do I need?
The recommended daily allowance is 400 micrograms per day, and for those who might get pregnant an extra 400 micrograms of folic acid supplement every day, alongside a healthy balanced diet.
 
How do I get it?
Folate is present in small amounts in many foods such as:
- broccoli
- brussels sprouts
- leafy green vegetables like cabbage, kale and spinach
- peas, beans and lentils including chickpeas
- some fresh fruits e.g. bananas and oranges
- wholegrain cereals, bread and rice
 
Folate is also present in foods fortified with folic acid.
 
However, it isn't possible for women to get the sufficient amount of folic acid from diet alone, which is why they need a supplement
 
Clonfolic has been specially developed to provide precisely the required amount of folic acid for all females capable of conceiving and is available from all good pharmacies nationwide. For more information visit www.clonfolic.ie
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