I was just reading a motherhood magazine and was surprised to know that about 60% of women have not heard of folic acid! When it comes to family planning, there's quite a number of things you need to know and folic acid is definitely one of the things on the list. If you’re pregnant or hoping to get pregnant, this post is just for you.
To put it simply, folic acid is a supplement that is most beneficial when taken months before pregnancy. Why that early, you may ask! Well, here is the part to get more scientific. Folic acid helps to prevent neural tube defects, of which relates to serious birth defect of the spinal cord (such as spina bifida) and the brain (such as anencephaly). This is particularly crucial in the early stages of pregnancy where major organs of your baby starts to develop. However, many a times we only realise that we’re pregnant when we miss our period, of which the baby would already be 1-5 weeks old. Hence, don’t wait to realise that you’re pregnant to start taking folic acid. Instead, it’s best if you can take folic acid months before you start trying to conceive.
Studies have also shown that women who take the recommended daily dose of folic acid starting at least one month before conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy reduce their baby's risk of birth defects. These defects can include cleft lip, cleft palate, certain types of heart defects, blood cell production and preeclampsia - a serious blood pressure disorder too!
So please go ahead and grab that folic acid of yours when you’re planning for a family! You can also buy it for someone who is planning to start a family. Do go around sharing this piece of knowledge with your girlfriends too :)
All 3 of us sisters will be sharing stories from our different perspectives. The good, the bad and the ugly, we're telling it as it is.