Folic acid or folate is commonly referred to as the “pregnancy superhero”. Folic acid is a synthetic form of vitamin B9. Its functions include the production of new cells, generation of nucleic acid. It is monumental for the development of the baby and facilitates production of red blood cells, child’s organ development and protects the baby’s ability to hear.
Here are 10 health benefits of folic acid during pregnancy
1. Prevents neural tube defects
The foetus has a neural tube. It later develops into the baby’s brain and spinal cord. This vital tube is protected by folic acid. It also protects any prenatal defects in the formation of the central nervous system.
2. Produces red blood cells
Folic acid facilitates the production of red blood cells. This helps in preventing anaemia during pregnancy.
3. Protects baby from delivery complications
Folic acid reduces the risk of premature birth, miscarriage, poor baby growth, and other complications. It also deals with low birth weight problems.
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4. Protects the pregnant woman
It protects the expectant mother from heart stroke, heart disease, cancers, and Alzheimer’s disease.
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5. Development of the baby
Folic acid helps in the proper growth of the baby and facilitates the development of the placenta.
6. Prevents left clip and plate
If taken during pregnancy, folic acid also helps your baby against left clip and palate.
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7. Folic acid also helps prevent premature birth
It is likely that Folic acid prevents malfunctions of the genes which cause preterm labour.
8. Prevents miscarriages
Although little research has been done on this, folate deficiency is said to cause problems in the embryo, which may lead to a miscarriage.
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9. Prevents gestational diabetes
It helps regulate blood sugars and prevents gestational diabetes.
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10. Lowers the chances of birth defects in babies
It is said that folic acid can reduce brain and spinal cord defects by more than 70 percent. The most common birth defect is when the spinal cord fails to close properly.