Folic acid is a B vitamin. When taken before and early in pregnancy it helps prevent birth defects of nervous tissue, the brain and spinal cord. Some studies show it can also prevent miscarriage, stroke, autism, and certain cancers. Every fertile woman should take a multivitamin with 400 micrograms of folic acid before pregnancy as well as during early pregnancy. Women who have already had a pregnancy affected by a birth defect of the brain or spinal cord, or a child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) should take 4000 micrograms.
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Cell Signaling Pathways and Diabetic-Induced Birth Defects

Researchers from the University of Maryland may have found a new means of reducing diabetic-induced birth defects like none other. ... more »
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New Therapy Could Decrease the Risk of Diabetes Related Birth Defects

While she was pregnant, my friend developed gestational diabetes. She caught it early though, and through proper diet and monitoring she was able to deliver a healthy baby.  ... more »
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Are Over-the-Counter and Prescription Prenatal Vitamins the Same?

Walk through the vitamin aisle at any major retail or vitamin store and you are likely to see a prenatal vitamin. When I was pregnant with my children just 10 years ago prenatal vitamins were prescribed, not taken as over-the-counter supplements. ... more »
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Efforts to Reduce Spina Bifida and Other Birth Defects Are Working

Fortunately, the rate of birth defects in the United States has plummeted by 32 percent in the last decade according to a press release issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC. ... more »
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Are Women Aware of the Importance of Perinatal Folic Acid Intake?

Folic acid is important for optimal fetal development. Higher levels of folic acid in the body at the time of conception may reduce the risk of neural tube defects and other fetal complications. ... more »
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Dietary Folic Acid Intake Across Three Generations

Researchers from the University of Granada recently published a study in the journal Appetite revealing three generations worth of folic acid intake data establishing a legacy value for folic acid intake in southern Spain. ... more »
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Preconception Medications

As you step back from the medicine cabinet it hits you ' can I takethese same medications when I'm pregnant? How about before I conceive? ... more »
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Preconception Health for Women

Before heading out for an adventure at sea, ship captains must prepare the ship for the journey. The same can be said for pregnancy. Physical pregnancy may last 40 weeks or about nine months, but preparation for that journey starts months or years in advance. ... more »
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What to Expect When You’re Expecting to Expect

Everyone is worried about what to expect when they are expecting, but what should they expect when they are expecting to expect? The answer, fortunately, is far less confusing. ... more »
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Association Between Oxidized LDL and Folate During Pregnancy

Researchers from the University of Tokyo recently published a study in the journal Biological Research for Nursing on the possible connection between folic acid intake and oxidized LDL (low-density lipoprotein). ... more »

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