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How much folic acid should a pregnant woman get every day?

Pregnant women should get 600 micrograms (mcg) of folate (or folic acid, the synthetic form of folate) every day, from fortified foods or supplements.

But women shouldn’t wait until they are pregnant to make sure they are getting enough folate. Every woman of childbearing age should get 400 mcg of folate, from folate-rich foods, fortified foods, a supplement or a combination.

Getting adequate folate can help prevent common birth defects, especially neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.