Why do I need vitamin B9 during my pregnancy?

Folic acid is very important for all women who may become pregnant. Folate coenzymes play a vital role in DNA metabolism and synthesis. Pregnancy results in increased rates of cell division and metabolism, causing an increase in the body's demand for folate. Additionally, adequate folate intake during the time just before and just after a woman becomes pregnant protects against neural tube defects. Neural tube defects result in malformations of the spine (spina bifida), skull, and brain (anencephaly). The risk of neural tube defects is significantly reduced when supplemental folic acid is consumed in addition to a healthful diet prior to and during the first month following conception. Health experts recommend women take 400mcg of supplemental folic acid in addition to a healthy pregnancy diet.
Vitamin B9, also known as folic acid, can prevent a number of birth defects during the first few months of your pregnancy. To ensure that you get enough vitamin B9 in your diet, talk to your doctor about diet and taking a prenatal vitamin that contains this nutrient.

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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.