For more than two decades, folic acid supplementation has been an essential component of pre-pregnancy and early pregnancy care across the world. Folic acid supplements reduce the risk of fetal neural tube defects, and a decline in incidence of such defects following food fortification with folic acid has been a public health success story in many countries. Recent evidence has shown that some group of women, such as those who are obese or taking certain medications, are at an increased risk of fetal neural tube anomalies and require a higher dose of periconceptional folic acid supplementation. Although concerns have been raised over the possible risk of cancer with increased folic acid intake, most data from large studies appear reassuring.
- Folic acid
- Neural tube defects