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Folic acid

Why do you need folic acid?
Folic acid is essential for the growth and reproduction of all body cells and for the formation of red blood cells. It is of special importance in pregnancy and its deficiency results in neural defects in the baby.

What are the sources of folic acid?
Green leafy vegetables (eg turnip greens, spinach, butter, lettuce), broccoli, asparagus, tomatoes, fruits (eg oranges), lentils, kidney, navy, or pinto beans, soybeans, green peas, liver, whole grain, sunflower seeds, peanuts are good sources of folic acid.

How much folic acid do you need?

Age/Life Stage

Males(mcg/d)

Females(mcg/d)

Children

 

1-3 years

80

80

4-6 years

100

100

7-9 years

120

120

Adoloscents

10-12 years

140

140

13-15 years

150

150

16-17 years

200

200

Adult sedentary

200

200

Pregnancy

NA

500

Lactation

NA

300

(ICMR,2010)

Folic Acid is a water soluble vitamin thus it dissolves in water and is not stored, which means we need a continuous supply of Folic Acid in our diets.