Women are not getting enough of folic acid during pregnancy, revealed a new study.
Though the Food Standards Agency has recommended that folic acid be added to bread and flour, the US government is mulling over it. In a study published in the British Medical Journal
experts from the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) have reported that adding folic acid supplements in bread making will help women during pregnancy and prevent birth defects like spina bifida or Neural tube defects.
‘Intake of 400 micrograms of folic acid supplement daily will help women during pregnancy and prevent birth defects.’
Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England (PHE), said: "Implementing SACN's advice to add folic acid to flour would reduce the risk of birth defects, such as spina bifida, in pregnancy. PHE's analysis shows that 85 per cent of 16 to 49-year-old women have folic acid levels below the new World Health Organisation recommendation for women entering pregnancy."
He added, "This highlights the importance for pregnant women, and those trying or likely to get pregnant, of taking a daily folic acid supplement of 400 micrograms - before and up to the 12th week of pregnancy."