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iVillage.com: Fact or Fiction? 12 Vitamin Questions Answered

Fact or Fiction? You Should Start Taking Folic Acid When You Get Pregnant

Fiction: Folic acid can help prevent certain birth defects, but you need to start taking it before you get pregnant and during the early weeks of pregnancy. Folic acid is a B vitamin that helps a baby’s neural tube, which becomes the brain and spinal cord, develop properly. If you're not taking it, it could lead to neural tube defects. Take a multivitamin with 400 micrograms of folic acid before you start trying to get pregnant, and then switch to a prenatal vitamin with 600 micrograms of folic acid once you are.

(M. Teijeiro/OJO Images/Getty Images)
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