Importance of Folate

Folate, also known as vitamin B9, is an essential nutrient that plays several important roles in the body. It is especially important during pregnancy for the development of the fetus.

Folate is important for the production and maintenance of new cells in the body. It is required for the synthesis of DNA, RNA, and proteins, which are essential for cell division and growth. Folate is also necessary for the formation of red blood cells, which carry oxygen throughout the body.

During pregnancy, folate is especially important for the development of the neural tube, which eventually develops into the brain and spinal cord of the fetus. Adequate folate intake during pregnancy can help reduce the risk of neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.

Folate is also important for the proper functioning of the nervous system. It helps support the production of neurotransmitters, which are chemicals that transmit signals between nerve cells. Folate deficiency has been linked to depression, cognitive decline, and other neurological problems.

Good dietary sources of folate include leafy green vegetables, citrus fruits, beans, and fortified cereals. It is also found in supplements and is often added to fortified foods. The recommended daily intake of folate is 400 micrograms for adults, and pregnant women are advised to consume 600-800 micrograms per day.

Related posts