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The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is encouraging women to make sure they take in 400 micrograms of folic acid each day. This week is National Folic Acid Awareness Week and the CDC has taken this opportunity to make more women aware of the benefits of folic acid. Folic acid is a B vitamin the has been shown to prevent birth defects. The National Council on Folic Acid estimates that up to 70 percent of birth defects could be prevented if women of childbearing age would have adequate amounts of folic acid before and during pregnancy.

By protecting neurons important for learning and memory, folic acid may also help to prevent Alzheimer’s, and new research suggests its deficiency may make people more susceptible to Parkinson’s said the Council.

The Center has also suggested that folic acid may decrease the occurance of cardiovascular disease and cancers of the colon, cervix, and breast.

The CDC recommends taking daily multi-vitamins which contain folic acid or an individual folic acid supplement. Making folic acid intake part of you daily routine could be one the easiest and most beneficial things that a woman can do for her health.

For more information on this subject, please refer to our section on Drugs, Medical Devices and Implants.

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