Family physicians and OBGYNs encourage everyone to monitor their folic acid intake as there can be serious consequences from a deficiency, such as spina bifida. Birth defects like spina bifida are a leading cause of catheter use in adults and children.
Folic Acid Supplementation
Studies have shown that pregnant women who consume .4 mg of folic acid a day prior to and during the first trimester of their pregnancy can reduce their chances of spina bifida by up to 75%.
Folic acid intake is one easy way to safeguard against the possibility of spina bifida.
According to the National Council of Folic Acid, everyone, but pregnant women specifically, should make an effort to take folic acid every day. There are a variety of ways to do this.
- The easiest is to take a multi-vitamin that contains folic acid. Just remember to take a look at the label to make sure there’s at least .4 mg.
- Those who are unable to or don’t like swallowing pills can also take fortified cereals and breads. If you can, try to avoid those with sugar and a ton of processed ingredients.
- There are many natural sources of folic acid, including green veggies, fruits, and juices. An easy way to go about this is to make a morning smoothie complete with a leafy vegetable and fruit of some kind.
Birth defects aren’t always avoidable. However, if you’re of child-bearing age or plan on becoming pregnant, it’s important to take precautions to decrease chances of Spina Bifida.
If you have any questions, speak with your physician or OB/GYN before and during your pregnancy to discuss ways you can ensure you’re armed against a folic acid deficiency.
180 Medical specializes in catheterization products for men, women and children, and they are passionate about educating people on the importance of avoiding conditions that require catheterization.