The Importance of Folic Acid in the First Trimester of Pregnancy

iting time! It’s hardly surprising that your imagination starts to run away with you. Will you have a boy or girl? What if it’s twins? Who will they take after? The questions in your mind are probably endless. But one thing that you must stop and think about is how to ensure that your body gets the best support and nutrition. While good quality nutrition is important for all of us, it’s essential for expectant mothers and those who are trying to conceive so that you can give your baby the best start in life. 

To ensure that you get the right nutrients and vitamins prior to conception and during your pregnancy, you may want to consider taking supplements, including those containing folic acid. Why? Let’s explain a bit more about the importance of folic acid in the first trimester of pregnancy. 

What Is Folic Acid? 

You’ve probably heard of folic acid but you may not be sure what it is and why it’s important to get enough both prior to conception and during the first three months of pregnancy. Put simply, folic acid is the manufactured form of B vitamin folate that can be added to foodstuffs and supplements. In addition to eating high-folate foods such as citrus fruits, nuts, leafy and dark green vegetables and legumes, taking a folic acid supplement will ensure you are getting adequate amounts, especially as naturally occurring folate is easily damaged during the cooking process. 

Why Take Folic Acid? 

Folic acid is essential for healthy bodily growth and development in humans and is used by the body to produce DNA. It’s particularly important for pregnant women to have enough folic acid as it plays an important role in the growth of your baby’s nervous system during the first few months of pregnancy. It’s vital for healthy growth of the neural tube that develops into your baby’s brain and spinal cord during the first four to six weeks after conception.

Taking a folic acid supplement prior to conception and in the first few weeks of pregnancy will reduce the likelihood of your baby developing a neural tube defect, such as paralysis of the legs and loss of bladder and bowel control. 

How Much Folic Acid Do You Need?

Folic acid is safe when taken orally and at appropriate doses and supplements containing at least 400 micrograms of folic acid can be taken on a daily basis. If you do take too much, it will be excreted via your urine. 

When Should You Start Taking Folic Acid?

Ideally you should take a folic acid supplement from 3 months before you conceive and through the first trimester of pregnancy. We also recommend that you add folate-containing foods to your diet too. However, we know that often pregnancies are unplanned so there is a case for saying that all women of child bearing age should consider taking it, especially as you may not be aware that you’re pregnant while the neural tube is developing. 

Choose a Supplement Specially Formulated For The First Trimester Of Pregnancy

Your body goes through significant changes during pregnancy. So it’s never too soon to give it the proper nutrients it needs to stay strong and healthy and provide your baby with the optimal environment for development. 

To support your body prior to conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy, NutraCare have created PregmaPlus+ 1, an Australian developed, comprehensive multivitamin and mineral supplement. By taking PregmaPlus+ 1 daily, you’ll be giving your baby the best chance of being strong and healthy – after all, stronger mum makes  stronger baby.  Our PregmaPlus+ 1 formulation provides a whopping 805mcg of folic acid – the highest level of folic acid on the Australian market, plus it’s packed full of iodine, iron and 18 other essential vitamins and minerals. It’s also soluble in water, you don’t have to worry about taking tablets. As 30% of us have difficulty swallowing pills, this is a big bonus.

Pregnancy is such a special time but it can take a toll on your body. Maximise your strength and energy with PregmaPlus+ and enjoy this incredible, life-changing adventure to the full.

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