If you get at least 0.4 milligrams of this vitamin before you get pregnant and early in your pregnancy, your baby is much less likely to be born with serious defects like spina bifida. This is when the baby’s spine doesn’t close up properly.
You can get folic acid from leafy green vegetables, orange juice or whole grains and pulses. But if you’re trying to get pregnant – or if you find out you’re pregnant – even if you do eat a varied diet, it’s not easy to get enough of the vitamin just from your food.
This means it’s wise to start taking a folic acid tablet every day if you're trying to get pregnant. You can get them from chemist's or drug stores.