High doses of folic acid (vitamin B9) can lead to pregnancy problems, says a study from the McGill University. Folate reduces the chances of neural tube defects which later become the brain and spinal cord. It decreases the occurrences of birth defects like spina bifida (spinal cord protrudes through an opening in the bone.) Researchers studied the effects of high doses (about 8mg per day) of folic acid on pregnant mice and found that they experienced embryonic delay and growth retardation.
The daily recommendation of folic acid is 0.4mg 3months prior to conception and 3months after conception i.e. the first trimester.
Lead researcher, Ms. Rima Rozen said, “Just because a small amount of something is a good thing, doesn’t mean more is better.”