My healthy pregnancy

Folic acid (vitamin B9)

Folic acid is best known for preventing neural tube defects, but it also plays a vital role in the formation of the nervous system, brain, cells and new tissues. Essentially all of the building blocks! This is why the embryo needs it from day 1 and even 2 to 3 months before conception.


0.4 mg to 1 mg a day.

However, a doctor, or your pharmacist, may prescribe a 4 or 5 mg daily folic acid supplement if you have certain risk factors or take certain medications. Talk to your health professional to learn more.

Foods rich in folic acid

Count on the colours! Dark green vegetables are excellent natural sources of folic acid (spinach, broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, etc.), as is orange fruit (oranges, mandarins, cantaloupe, etc.).

Legumes such as kidney beans, chick peas and lentils are also good options. As well, in Canada and the United States, all flour and pasta are enriched with folic acid (so, the beautiful pasta brought back straight from Italy by your mother-in-law is not a source of folic acid!).

When should I take a supplement?

Doctors recommend that you begin taking folic acid three months before a pregnancy and continue to do so until you have finished breastfeeding.

This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice and Accès pharma affiliated pharmacist-owners cannot be held responsible for this information. The information was true and accurate at the time of publication, but it is subject to change.

Latest articles

Subscribe to your Accès pharma pharmacist's newsletter

Subscribe to your pharmacist's newsletter to take advantage of his advice and offers.