Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Folic Acid Recommendations Have Had Little Impact On Birth Defects

Date:
March 5, 2005
Source:
British Medical Journal
Summary:
Recommendations on use of folic acid consumption have had no detectable impact on the incidence of neural tube defects, according to an international study published on bmj.com.

February 17, 2005 -- Recommendations on use of folic acid consumption have had no detectable impact on the incidence of neural tube defects, according to an international study published on bmj.com today.

Related Articles


These results support a move towards food fortification in addition to recommending use of supplements.

Trials showed, more than a decade ago, that folic acid can reduce the occurrence of neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, by half or more. Since then, many countries have tried to promote use of folic acid, either by fortifying foods or, more often, by recommending the use of supplements.

Although studies have shown that fortification of flour is effective, the impact of recommendations alone is not known.

Researchers examined data from over 13 million births in Europe and Israel from 1988 to 1998. For each country, cases of neural tube defects were identified, and policies and recommendations regarding folic acid were ascertained.

Recommendations alone did not seem to influence trends in neural tube defects, despite the proved effectiveness of folic acid. The authors estimate that thousands of pregnancies that would otherwise have been healthy were affected by neural tube defects in the study area alone since 1992.

The most likely explanation for these results is that recommendations were not implemented widely enough to produce a sustained change in behaviour in a sufficiently large proportion of women to cause measurable effects, say the authors.

These findings underscore the ongoing missed opportunities for prevention. In addition to recommending use of supplements, public health agencies and medical professionals should strongly consider implementing food fortification programmes, they conclude.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

British Medical Journal. "Folic Acid Recommendations Have Had Little Impact On Birth Defects." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 March 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050223141748.htm>.
British Medical Journal. (2005, March 5). Folic Acid Recommendations Have Had Little Impact On Birth Defects. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050223141748.htm
British Medical Journal. "Folic Acid Recommendations Have Had Little Impact On Birth Defects." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050223141748.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins