Document Detail

Folate intakes and awareness of folate to prevent neural tube defects: a survey of women living in Vancouver, Canada.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12589323     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: To estimate folate intake and knowledge in women of childbearing age, in relation to risk of neural tube defects. SUBJECTS/SETTING: One hundred forty-eight women (aged 18 to 45 years) in the Vancouver area of British Columbia, Canada. DESIGN: Using an interviewer-administered survey, we examined women for folate knowledge and the relation of folate knowledge to intake in a random sample. Contribution of folate from food, fortified grain products, and supplements was assessed by validated semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS PERFORMED: Descriptive statistics, t tests, Chi;(2), Pearson correlation analysis. RESULTS: Mean daily folate intake from food, fortified foods, and supplementation was 812+/-710 Dietary Folate Equivalents (DFE)/day. Fortification of bread and grain products contributed 104+/-68 microg synthetic folic acid (SFA)/day (equal to 174+/-114 DFE), and supplements contributed 205+/-388 microg SFA/day. Although 86% of women met the Estimated Average Requirement (320 DFE/day) for folate, only 26% met the recommendation (400 microg SFA/day) for women capable of becoming pregnant. Most (95%) of the women had heard of folate, but only 25% knew that it could prevent birth defects. One-fourth of the women had good or very good knowledge of folate-rich foods. However, folate knowledge was not related to its intake. The most common sources of folate information were magazines/newspapers, doctors, and television/radio. Lack of awareness of the importance of folate was the most common reason given for choosing not to use folic acid supplements before pregnancy. However, 78% of the women indicated that, with knowledge of the benefits of folate, they would use supplemental folic acid daily to reduce the risk of birth defects. APPLICATIONS/CONCLUSIONS: Educational strategies are required to increase folate awareness among women and to promote the benefits of periconceptional folic acid supplementation. Targeting physicians to educate women on the importance of folate could be a potentially successful route. J
Melissa R French; Susan I Barr; Ryna Levy-Milne
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of the American Dietetic Association     Volume:  103     ISSN:  0002-8223     ISO Abbreviation:  J Am Diet Assoc     Publication Date:  2003 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-02-17     Completed Date:  2003-03-25     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7503061     Medline TA:  J Am Diet Assoc     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  181-5     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Osteoporosis Research Program, Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, ON, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
British Columbia
Cross-Sectional Studies
Dietary Supplements
Folic Acid / administration & dosage*
Food, Fortified
Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
Health Promotion
Middle Aged
Neural Tube Defects / prevention & control*
Nutrition Policy
Nutrition Surveys
Nutritional Requirements
Preconception Care
Reg. No./Substance:
59-30-3/Folic Acid

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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