A U.S. research shows a significant effect of folic acid intake during pregnancy. These effects include kids that are smarter, more organized and better fine motor skills compared to kids whose mothers’ folic acid intake is nil. Such is the case of the children in Nepal.

These findings are essential to make it a point to include folic acid supplements in pregnant women’s basic prenatal care, especially those in poor communities, of which there is rampant deficiency in iron.

Iron deficiency is considered to be the most common and widespread nutritional disorder in the world, affecting 2 billion people, according to the World Health Organization.

Iron is a mineral with a very vital role in the development of the CNS or the central nervous system. This was relayed by Paul Christian, an expert in international health at the John Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, whose study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Lack of iron during pregnancy compromises the development of the nerves, as well as biochemistry and metabolism, which in turn affects not only the fine motor development, but also intellectual development.

The study which was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, reveals the realization on the important role of folic acid and iron during pregnancy, the inclusion of such practice in the prenatal care of pregnant women, and the fact that even the poor communities can avail of such service since it is of relatively low cost.