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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A food industry perspective on folic acid fortification.

The U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) has recommended that all women of childbearing years, capable of becoming pregnant, consume 400 micrograms folic acid/d to reduce their risk of having a neural tube defect (NTD)-affected pregnancy. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration subsequently proposed a folate fortification scheme for cereal grains, which also allowed the continued fortification of breakfast cereals at 0.1 mg per serving. To determine the contribution of ready-to-eat breakfast cereals (RTEC) to folate intakes in women of childbearing years, data were analyzed from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 1989-1991 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals and 1987-1988 Nationwide Food Consumption Survey. Women consuming RTEC have higher intakes of folate than women reporting no RTEC consumption. Recent reports indicate that most women are unaware of the PHS recommendation to consume more folate, and many health professionals are not advising women of the need to consume adequate folate during childbearing years. The food industry has been an effective communicator of health and nutrition messages and should be encouraged to raise awareness about the role of folate in NTDs. Better analysis also needs to be conducted to identify women at risk of low folate intakes, so that targeted education efforts can be made and appropriate vehicles identified for delivering folate to these women.[1]


  1. A food industry perspective on folic acid fortification. Schaller, D.R., Olson, B.H. J. Nutr. (1996) [Pubmed]
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