As many of us focus on healthier habits for 2017 women should add folic acid to the list.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends women who are planning, or able, to get pregnant take 400 to 800 micrograms of folic acid a day.
Studies show the supplement helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spine.
And because these defects develop very early in pregnancy, women need to have enough folic acid in their bodies before they conceive.
Leafy greens, broccoli and orange juice also contain folic acid but most women do not get enough through diet alone.
This study was led by researchers at US Preventive Services Task Force and published in 'JAMA.'