Folic Acid (Folate) - Information and Sources


Folic acid is a B vitamin and is necessary for healthy red blood cells. It has also been shown to help prevent neural tube defects (e.g. spina bifida) in pregnancy

Foods rich in folic acid include:

  • Liver (not to be eaten during pregnancy)
  • Leafy green vegetables, especially broccoli, spinach, dark green (Savoy) cabbage
  • Runner and French beans
  • Peanuts, hazel nuts
  • Bread, wholemeal or white
  • Rice
  • Oranges, bananas
  • Yeast extract e.g. Marmite, Vegemite
  • Fortified breakfast cereals, e.g. Cornflakes, All Bran, Rice Krispies, Weetabix, Bran Flakes

However as folic acid is easily lost from foods during cooking:

  • Cook vegetables in the smallest amount of boiling water needed
  • Cook for as short a time as possible
  • Eat foods shortly after cooking – do not keep warm for long periods after heating