Folic Acid is also sometimes called Folate. It is so-named because the major food sources are leafy, green vegetables, (foliage). In recent years the medical world has established that a deficiency of Folic Acid during pregnancy, is a major contributing factor to birth abnormalities known as Neural Tube Defects, the most common of wich is Spina Bifida. Therefore, it is recommended that women of childbearing age, who are considering starting a family, commence supplementation a minimum of one month prior to conception and maintain this regime throughout the pregnancy. Many foods are now being fortified with Folic Acid, however it is a very sensitive vitamin and can be easily lost if exposed to heat or light. To ensure the stability of such unstable nutrients and ensure you receive the maximum potency, Nature's Own uses opaque packaging. Cooking or long periods of storage at room temperature can cause the potency of this vitamin to be diminished in foods. Alcohol, oral contraceptives and some antibiotics can also interfere with the absorption of Folic Acid. Folic Acid may help maintain normal blood. It contributes to maintenance and healing of tissues and the normal health of skin and hair.