Folate is the form of this B vitamin found naturally in foods, whereas folic acid is the form found in supplements and fortified foods. The body converts folate to folic acid during digestion, and it then gets absorbed and used by the body. Because it doesn’t need to go through this conversion, folic acid in supplements and fortified food is more readily available to the body. To reflect this difference, folate and folic acid are usually expressed in terms of Dietary Folate Equivalents. The Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for folate for pregnant women is 600 micrograms of DFE and this is the amount found in most pregnancy multivitamins.
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