EFSA Approves Folate Claim for Neural Tube Defects

August 5, 2013

Panel also issues dosage recommendations.

The EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition, and Allergies has decreed that there is sufficient scientific evidence to support the benefit of maternal folate supplementation as it relates to reducing the risk of neural tube defects in infants. In addition, the panel recommended a daily dose of 400 μg of folate for at least one month before and up to three months after conception.

The decision came as the result of a filing from Rank Nutrition Ltd. (Kent, UK), an independent nutrition science consultancy.

The EFSA decision comes some 15 years after the U.S. FDA’s recognition of the connection between folate supplementation and neural tube defects and the subsequent fortification of grain-based products with folic acid-a move that contributed to the reduction of American neural tube birth defects by about 36% (Centers for Disease Control).

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