Peri-conceptional folic acid supplementation decreases the risk of stillbirths

During pregnancy, a woman needs more macro- and micronutrients, as suboptimal nutrition can lead to adverse outcomes for the infant and even stillbirth. This paper reviewed nutritional interventions including peri-conceptional folic acid supplementation, balanced protein energy supplementation and multiple micronutrient supplementations during pregnancy. In 18 studies performed using peri-conceptional folic acid supplementation, the incidence of neural tube defects was found to be reduced by 41% (RR: 0.59, CI: 0.52-0.68).
Pooled data from lower quality studies showed that balanced protein energy supplements decreased the risk of stillbirths by 45% (RR 0.55, 95% CI 0.31-0.97). 13 studies examining the role of multiple micronutrients supplementation in pregnancy showed no significant reduction in stillbirths or perinatal mortality. However, as folic acid prevents neural tube defects, it should be supplemented around the time of conception.

Folic acid can be found in PM Procare (Pregnancy & Breastfeeding formula and AB Extra bone-care+ (comprehensive calcium supplement).

Imdad, A., M.Y. Yakoob, and Z.A. Bhutta, The effect of folic acid, protein energy and multiple micronutrient supplements in pregnancy on stillbirths. BMC Public Health, 2011. 11 Suppl 3: p. S4.