We simply can’t stress enough how important folic acid is during pregnancy. There’s a reason it’s #1 on our list of the most essential prenatal vitamins. But while we’ve discussed thus far how to get folic acid through pills and supplements, there is also a lot of value in getting nutrition from whole food sources. That’s why today we’ll be talking about foods high in folic acid. Believe it or not, you don’t have to completely overhaul your diet to get the folic acid you need: many common foods are great sources.

According to MedlinePlus, folic acid can be found in dark green leafy vegetables, dried beans and peas, and citrus fruits and juices. This is helpful general advice, but falls short of specific recommendations. That’s where we think we can offer some more clarity…

Broccoli

BroccoliBroccoli is a great source of folic acid, offering 52 mcg per serving (1/2 cup chopped). Broccoli is easy to include in your diet (it may already be a part of your diet). While we wouldn’t recommend making broccoli your only source of folic acid, it’s a great way to supplement your intake. Consider steaming broccoli and making it a part of a vegetable medley, or including it in a stir fry. Broccoli is also a great addition to vegetarian lasagna.

Pinto Beans

Pinto BeansPerhaps surprisingly, pinto beans are packed full of folic acid. In a 1/2 cup serving, there are 115 mcg of folic acid. The same can be said of black and navy beans as well. Beans are great because they are quite inexpensive (usually $1 or less per can) and easy to incorporate into many dishes. You can roll them into a burrito or simmer them into a soup. Make a Mexican-inspired dinner tonight and get a healthy dose of folic acid!

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Spinach

SpinachIf you’re looking for foods high in folic acid, look no further than spinach. A cup of raw spinach contains roughly 131 mcg of folic acid. If you can, stick to fresh spinach instead of frozen, but even more importantly, beware that boiling spinach can reduce the folic acid content by half. You’re better off microwaving spinach if necessary.

Spinach is great in salads, sandwiches, and even on pizza. Each of these use spinach in its raw form, giving you the maximum health benefit.

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Pomegranate

PomegranateThis crunchy fruit is another surprising folic acid source. Just one medium pomegranate offers 107 mcg of folic acid. If you’re not familiar with pomegranates, here’s a few recipes courtesy of the Huffington Post to get you started. We think you’ll be astonished by just how versatile this unique fruit is.

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Avocado

AvocadoLast but certainly not least on our list of foods high in folic acid are avocados. Once billed as a superfood, avocados have plenty about them to love. In fact, each medium avocado offers about 163 mcg folic acid. With their creamy, rich taste and texture, we’re sure you’ll find plenty of ways to include them into your diet. Plus, avocados offer healthy fats, so while you should always practice moderation, don’t be afraid of the calorie content. Great taste AND great health? Sounds like this is a food high in folic acid you’re bound to enjoy!

 

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