Folate and folic acid are the same thing, according to the National Women's Health Information Center. Folic acid is a manmade supplement, while folate occurs naturally in some foods. Folate is part of the B vitamin complex, and is a particularly important part of the diet for pregnant women. The website BabyCenter reports that folate can help prevent serious birth defects of the neural tube, which forms very early in pregnancy. Most people need 400 micrograms of folate daily, while pregnant women need slightly more -- 600 micrograms. Several fruits and vegetables help you achieve your intake goal.
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Oranges offer 31.5 mcg of folate per 1-cup serving, according to the USDA National Nutrition Database for Standard Reference. The U.S. Office of Dietary Supplements indicates that one small orange offers 8 percent of your daily value. Grapefruit supplies 21.0 mcg folate in a 1-cup serving.
One large banana will give you 27.0 mcg of folate, according to the National Nutrition Database. Peaches contain folate, too, but in much lesser quantity: 7.0 mcg in one large fruit.
Peas and Beans
Peas are one of the best vegetable sources for folate. The National Nutrition Database reports that a 1-cup serving provides 94.0 mcg of folate. The Ohio State University Fact Sheet for folate indicates that a 1/2-cup serving of lentils is even better: 180.0 mcg, or 45 percent of your daily value.
Opt for romaine for your salads instead of iceberg lettuce. Both contain folate, but romaine has 64.0 mcg per 1-cup serving, according to the National Nutrition Database. Cucumbers also contain folate: 4.0 mcg for a 1/2-cup serving, unpeeled.
Spinach, asparagus and broccoli are all excellent sources of folate. According to the Office of Dietay Supplements, spinach provides 60.0 mcg and 15 percent of your daily value per 1-cup serving. Four asparagus spears, cooked, have 85.0 mcg and will meet 20 percent of your daily requirement. Broccoli supplies 45.0 mcg for 10 percent of your daily value for two raw spears.