The neural tube defects which include the defected spinal cord or brain could be caused if required amount of folic acid is not taken by the expecting mother. These defects develop in the early stage of the pregnancy so care is required in the first trimester. The recommended dose is 600mg daily and especially in the first half of the pregnancy. This way fifty to sixty percent chance of birth defects can be reduced. Folic acid pregnancy or intake also helps in forming the normal red blood cells and thus prevents mother and her fetus from any of the disease.