Folic acid consumption based on the theory of planned behaviour in pregnant women

J Obstet Gynaecol. 2020 Jan;40(1):37-39. doi: 10.1080/01443615.2019.1603208. Epub 2019 Jul 15.


Folic Acid reduces the risk of neural tube defects. This study was aimed to investigate the consumption of folic acid to prevent deficiency anaemia based on the theory of planned behaviour on pregnant women in Neyshabur, Iran. This study included 180 pregnant women, who were gathered from 12 healthcare centres in the city of Neyshabur, Iran in 2018. Using a questionnaire and blood lab exam (folat) were measured and analysed. The average rates of knowledge, attitude, perceived behavioural control, intention, behaviour in the education group were meaningfully increased (p value < .05); however, these changes were not meaningful in the control group (p value > .05). Also, no statistically meaningful difference was obtained in subjective norm between the groups after the intervention (p = .924). It is suggested that folic acid supplementation promotion workshops should be held in health centres with the aim of preventing folic acid deficiency anaemia.Impact statementWhat is already known on this subject? The results of this study showed that by using education based on the theory of planned behaviour that emphasises the important psychological factors of behaviour or change, folic acid can be consumed in pregnant women. That women receive adequate and proper knowledge, along with a positive attitude toward taking folic acid, and feel that taking folic acid is at their discretion in terms of environmental factors (facilities and barriers), increases intent to use folic acid.What do the results of this study add? The results of this study also showed that the amount of folic acid intake during pregnancy increased by pregnant women and anaemia decreased.What are the implications of these findings for clinical practice and/or further research? The study showed the importance of the role of education based on theory of planned behaviour in consumption promoting folic acid.

Keywords: Folic acid; pregnant women; theory of planned behaviour.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Female
  • Folic Acid / administration & dosage*
  • Folic Acid Deficiency / prevention & control*
  • Folic Acid Deficiency / psychology
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Iran
  • Maternal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
  • Neural Tube Defects / prevention & control
  • Non-Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control*
  • Pregnancy Complications / psychology
  • Prenatal Care / methods*
  • Prenatal Care / psychology
  • Vitamin B Complex / administration & dosage*
  • Young Adult


  • Vitamin B Complex
  • Folic Acid