From a public health perspective, some of the new insights into folic acid nutrition are of significance. Folate intake recommendations vary under different conditions. Intake of 350 μg is required to maintain plasma homocysteine levels, 650 μg for those with elevated plasma homocysteine, about 400 μg for women planning to become pregnant and 4000 μg for those with history of neural tube defect affected pregnancy. This raises the question whether the folate intake is adequate for the general population, particularly in the vulnerable groups or whether there is a need for scientists to take a fresh view of the requirements, recommended dietary intakes, and consider intervention measures which will have impact on the folate nutritional status. The recommendations should provide a margin of safety to allow for decreased intake, increased requirements, individual variability and bioavailability of natural food folates. The folate intake and nutriture in relation to India and other developing countries needs careful consideration to reduce anemia, neural tube defects and possibly impact on the high incidence of cardiovascular diseases.