Herbs and Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a delicate matter. You cannot take anything for granted and this is more evident especially when it comes to food and dietary consumption. While modern medicine plays a vital role in ensuring the health of the mother and baby, certain types of herbs are extremely beneficial for all types of health-related reasons.

Replacement or complementary medicine?

Traditionalists and herbalists will advocate the use of these options because they are supposedly cheaper and healthier. In fact, some even claim to be better too. Herbs could be taken by pregnant women as a supplement and not as a replacement because they help to maintain the general wellbeing of the person.

Are there risks involved?

One of the best reasons to take herbs is because they are natural supplements. The authorities would not urge pregnant women to take any form of herbs without first consulting their doctors. In fact, the best practice would be to consult a certified herbalist as any supplement to be taken should be done to complement what the body needs. This most be done even if you are taking western supplements during pregnancy. If taken wrongly, it could cause several conditions such as:

  • Uterine contractions
  • Internal injury
  • Premature birth
  • Miscarriage
  • and other pregnancy-related complications

Don’t take the following herbs when pregnant

Bear in mind that while herbs are generally good for health, not all can be taken during pregnancy. Among those that you should avoid include:

  • Dong Quai – the uterine stimulant and relaxant effects might not be very favorable. It is usually taken during confinement.
  • Saw Palmetto – Known to cause unusual hormonal activity when taken orally.
  • Blue Cohosh – Have uterine stimulant when taken orally and this could induce labor (could lead to premature birth).
  • Besides those, you should be cautious about other herbs such as Goldenseal, Yohimbe, Passion Flower and Roman Chamomile.

Herbs that are recommended for pregnancy

It is highly recommended that certain herbs are good for pregnancy. This, however, should be taken in moderation and during the first trimester.

  • Ginger root – Very useful for treating morning sickness.
  • Peppermint Leaf – Another great herb for morning sickness or nausea and also for flatulence.
  • Oat straw – This herb helps to relieve skin irritation and anxiety as it has a lot of magnesium and calcium.
  • Slippery Elm Bark – Can treat vaginal irritations and relieve morning sickness.