Foods That Can Induce Labor
There are many myths around this topic. Many people are sure that certain foods can induce labor.
Unfortunately, there isn’t sufficient scientific support for this idea. However, an expecting mother may try certain foods to see if she can speed up the birth process when she is near the end.
Is it possible that certain foods can help induce labor?
Many women with experience on this topic say yes. Others who aren’t experts wish it were true and are willing to try.
If you are curious to find out, we will give you some “recipes” for that extra boost you are looking for.
1. Aromatic plants and spices
This is a pretty well-tested idea. Many believe that plants like basil, oregano, thyme, parsley, sage, anise, or cayenne pepper can provoke uterine contractions. However, many of these are prohibited during pregnancy because they could cause a miscarriage.
It is possible that these herbs could bring on contractions, but limit the quantities and always check with an expert first.
2. Castor oil
It’s understandable that you may be afraid to try some of these foods. Myths about castor oil are archaic. This oil is produced from a toxic seed, but the oil has medicinal properties.
It is believed that castor oil can induce labor. It is capable of provoking intestinal muscles to contract. This causes uterine cramps and may trigger labor.
3. Spicy foods
Spicy food is not recommended during pregnancy because it can be related to stomach acid and other gastrointestinal complications.
However, although it is included in the list of foods that can induce labor, there is no real evidence of it working.
This fruit has many properties. According to some mothers, it can help speed up labor. It is believed that the enzyme bromelain, which is present in fresh pineapple, is capable of causing the cervix to soften.
However, while this may be true, the amount of bromelain in pineapples is actually very low. You would have to consume large quantities of fruit to experience any notable cervix softening.
5. Raspberry leaves
The use of raspberry leaves is typically used in the preparation of relaxing teas. This means that this relaxing effect might help lower stress levels at the end of your pregnancy. Perhaps this relaxation will even reach the uterus.
This goes along with aromatic plants mentioned earlier in moving the fetus along to its final position for delivery. Eating enough garlic is thought to induce labor, but has not been proven.
7. A plant called Cohosh
It’s not a very common plant, but this North American product is consumed as a tea. By drinking cohosh tea, you could provoke moderate to strong contractions.
There are no scientific studies to prove this, so it is preferable to take precautions and be in permanent contact with your doctor.
Considerations before inducing labor
As we have mentioned, the majority of foods and supplements that are believed to induce labor have not been scientifically proven. Also, they are not proven to be safe.
As a result, before venturing to try techniques and/or products whose effects we are not certain of or pose a potential risk, the best thing to do is to limit the quantities and avoid using them when directed.
In general, alternative medicine is not recommended for pregnant women. It is a good idea to be in contact with specialists and not take unnecessary risks.
The decision to use these foods to induce labor is a personal one. We recommend sticking to the foods that we know are safe.
For example, in the case of pineapple, it’s not possible to eat too much. Other products like chocolate can be permitted on a smaller scale.
It is important not to risk our health or our baby’s health. The time to give birth will arrive. Relax and wait for labor in peace and wellness.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
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- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Licorice root. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Agosto 2020.
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