Fenugreek during pregnancy

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If you are a newly pregnant woman, you must be full of doubts as to what you can eat and what not. There are so many foods that you should include in your daily diet that will provide all the nourishment needed for the baby growing inside. However, there are also many foods that though very good for an individual is normally not good for a pregnant mother. These products can cause complications to the pregnancy. Fenugreek is one such food product.

The roots of the potent herb fenugreek

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Fenugreek is a herb that is commonly used as a spice in the Indian subcontinent. This herb is commonly found growing in the Mediterranean. The leaves and seeds of the herb are used as spices. The herb has light green coloured tri-foliate leaves. Each plant contains about 10-20 mustard coloured seeds. They are small, firm, and resemble tiny, multi-faceted stone-pieces. The Raw seeds have maple flavour and a bitter taste. The seeds taste a little better after it has been roasted. Fenugreek is available throughout the year.

Benefits of consuming fenugreek

In various countries of South East Asia, Greece, Egypt and other places in the region, the herb is also used for medicinal purposes to treat health problems. The herb is rich in nutrients and minerals like iron, vitamin C, protein, potassium etc. They are a good source of soluble dietary fibre. The seeds become soft and mucilaginous once it has been soaked in water.

Fenugreek is a herb used in many Chinese and Indian Ayurvedic Medicines. It helps to treat myriad health problems. A few of them are-

  • Digestion
  • Bronchitis
  • Arthritis
  • treatment of reproductive disorders
  • hormonal disorders
  • menstrual pain
  • cramps

It also eases menopausal symptoms like

  • hot flashes
  • stress
  • dizziness
  • moodfluctuations
  • sleepiness

Fenugreek contains a matter called diogenin, which behaves, similar to estrogens. For men it is an aphrodisiac as it increases libido and male potency. Fenugreek reduces cholesterol and reduces cardiovascular diseases. For a normal person fenugreek is very safe.

Fenugreek not safe during pregnancy

Fenugreek is not recommended during pregnancy for more than one reasons. Below are enlisted the few reasons why it is best to avoid fenugreek during your last term of pregnancy.

1. Fenugreek has the potential to induce labour. So most doctors ask pregnant mothers to stay away from fenugreek before 38th week.

2. It also has the ability to lower the blood sugar levels.

3. Fenurgreek can change the blood-clotting factor in a pregnant mother. This can prove to be dangerous during pregnancy.

In Rome in ancient times, Fenugreek was used to aid labour and delivery towards the end of pregnancy. It stimulates the uterine and can cause pre term labour. It also reduces labour pain. However, it is always advisable to consult your doctor before having fenugreek, for it can also cause miscarriage.

Fenugreek best after Childbirth

Freshly picked fenugreek leaves for toni by heymrleej, on Flickr
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Fenugreek is most recommended after pregnancy. If you want to know why? Read on!

1. Since ancient times this herb is said to be very beneficial for lactating mothers. Several studies suggest that fenugreek seed helps to increase the production of milk in lactating mothers. Research has shown that there is an almost 500% increase in milk production. It is believed that the oil found in fenugreek is responsible for this.

2. Fenugreek helps to cure digestive problems in nursing mothers. Many ayurvedic doctors vouch for this herb that has no side effects and can comfort an upset tummy!

3. Fenugreek seeds help in the enlarging of the breast. The seed has the power to balance the hormones. People use it for commercial preparation and tea for the same. People who have small breast can use the herb for breast enlargement.

Dishes made of fenugreek leaves and seeds are fed to most newbie mothers in India. Seeds soaked in water and used in dishes or even capsules are available in the market and can be easily procured.

Whatever said and done, experimenting with any herb or medication is a very dangerous prospect during pregnancy. Many a times a pregnant woman can be allergic to many products that otherwise would be safe for her. Fenugreek is one such product that most doctors and elders advise pregnant women to stay away from and not include in their daily diet until childbirth.

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