Spices and Pregnancy
Luke Coutinho

Puneet Kaur
27 May 2020

This article is authored by Puneet Kaur. .

The announcement that a new, little member will be arriving soon in the family invariably brings abundance of joy and contentment in everyone’s life. Before conceiving, you were in the habit of having anything, but now no more. As now, you are pregnant and before eating anything, you always think if it is all that safe for you and the new life within you!

Diet is everything when you are expecting as the growing fetus requires good nutrition to properly develop.

What Are Spices?

Spices have an exceptional place in Indian cooking. The sautéed vegetables, when treated with various spices, can do wonders and turn out to a mouthwatering dish.

Wikipedia defines spice as a dried kernel, root, bark, vegetable or fruit substance that adds flavor, aroma and taste to your recipes. You can use spices, not just for flavoring, but also as coloring agents and preservatives for a food item.

Is having Spices Safe during Pregnancy?

Several women tend to crave strongly for having foods with hot spices in pregnancy. These cravings can be caused by fluctuating pregnancy hormones which can play with your sense of taste and smell. A spicy meal does not affect the fetus or the pregnant mother, however, excessive consumption of spices in pregnancy can create problems.

What are the best Spices in Pregnancy?

Ginger is an effective natural cure to handle morning sickness, nausea as well as vomiting throughout pregnancy. Women who experience morning sickness can have one gram of ginger every day for three consecutive days to get relief.

Black pepper is a great source of chromium. Chromium is necessary for pregnant woman. Low chromium levels can increase blood sugar level and cholesterol, which may result in diabetes or heart diseases.

Turmeric (haldi) is safe to be consumed during pregnancy. Haldi helps to build immunity. Tata Sampann Haldi comes from Salem region of Tamil Nadu and it contains natural oils. It has 3% guarantee of curcumin. Natural oils are what give spices all the health benefits that we are familiar with and also enhances its flavour.

Cardamom is also considered to be a safe spice during pregnancy and is a helpful to beat nausea.

Consumption of Spices in Second and Third Trimester

Consumption of spicy meals during the second and third trimester escalates the likelihood of experiencing indigestion as well as acid reflux. In the third trimester, the growing baby causes stomach acids to go back to the esophagus. Having spicy foods in third trimester can aggravate this condition.

Avoid these Spices in Pregnancy

Like innumerable foods out there, spices possess their own gifts. They do come up with some amazing benefits for your health and wellbeing. However, the expecting mother must be really careful of having spices in pregnancy. There are a few spices that you should keep yourself away from. They are asafetida (hing), fenugreek seeds (methi seeds), garlic (lehsun) and peppermint tea. Consumption of these spices even in moderate amounts can cause various unpleasant after effects. These can be bloating, heartburn, gas, indigestion, nausea as well as GI distress.

Furthermore, spices such as fenugreek as well as asafoetida can trigger the uterus, thus inducing premature contractions. Similarly, consumption of peppermint tea during pregnancy may cause menstruation thus leading to miscarriage.

Conclusion

The consumption of spices during pregnancy is safe, although, excessive consumption of any of these may not be a safe option. Therefore, just keep the quantities limited and have a well-balanced diet to keep your taste buds excited. Also keep in mind the spices to be avoided as their consumption may be counterproductive for your overall wellbeing.

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