Can you eat garlic when pregnant?

In this brief guide, we will answer the question if you can eat garlic when pregnant and we will discuss health benefits and side effects.

Can you eat garlic when pregnant? 

Yes, you can eat garlic when pregnant but there are a few necessary precautions you should take. Garlic is referred to as a super spice because it goes excellent with almost every food you can prepare. As with all food, it should be eaten in moderation but there are many advantages to eating garlic when pregnant. 

For a very long time, garlic has been used in herbal medicine. Over the years, garlic is not harmful to pregnancy but neither any studies have found that it’s completely safe but there has never been a direct harmful effect on the baby or mom. 

Some people may find that eating garlic when pregnant has caused heartburn and upset stomach, especially if eaten raw. So if you have any of these conditions you should try to avoid them.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, the FDA marks it as completely safe to eat garlic while pregnant. It is very important to mention that it talks about amounts commonly found in food and not taken as pills or medication. 

What are the health benefits of garlic?

Garlic contains allicin that is responsible for all the benefits of eating garlic when pregnant but also responsible for the smell. It also contains a high amount of calcium, zinc, iron, and copper which help replenish the baby with trace elements and help develop the healthy bones and nervous systems of the baby and mom. 

  • Reduces high blood pressure
  • Increases baby weight 
  • Lower cholesterol 
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Antifungal and antibacterial properties
  • Prevent Hair Loss
  • Lower risk of preterm labor

Increases baby weight 

Some research suggests that garlic may increase the weight of babies that may tend to have lower birth weight. Experiments show that adding garlic to placental cells stimulated growth. 

Lower cholesterol 

Allicin, a compound found in garlic helps to reduce your cholesterol levels 

and lower blood pressure

If you have preeclampsia, a condition where pregnant women tend to have high blood pressure and can harm the baby and the mother, garlic may help to lower blood pressure.

Antifungal and antibacterial properties

During pregnancy, our immune system tends to be lower or weaker. Garlic may help fight some infections and may help to boost our immune system. 

Prevent hair loss

Some pregnant women tend to have more hair loss than normal. Allicin also helps to stimulate hair growth and prevent hair loss. 

Lower the risk of preterm labor

Some old studies have suggested that antimicrobial and prebiotic properties may help to reduce preterm labor. 

How much garlic can I eat when pregnant?

It suggests that pregnant women can eat as much as 4 buds of garlic and it’s recommended to not eat raw garlic when pregnant. 

What are the side effects of eating too much garlic?

As said above, it can help to low blood pressure. So, if you have low blood pressure when pregnant you should be careful. Also, garlic may cause more bleeding than normal because garlic has blood thinners properties. It’s important to have this statement in mind. If you are in the third trimester you should be careful because you may undergo surgery. 

Garlic can cause gastritis in some pregnant women, a condition that already exists just by the fact of being pregnant because of hormone changes and physical pressure of the baby growing. 

Also, garlic may lower your blood sugar. If you are having problems with insulin and blood sugar you should eat in moderation. 

There’s only one way that garlic may not be consumed when pregnant. Oil infused with garlic may carry a bacteria that can cause botulism, so it’s preferred not to consume it or to consume it between 4 days from preparation according to the CDC. 

How can I eat garlic when pregnant?

You can add it almost to everything! From a cauliflower soup to almost any vegetable or protein, here are some ideas:

Garlic butter with freshly baked bread
Cauliflower soup infused with garlic
Stir fry peas with garlic 
Pasta with tomato sauce with garlic 
Click here for some more recipes ideas


In this brief article we answered the question if you can eat garlic when pregnant. We also talked about the benefits, how much you can eat, side effects, and some ideas to add to your diet. 

If you have any questions please let me know.


What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.