Can you eat herbs when pregnant?

In this article we are going to answer: can you eat herbs when pregnant, what herbs are safe when pregnant, what herbs are not safe when pregnant, what is the risk of eating herbs when pregnant, and what herbal teas are safe during pregnancy. 

Can you eat herbs when pregnant?

Not all herbs are safe for you to eat when pregnant. The FDA urges pregnant women to not take any herbal products and recommends talking to their doctor before using herbs when pregnant.

Some herbs are safe to add to your favorite dish always in moderate amounts. Herbal supplements are not regulated so you don’t know what you are taking. Also, many drugs haven’t been tested. 

What herbs are safe when pregnant?

Some herbs in the kitchen are safe to use in moderate amounts. They will add flavor to your food and some may add vitamins and minerals. 

  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Sage
  • Rosemary
  • Dill
  • Mint
  • Thyme
  • Fennel
  • Ginger
  • Garlic

What herbs are not safe when pregnant?

According to the American Pregnancy Association, these herbs are considered unsafe when used orally 

  • Saw palmetto
  • Goldenseal
  • Dong Quai
  • Ephedra
  • Yohimbe
  • Pau D’ Arco
  • Passion Flower
  • Black Cohosh
  • Blue Cohosh
  • Roman Chamomile
  • Pennyroyal

What herbs are commonly used during pregnancy?

Red Raspberry LeafIs a herb rich in iron. It has helped tone the uterus and increase milk supply. Also, decrease nausea and ease labor pains.
Peppermint LeafCan relieve nausea, morning sickness, and flatulence
Ginger RootHelps with nausea and vomiting
Slippery Elm Bark (in food)Helps with nausea, heartburn, and vaginal irritation
Oats & StrawIs a herb rich in calcium and magnesium. Helps with anxiety, restlessness, and irritated skin.

What is the risk of eating herbs when pregnant?

Some herbs are not safe to eat or use during pregnancy because they have side effects that can affect mom and baby’s health. 

Herbs with Uterine StimulationAloe, barberry, black cohosh, blue cohosh, don quai, feverfew, wild yam, motherwort, juniper, and goldenseal 
Herbs that harm the babyautumn crocus, mugwort, poke root, and sassafras
Herbs that have toxic effectscomfrey and mistletoe

Are herbal teas safe during pregnancy?

Some teas are safe to drink when bought at a supermarket. According to the American Gynecologist Association, these teas are considered safe 

  • Peppermint tea: There is evidence that it doesn’t harm the baby or the mother but you should take no more than one cup per day because it can promote menstruation. Do not drink peppermint tea in the first trimester. 
  • Red Raspberry tea: It is usually used to help prepare your uterine for birth when taken in the last weeks of pregnancy. Do not drink in the first trimester, it can stimulate contractions. 
  • Ginger tea: It is the perfect treatment for morning sickness, just don’t drink too much. Two or three cups per day are safe. 
  • Chamomile tea: You can take up to one cup per day to relax. Large amounts of chamomile tea stimulate the uterus or lead to circulation problems in your baby. 

Do not take any other tea, it is really important to always ask your doctor. 

Teas you should avoid when pregnant:

  • Sage tea: You can use sage in the kitchen but do not drink sage tea. In large concentrations, it can lead to miscarriage and high blood pressure.
  • Parsley tea: You can use parsley in the kitchen, in moderate amounts but large amounts, it can lead to miscarriage or affect how your baby develops

You should never make your herbal teas from plants you collected. You can have serious side effects like uterine contractions and an increased risk of preterm labor. 

What safety tips can I use when eating herbs when pregnant?

Before using any herb, double check if it’s safe to add it to your food or tea. Do not take any herbal supplement without talking to your doctor. It is a personal choice if you want to use herb treatments but always make informed decisions.

Here is a list of all herbs that have been proven to cause side effects when pregnant

Conclusion

This article answered can you eat herbs when pregnant, what herbs are safe when pregnant, what herbs are not safe when pregnant, what is the risk of eating herbs when pregnant, and what herbal teas are safe during pregnancy. 

Citation

https://www.wnyurology.com/content.aspx?chunkiid=35536

https://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy-and-herbal-therapy.aspx

https://www.pregnancybirthbaby.org.au/herbal-teas-during-pregnancy-and-breastfeeding#:~:text=Never%20make%20your%20own%20herbal,they%20may%20affect%20your%20baby.

https://www.intechopen.com/chapters/61138

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.