Separating Myths from Truths About Certain Fruits in Pregnancy
Dr. Aakriti Gupta

Dr. Aakriti Gupta

Jan 09Pregnancy and fertility

Separating Myths from Truths About Certain Fruits in Pregnancy

Despite its prevalence, misinformation surrounds pregnancy foods. Dr. Akriti Gupta talks about certain fruits that are a must-have during pregnancy. Pregnant women are often given tons of advice surrounding healthy eating and lifestyle. Many myths float around pregnancy fruits making it difficult for mums-to-be to tell facts from fiction. Here are some health tips which can make you feel confident about having a healthy pregnancy.

Pineapple: 

The theory says that pineapple contains bromelain, an enzyme that thins our blood. Bromelain acts by digesting protein. Well, it’s been found that bromelain supplements can cause early labour or miscarriage, precisely because of their ability to thin the blood and digest proteins. This action ripens the cervix, which can make it open before the time is right.

However, like with all things, the supplement bromelain and the bromelain in pineapples are quite different things. Concentrated bromelain pills are many times stronger, and the bromelain in pineapple is actually found in the core of the pineapple, not in the edible flesh. Pineapples themselves have never been found to cause early labour or miscarriage.

Aloe vera: 

Though a rich source of antioxidant, it must be taken cautiously by pregnant women. Aloe vera is known to increase the risk of uterine contractions which can be dangerous. Aloe vera juice also affects the blood glucose level by lowering it. In women who have gestational diabetes, aloe vera juice side-effects during pregnancy include improper regulation of blood glucose levels. Since the juice reduces glucose levels, it may interfere with existing methods of blood glucose regulation and can also lead to hypoglycemia. 

Aloe latex is a powerful laxative. The aloe vera latex is also known to cause kidney damage and bloody diarrhoea, and it can severely upset the electrolyte balance. Breastfeeding women should also be cautious as the latex is known to cause diarrhoea and vomiting in infants. Since the safety of aloe vera on infants is mostly unknown, it’s best that breastfeeding mothers avoid it.

Papaya:

Ripe papaya is a natural and healthy source of beta-carotene, potassium, folate,

vitamin C and choline, fibre and vitamin- A. An unripe papaya is a rich source of latex and papain. The type of latex in unripe papaya should be avoided by pregnant women because

it might trigger marked uterine contractions, leading to early labour. It contains papain which your body may mistake for the prostaglandins sometimes used to induce labour. It can lead to miscarriage and also preterm labour. Papain may also weaken vital membranes that support the foetus and hence preterm labour. It may be associated with bleeding during pregnancy called as antepartum haemorrhage. It is a common allergen that could trigger a dangerous reaction.

Litchi:

 It is safe to eat litchi during your pregnancy. But you have to ensure that you eat it in a moderate amount. If you eat it in an excessive amount, it will affect your pregnancy. Eating litchi during pregnancy boosts your immunity. It contains a lot of Vitamin C which is essential for your immunity. It can be a good home remedy if you have a cold, flu. It moves the bowel well and boosts blood circulation. Excessive consumption of litchi can spike your blood sugar level which may lead to miscarriage. So, it is important to consult with your doctor before consuming litchi.

Peaches: 

Yes, peaches can be consumed during pregnancy. Peaches are a great source of Vitamin C, iron, potassium, and dietary fibre, all good and necessary nutrients for pregnant women. But one chief concern with peaches is pesticide contamination. Given this concern, it is best that organic peaches are sourced, at least while pregnant.

Another reason that the expecting mothers should avoid eating peach as it is considered a hot fruit. Consuming peaches in large quantities can produce heat in the body which might lead to internal bleeding and even miscarriage. If you want you can have them in moderation but without the peel as the tiny follicles on their skin can irritate the throat.

Watermelon: 

We all know that the water content of the watermelons keeps the body hydrated. It also flushes out the harmful toxins from the body but while doing this the baby gets exposed to these toxins which is not good for the baby. Also, consuming large amounts of this fruit can raise blood sugar levels in women with gestational diabetes.

Grapes: 

Grapes are categorized as one of the most nutritious fruits. A lot of questions on its intake in pregnancy exist. A moderate amount is always allowed though. They contain a lot of resveratrol compounds in their skin. This compound is poisonous and toxic and can be harmful to expecting mothers. Also, the digestive system of pregnant women is quite weak at this time and black grapes are difficult to digest.

When you’re pregnant, it’s essential to avoid foods and beverages that may put you and your baby at risk. Also, it’s essential to keep oneself well-hydrated during pregnancy. Otherwise, you may notice symptoms such as headaches, tiredness, anxiety, reduced memory, mood swings and more!

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Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as a substitute for medical advice or treatment.