Having a good multivitamin/mineral supplement during pregnancy is essential. An excellent regimen that also ensures adequate essential fatty acids is important. Choline is also a supplement that is important to the babies’ nerve development. A good supplement will include all the essential vitamins and minerals, plus, choline. A separate supplement should be taken for the essential fatty acid intake of Omega-3’s.
There are herbs that can assist in the pregnancy and health of the baby, but it is advised by naturopathic doctors that during the first three months of pregnancy a woman should avoid all medicines including medicinal herbs unless advised otherwise by a health professional. After this initial development period caution should still be used and a doctor should be consulted before taking any herbs while pregnant.
Pregnancy herbs are meant to be used whole, either eaten as a vegetable of taken as a tea or tincture. A tincture is an alcoholic extract or solution of a nonvolatile substance. Pregnant women should not use botanicals that concentrate isolated chemicals constituents unless prescribed.
Red Raspberry leaf (rubus idaeus) is named as the best all around herb for a healthy pregnancy. Red raspberry is a nourishing and building herb that is coined towards the health of the reproductive system. It is a tonic that has been safely used by women for centuries. It is rich in calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, and vitamins B, C and E . The alkaloid fragarine is the plant’s contributing factor toward being a pregnancy tonic. It has also been used as a fertility increasing tonic in men and women, in tea form. To make a tea, add one to two tablespoons of dried leaf per cup of boiling water. Drink two cups every other day.
Nettles are a wonderful pregnancy tonic. Drinking a nettle infusion before and throughout pregnancy strengthens the kidneys, nourishes the mother and baby with it’s high calcium content, increases fertility, and helps to reduce leg cramps and labor pains. It can help to prevent hemorrhage after birth, reduce hemorrhoids, and increase milk production. It is rich in calcium and protein. Nettles are considered safe, but concentrated extracts of stinging nettles (used to treat hay fever) can be harmful to baby.
Alfalfa is recommended for late pregnancy. It has beneficial vitamins A, D, E, and K. It has eight helpful digestive enzymes and numerous trace minerals. When taken during late pregnancy it reduces the risk of postpartum hemorrhage.
Herbs can be helpful for pain, sickness, and even headaches, just be sure to discuss any supplements with your physician to fit your individual needs and to keep you and your baby safe.