Is turmeric safe during pregnancy? We explore the potential benefits and risks of turmeric in pregnancy, and how much you can safely consume.
Turmeric in pregnancy is a hot topic right now.
It’s a spice with a whole host of health benefits that people have taken for centuries.
This rich, yellow and flavorsome food is widely used in Indian and Thai cuisine in powdered and root forms.
It’s also taken as a supplement for a number of things, including joint pain, fatigue, depression, digestive issues, colds, and headaches.
But is it a good idea when you’re pregnant?
Here’s the lowdown on turmeric during pregnancy and how much of it you can enjoy while keeping yourself and your baby healthy.
In this article: 📝
- The 411 on turmeric in pregnancy
- What are the risks of turmeric during pregnancy?
- Is turmeric safe during pregnancy?
- How much turmeric is safe during pregnancy?
Let’s start by looking at why turmeric in pregnancy is so popular.
The 411 on turmeric in pregnancy
One of turmeric’s reported benefits is supporting your digestive system.
As bloating, gas and [constipation](https://www.peanut-app.io/blog/colace-while-pregnant are all common pregnancy issues (yep, glamorous, we know), it seems like it could be a big boost for your day-to-day comfort.
What’s more, turmeric might also ease swelling and inflammation (particularly useful during later pregnancy) as well as relieve joint and back pain.
Many people also believe turmeric has potent antioxidant qualities, helping our immune systems fight off colds and allergies during pregnancy.
But scientific studies on turmeric are pretty scarce.
So, while you might find it helps you, it’s not a medically recommended treatment for pregnancy symptoms.
What are the risks of turmeric during pregnancy?
Ultimately, there aren’t any human studies on whether turmeric is harmful in pregnancy.
There have been a few animal studies though, which have shown connections between the spice and things like lower birth weight.
Even though there are no proven links for humans, most doctors recommend against turmeric supplements during pregnancy — just because we don’t know enough about the risks for mamas and babies.
If you’re just eating normal levels of turmeric in food (flavoring the occasional dinner or drink), it shouldn’t be a problem.
Even so, you might find you’re sensitive to turmeric (just like any other food allergy).
So if you notice symptoms like rashes or headaches after eating turmeric, take it as a sign this spice isn’t right for you.
High doses of turmeric (i.e., taking supplements or eating turmeric daily) can interfere with some medications like blood thinners.
So if you’ve got any concerns or pre-existing health conditions, chat with your doctor.
Is turmeric safe during pregnancy?
At levels found in food, yes, turmeric appears to be safe in pregnancy.
Unless you have a medical reason to do so, totally avoiding this nutritious and delicious spice isn’t necessary.
So don’t worry too much here!
You can head out and enjoy your favorite Indian and Thai dishes every now and again, safe in the knowledge that it isn’t harmful to you or your baby.
But medical experts recommend avoiding turmeric supplements during pregnancy.
So it’s worth skipping the turmeric powders, pills, and concentrates.
If you’re concerned about the levels of turmeric you’re consuming, get your OB-GYN’s opinion.
They can put your mind at ease.
How much turmeric is safe during pregnancy?
There aren’t any clinical trials for the safety of turmeric for pregnant women, so we simply don’t know exactly how much turmeric is safe during pregnancy.
Because of this lack of evidence, it’s best to err on the side of caution.
If you eat lots of turmeric-rich foods and drinks, you may want to consider cutting back.
Again though, turmeric is usually safe when consumed in amounts commonly found in food.
So if you’re using it as an occasional spice, you should be completely fine!
If you do decide to cut out turmeric altogether, there are plenty of ways to keep the spice in your life.
When those pregnancy cravings are calling out for a bit of heat, try things like curry and ginger powder, saffron, cumin, and yellow mustard seeds for pops of flavor.
And if you’d like to get some more ideas on what to put on your pregnancy plate, we’ve got you covered.
All the best, mama!