Friday, April 8, 2011

Fertility Diet: Why No Chamomile Tea

A few have written in and asked why chamomile tea is "off" our fertility diet list, and what if they have it just sometimes. Here's my answer:

When you’re not trying to conceive or are pregnant, chamomile has a lot of wonderful, positive qualities, such as aiding digestion, easing inflammation, alleviating menstrual cramps, and easing nerves. However, the reason it is on our “no” list is that it can potentially stimulate the uterus and cause miscarriage, and my rule is that if something can potentially get in the way of conceiving or carrying a baby to term, it should be eliminated (temporarily, at least).

That being said, however, with chamomile in tea form, you generally need to be drinking a LOT of it—every day, all day long—to inspire possible negative effect. A cup of chamomile tea here and there is probably just fine. Use your judgment. Do avoid any stronger medicinal version of chamomile, however, such as concentrated chamomile oil.

Something else to keep in mind: Every person reacts differently to various foods and substances. It’s hard to know how you, specifically, might react to a particular item, such as chamomile. Your uterus may be very sensitive or not at all. Unfortunately they rarely conduct medical studies on herbs because it’s not worth the cost (herbs are not regulated by FDA the way drugs are in the US). This is why we err on the side of caution with food choices while TTC and pregnant.

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