Prenatal vitamins are an important source of folate along with other vital nutrients throughout pregnancy. And many women, with the popularity of herbal medicine, use other herbs during pregnancy. They may have been using several of these herbs before for an existing condition. Others, they may use to help cope with some of the physical troubles that go with pregnancy. The following supplements and food additives should be avoided during pregnancy to avoid potential problems with the health of the baby.
Quinine – Quinine is found in many drinks like tonic water, and these are popular because of their somewhat bitter taste. However it was found that one woman who drunk a lot more than 1 liter of tonic water a day whilst she was pregnant, had a infant who was suffering withdrawal symptoms when it was born. It had nervous tremors in a day of being born, which disappeared 2 months after. Germany’s BfR (Federal Institute for Risk Assessment) suggests that pregnant women treat quinine drinks, no matter how small the amount of quinine in them, as a medicinal item, and avoid them as a preventative measure during pregnancy.
Ginseng- One of the more than 20 active constituents of ginseng was discovered by researchers at the Chinese University of the Hong Kong Prince of Wales Hospital to be a feasible cause for problem for pregnant women.
One of the problems with studying active constituents in herbal medicine is that the whole herbal extract might have a really different overall impact than a single constituent. This is because of the manner active principles both work together and counteract one another. These 2 aspects, the fact that the research was not performed on humans, and doesn’t gauge the general effect of the whole ginseng extract, imply that its results ought to be treated cautiously. As a safety precaution, at this time, it is best to at least avoid ginseng supplements during the first trimester, as the authors of the study suggest, and most likely for the whole of the pregnancy. But ginseng should certainly not be labeled dangerous as a result of this study as it is just quite a preliminary finding in the general picture, and much more points the way as to where further research needs to be completed.
Ginkgo Biloba- Ginkgo biloba is another supplement that’s best avoided whilst pregnant. Researchers at Wayne State University in Detroit found one of the constituents of ginkgo biloba in the placenta of women who had taken ginkgo supplements. This specific constituent, an alkaloid called colchicine, could be fatal in high doses, though medicinally, it has great anti-inflammatory effects. Other research has discovered that cochicine can harm a growing fetus. The possible problem with taking ginkgo supplements on a regular basis whilst pregnant is that colchicine can accumulate in the womb, like caffeine when taken excessively of the suggested highest possible amounts. The researchers did stress that there was no link established in the study between ginkgo and complications in the pregnancy, the study only looked at levels of colchicine in the womb.