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Herbs and spices

(19 Posts)
Summerblaze Sat 06-Aug-11 16:33:06

Whats the deal???

I make a lot of food that uses herbs and spices or already contain them (stir in sauces etc) but when I have looked on the internet, some places say ok in food but others say that they might cause problems (uterine stimulant).

As I have had 2 m/c's in the last 7 months, I don't want to jeopardize this pg.

DH has just bought something that contains thyme and the other day, nutmeg. Should I avoid altogether or is this just the usual scaremongering.

Crosshair Sat 06-Aug-11 16:37:34


EauRouge Sat 06-Aug-11 16:45:51

I've never heard of any herbs or spices being on the "don't eat during pregnancy" list. I would speak to your MW if you are worried because she will have access to scientific data- don't look on the internet, especially not on any of those woo 'alternative therapies' websites.

Have you been put on pelvic rest (ie no sex)?

tigana Sat 06-Aug-11 16:55:14

Everyday herbs and spices should be totally fine.

Any that are thought to have uterine stimulant properties would undoubtedly have to be consumed in VAST quantities in one sitting to have any impact.

so a sprinkle in your curry/pasta sauce/cake won't matter.

nannyl Sat 06-Aug-11 17:03:56

so long as you arnt using raspberry leaf, i cant think of any normal kitcheny herbs / spices that need to be avoided during pregnancy

Summerblaze Sat 06-Aug-11 18:42:26

No not using raspberry leaf just the normal mixed herbs, thyme, rosemary etc.

And yes eaurouge I have been put on pelvic rest. DH thinks that is rubbish especially as he has been "on call" for the last god knows how many months.

I am only 5 weeks so won't be seeing the mw for a few weeks yet but will defo mention it. My head says that surely with all the herbs and spices that are in food these days, more people would be having m/c's, but my heart gets worried when I even see one thing that suggests it could be bad.

Oeisha Sat 06-Aug-11 20:59:37

There are issues with rosemary, but 'every day' usage is fine. Eat enough nutmeg and it's an hallucinagenic (again, you'd have to have an awful lot)...could be an intresting way to get through childbirth. grin
Quite a few of the herbs it's recommended you don't use the oils of (in carriers or otherwise).

This site seems to match the 'warnings' I recognise, but again, moderate usage is fine for most:

Ilovekittyelise Sat 06-Aug-11 21:16:43

i'm really sorry to hear about your miscarriages, and i can totally understand why you are nervous about this pregnancy.

try and think about it as rationally as you can (mind over matter), that most miscarriages occur due to problems that have been there since before you even knew you were pregnant - ie abnormalities in the way eggs and sperm came together, and most of the time, they were pregnancies that were never meant to be, and the bodys way of getting rid of them, and at this early stage of pregnancy, you really just cant control the unknown and the best you can do is be kind to yourself and try to relax.

i've never heard of any herbs or spices being a threat to pregnancy, but no doubt there is something somewhere on this crazy internet that says so....

please try to relax and be kind to yourself and i hope so much that these early weeks pass uneventfully and you have a healthy pregnancy this time.

Ilovekittyelise Sat 06-Aug-11 21:20:23

i just looked at oeisha's link. probably worth noting that this table refers not to the fresh and dried herbs typically used in cookery, but the 'oils' of various herbs which are much more concentrated for use in alternative for example fresh basil is perfectly safe whilst you might wish to avoid a basil homeopathic remedy.

Oeisha Sun 07-Aug-11 17:05:20

There are 2 lists there. One to 'completely avoid' (yes, basil oil os on the list to avoid) with recommended limited intake/moderate usage of herbs. The lower list is the one you're probably interested in and, as I said, for most modertate, culinary uses, it's totally fine to eat most herbs.
e.g. "Caraway (Carum carvi). A uterine stimulant in high doses, but quite safe as a culinary herb."

Ilovekittyelise Sun 07-Aug-11 17:20:45

sorry i only saw the one that was really obviously homeopathic stuff! still, im sure theres nothing to worry about all the same x

IssyStark Sun 07-Aug-11 17:21:01

As others have said, standard kitchen use of herbs and spices is okay. The few that could cause contractions (not miscarriages) would have to be consumed in such high doses it couldn't be accidental.

I had two m/c before DS was born and have ad 6 losses between him and the current pregnancy so I know my stuff when it comes to miscarriages and what to avoid. Your standard home-made curry or spag bol is not a problem.

IssyStark Sun 07-Aug-11 17:26:39

Re homeopathic remedies

They are likely to be safer than oils because there's bugger all of the original component in any homeopathic remedy!

Summerblaze Sun 07-Aug-11 17:59:02

Thanks everyone for your input. Just can't seem to get away from them anyway. They are everywhere. Went to Pizza Express for dinner and there was fresh rosemary on it.

Came home and found Oeishas post saying that there are issues with Rosemary. Just feel like I am putting this baby at risk every time I put something in my mouth.

I know that there is probably nothing to worry about but can't help but worry.

Crosshair Sun 07-Aug-11 18:02:11

Normal culinary use is an issue? confused

Summerblaze Sun 07-Aug-11 18:09:49

My pizza also had garlic oil on it. Is this bad????

Oeishas list said that rosemary was ok in moderate culinary use but avoid the oil entirely. Does this go the same for garlic oil. It didn't say.

Might just eat bland food for the next 8 months.

Merinda Sun 07-Aug-11 18:13:25

When we speak about oils, we are talking about essential oils, that are very concentrated. Those are used in herbal remedies and some cosmetic applications.
Normal culinary oils (e.g. garlic-infused olive oil) are absolutely fine.

Summerblaze Sun 07-Aug-11 18:37:40

Thanks Merinda. I get confused with all the different types of herbs, oil there are and what they are used for.

I was never like this with my first pregnancy. My m/c's have made me paranoid. Thank god for mumsnet and all you lovely ladies.

Oeisha Sun 07-Aug-11 22:14:17

Anything you're likely to consume in culinary uses is fine, including rosemary and garlic oil, but you may choose to avoid them if you have a history of mc, or gastric problems during pg, like others have said, you'd have to cosume A LOT for it to have any influence. I'd be more worried about listeria etc. than I would a herb.
FYI if you've heard the stuff about pineapples bringing on contractions, you'd have to eat 7 an hour and maintain it over time to get the desired dose of bromelaine...and it's more likely to give you the runs than bring on labour.

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