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Can you take echinacea during pregnancy?

(11 Posts)
slackrunner Thu 09-Jul-09 20:30:06

I'm getting mixed messages - Zita West's book states that you can, however Boot's echinacea says specifically on the pack that it shouldn't be taken whilst pregnant or breastfeeding.

Any thoughts?

KnickKnack Thu 09-Jul-09 20:34:26

Nope sorry, you cannot take it during pregnancy.

slackrunner Thu 09-Jul-09 20:43:55

B*gger. Have a colleague with swine flu, and I don't feel too positive about taking Relenza (I'm definitely a lentil weavery type when it comes to natural supplements).

KnickKnack Thu 09-Jul-09 20:59:41

Its to do with the body needing to lower the immune system so as not to reject the foetus...hence you can't take something to boost the immune system.

KnickKnack Thu 09-Jul-09 21:01:20

Realisticaly the only thing you could take to help would be a good multivitamin such as Solgar Prenatal Vitamins (from a good health store) and make sure you're general diet/lifestyle/stress levels are in good shape.

KnickKnack Thu 09-Jul-09 21:01:55

Realistically!

slackrunner Thu 09-Jul-09 21:10:12

Ahhh - that makes sense. I'm already on the pregnancy vits, so I guess I'll just have tp try and take it easy. Boss off on hols as of tomorrow for 3 weeks <hollow laugh>. Thanks KnickKnack

KnickKnack Thu 09-Jul-09 21:14:10

lucky you grin [jealous]

peanuthead Thu 09-Jul-09 22:12:02

Yes you can take it - it's an immunomodulator not an immunostimulant and decent trials have shown no birth defects and no negative outcomes as compared to a control.

I'm pg - only just - and I take it and def would if I knew someone with swine flu.

Boots have to say that in case you sue them if you have a problem. Their echinacea will be such shite quality it won;t make any difference either way.

But really you should only take any herbs whle pregnant under the guidance of a qualified medical herbalist.

mrswee Fri 10-Jul-09 13:23:34

I thought you couldn't take it from reading a boots bottle too, I had had to pick up a bottle from boots while on holiday in a small town when I came down with a cold last year,(it didn't work, but I think that was probably the boots lack of quaility!!) I still had it in the cupboard and read it when I was first pregnant. I have since read reconmendations that you CAN take it in the right dose though.

Zita West is very good and well respected so if she says in her book that you can take it then I'm pretty sure you can, it's not like she would risk being wrong on such an importatnt thing and say that without knowing for sure.

As Peanuthead says though, I would go to a qualified medical herbalist and speak to them, they will know for sure and they will give you instructions and a correct dose to take during pregnancy.
I have recently been to my local herbalist form remedies to help with stress and they were very helpful and spent a long time sorting out just the right thing for in pregnancy.

KnickKnack Fri 10-Jul-09 15:25:01

I'm qualified
Peanut is right, it does regulate the immune system, however I still would not take it, or recommend, it during pregnancy.

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