Let us know about Asparagus during pregnancy. Asparagus, also known as Asparagus racemosus, is one of the best herbs that provide a host of health benefits to the body. Asparagus, which means ‘acceptable to many’, has great importance in Ayurveda and is used in the treatment of many diseases and problems. Women of almost all ages take shatavari as a tonic to help them adjust to the different phases of the transition phase that naturally occurs in the body.
Can You Use Asparagus While Pregnant?
Shatavari strengthens the uterus and is known to help in the production of milk in the breast. Consuming Shatavari after delivery helps in increasing the amount of breast milk along with increasing the immunity of the new mother and giving strength to the body. However, we recommend that you consult an Ayurvedic doctor before taking Asparagus during pregnancy, how to take it along with other supplements you may be taking, and how much to consume.
Nutritional Facts of Asparagus
Asparagus contains non-nutritive plant chemicals called phytochemicals that protect the body from disease-causing agents and promote overall health. The phytochemicals present in Shatavari are known to strengthen the immune system and combat oxidative stress with anti-carcinogenic properties. Phytochemicals present in asparagus include:
- Steroid saponins called Shatavarin
- alkaloids, mucilage, oligosaccharides, isoflavones
- sterols such as sitosterol found in asparagus roots
- Flavonoids such as rutin and quercetin, found in the fruits and flowers of the asparagus plant
Asparagus roots are rich in minerals like copper, zinc, manganese and cobalt. It also contains calcium, potassium, magnesium, selenium and other essential minerals. Along with minerals, asparagus is also rich in vitamin A and ascorbic acid. It is also rich in essential fatty acids such as gamma-linolenic acid, which is very beneficial for the treatment of diabetes mellitus, arthritis, depression, high cholesterol and heart disease.
Benefits of Consuming Asparagus During Pregnancy
Asparagus has been used as a traditional healer for centuries. It contains phytochemicals which are very important with anti-fungal, diuretic, anti-tumor and immunostimulatory properties. Shatavari is also a galactagogue which increases the production of milk in the body of lactating mothers. Apart from this, compounds like saponins, sulfur-containing acids, oligosaccharides and amino acids present in Shatavari make it a beneficial herb that is useful in improving health.
Here are some of the benefits of consuming Asparagus Kalp during pregnancy:
1. Rich in folic acid
Asparagus is rich in folic acid which is an important nutrient required for the development of the fetus. It is needed both before becoming pregnant and during pregnancy in order to deliver a healthy baby.
The benefits of folic acid for pregnant women include:
- Important for the neural development of the fetus
- Important for the formation of new cells and DNA in the body
- Reduces the chances of heart problems
- Maintains health and prevents cancer
2. Helps with lactation
Shatavari is known to be a galactagogue (milk-promoting substance) which helps lactating women to increase their milk production. Its galactagogue effect is due to the presence of steroidal saponins in the herb and is confirmed by testing the levels of the hormone prolactin. Taking Shatavari root powder increases prolactin level by 3 times the normal and has no toxin effects.
3. Contains Glutathione
Due to the glutathione found in Shatavari Churna, it is extremely beneficial during pregnancy. It is an essential nutrient for pregnant women as it acts as an antioxidant. Antioxidants fight the oxidative damage caused by free radicals in the body. If left unchecked, free radicals can attack the fetus’s DNA and cause damage that manifests as birth defects. They can sensitize the mother and the child to diseases mainly related to the body’s immunity.
4. Strengthens the Immune System
It is said that the root extract of Shatavari powder can stimulate the body’s immune cells. The body’s immunity may be low after an infection, and in this case, Shatavari can boost the immune system to fight any new infections and speed up recovery. Shatavari contains an active compound called sapogenin which is a potent immuno-stimulator and is known to prepare the body to fight diseases in both normal and impaired immunity.
5. Contains Inulin
Consuming asparagus during pregnancy supplies the body with abundant amounts of inulin, which is very useful for the intestines. Inulin is a starchy substance that is not digested or absorbed by the stomach. It reaches the intestine where with its help good bacteria grow. These bacteria are useful in improving bowel function and overall health.
6. Rich in calcium
Calcium is an essential mineral for the proper functioning of the body and for the development of teeth and bones. Pregnant women need adequate amounts of calcium to aid in the development of the baby. The functions of calcium are as follows:
- Builds and strengthens bone structure
- Helps in the development of the fetus in the uterus
- Helps in the formation of bones of the fetus
- Prevents abnormal bone development in fetus
7. Vitamin C
Asparagus is rich in vitamin C and is an essential nutrient for the body. It acts as an antioxidant that protects the body from free radical damage. Vitamin C increases the immunity of the body and prevents viral infections like cold. It is also important for the formation of collagen, which is the main protein that helps make up skin and other connective tissues.
8. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an essential nutrient for both the mother and the fetus. Asparagus is rich in Vitamin E, and some of its uses are as follows:
- Protects the body from pollutants and toxins
- Prevents neurological health problems in children
- Improves immunity and protects pregnant women from diseases
- Helps maintain the health and vitality of the body
9. Vitamin B6
Asparagus is rich in Vitamin B6, which is an essential vitamin for the body. This vitamin is essential for boosting the immunity of both the fetus and the mother and for proper functioning of the body. It also prevents nausea and morning sickness and regulates blood pressure.
10. Vitamin K
Vitamin K, which is also an essential vitamin for the body, is found in abundance in asparagus. It is essential for maintaining heart health and preventing coronary heart disease. It also helps in maintaining the functioning of the blood vessels in the mother and the baby.
Asparagus side effects
- Shatavari has properties similar to the female hormone estrogen. Therefore, women who already have high estrogen levels may experience breast pain or tenderness if they take shatavari kalpa during pregnancy.
- In some women, this can lead to a difference in the size of both the breasts which may not be correct.
- Some women gain weight without any specific reason. (Expert confirmation is required on this)
- It is considered unsafe for people with kidney and heart problems.
Asparagus Dosage for Pregnant Women
To get the best benefits of Shatavari root during pregnancy, take Shatavari Kalp granules as prescribed by your doctor. Its dosage is usually 1 to 2 teaspoonful of Shatavari Kalp twice a day with milk for 2-4 months.
Asparagus is very beneficial for lactating women. However, it has positive effects as well as negative side-effects and hence should only be used during pregnancy under the supervision of your doctor.