Overview Ayurveda For Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a cheerful time of life for many women. At the same time, it can also be a challenging time as a mother’s body undergoes various changes in order to create and support the development of a new life. Ayurveda with its holistic approach recommends special regimen for pregnant women in order to give birth to a healthy progeny.

Ayurveda Dietary Regimen For Pregnancy

1st month

  • Intake of milk in the desired amount twice a day
  • Sweet, cold and liquid diet
  • The congenial diet should be taken in morning and evening

2nd month

  • Milk medicated with sweet drugs like asparagus root powder (1 tsp powder in 1 glass of milk)
  • Sweet, cold and liquid diet

3rd month

  • Milk with honey and ghee (2 tsp of ghee and 1 tsp of honey in 1 glass of milk)
  • Sweet, cold and liquid diet
  • Cooked rice with milk

4th month

  • Butter extracted from the milk (6 tsp)
  • Cooked rice with curd
  • Dainty and pleasant food with milk and butter

5th month

  • Ghee extracted from milk
  • Cooked rice with milk or meat(preferably chicken)
  • Yavagu (Gruel prepared by cooking rice and water mixed in the ratio 1:6)
  • Rice-pudding

6th month

  • Ghee medicated with a sweet group of drugs like liquorice, asparagus etc.
  • Sweetened curd
  • Rice gruel medicated with Gokshur (Tribulus Terrestris)

7th month

  • A regimen of the sixth month should be continued

8th month

  • Rice gruel prepared with milk and mixed with ghee.

Other Regimens Alongside

  1. The pregnant woman desirous of producing healthy and good looking child should give up non-congenial diet and mode of life and should remain in high spirit.
  2. Her sleeping and sitting place should be covered with soft cushion or mattress, not very high, possess elevated portion for head-rest and should be perfect and very comfortable.
  3. A cold decoction of pounded leaves of drugs capable of suppressing vata like castor oil plant should be used for bathing purpose
  4. In the eighth month for clearing the retained feces and flatus, asthapana Basti (evacuative enema) should be given. This should be followed by anuvasana Basti (uncting enema) of oil medicated with milk and decoction of sweet drugs. After this, she should be given unctuous gruels and meat soup.
  5. In the ninth month, only anuvasana Basti (uncting enema) of oil medicated with milk and decoction of sweet drugs should be given. Vaginal tampoon of this very oil should be given for lubrication of cervix and vaginal canal.

Rationale Of These Regimen

During the first trimester of pregnancy most women experience nausea vomiting, thus cannot take proper diet. Use of cold and sweet liquid and diet and milk will prevent dehydration and supply required nourishment. Besides the drugs of madhura (sweet) group being anabolic will help in the maintenance of proper health of mother and fetus.

Fourth month onwards muscular tissue of fetus grows sufficiently requiring more protein which is supplied by the use of meat-soup. By the end of the second trimester, most women suffer from edema of feet and other complications of water accumulation. Use of gokshura, a good diuretic in the sixth month will prevent retention of water as well as its complications.

Most women experience constipation in late pregnancy due to pressure of gravid uterus over the bowels and effect of progesterone. Use of enema in the eighth month will relieve this constipation, besides this may also affect the autonomous nervous system governing myometrium and help in regulating their function during labour.

Tampon oil may destroy pathogenic bacteria of the vaginal canal and prevent puerperal sepsis. Besides, this might soften the perineum and help in its relaxation during labour.

Dietetics And Mode Of Life Contradicted During Pregnancy

  1. Use of excessive heavy, hot and pungent substances
  2. Harsh or violent activities
  3. Intoxicating substances and alcohol
  4. Day sleep
  5. Squatting
  6. Repeated excessive massage of oil
  7. Suppression of natural urges
  8. Prolonged stay in the sun or near fire
  9. Pancha-karma (detoxifying measures)
  10. Anger, grief fear, terror
  11. Ride over vehicle running on an uneven path

Concept of Dauhrid

Ayurveda describes a unique concept of Dahrid in course of pregnancy. Dau means two and hrid mean heart. The two hearts denote both the heart of mother and fetus.

The heart is considered as the source of desires and the desires of both hearts i.e. that of a pregnant lady and that of a fetus are thought to be expressed by the mother. Suppression of these desires vitiates Vata, which moving in the body of the fetus produces various diseases and abnormalities. So, Ayurveda considers that the desires expressed by the pregnant lady must be fulfilled appropriately. Along with these Ayurveda also emphasize upon care from husband and kinsfolk during pregnancy in order to comfort emotional mood changes the pregnant lady undergoes in this period.

Conclusion

Ayurveda has considered various physical as well as psychological factors that could affect the health of both fetus and pregnant woman. On this basis, Ayurveda has suggested specific regimen during the course of pregnancy as well as contradictions such that the mother would be able to deliver a healthy child with fewer complications.

The ayurvedic regimen is effective, economical and easy to fulfil so it would be beneficial to follow these regimens for any pregnant women who are aspiring for a healthy progeny.