Dry fruits are considered a superfood as they are rich in nutrients and beneficial for pregnant women. During pregnancy, you might want to try experimenting with different choices of dry fruits and reap their benefits. But, you might wonder whether having prunes during pregnancy is safe as you are unsure about their effects on your unborn child. Read on as we tell you about the safety profile of prune, its juice for pregnant women, and its various health benefits.
If you are craving for prunes in pregnancy, we are here to help. Read on to know if prune juice is safe during pregnancy.
What Are Prunes?
A prune is a dry plum. It is one of the healthiest types of foods the world over. Prunes are good for your overall health and the baby’s health. The good part about eating prunes is that they rarely have any side effects.
Eating Prunes In Pregnancy
Eating prunes within limits during pregnancy is normally safe and one of the best healthy snacks. Each pregnancy is unique and whether or not you can eat prunes during your pregnancy will depend on your overall health. Your doctor will be your best guide to tell you about how many prunes you can consume safely.
Benefits Of Eating Prunes When You Are Pregnant
Prunes are nutrient-dense and contain vital prenatal vitamins like vitamin A and vitamin K; they are also rich in dietary fiber, iron, calcium,
magnesium, and antioxidants. Here are some more benefits of eating prunes for pregnant women:
1. Prevents Constipation And Aids Bowel Movement:
When you are pregnant, you are likely to experience bowel difficulties or constipation due to the various hormonal changes. During your pregnancy, your body produces more estrogen to ensure that your baby is growing properly. It can slow down your digestion and cause constipation (1). Progesterone is another hormone that your body releases during pregnancy. It relaxes and loosens your muscles. The muscles that form the outside walls of your bowel area relax during pregnancy due to progesterone production. It makes it difficult for the food to move along and get out of your body. Prunes can help one have smooth bowel movements and improve digestive health due to the presence of fiber, which can help prevent hemorrhoids. (2).
Sophia, a mother and blogger, shares how prunes helped her relieve constipation during pregnancy. She says, “One of the things the massive amounts of hormones do is slow down your digestive tract. It can give you constipation… I got constipation from early on – before I even knew I was pregnant… The only thing that worked was loads of dried prunes. Other people have suggested dried apricots or fresh kiwi fruits. Dried prunes are cheap, though. Five dried prunes count as a portion of your five a day and, in my experience, are enough to get your sluggish bowel moving (i).”
2. Prevents Anemia And Boosts Your Iron Levels:
Iron is one of the main nutrients that is vital for the proper growth and development of your baby. Prunes are a rich source of iron (3). When you are pregnant, your iron requirements go up considerably. Just eating your regular meals may not be adequate. It is important to include additional food items like prunes to fight iron deficiency. Eating prunes help you build hemoglobin and prevent anemia during pregnancy. It will also help you and your baby build immunity and keep any signs of weakness at bay. Snacking on prunes will also help maintain your energy levels and soothe your nerves.
3. Controls Blood Pressure And Fights Depression:
According to a US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report, hypertensive disorders during pregnancy affect at least one in seven deliveries. Also, the prevalence of pregnancy-associated hypertension in the US was 13% in 2019.
Prunes contain potassium, which can help lower blood pressure and may reduce the risk of gestational hypertension (4). It may also help fight depression and control anxiety (5). The beta-carotene and vitamin A in prunes help in the development of eyes in your unborn baby. Eating prunes will work wonders for your skin and that of your baby too.
4. Prevents Joint Pain:
You may be experiencing joint pains and cramps while you are pregnant. Eating prunes can help prevent or reduce these pains. Intake of prunes will also help prevent any inflammation while you are pregnant.
5. Fights Nausea:
Eating prunes can be a natural and healthy way to prevent nausea.
It has been observed that prunes have a low glycemic index and may help control blood sugar levels, which may be beneficial for pregnant women with gestational diabetes.
Frequently Asked Questions
1.Can prunes increase blood sugar levels during pregnancy?
Prunes do not cause a rapid increase in blood sugar levels due to their low glycemic value and high energy content (8).
2.Can prunes contribute to weight gain during pregnancy?
Studies suggest that prunes do not contribute to weight gain due to their high flavonoid content (9).
3. What are the best ways to incorporate prunes into a pregnancy diet?
Prunes can be consumed directly, in juice form, or added to breakfast recipes during pregnancy with prior consultation from a doctor.
Dried fruits are one of the most popular food choices among expectant mothers. Prunes are dried plums that provide numerous health benefits. Prunes are popular for their ability to help with constipation, anemia, blood iron levels, blood pressure, and nausea. Bloating, gas and diarrhea are some of the side effects of overeating prunes. Also, if you have diabetes or any other health issue, talk to your doctor about the safety and consumption of prunes during pregnancy.
Infographic: Ways To Include Prunes Into Pregnancy Diet
Prunes are nutritious dry plums that are safe to consume when pregnant. So, do you love having them and want to include lip-smacking prune-based dishes in your pregnancy diet? Scroll through the infographic below to discover interesting ways to relish prunes during pregnancy.
- Prunes, a variety of dried plum, are regarded as a nutritious food.
- It’s important to see a doctor to find out whether eating prunes is safe while pregnant.
- Iron-rich prunes can help prevent anemia and increase iron levels in pregnant women.
- During pregnancy, prunes can help avoid joint discomfort and lessen inflammation.
- Prunes can also help with nausea prevention, but their oxalate concentration should be taken into account, and medical help should be sought if necessary.
Prunes have numerous health benefits from aiding in digestion to improving bone health. Learn how prunes can help you stay healthy from this informative video.
Personal Experience: Source
i. Things I didn’t know before I got pregnant.
- Ji-Eun Oh et al.; (2013); Estrogen Rather Than Progesterone Cause Constipation in Both Female and Male Mice.
- 8 Remedies To Relieve Constipation.
- Iron-Deficiency Anemia.
- Medical Benefits of Prunes.
- Nutritional strategies to ease anxiety.
- Faryal Mirza et al.; (2018); Dried plum alleviates symptoms of inflammatory arthritis in TNF transgenic mice.
- Real Food Encyclopedia | Plums.
- Chemical Composition and Potential Health Effects of Prunes: A Functional Food?
- Dietary flavonoid intake and weight maintenance: three prospective cohorts of 124 086 US men and women followed for up to 24 years