Calendula or pot marigold is a plant whose flowers are considered to have therapeutic value. The plant is reported to contain a variety of phyto-chemicals, including carbohydrates, phenolic compounds, carotenoids, etc., each with different health benefits. Calendula extracts are used as antiseptic, stimulant, anti-spasmodic, and antipyretic (1).
In this post, MomJunction tells you about the general medicinal uses of calendula, its safety during pregnancy, and more.
Are Marigolds The Same As Calendula?
No. Calendula is different from ornamental marigolds, which are commonly found in gardens (2) Calendula is typically found in Europe, Western Asia, and the US, and blooms from early spring until frost with orange-yellow flowers (3).
General Medicinal Uses Of Calendula
Calendula is used to treat wounds, ulcers, skin damage, frostbite, and eye diseases. It is also used in suspension or in tinctures used for topical application to treat acne, inflammation, to soothe irritated skin tissue, treat yeast infections, and varicose veins (4).
Is Calendula Safe During Pregnancy?
Some experts believe that consumption of calendula is not safe during pregnancy, as it can interfere with conception and can cause miscarriage (3).
A study on the effects of hydroalcohol extract from Calendula officinalis flowers on the reproductive function of female Wistar rats showed mixed results. The extract was non-toxic when administered during preimplantation and organogenic period (a stage when the embryo forms a few organs). However, it caused a decrease in maternal weight when given during the fetal period (when the embryo had turned into a fetus) (5). Despite the research on rats, there are no studies to determine its safety among pregnant women.
Is It Safe To Use Calendula Topically During Pregnancy?
According to the European Scientific Cooperative on Phytotherapy (ESCOP) monograph, external use of calendula may be safe during pregnancy. However, ESCOP does not recommend the topical use of calendula since there is no data to determine its safety during pregnancy (6).
Calendula is used as one of the ingredients in stretch marks removal oil, which is considered effective and does not show any adverse reactions (7). Also, many topical creams and oils contain calendula among its ingredients. Always check the ingredients of a cream or oil and discuss its safety with your obstetrician before using it.
Is Calendula Tea Safe During Pregnancy?
Research suggests that water infusions of calendula flower can cause contractions of the uterus and induce labor (6).
Side Effects Of Calendula
Apart from likely being unsafe during pregnancy, there are no specific side effects of calendula. It may cause drowsiness when combined with some medications used during or after surgery (2).
Always consult your doctor before using anything ingredient, whose safety is questionable during pregnancy. If such ingredients are avoidable, then it is good to avoid them until after your delivery.
Did you use any herbs during pregnancy? Tell us your story in the comment section below.
This post is for informational purposes only and is not a replacement for a doctor’s consultation. Do not use any medication without talking to your doctor.
2. Calendula; Medline Plus; US National Library of Medicine
3. Calendula; Milton S. Hershey Medical Center; PennState Hershey
4. Vrish Ashwlayan; Therapeutic Potential of Calendula officinalis; Research Gate
5. Silva EJ et al., Reproductive assessment of hydroalcohol extract of Calendula officinalis L. in Wistar rats; NCBI (2009)
6. Assessment report on Calendula officinalis; European Medicines Agency
7. Summers B, The effect of a topically-applied cosmetic oil formulation on striae distensae; African Journals Online
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