There is not enough information on turmeric and pregnancy to determine whether it is safe for pregnant women to use this herbal supplement. Although it is thought that a normal intake of turmeric through dietary means is probably okay, using turmeric medicinally (in higher doses) may potentially cause problems. There are some concerns that turmeric may stimulate the uterus, possibly leading to a miscarriage.
Is Turmeric Safe During Pregnancy?
At this time, it is not known if using turmeric medicinally is safe for pregnant women. It is thought that a normal intake of turmeric in foods (such as when used as a spice) is probably okay for pregnant women.
There is no evidence either way to suggest that turmeric is safe (or unsafe) for pregnant women. Even though turmeric is a "natural" product, it does not automatically mean that it is safe for use during pregnancy (after all, many poisons and toxins are natural).
Until more information is available, it may be a good idea to avoid turmeric if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant. While eating foods with turmeric is assumed to be safe during pregnancy, using turmeric medicinally (usually at higher doses) may potentially cause problems. There is some thought that turmeric could stimulate the uterus, possibly leading to a miscarriage (although there is not much real evidence to back up such a claim).
Turmeric and Pregnancy: Talking With Your Healthcare Provider
If you are pregnant, it is always a good idea to have a discussion with your healthcare provider before taking any medication or supplement, including turmeric. Do not assume that turmeric is automatically okay for use in pregnancy just because it is a natural product. However, it is probably fine for pregnant women to use turmeric in moderation in foods.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Jellin JM, editor. Pharmacist's Letter/Prescriber's Letter Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Web site. Available at: http://naturaldatabase.com/. Accessed April 2, 2008.
National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine. National Institutes of Health. Herbs at a glance: turmeric (March 2007). NCCAM Web site. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/turmeric/. Accessed April 2, 2008.
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