Papaya in Pregnancy

Just as pineapple, eating papaya during pregnancy is also a matter of contradictions as there are a lot of questions regarding its safety. Hence, before including papaya in your fruit salads and smoothies, it is essential to take its pros and cons into consideration to avoid any risks.

Papaya In Pregnancy

Is papaya good for pregnancy

Eating ripe papaya in moderate amounts is considered safe as it comes with certain health benefits because of its Vitamin C, E, folic acid, and fiber content, considered helpful especially for constipation and heartburn [3]. It is still recommended to consult your doctor before including ripe papaya to your diet in the first, second or third trimester.

Safety and risks of raw papaya and its enzyme while pregnant

Unripe or semi-ripe papaya can be harmful during pregnancy as the latex in it functions like the prostaglandin and oxytocin hormones [2, 3] that prepare your body for labor, thus triggering uterine contraction and increasing risks of miscarriage or stillbirth [1], as shown in an animal study. The seeds and skin of ripe and unripe papaya should not be eaten either [3] since they are concentrated with latex.

Papain, an enzyme found in papaya latex and leaves, and predominantly present in green or raw papaya is said to be effective in relieving heartburn [1, 5]. However, as it is present in the latex that is known for its labor-inducing properties, you would need to consult your doctor in case you are considering using it.

If you fall sick or face any discomfort after having papaya, do not delay in talking to your medical practitioner.

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