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Professionals at the World Federation of Societies of Anesthesiologists say that pain is a subjective experience. The severity of labour pain is extremely personal and cannot be measured accurately. However, it does require truck loads of physical strength and stamina to push out a baby. Breathing and relaxation does work. But did you know that a well-balanced diet can also ease the entire process?

Here are a few foods that can help you with the process of natural childbirth.

Leafy Vegetables

Kale, beet greens, asparagus, cabbage, spinach, Brussel sprouts and Romaine lettuce provide essential nutrition like Vitamin A, K and E, Iron, Zinc, Calcium and Magnesium. They are extremely beneficial during pregnancy up to natural delivery. It is recommended to cook them well to break down the nutrients. However, you can balance it out by consuming a few vegetables raw, as salad, or in the form of green smoothies.

Pineapple and Green Papaya

Bromelain is usually found in pineapple, which can help with strong contractions. This happens because the enzyme softens the cervix and stimulates the muscles. This is one of the safest and most natural ways to bring on labour. Either consume the fruit as it is or as pineapple juice. Try not to eat canned or frozen forms. Green papaya leaves contain oxytocin and prostaglandin, which can induce uterine contractions as well. Try to avoid ripened papayas for best results during the natural birth process.

Liver

For prenatal, labour and postpartum health, try to include liver in your daily diet. It is packed with CoEnzyme Q10, folic acid and almost all the vitamins, including A, D and K. One great pain management nutrient is Vitamin B12, which is present in liver. Vitamin B also helps in the production of red blood cells, necessary for the growth, development and delivery of a healthy baby.

Seeds and Nuts

Nuts are healthy sources of fat and can promote energy, which is crucial during vaginal delivery. In fact, walnuts, pistachios, pine nuts and almonds have are high on calories and proteins, which release energy slowly. They also contain antioxidants, which help ease oxidative stress. Sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds are extremely beneficial while preparing for natural birth. Pumpkin seeds, in particular, are full of iron, magnesium and compounds like phytonutrients. These are effective for those who have gestational diabetes. Additionally, Vitamin E, present in sunflower seeds, helps to avoid pre-term labour.

Bananas and Dates

Pre-eclampsia is a dangerous complication, which develops a few weeks before labour. It leads to high blood pressure and damages the kidneys and liver. Bananas contain good amounts of Vitamin B and Potassium, which can effectively reduce the symptoms. Dates increase the chances of natural labour and high cervical dilation. In fact, early labour is shortened in women who consumed 6 dates for a month before childbirth.

Make sure to consult your doctor to know if your medical history permits you to consume these foods before delivery.

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