Ayurveda and pregnancy

Pregnancy and birth are significant events in a woman’s life, especially with the first child, but of course also with each subsequent one. Ayurveda has numerous recommendations for conception, pregnancy and motherhood to ensure a healthy, relaxed and happy mother and a healthy and vital baby.
In Ayurveda, pregnancy is not an accidental event, but should be carefully prepared by both partners in order to give birth to a healthy, balanced child with the best starting conditions for a fulfilled life.

Ayurvedic preparation for pregnancy

In Ayurveda, it is not left to chance whether a child is born healthy. Instead, the father and mother-to-be should prepare their body and mind well before conception to create the best possible conditions for the unborn child.

The following applies: the less Ama (toxins, metabolic deposits) burden the body of the woman and man, the better the genetic material and also the fertility of both will be. Infertility is a growing phenomenon in the Western world, which is promoted by toxins, environmental pollution and electromagnetic radiation, among other things, and also leads to an increase in malformations and pregnancy losses.

In order to prevent this, cleansing and elimination is a central point, which not only considerably increases one’s own well-being, but also promotes the physical and mental health of the unborn child from the very beginning.

Ama cures in the home setting, regular liquid days and especially a professionally conducted Panchakarma cure are ideal for this.

All of these options aim to systematically remove metabolic waste products and toxins from the body and cleanse the various body tissues at a deep level.

Ama cures are recommended not only before planned pregnancies, but at least twice a year, preferably in the major transitional periods of spring and fall. You can find instructions here.

In order to maintain the positive effects of Ama cleansing, it is advisable to take a liquid day once a week until the start of pregnancy. Parents-to-be should only consume liquids, for example a freshly squeezed juice in the morning and a smooth vegetable soup at lunchtime and in the evening. The regular liquid day prevents the accumulation of ama and increases fertility.

Ayurveda recommends that both partners undergo a Panchakarma treatment before conceiving a child. This is because it cleanses the body particularly deeply and thus creates the best conditions for increasing fertility and a healthy genetic make-up for the child. The ingenious concept of a Panchakarma treatment is a very effective method of systematically getting rid of ama that has accumulated over the course of a lifetime due to an incorrect lifestyle, environmental toxins and chronic stress. Even a ten-day cure can achieve a great deal and help to bring body and mind back into balance, as well as balancing all three doshas. You can find more information about the course of a Panchakarma treatment in our hotel here.

In addition to cleansing, a diet that is as balanced as possible, rich in vital substances and ideally based on Ayurvedic principles also plays a decisive role. It should not only taste good, but also nourish the body on all levels. An individual diet – adapted to your own constitution and digestive power – also logically strengthens the reproductive tissue, called Shukra Dhatu in Sanskrit. This point is given great importance in Ayurveda and is a separate discipline known as Vajikarana. The reproductive tissues, which include sperm and egg cells, can be particularly strengthened with the following foods, among others: Cream, raw milk, ghee, honey, raisins, almonds, sweet ripe fruits, stimulating spices such as saffron, cardamom and turmeric, and nourishing grains. Irritants such as very sour or spicy foods, packaged and processed foods with many artificial additives, as well as caffeine and alcohol should be avoided.

On a physical level, regular self-massages, known as Abhyanga in Ayurveda, are also recommended during the preparation period. The Ayurvedic full-body oil treatment reduces Vata, stimulates the digestive fire Agni, supports a healthy Pitta and eliminates excess Kapha. This ensures a balanced hormonal system, more youthfulness and joie de vivre and also increased fertility.

On a spiritual level, Transcendental Meditation (TM) in particular supports a balanced mind and a calmer spirit. The experience of absolute inner stillness brings order to the entire organism, so that breathing, heartbeat, hormones, the immune system and the thousands of subtle metabolic processes are brought into harmony. Just two meditation sessions of 15-20 minutes a day can refine body and mind and ensure greater balance. This experience of the inner space that can be entered at any time is also very helpful and supportive during childbirth. Corresponding studies show that women who practiced TM regularly during pregnancy had easier births, their babies were measurably stronger immediately after birth and the women were able to breastfeed better and for longer.

Increase fertility with Rasayanas

In Ayurveda, medicinal herbs play a major role and are used in addition to the measures mentioned above. Rasayanas improve all physical functions, the fertility as well as the hereditary substance. The best-known and very popular rasayana is Amrit Kalash, which translates as the nectar of immortality. This herbal paste and herbal tablets have been very well researched and have repeatedly proven their high potential to bind free radicals. More than 40 medicinal herbs and 20 pounds of raw material are processed in complex procedures to produce one pound of the finished product. One teaspoon of this can be taken daily in the morning and evening and two tablets during the day to benefit from the many positive effects.

Another highly recommended remedy is Maharishi Ayurveda Men’s Rasayana for the father-to-be, while Maharishi Ayurveda Women’s Rasayana strengthens and harmonizes the female organs. However, this remedy should no longer be taken during pregnancy.

In this case, a pregnancy tonic is recommended, which can be taken during the entire pregnancy, nourishes the mother and the unborn child and helps against morning sickness in the first trimester.

Ayurvedic recommendations for expectant mothers

Once the longed-for pregnancy has occurred, Ayurveda also offers a number of recommendations to make the time leading up to the birth as optimal as possible.

Of course, nutrition continues to play a major role, as this should now not only nourish and strengthen the woman alone, but also the unborn child as much as possible. In general, it is advisable to continue with the above recommendations and to drink hot water regularly to calm Vata again and again.

Also make sure you eat freshly prepared food, preferably with freshly cooked vegetables, rice and dal, high-quality fats from ghee and cold-pressed olive oil and spices, depending on taste, digestive power and season. In summer, fresh salads with lots of leafy greens are also recommended for lunch. Flatulent foods, garlic and onions, on the other hand, should be avoided.

In addition to these more general guidelines, the Ayurvedic doctor can give the expectant mother specific nutritional recommendations for each month of pregnancy. This is because Ayurveda has had in-depth knowledge for thousands of years about which tissues of the unborn child develop in which month and which specific foods support this process.

If pregnancy cravings arise, the expectant mother should satisfy them in her own interests and in the interests of the baby, replacing cravings for unhealthy or harmful foods with similar tasting but healthy foods wherever possible. This is because these cravings indicate hidden deficiencies in the physiology of the expectant mother, which should be compensated for in order to support the optimal development of the unborn child.

Recommendations for different stages of pregnancy

In the first trimester of pregnancy, all doshas are in turmoil. On a physical level, the absence of the last period brings about numerous changes that can manifest themselves in the form of discomfort, nausea, mood swings and digestive disorders. All Ayurvedic recommendations serve to gently balance Vata and Pitta in particular – through an appropriate diet, plenty of rest and relaxation. The expectant mother should avoid strenuous physical and mental exertion and worry as much as possible and rather create plenty of space for herself in order to focus more on her inner self.

Fasting cures and purging procedures should be avoided at all costs, but regular Abhyanga is highly recommended.

The mother-to-be should be as comfortable as possible throughout the pregnancy, as all her feelings are transferred directly to the unborn child and have a significant impact on it while it is still in the womb. The father’s task during this time is therefore to ensure that the expectant mother is doing well. For this reason, Ayurveda even says that a pregnant woman should be treated like a queen whose every wish is read from her eyes. The more this succeeds, the more balanced the baby will be after birth.

From the second trimester of pregnancy onwards, things often settle down again, bodily functions have settled down and the unborn child is growing and thriving, which is noticeable in the increasing abdominal girth. A high nutrient density and sufficient intake of fresh food are particularly important here, and Ayurvedic oil massages are also highly recommended as long as no pressure is exerted on the abdomen. Warming baths and swimming in warm water also have a very relaxing effect and can help to relieve the increasing pressure on the lower abdomen and lumbar spine from time to time.

In the last few weeks before the birth, cold and flatulent foods should be avoided and a warming, easily digestible diet should be preferred. Walks, oil massages and oil enemas, yoga and pranayama can have a positive influence on Apana Vata, the subdosha whose activity is crucial for the birth process.

If you would like to become pregnant or are already pregnant and would like to benefit from an Ayurvedic cure or need advice and support in any other way, you are welcome to arrange a free telephone consultation with a doctor or book an appointment for an outpatient medical consultation.

The Maharishi Ayurveda Team from Bad Ems wishes you all the best for this exciting time.

© Maharishi Ayurveda Private Clinic Bad Ems

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