Herbs to Avoid while Breastfeeding

Herbs to Avoid while Breastfeeding

Posted in the Pregnancy Forum

Since: Oct 10

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#1 Oct 26, 2010
Breast feeding mothers need to take extra care when taking herbals even though herbs are natural, they are not always safe, especially while nursing. Components in herbs may be passed through breast milk and ingested by a nursing baby just as easily like the foods we eat and the medicines we take.

Below is a common list of well-known herbs to avoid during breast feeding because they contain constituents that may be harmful to the mother or baby. Other herbs should be avoided because they are can decrease the supply of breast milk.

Herbs to Avoid

Alder Buckthorn Rhamnus Frangula
Alkanet Alkanna tinctoria
Aloe Aloe barbadensis
Basil Ocimum basilicum
Bearberry Arctostaphylos Uva ursi
Black cohosh Cimifugia racemosa
Bladderwrack Fucus vesiculosus
Borage Borago officinalis
Black cohosh Cimifugia racemosa
Bladderwrack Fucus vesiculosus
Blood Root Sanguinaria canadensis
Blue Cohosh Caulophyllum thalictroides
Bog Myrtle Myrica gale
Borage Borago officinalis
Buchu Barosma betulina
Bugelweed Lycopus europaeus
Butterbur Petasites hybridus
Cascara sagrada Rhamnus purshiana
Cat's Claw Uncaria tormentosa
Chaparral Larrea tridentate
Chinese Rhubarb, Da Huang Rheum palmatum
Cinchona bark Cinchona spp.
Coltsfoot leaf Tussilago farfara
Comfrey Symphytum officinale
Dong Quai Angelica sinensis
Elecampane Imula helenium
Ephedra/Ma Huang Ephedra sinica
Goldenseal Hydrastis Canadensis
Greater Celandine Chelidonium majus
Guarana Paullinia cupana
Jasmin flowers Jasminum pubescens
Joe-Pye weed Eupatorium purpureum
Kava Kava Piper methysticum
Indian snakeroot Rauwolfia serpentine
Licorice Glycyrrhiza glabra
Madder Rubia tinctorum
Male Fern Dryopteris filix-mas
Stinking Mayweed Anthemis cotula
Mate Ilex paraguayensis
Parsley leaf Petroselinum crispum
Peppermint leaves Mentha piperita
Prickly Ash Zanthoxylum americanum
Pulsatilla plant Anemone pulsatilla
Rhubarb Rheum palmatum
Sage Salvia officinalis
Saw Palmetto Serenoa repens, Sabal serrulata
Senna Cassia spp.
Spearmint leaves Mentha spicata
Tobacco Nicotine tabacum
Wintergreen Gaultheria procumbens
Wormwood Artemis absinthium
White Willow Salix alba
Yellow Dock Rumex crispus

Common Recommendations
• Avoid the pharmacologically active herbal teas.
• Drink any herbal teas only in moderation.
• Limit intake of any herbal preparation that combines several active ingredients.
• Always check the label. Even vitamins and simple Echinacea may contain herbs that should not be used by breastfeeding mothers, such as ginkgo or ginseng.
• Use only brands that have ingredients clearly marked on the label, as well as the expiration date and the name of the manufacturer and distributor.
• Be sure to check with your physician before taking any natural remedy, since it could interact with other medications you take or need.

Always ask your doctor, your child's pediatrician, or a certified lactation consultant before adding any herb or medication to your diet or treatment plan. Herbs can be powerful medicines and should not be used frivolously or unnecessarily, especially if you are breastfeeding a child.

The information provided is for educational and communication purposes only and it should not be construed as personal medical advice. Information published in this article is not intended to replace, supplant or augment a consultation with a health professional regarding the reader's own medical care.

The articles and information included on this website are a blend of excerpts from books, internet research and other periodicals that I found interesting and useful during my research.

Read more great articles about postpartum wellness on our blog: http://www.mypostpartumwellness.com/... and like us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PostpartumWellness

United States

#2 Jul 25, 2012
Another great source for herbs and extracts to take and avoice during pregnancy is:


Since: Jul 12

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#3 Aug 4, 2012
thanks for the details

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