Fertility and pregnancy * Women's health

Can a curry help bring on labour?

curry wont hurry baby Poll reveals pregnancy old wives' tales

Many mothers-to be are still susceptible to the myths and old wives tales surrounding pregnancy, according to the results of a new poll.

More than 1 in 5 think that tucking into a curry will help bring on labour, while 1 in 3 women questioned believe drinking raspberry tea will do the job.

The poll of over 1200 women also revealed that 13% of women thought they were going to give birth to a boy if their bump was “all at the front”, and 7% believed that drinking coffee during pregnancy can affect the skin of their baby.

"Eating curries or drinking raspberry leaf tea will not, unfortunately, induce labour," said Tommy's midwife Sharon Broad.

"There is no evidence to support this. I still speak to many women, however, who continue to eat spicy food and take raspberry leaf tea in late pregnancy hoping that either will bring on labour."

"Carrying a baby boy with your pregnancy bump all at the front, damaging your baby's skin by drinking coffee or hurting your baby by sleeping on your back are also modern myths. It's true that in later pregnancy sleeping on your side, supported by pillows, will be more comfortable and help boost your blood circulation."

The survey also found that 2 out of 3 women were still unsure about what foods they should eat while pregnant.

Results showed that over half the women surveyed don't know whether they should eat mayonnaise or the levels of caffeine they can drink, and 1 in 5 don't know if they can eat pate.

And 1 in 3 women do not think they should start to exercise if they were not physically active before the pregnancy.

"Pregnancy can be an excellent reason to start exercising. Although it's important to start off slowly, exercise will help your body to be in the best possible shape to cope with labour and giving birth. Even going for a walk is a start," said Ms.Broad.

The poll was carried out by Tommy's and Johnson's Baby.

This article was published on Tue 8 September 2009

Image © anna - Fotolia.com

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