Being pregnant means being cautious about the food and drinks we consume. One drink that has sparked interest is tart cherry juice.
People love it for its health benefits; like better sleep, lower inflammation, and muscle recovery. But, is it safe for pregnant women?
In this article, we’ll look at both sides of the coin – the good and bad sides of this juice while expecting. We’ll bring up expert opinions and general advice to help you better understand this topic.
So if you’re a preggy mom, read on to learn more about tart cherry juice and its safety for pregnant women.
Is tart cherry juice safe for pregnant women?
Tart cherry juice is safe for pregnant women, provided that it is consumed unsweetened. This fruit juice is a power house of good nutrients like vitamin C and potassium, which are beneficial for the healthy growth of the baby.
However, it’s worth noting that drinking tart cherry juice in pregnancy may trigger oral allergy syndrome (OAS) for individuals allergic to pollen.
While it is safe and beneficial for most pregnant women, individual health circumstances and dietary needs can vary.
So before incorporating this, or any other new juice into your diet, especially for a long term, consult your healthcare provider.
Regardless, it is a nutritious beverage choice for those expecting, unless the individual has relevant food allergies.
Tips for consuming tart cherry juice safely
- Be aware of allergies:
For certain individuals with pollen allergies, consuming tart cherry juice during pregnancy could trigger oral allergy syndrome (OAS). If you’re aware of any existing allergies, do discuss this with your healthcare provider.
- Watch your daily intake:
While this fruit juice is safe to consume and rich in essential nutrients like vitamin C and potassium, it’s important not to overdo it. Your healthcare provider can suggest an appropriate dosage
- Choose unsweetened varieties:
The version of tart cherry juice without added sugars is the safest choice. This juice is naturally sweet and does not require additional sweeteners
- Digestive Issues:
Some individuals may experience digestive discomfort, such as gas or diarrhea, when consuming large amounts of cherry juice.
This can be a concern during pregnancy when digestive issues are common. It’s always best to take in small amounts first to see how your body receives it.
- Medication Interactions:
Tart cherry juice may interact with certain medications, like blood thinning drugs. For instance, it may interact with warfarin (also, Coumadin) due to its natural anticoagulant properties.
Pregnant women on medication should consult their healthcare provider to ensure maximum safety and stay free from unusual interactions.
- Acidic Nature:
It is naturally acidic, which can potentially worsen heartburn or acid reflux usually common during pregnancy. If you have these symptoms, you certainly do not want to overdrink.
While tart cherry juice is nutritious, it does contain calories. Pregnant women should consider their overall calorie intake and nutritional needs when incorporating this juice into their diet.
Nutritional value of tart cherry juice
Tart cherry juice is quite nutrient-dense. An 8-ounce serving contains approximately the following values according to various sources:
- Calories – 128 and 159
- Carbohydrates – 31 to 36.9 grams
- Protein – 0.3 and 1 gram
- Fat – 1.5 grams
- Sodium – 10.8 to 145 mg
- Iron: 0.6 to 1.1 mg
- Fiber- Usually around 0 grams
- Potassium – 289.1 and 433 mg
- Sugar-Approximately 29 to 32.8 grams
It is also a good source of essential vitamins and minerals, namely:
- Vitamin C
Besides being packed with essential nutrients, it brims with things like proanthocyanidins, anthocyanins, and flavonols.
These fancy-sounding names are basically powerful warriors that help tackle harmful substances in our bodies and calm down inflammation.
So, tart cherry juice doesn’t just taste good, it does good things for our bodies too!
Benefits of tart cherry juice during pregnancy
- Reduces Inflammation:
Hormonal changes during pregnancy lead to increased inflammation levels, which could cause discomfort or pain, particularly around swollen areas like ankles or feet. Tart cherries can help curb this inflammation.
- Aid in Pain Relief:
It might also be beneficial in relieving pain during pregnancy.
- Rich in Vitamins and Minerals:
It is filled with vitamins and minerals required by pregnant moms.
- Improves muscle contraction and nerve communication:
Its potassium content plays an important role in improving muscle contraction, which is necessary during this delicate period.
- Improves Sleep-Wake Cycle:
Contains plenty melatonin responsible for improving sleep and wake cycles.
Tart cherries are a powerful source of antioxidants, and what these do is to protect cells from oxidative stress and inflammation.
Antioxidants contribute to boosting overall health by reducing the risk of pregnancy related complications.
- Heart Health:
The potassium in tart cherry juice doesn’t improve muscle health alone, it can also regulate blood pressure levels which is crucial for both mom and baby.
- Digestive Health:
Cherries are a good source of dietary fiber, which can help alleviate constipation, a common issue during pregnancy.
It contributes very well to overall fluid intake. And since proper hydration is an essential part of every pregnancy, you could take them to help reduce the risk of dehydration and even, urinary tract infections.
Is tart cherry juice safe for babies toos?
Yes, tart cherries are safe for babies but as with most incidents of dietary changes, it is recommended to talk with a paediatrician before introducing it into their diet..
It should be swerved to babies in very small amounts and must be diluted first. Also, observing your child’s intake and choosing organic brands might be crucial to curbing any potential side effect.
It’s worth emphasizing that it is filled with great nutrients like vitamins, minerals and antioxidants but has lower sugar content as compared to the fruit juices.
This could certainly be a plus considering the general recommendation of reducing sugar content in children’s diet.
Attention should be paid to any potential allergic reactions your child might have, especially if they haven’t consumed tart cherry juice before.
What kind of juices to avoid while pregnant?
- Unpasteurized juices
- Some fresh squeezed juices
- High sugar juices
- High caffeine- juice
- Fruit juice with high mercury levels
- Juice with alcohol
- Excessive sour or acidic juice
Yes, this juice contains melatonin, which is a hormone used to regulate sleep and wake cycles. But do not drink to treat insomnia without informing your doctor first. They should be aware, and be the one actually recommending it for the intended purpose.
Yes, cherries are perfectly safe for pregnant women in the first, second and third trimesters. They have vitamins and minerals that fosters healthy pregnancy. But eat in moderation and discuss with a health care professional if you plan using for a long term.
People who are allergic to cherry or certain types of fruits should avoid drinking tart cherry juice. Also, those with diabetes or other conditions affected by high sugar intake should consume it in moderation, due to the juice’s naturally occurring sugars.
To wrap it up, tart cherry juice seems to be pretty safe for women to have during pregnancy. It’s full of the nutrients you need on this journey, and might even help with discomforts.
However , in as much as they are quite sweet, drinking too much might not be ideal as that will increase your sugar levels.
Again, ensure that it is pasteurized; meaning it’s been treated to kill all bacteria and pathogens that could make you sick.
If you’ve had bad allergic experiences drinking cherries or similar fruits, it’s best to give it a pass.
While drinking this can be good for most pregnant women, it’s important that they are included in a balanced and healthy diet as well as priory discussed with a medical health expert.