It seems obvious that women have always eaten during labor. Imagine hundred of years ago, a woman giving birth in the woods, perhaps.
During labor she would drink, she would use the bathroom, she would rest…she would eat if she was hungry.
But lately and with the increase of hospital births in the United States ( and around the world overall) the so called civilized medical system seems to dislike the idea of moms eating once they go into labor.
The official reason is that in case of an emergency in which mom would need to go to the ER, she would be at risk of choking on her own food regurgitation during such surgery.
Well, let me ask then what would happen if in a different scenario, someone ( not necessarily a mother, nor a woman) were to walk out a restaurant after dinner, get in an accident and sent straight to the ER…shouldn’t she count on the fact that the medical team would know how to deal with her full stomach?
Or from now on, should we all never eat again for fear of needing surgery, at any unpredictable time and possibly suffocating on our lunch??
Let me call this fear mongering strategy exactly what it is: a lie!
I wanted to take the time to address how important it is that mom keeps hydrated but also well fueled during labor. To give an example, she is using as much energy as running the NY marathon, without being necessarily fully trained.
Would you run it on an empty stomach? Don’t you think the outcome would better if we restored our energy with good, easy digestible snacks?
During labor, a woman might not feel eating a ton, but that is a different story and it is vital that she consumes easy, small snacks to keep going.
Of course I am not suggesting she should have a Thanksgiving meal, good options can be: yogurt, fruit, protein bars, eggs, honey sticks, soup, energy drinks, broth, cheese, to name a few. Eating during labor can look like a different million things. For instance, when I photographed this mama’s birth, she kept fueled with scrambled eggs, water and bites of protein bars.
But there is a fruit in particular that has been discovered to be truly magical.
I am sure the Mediterranean culture has known it all along, but in a recent study, it has been proven that dates not only help inducing labor and are more effective than any other artificial oxytocin ( read Pitocin) starting at 38 weeks; but, also, they help reduce the length of labor itself AND are effective in preventing hemorrhage after birth.
The study was conducted on hundreds of women and confirmed with a double blind experiment that you watch here:
So please have your favorite snacks ready at your birth, hospital, home or birth center. The outcome will be much better for everyone and when needed, why not skip the drugs and try some (way) cheaper, delicious, and miraculous dates?
I will be experimenting with them myself in a few months. <3