Is it safe to eat papaya during pregnancy?
While there are many health benefits of papaya, it is crucial to be aware of potential risks associated with its consumption during pregnancy. “The enzyme papain found in papaya can trigger uterine contractions, potentially leading to miscarriage or premature labor,” says Dr Tiwari. She further explains that papaya may also cause the amniotic sac to rupture, resulting in the loss of amniotic fluid and posing risks to the fetus. Therefore, caution must be exercised, especially in the later stages of pregnancy.
Papaya contains phytoestrogens that mimic the effects of estrogen in the body. Consuming ripe papayas during pregnancy can disrupt hormonal balance, potentially leading to complications such as low birth weight, developmental problems in the fetus, or preterm labor. “It is essential to be mindful of this hormonal impact and consume papaya in moderation,” advises Dr Tiwari.