Plums are one of the most colourful and delectable fruits renowned globally. With more than 100 varieties of plums available, they are renowned globally. In India, they are also known as ‘Aloo Bukhara.’ The taste of plums range from sour to sweet and is a very juicy and nutritious fruit. However, whether it is safe for consumption during pregnancy is a big question. Let us try to analyse, the benefits and side effects of consuming plums during pregnancy.
Your diet during pregnancy should contain lots of fruits and juices. Plum should be one of them. It has a great deal of health benefits. Eating plums in pregnancy can ease out the complications of the phase and even after it. Here are a few plum fruit benefits during pregnancy.
Is it safe to eat plums during pregnancy?
Plums will definitely make a great choice for consumption for pregnant ladies. The fruits is highly nutritious and have a plethora of benefits for both the mother as well as the baby when consumed during pregnancy. However one needs to be cautious about its consumption if they have a kidney problem and consult their doctor before consuming plums during pregnancy.
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Nutritional value of plums during pregnancy:
The following are the nutrition received from consuming 100g of plums during pregnancy.
- Calories 46Kcal
- Carbohydrates 11.4g
- Protein 0.7g
- Fibre 1.4g
- Fat 0.28g
- Folate 5mcg
- Pantothenic Acid 135mcg
- Niacin 417mcg
- Pyridoxine 29mcg
- Riboflavin 26mcg
- Potassium 157mg
- Thiamine 28mcg
- A Vitamin 200mcg
- C Vitamin 9.5mg
- E Vitamin 260mcg
- K Vitamin 6.4mcg
- Calcium 6mg
- Iron 170mcg
- Magnesium 7mg
- Manganese 52mcg
- Zinc 100mcg
- Phosphorous 16mg
Where g=grams, mg=milligrams, mcg=micrograms
Benefits of eating Plums in Pregnancy:
1. Controls weight gain:
In spite of plum being a fruit, the carbohydrates in the form of fruit sugar are relatively low. Hence it is an excellent option for a low-calorie food to be added to a pregnancy diet to get the required nutrients but check the weight gain.
2. Maintains eyesights:
Studies show that the everyday consumption of plums reduces the chances of developing retina degeneration. It is a disease which is known for the loss of eyesight in the older folks.
3. Good for development of the brain:
Plums contain powerful antioxidants such as polyphenols and anthocyanin that protect the lipid content in the brain and thereby preventing the brain cells from oxidative degeneration.
4. Prevention of Premature Labour:
There is a common fear among pregnant women of going into premature labour. Premature labour may be painful and may even lead to stillbirth. Plums contain a good quantity of magnesium. The magnesium content in them can relax your muscles. This, in turn, can help avoid premature contractions and labour.
5. Absorption of Iron:
The heart pumps extra blood during pregnancy to meet the needs of the growing baby which in turn can lead to anaemia. Plums contain vitamin C which is vital for better absorption of iron from your regular diet.
6. Prevention of Constipation and Haemorrhoids:
During pregnancy, the additional hormones and the growing uterus can take a huge toll on the digestive system of the mother and can make it very sluggish. Due to this, problems like bloating, constipation, and haemorrhoids are widespread. Plums are full of fibre which helps to ease your bowel movement, thereby making you feel better.
7. Elimination of Stress and Fatigue:
Pregnancy makes mothers feel weak, tired and drained out of energy. With energy levels hitting rock bottom, most expecting mothers find it challenging to lead a normal life. Adding plums to your pregnancy diet is a great way to get a kick of energy and stay active as they are rich in antioxidants and potassium. This is a great plum fruit benefit during pregnancy.
8. Improving Bone Health:
Pregnancy can take a toll on the bones of the mother because the unborn baby needs a healthy supply of calcium for the development of its own skeletal structure. This is why doctors prescribe calcium supplements during pregnancy. Plums are the organic alternatives as they are very rich in Vitamin K, which along with calcium and Vitamin D, keeps your bones healthy.
9. Boosting the Immune System:
Illnesses like flu, cold, diarrhoea etc. might not seem serious on normal days. During pregnancy though, even the most common illnesses can have serious consequences. Plums contain vitamin C which significantly helps to strengthen the immune system, and keeps common illnesses at bay.
10. Prevention of Blood Clotting:
Eating plum fruit during pregnancy is known to prevent blood clotting due to the fruit containing a healthy dose of vitamin K.
11. Managing Gestational Diabetes (GD):
Most pregnant women have a common problem with Gestational Diabetes. To avoid getting GD, you need to ensure that your diet consists of foods with a low glycemic index. Plums during pregnancy are one of the best fruits you can consume to prevent or manage gestational diabetes, due to their significantly low glycemic index.
12. Regulation of Blood Pressure:
Preeclampsia, or high blood pressure, can have harmful consequences and may even prove to be fatal during pregnancy. Plums contain potassium which can regulate blood pressure. Plums have high fibre content that can help reduce the risk of Preeclampsia.
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Side effects of plums during pregnancy:
There are a few side effects of consuming plums during pregnancy. They are as under:
- Low in calories – The plums are low in calories which is good to check the weight gain and also diabetes. However, calories are vital for metabolism. One must consume 1800Kcal during the 1st trimester, 2200Kcal during the 2nd trimester and 2400Kcal during the 3rd trimester.
- Plums can aggravate the kidney issues – If you do not have any problem with the kidneys then go ahead and consume plums without any fear. However, if you have kidney issues then be cautious as plums contain oxalates can aggravate the same by forming a kidney stone.
Recommended quantities of plums to eat during pregnancy:
The daily consumption of plums will vary according to age, sex, health status and so on. However, on average, a person can safely consume 100g of plums per day without any issue. Though the plums are extremely delicious and irresistible one needs to consume it only in moderation to avoid the possible side effects that are mentioned above.
How to take plums during pregnancy diet?
While buying the plums select the bright red ones as they are very juicy. Avoid the ones that are wrinkled, bruised, unripe or damaged. The shelf life of plums increases when stored in plastic zippers in the refrigerator.
The following are the various methods in which you can include plums in your pregnancy diet:
- Plums being a fruit you can have it raw after washing them thoroughly.
- Roast the plums with nutmeg powder, cinnamon powder, ginger powder and orange concentrate.
- Make a plum sauce which will be a perfect complement for the English breakfast.
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The plum fruit benefits during pregnancy and hence unless one has kidney issues, they must be included in the pregnancy diet. There are a couple of side effects of consuming plums during pregnancy. Having high oxalates, they can increase the chances of kidney stones. They have zero calories which aren’t ideal for the mother or the baby. So, is plum good for pregnancy? Despite a few negatives, plums are a healthy addition to your pregnancy diet.
Eating plums during pregnancy is fine and in fact, strongly recommended also because of the unique nutritional combination that it carries. However, consult your doctor before consuming aloo bukhara in pregnancy especially if you have a problem with the kidneys.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Is it safe to eat prunes during pregnancy?
Ans: Prunes are the other name of plums or Aloo Bukhara. They have numerous health benefits when consumed during pregnancy and are extremely safe. Unless one has some kidney problem, prunes do not have any potential side-effect during pregnancy.
Q2. Are plums good for your skin?
Ans: Consuming plums tightens the skin and improves the skin texture. It also reduces the freckles on the skin and rejuvenates the skin to bring a shine on the skin. Hence consuming plums are good for the skin.
Q3. Why do plums make you poop?
Ans: Like many other fruits, plums are also rich in insoluble dietary fibres. Thus they speed up the digestion process and aids in clearing the bowel faster. Hence you feel to poop after consuming plums. If you are facing constipation during your pregnancy then eating plums can aid you in making a gut movement.