The gentlebirth.org website is provided courtesy of
Ronnie Falcao, LM MS, a homebirth midwife in Mountain View, CA
An interactive resource for moms on easy steps they can take to reduce exposure to chemical toxins during pregnancy.
Other excellent resources about avoiding toxins during pregnancy
These are easy to read and understand and are beautifully presented.
* "We have found the Polly-Jean Formula--an herbal
combination that gravidas begin taking five weeks prior to anticipated
date of delivery--to be a boon to the home birth movement. It assists
in the following ways:
As with all herbal preparations, this should be undertaken with supervision.
Five-Week Antenatal Formula
contains the following
My reference: The New Holistic Herbal by David Hoffman, with occasional reference to Hygeia: A Woman's Herbal by Jeannine Parvati Baker.
Squaw vine herb: Used by Native Americans and "among the best remedies for preparing the uterus and whole body for child birth". Recommended for use during the some weeks before one's EDD. Also useful in the relief of painful menstruation (dysmenorrhea). When used in preparations for labor, combine with raspberry leaf.
Thistle (also known as Blessed thistle): A digestive acid which "increased
gastric and bile secretions". Its use in pregnant women can be traced to
its "benefit in...dyspepsia and indigestion... [with] a role in any disease
of the digestive system which is accompanied by wind and colic". Contrary
to what I said earlier,
it is not a demulcent.
False Unicorn root: Another native American herb and "one of the best tonics and strengtheners of the reproductive system that we have". Normalizes hormone function, can be used to prevent threatened miscarriage, and ease morning sickness vomiting.
Wild Ginger:Warming, stimulating.
Wild Yam: Anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory, anti-rheumatic, hepatic, cholagogue, diaphoretic.
Blue Cohosh: Emmenagogue - promotes uterine contractions.
Raspberry Leaf: Used to strengthen and tone the uterus, thereby easing
labor and preventing hemorrhage. This herb should be taken regularly during
pregnancy and esp. during labor.
Motherwort: Nervine, emmenagogue, anti-spasmodic, hepatic, cardiac tonic, hypotensive.
Inflata herb - This anti-spasmodic is ideal for relaxing the uterine
muscles that keep the cervix rigid. From King's
American Dispensatory: "The powerfully relaxant properties of
lobelia render it a very efficient agent in several conditions, whose chief
feature is the spasmodic element. . . . Lobelia is of value in obstetrical
practice. It powerfully subdues muscular rigidity. It is the remedy to
overcome a rigid os uteri during parturition, and at the same time it relaxes
the perineal tissues."
Bayberry Root Bark: Astringent, circulatory stimulant, diaphoretic.
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