Chewing betel leaf with many additives is a common and great after meal snack in India. Many people have got the habit of chewing it even between meals and so, talking about its harmful effects during pregnancy becomes important. Read on to know in detail.
Chewing betel leaves along with hazardous items like betel nuts (supari), slaked salt (chuna), tobacco etc; may prove life threatening during pregnancy. Although, chewing betel leaf alone without adding any such things is deemed to be safe, it is better to completely avoid it for the well being of the little life growing inside you.
Betel leaf prepared with betel nuts (supari) and slaked salt (chuna) makes a great after meal sweet and spicy snack (Mukhwas). But consuming such items during pregnancy may cause harm. Like everyone in family, even riya was very much fond of “paan” and often chewed it out until she got pregnant. Riya remained two minded on eating or not eating betel leaf during pregnancy
as she was advised differently by different people.
Is it Harmful to Eat Betel Leaf during Pregnancy?
As per research conducted by World Health Organization (WHO), there are enough evidences which suggests that consumption of betel leaf along with betel nuts (Paan) can cause cancer. This mixture of betel leaf along with betel nut can increase the risk of miscarriages
and birth defects during pregnancy.
Betel leaf alone does no harm as such if consumed moderately. In fact it helps in the proper digestion of food. The only adverse thing that it does, it stains the teeth poorly of those people who consume it regularly.
But consumption of betel leaves together with betel nuts and tobacco has many risks associated with it. Besides being a very strong stimulant it has other risky health hazards as well. Let’s have a look at the harmful effects which is caused due to the consumption of betel leaves.
The most common health hazards are mainly mouth ulcers. In most of the cases, the cancers are incurable. Betel leaf together with betel nut can cause damage to the DNA. It can attack various organs of the body like, mouth, throat, larynges and the oesophagus. The cancerous cells originate from these organs and spread to the whole body thereby causing horrible deformation of the body and organs. Then it attacks the mind and causes the patient to be half dead due to frustration.
Tobacco is more deadly. For those who are addicted to leaves and other things of addiction, adding a little tobacco to the betel leaves gives them a feeling of ecstasy which is unexplainable for those who love this addiction and shows no sign to come out of this.
Betel leaf combined with betel nut and slaked lime commonly known as the betel quid is a deadly addiction. The health hazards caused due to the consumption of betel quid may include increased heart palpitations and other coronary diseases. It also causes oral or mouth ulcers and brain cancers.
Researches also show that betel leaf chewing is also one of the causes behind obesity. However scientists, could not link this association of consumption of betel leaf with the reason behind obesity. Consumption of betel leaves also reduces the average life span by six years approximately.
Too much consumption of the betel leaves together with tobacco and betel nut causes the upper digestive tract to become thicker, which in turn causes other harmful side effects like indigestion
Thus betel leaf alone is not deadly, but when it is consumed with other deadly counterparts like tobacco, lime and betel nut can prove to be very fatal and can cause life risks.
Is it Healthy to Eat Betel Leaf during Pregnancy?
Betel leaves are traditionally known to hold immense vitamins, minerals and fibres. During pregnancy all of them are required as additional measure to ensure proper growth of baby. As betel leaf contains good amount of nutrient components, it is said that chewing betel leaf after dinner may help to cope with indigestion
and may improve appetite during pregnancy.
Can I Eat Betel Leaf during Pregnancy?
If traditions are to be count, betel leaf comes under checklist of foods that can be consumed during pregnancy. Betel leaf holds vitamins, minerals and is full of fibre, which are essential components needed by pregnant women. Chewing maximum of two or three betel leaf after heavy meals may improve digestion during pregnancy. Betel leaf also helps in proper appetite functioning during pregnancy.
Traditionally it is believed that chewing betel leaf alone without betel nuts and/or slaked salt (chuna) can be beneficial as it contains essential nutrients. However, there is no evidence for such betel leaf benefits during pregnancy. It is better to avoid betel leaf during pregnancy to save the little one growing inside you from health hazards.Is it harmful to eat betel leaf during pregnancy? Is it healthy to eat betel leaf during pregnancy? Why are pregnant women prohibited from eating betel leaf during pregnancy? Discuss Here