Why women should eat during labour, by study
*Scientists claim good dose of carbs could speed up birth, recovery
Women should eat during labor to make the birth quicker and shorten their recovery time, scientists claim.
Expectant mothers are often told they can have nothing other than ice chips after they enter the first stage of labour.
Until now, doctors have feared mid-push food could cause the woman to choke, or would affect the anesthetic if they needed an emergency C-section.
But a new analysis shows they can have much more than some frozen droplets, and it won’t cause them any problems.
In fact, keeping hydrated and having carbohydrates helps muscles to work better – especially the uterus – giving an energy boost, and allowing for a shorter stint in hospital.
Researchers from the Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, United States (U.S.), analyzed 10 trials that included 3,982 women in labor.
All participants were only delivering one child – not twins or triplets – and were not at risk of a cesarean section.
Those who were allowed to eat and drink more than ice chips and water had labors that were shorter by 16 minutes on average.
And they were not at an increased risk of choking or vomiting under general anesthetic – a concern raised in a study from the 1940s, according to the study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology.