To ensure proper growth and development of the foetus; herbal decoctions, are given to a pregnant mother, to be taken every month till childbirth. These are especially recommended to women who have a history of recurrent abortions or miscarriages.
The mind of the foetus starts expressing itself from the fifth month of pregnancy and intellect from six months onward. Thus, once a woman reaches the fifth month of her pregnancy she should start following a sattvic diet, which includes food that is easy to digest, warm and unctuous, and which is grown, prepared and consumed in its natural form without much processing.
From the sixth month onwards, the diet should also include nootropic herbs (medicinal herbs that stimulate the brain and nervous system) like Brahmi, Mandukaparni, Shankhapushpi etc. Food which is pungent and heavy to digest should be avoided at all costs during pregnancy.
Strenuous and violent activities, squatting, sleeping during daytime and remaining awake at night, suppression of natural urges, prolonged stay under hot sun and peeping into pipes and wells should be avoided during pregnancy. Therapies like sudation (causing excessive sweating) oleation (application of oil), emesis (induced vomiting) and bloodletting are prohibited during pregnancy.
It is important that the expectant mother remains in a pleasant state of mind by listening to recitations from the scriptures and avoiding thoughts that breed anger, fear, jealousy and hatred.
Source: Book - Guide to Child Care by Dr R K Anand
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