So, you’re feeling a bit over-due: you’re blocked up and swollen, aren’t sleeping so well and are running out of patience. Your reading at-home remedies to kick start your labor: spicy foods, stairs, sex, squats, and.. drinking castor oil?
Castor oil has been used to induce labor by stimulating the bowels which in turn, stimulates uterine contractions. If you google “using castor oil to induce labor”, you will get a mix of positive and negative stories.
The positive: using castor oil internally and externally may induce labor if taken in small doses. The body seems to clear out as you approach labor and castor oil will increase the possibility of this. Taken in small doses with lots of water, castor oil may be useful.
The negative: some women will drink too much castor oil in an attempt to induce labor quicker. Taken in larger doses, castor oil may cause diarrhea, dehydration, vomiting and a broad range of discomfort if not taken with care. It can also start a false labor and tire you out so read into your body before you start gulping it down.
So what does a small dose look like?
I am not a medical practitioner so I cannot prescribe what a small dose could be for your body– I would recommend talking with your health care provider about what could be right for you. The thing is, a small dose for one person could be an external belly and back rub with castor oil and a drop or two of essential oils (with sage and lavender if you are full term). A small dose for another could be anything under 1 tablespoon. If you are interested in trying castor oil internally, I recommend trying it in small amounts—say 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon to see how your body reacts (make sure you write down when you’ve taken it along with any other natural induction product). Remember that you will need to drink a moderate amount of liquid afterwards (try making some labourade or juices—here is a recipe for ideas https://theficusandthedoula.wordpress.com/2014/07/07/bring-on-the-summer-heat/ ) just in case you go into labor.
Try this anti-inflammatory warm labor inducing Turmeric Latte- a blend of warming spices with some coconut milk for creaminess, prunes and honey to sweeten, and castor oil!
(what you can’t see is I am drinking it right now, and it’s delicious!)
In a pot combine:
1 mug of water (pick your favorite but remember the size will alter the flavor intensity- I aimed for around 12-16 oz mug)
1 ½ tablespoons turmeric powder
up to 1 tablespoon of castor oil
1 tablespoon coconut oil
½ teaspoon grated ginger
a dash of chili powder, cinnamon and nutmeg
Bring all ingredients to a boil over medium high heat for about 5 minutes to plump the prunes. Add all ingredients into a vitamix or a blender and add in:
a “glug glug” of milk
honey to sweeten if desired
Blend for a few minutes until the prunes are broken up. Transfer to a mug and enjoy!
So what do you think? What have you used to naturally induce at home? I would love to hear your feedback and thoughts.
With Love, from Ficus.