Upcoming Events

National | Consumer Issues

no events match your query!

New Events


no events posted in last week

User Preferences

  • Language - en | ga
  • text size >>
  • make this your indymedia front page make this your indymedia front page

Blog Feeds


Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link Diamaid Ferriter: Mean-spirited in giving credit to Atheist Ireland

offsite link Fintan O’Toole: Falling for the myth that the people are to blame Anthony

offsite link Tom Lyons: A journalist unlikely to ask the tough questions Anthony

offsite link Breaking news: Sinn Fein responsible for IBRC farce Anthony

offsite link Atheist Ireland banned while Iona Institute enjoys full access to schools Anthony

Public Inquiry >>

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Latin America SITREP December 1st, 2015 by Jack J. Tue Dec 01, 2015 00:39 | Scott
The Shifting Pink Tide Kirchnerism is out of the presidency in Argentina but remains a force to be reckoned with, controlling both houses of congress, whilst Kirchner herself is free

offsite link International Military Review ? Syria, November 30, 2015 Mon Nov 30, 2015 16:57 | Scott
Help produce more actual and interesting content, join our struggle by donating via PayPal: southfront@list.ru or via: http://southfront.org/donate/ The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has deployed newly-arrived Russian T-90 advanced battle

offsite link Open Thread while awaiting Saker?s Return on Wednesday Mon Nov 30, 2015 14:40 | Saker-Admin
Here is an open thread for the Saker community to discuss current events. Photo is of Turkish armor moving to Syrian border … webmaster

offsite link Crimea SITREP ? by Auslander Mon Nov 30, 2015 13:58 | Saker-Admin
SitRep Sevastopol and Krimea 30.11.2015 While citizens in Sevastopol are getting used to the deprivations from the power cut off, the lack of power is still extant. 1. Russia Army

offsite link Short message from the Saker Mon Nov 30, 2015 08:07 | The Saker
Dear friends, I just wanted to let you know that I am sorry for being unable to work on the blog for the past week.  The trip to bury my

The Saker >>

Human Rights in Ireland

offsite link Open Letter: Recognition of the Travelling Community as an Ethnic Minority in Ireland Fri Nov 27, 2015 11:56 | Liam Thornton

offsite link The Labour Party #repealthe8th Proposals: An Analysis Wed Nov 25, 2015 20:11 | Fiona de Londras

offsite link Book Launch: International Human Rights: Perspectives from Ireland, 8 December 2015 Wed Nov 25, 2015 10:21 | Liam Thornton

offsite link FLAC: 2016 Thomas Addis Emmet Fellowship Wed Nov 25, 2015 10:04 | Liam Thornton

offsite link The Green Party?s Reproductive Rights Policy: An Appraisal Tue Nov 17, 2015 07:55 | Fiona de Londras

Human Rights in Ireland >>

Cedar Lounge
For lefties too stubborn to quit

offsite link Another November?  11:48 Mon Nov 30, 2015 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Attendance at Mass 10:19 Mon Nov 30, 2015 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Whatever you say (LP TDs), say nothing 09:14 Mon Nov 30, 2015 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Left Archive: Books for Anarchists, WSM Bookservice, Summer/Winter 1998, Workers? Solidarity Movemen... 08:12 Mon Nov 30, 2015 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link What a difference a week makes. Labour polls? from ?unaware? to ?deplorable?? 20:28 Sun Nov 29, 2015 | WorldbyStorm

Cedar Lounge >>

Why Eating in Labour is Good For You and Your Baby

category national | consumer issues | opinion/analysis author Tuesday July 29, 2008 14:31author by Tracy Donegan - Doula Irelandauthor email TracyDonegan at DoulaIreland dot com Report this post to the editors

Don't go hungry in labour !

Irish women are often starved in labour despite there being significant benefits to eating - and significant risks to being starved.

Why hasn't Irish medical care caught up with the 21st Century?

Should women eat and drink freely in labour ?

Read on.....

As pregnant mums you’ve probably never been more focused on food than any time in your life. Even analogies about baby’s size and our body parts are associated with food - as if we weren’t obsessed enough ;-) Your baby is the size of a bean…..your uterus is now the size of a grapefruit…..your boobs are like….(well you get the picture !) You’ve probably spent endless hours online researching what you can and can’t eat during pregnancy.

Some mums have cravings and can’t get enough of a particular food….others struggle with all day morning sickness and it takes a huge amount of willpower and determination to even get a few Ritz crackers past your lips.

There’s also Pica which is the term for unusual cravings. The reason that some women develop pica cravings during pregnancy is not known for certain. There is currently no identified cause; but according to the Journal of American Dietetic Association there may be a connection to an iron deficiency.

Some speculate that pica cravings are the body's attempt to obtain vitamins or minerals that are missing from a mum’s diet.
The most common substances craved during pregnancy are muck / clay. Other pica cravings include: burnt matches, stones, charcoal, mothballs, ice, cornstarch, toothpaste, soap, sand, plaster, coffee grounds, baking soda, and cigarette ashes……..ewwwwww

Science recognizes that good nutrition during pregnancy is essential for both mum and baby. Newly pregnant mums often spend a significant amount of time ‘grazing’ or snacking regularly to keep their blood sugar normal.

If you’ve missed a meal lately you’ve probably experienced some of the following side effects

Increased crankiness…

You feel exhausted due to low blood sugar

You may even have passed out

Skipping meals during pregnancy isn’t recommended and you’d never willingly starve yourself during your pregnancy……so why would you do it in labour?

Let’s look at the history of where this began and what can happen when a mum is refused nourishment during labour (assuming she’s hungry)

Mendelson’s Syndrome: Mendelson's syndrome is the inhalation of gastric contents and is a risk during intubation for a general anaesthetic (you’ve probably seen intubation on Grey’s Anatomy).

Most cesareans are performed with a spinal or epidural these days. It is rare to have a general anesthetic for a cesarean birth. The original article by Mendelson dates back to 1946 so it’s a little bit outdated. The great news is that in 1961 a technique called Sellick's manoeuvre (wonder if he looked like Magnum) was discovered which minimized the risk of gastric contents entering the lungs during a general anesthetic.

What a breakthrough for labouring mums….it meant that all normal low risk women (80 – 90% of you reading this) could go back to eating in labour again !! Yay !!!………but wait a minute….that was 47 years ago…..obviously some hospitals missed that memo.

Without food for a long period of time a labouring mums body enters into ketosis. When you first deprive your body of food your metabolism begins to shift to accommodate this. The first stage is known as lipolysis, and means your body is burning fat to provide you with energy (sounds like a great way of burning off those extra pregnancy pounds….AFTER you’ve had your baby !!)

Ketosis is the second part of the process that takes place when your body has no carbs to provide it with energy so it needs to use the energy from the fat being burned. In a nutshell (see …can’t stay away from those food analogies) The unused portions of the fat cells are called ketones, and are removed from the body in the urine. Ketosis is a signal that you are breaking down your fat reserves……your body is effectively eating itself to give you energy during labour.
So you're at the hospital....starving...cranky....exhausted and that's just your partner ! Plus you feel pain much more intensely ! That doesn't sound like a recipe for a positive birth.

Of course some mums have no interest in eating in labour – if you’re very anxious and afraid during labour adrenaline arrests the digestion process.

If you’re giving birth in a hospital that is stuck back in the 1940’s bring along some snacks for yourself and your partner – just in case you do get hungry. Chances are your won’t be in the mood for a Big Mac.

Even in these 1940’s hospitals there are some fantastic midwives that are happy for you to snack to keep your energy levels up if you’re hungry so all is not lost !

For more information on which hospitals support mother friendly principles and evidence based international practices have a look at Cuidiu’s comprehensive consumer guide here at


Bon appetite !!


Related Link: http://www.DoulaIreland.com
author by lulupublication date Tue Jul 29, 2008 17:17Report this post to the editors

It's been said that eating curry near the time of labour, or for an overdue birth, makes the birth process quicker & easier!

© 2001-2015 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy