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Kava and Breastfeeding

It is currently recommended that breastfeeding women avoid taking kava. No studies have been conducted on kava and breastfeeding, so it is not known whether the supplement passes through breast milk or whether it is safe for breastfeeding women (or their babies). Since everyone is different, however, you should talk to your healthcare provider about kava and breastfeeding in your particular situation.

An Overview of Kava and Breastfeeding

It is not known whether kava (Piper methysticum) supplements are safe for use in breastfeeding women. Kava is an herbal remedy often used to treat anxiety, although it is claimed to be useful for other conditions as well. Until more information is available, you should not take kava while breastfeeding.

Kava While Breastfeeding: What Does the Research Say?

It is not known whether kava passes through breast milk, and it is not known whether kava is safe for breastfeeding women. Although it is a "natural" product, this does not necessarily mean that it is safe for use during breastfeeding.
Many women try to avoid medications while breastfeeding and turn to herbal remedies as an alternative, assuming that "natural" automatically means "safe." However, natural products can be quite toxic. For instance, many poisons and toxins are natural products. In fact, there are significant concerns about the safety of kava, due to numerous reports of serious liver damage. Kava has been banned in several countries (although it is still available in the United States).

Talking With Your Healthcare Provider About Kava and Breastfeeding

You should talk with your healthcare provider about kava and breastfeeding. Each woman's situation is different, and you and your healthcare provider understand your situation best. After considering what you want and expect, as well as your current health situation, you and your healthcare provider can make a shared decision about kava and breastfeeding that is right for you.
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