Can grassfed raw milk reduce childbirth pain? While conventional practitioners would poo-poo the idea, the fact is that it is possible with more and more women drinking it regularly and opting for a natural birth in the face of over-medicalization of the birth process.
It is already known that pregnancy diet can play a crucial role in how much childbirth pain a pregnant woman experiences during delivery and whether or not she is successful in withstanding the tremendous physical effort and stamina required to have a natural birth.
So why not raw milk specifically?
The picture above was taken while I was transitioning at 9cm dilation. I was literally minutes from pushing my baby out. Most women in a similar situation are begging for drugs at that point or are already on an epidural IV and completely numb from the waist down.
As for me, I was totally comfortable other than feeling the amazing intensity of the pain free contractions. Here’s my story.
I was fortunate to experience three natural births. The difference between them in the level of discomfort experienced was profound, however, and I can attest that my diet during each of the pregnancies played a key role in the amount of pain I experienced during labor.
During my first pregnancy, I ate completely organic and hormone/steroid free. I ate what would be termed a stellar diet in almost every way. I had a complication-free, natural, and fairly fast delivery although it was a pretty painful experience.
During most of my second pregnancy, I improved my whole organic diet by several notches by adopting a fully Traditional Diet. I took high vitamin cod liver oil and consumed plenty of grassfed meats. I prepared my grain based foods properly by sprouting, soaking and/or sour leavening. My second birth experience was way faster than the first (as is fairly typical for most women), but it wasn’t really that much less painful.
During my third pregnancy, however, I had a Traditional Food available to me in unlimited quantity that I did not have as an option in the previous two pregnancies.
That food was raw, grassfed milk.
I drank raw grassfed milk with abandon with my third pregnancy. It kept my morning sickness at bay during the first trimester due to my propensity for low B6. B6 deficiency can cause morning sickness and raw milk is loaded with this nutrient in highly bioavailable form. B6 supplements did not produce the same excellent results.
Sipping raw milk all day long kept my tummy very happy during those early weeks. Incidentally, pasteurization destroys B6.
What ended up being the most surprising, however, was how completely pain free my third delivery was. The birth of my third child was slower than the second birth, so speed was not a factor.
The picture above is me at 9 cm dilation, completely comfortable and without any discomfort. I told my husband to snap a picture as I couldn’t believe it at the time! I even chatted with my Mom on the phone while I was in transition (she was in the car on her way to the birth center).
Calcium Status Greatly Affects Childbirth Pain
What was the difference? Science will tell you that a women’s calcium status greatly affects the pain she experiences with the uterine contractions during labor.
However, it is much more than just calcium intake as I was consuming plenty of calcium during my first 2 pregnancies and both labors were quite painful as is the norm today. I should note that the calcium was from natural sources too as it was typical for me to drink 1-2 cups of nettle tea during all my pregnancies and nettle is high in calcium and a known uterine tonic. A pain free delivery is not just a matter of popping calcium pills, eating foods that are factory fortified with calcium, or even consuming natural foods high in calcium like nettle.
Why was the delivery of my third child so comfortable and even (gasp!) an enjoyable experience by comparison then?
The bioavailability of the calcium in the diet is an all important consideration that some in the scientific community have not fully grasped yet but a growing number of researchers are emphasizing and certainly something the effects of which I experienced firsthand.
You see, raw grassfed milk is loaded with calcium but it also has something special that pasteurized dairy, calcium supplements, and calcium fortified foods do not.
That something is the enzyme to absorb the calcium!
What good is consuming calcium if your body simply does not know what to do with it or can’t do anything with it?
In other words, to experience a comfortable and even pain free labor and delivery requires not just getting enough calcium but getting it in a form that the body can absorb!
To make a long story short, if you think you are getting enough calcium in your diet and you are pregnant, think again. Not all calcium is created equal!
Examine your pregnancy diet and make sure it is loaded with plenty of raw grassfed dairy so that you are getting the bioavailable form of this important nutrient in copious amounts!
Worried about consuming raw dairy while pregnant? Don’t be. Raw grassfed milk is one of the safest foods you can consume and CDC data proves this as shown by the research of Dr. Ted Beals MD.
Interested in following a completely Traditional Diet during your pregnancy and potentially experiencing significantly reduced childbirth pain as a bonus? Here’s an article which outlines the ideal pregnancy diet as recommended by the Weston A. Price Foundation. This is the diet I followed during my second and especially my third pregnancy with the addition of raw grassfed milk.
I live in Iowa, and it would be extremely inconvenient for me to get raw milk. It is still illegal here. I have decided to drink one quart of organic grass-fed kefir a day instead. I think kefir has enzymes that help us digest calcium, plus it has potassium, and the added benefit of colonizing your body with beneficial bacteria. I had a nearly painless labor last time I gave birth, I was not drinking raw milk then either. I was drinking a magnesium supplement drink, a bit of whole milk, and drinking raspberry leaf infusion. I plan on doing that this time, but with the quart of kefir. I was calm until baby crowned and then I was cursing like a sailor.
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Thank you and good luck.
So I found this article a while back and I had been drinking raw milk already, but being pregnant with my third child and having been unsuccessful at going natural the first 2 times (HAD to have an epidural) I decided to go for it and drink more raw milk. Sad to say it didn’t work. I went into labor yesterday evening (it’s now 2am) and it hurt so horribly bad I just couldn’t do it and I had to have another epidural. I don’t know that anything will get me to have a natural birth 🙁 I was even drinking milk during the first part of my labor! I don’t know what I did wrong. Suggestions for next time?
Did you follow a traditional diet while pregnant? Just wondering what the rest of your diet looked like besides the raw milk … also how much were you drinking per day? I’ve had quite a few women email me that it worked for them too? http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/diet-for-pregnant-and-nursing-mothers/
Coincidentally, I read this only a week before going into labor, and I’m not going to lie, I did doubt it. I can tell you now that I deeply regret doubting this article! I had a poor diet made up of mostly organic cereal during my entire pregnancy, because my morning sickness was so bad and its all I could keep down. I did however, drink nearly a half gallon of raw milk a day! I wish I could have taken a picture of my midwifes face when my water broke in the tub, unexpectedly to her, because I think she was waiting on the labor pains to come! I had such an amazing birthing experience, I couldnt sleep a wink that night.
Sarah I just love you. Thank you so very much for your constant words of wisdom and for showing us the way forward to beautiful health. I recommend your blog to everyone!
Taryn, South Africa
I’m just curious what your children weighed at birth?? My first child, on sad died weighed 8lb 2oz. My 2nd child, mostly organic, transitioning to traditional diet 9lb 13oz. My 3rd baby, eating traditonal diet, lots of grassed meats and raw dairy 10lb 10oz!
8 lbs 8 oz for the first, 7 lbs 12 oz for the second, and 7 lbs 9 oz for the third baby 🙂
My first was 2 weeks late and the second and third babies were basically on time (within 2 days of due date).
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i never thought that i can get conceive again after a series of miscarriage over ten years of marriage. i keep telling my husband to get another
way out to restore his joy in life as for me i told him that am packaging out not to be a disburb in his life.just one day ,i saw this
address:[email protected] from a testimony of mrs daniel prisca in london .so i gave it a try till i got some instruction and process on
how to make use effectively the SHADOW TEA .i keep taking it for over a period of time up to 3weeks.to my greatest supprise, i could not see my
period at appropriate so i told priest shadow and he told me to continue to take . i actually did.great to announce to you all that i had my first
awaiting child .so glad and full of joy and happiness.nice thanks to priest shadow.
tonia vial from new york
hello friends i got my baby twin through the help from prriest shAdow.now am really so happy to know this great man and faithful priest that
cleared offf my pains over two years of marriage.now am feeling a complete woman in my husband house that i belong to.***stella ,south africa. i encourage you to use him:[email protected]
I think that food is an important part of keeping healthy but I also believe that there are other ways to ease labor pain like exercise!