No sex, avoid meat, be spiritual: AYUSH ministry's advice to pregnant women

Hang beautiful pics of babies in room refrain from sexual activity Modi govt's advice to expecting mothers

Hang beautiful pics of babies in room refrain from sexual activity Modi govt's advice to expecting mothers

The Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy, or Ayush Ministry, wants pregnant women to stop eating meat and having sex, and also asks them to nurture spiritual thoughts and hang attractive pictures in their rooms to have a healthy baby, reported Hindustan Times.

The booklet was released by Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Yesso Naik during the National Health Editors' Conference on Yoga on June 9 in the run-up to the International Yoga Day. The booklet also advises pregnant women to eat a sattvic diet (deemed calming on the body and mind), read books about great people, and think spiritual thoughts.

Pregnant mothers should be not be told to suppress their sexual desire either, said Palaniappan, who also serves as chairman of the safe motherhood committee of the Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India.

Although the booklet also focuses on Yoga and a healthy diet, some of its recommendations for the pregnant women are incomprehensible and have been called unscientific by the doctors.

Medical experts, however, have contradicted what the booklet says.

Regarding consumption of non-veg food, she said fish and chicken are good for health while (red) meat increases cholesterol levels.

"This was just a suggestion or an advisory, its not a prescription, " says Dr Ishwara Acharya, Central Council for Research in Yoga & Naturopathy. "Indian women enter pregnancy deficient in iron, calcium, protein and we have to supplement it".

"The only advice is to consume meat that is cooked in a healthy manner - too rich or spicy preparations can be discomfiting". "After that, unless it is medically indicated, there is no need to avoid it during normal pregnancy".

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