By the time the third trimester rolls around, there is no shortage of questions and Google searches about how to induce labor. Between nipple stimulation, exercise, and even getting frisky between the sheets, women and experts alike have sussed out the methods that work best. But when it comes to the foods that help move a baby along, have you considered taking a look at your big kid trick-or-treating stash (or breaking into your kid's reserve)? After all, where there's a Halloween candy bucket to induce labor, there's a full-term pregnant woman hoping it holds the magic key to coaxing along contractions. (If all the walking around the neighborhood didn't do it already.)
Of course, all of this is circumstantial, but in a world where your options are acupuncture, various oils and teas, or getting hot and heavy, why not go for the angle that involves sitting on the couch and indulging in a bucket of candy? Even if it doesn't lead to your little one's arrival, you can busy your thoughts with the task of licking your fingers clean or picking licorice from your teeth. And, heck, if it works, then you sure will have an interesting story to share about how your favorite candy helped bring your little one into the world.
1. Pineapple Jolly Ranchers
Part of the Fruit Bash mix, pineapple Jolly Ranchers might be the way to go if you are looking to meet your little ghoul soon. One of the most famous old wives' tales about inducing labor, the bromelain in pineapple is said to soften the connective tissue of the cervix and bring on labor, according to Today's Parent.
2. Peanut M&Ms
My excuse for eating peanut M&Ms is always that they contain a dose of protein, but it turns out that a 1.74-ounce bag of the candies also has two grams of fiber. That means that if the suggestion to eat a healthy dose of fiber to induce labor is true, then scarfing handfuls of the candy that melts in your mouth certainly won't hurt.
3. Candy Corn
4. Hot Tamales
Chances are likely you've heard the rumor that spicy foods causing labor contractions? Many women swear a dash of Sriracha or sprinkle of chili pepper flakes have helped their little ones make their arrival. According to Pregnancy Magazine, some people believe eating spicy foods stimulates the digestive system and causes contractions, while others say, like licorice, spicy foods help produce prostaglandin. If you are antsy for baby to make their arrival, then stock up the next time you hit the Halloween candy aisle at the grocery store.
5. Black Licorice
You know how you always used to turn your nose up at black licorice candy? Now might be the time to embrace it. According to OBGYN North, the chemical glycyrrhizin in real licorice candy — the black kind — is said to stimulate the production of prostaglandins, which help ripen the cervix and increase contractions.
In 2013, NBC 29 reported that Cappellino's Crazy Cakes claimed they had sent at least 150 moms into labor as a result of their lemon drop cupcakes. The Charlottesville, Virginia bakery has since closed, but the legend lives on in several copy-cat recipes. If lemon does the trick, then why not try a few boxes of Lemonheads to see if the candy possesses the same powers as the famous cupcakes?
7. Red Hots
Like Hot Tamales, the spice in Red Hots might be extra incentive to get labor contractions on the road. Plus they contain cinnamon, which has also been rumored to cause uterine contractions and induce labor.
8. Sweet 'N' Sour Super Blow Pop
Of course, if Halloween candy just isn't your thing, but you still wouldn't mind something sweet to help your baby along, then you can always give dates a shot. According to a 2011 study, women who ate six dates per day for four weeks before their due dates not only increased the likeliness of spontaneous labor, but were less likely to be induced compared to women who did not eat the dried fruit.
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