Last update March 7, 2022
Mentha is a genus of herbaceous plants of the Lamiaceae family. There are several species with differences in composition and properties.
Pennyroyal (Mentha pulegium) has been traditionally used as an antispasmodic, digestive and emmenagogue (unproven properties) (MedlinePlus2012). The flowering summits are used. It contains essential oil (70-90% Pulegone), flavonoids and tannins (Fitoterapia.net acces. 03/2022). Indications from the Commission E of the German Ministry of Health: none. (Blumenthal 1998)
On last update no relevant published data on breastfeeding were found.
Pulegone induces abortion and has toxicity against the liver, kidney and neurological system; can cause convulsions, hypertension and be carcinogenic (Jalili 2013, Bunchorntavakul 2013, MedlinePlus2012, Chitturi 2008, Zhou 2004, Ciganda 2003, Burkhard 1999, Gold 1980, Gunby 1979, Conway 1979). It is found very concentrated in essential oil but much lesser in infusions. Lethal or severe cases in adults and infants have been reported. (Fozard 2020, Bakerink 1996, Anderson 1996, Gold 1980, Sullivan 1979, Gunby 1979, Vallance 1955)
Because of toxicity mostly for the liver, and, lack of proven beneficial pharmacologic effects, it would be wise to avoid usage while breastfeeding. Otherwise, consumption of infusion should be occasional but never use essential oil. (MedlinePlus2012)
Precautions when taking plant preparations (Anderson 2017, Powers 2015, Posadzki 2013, Efferth 2011, Kopec 1999, Hsu 1995):
Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.
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