I am a breastfeeding mother and i want to know if it is safe to use Borage? Is Borage safe for nursing mother and child? Does Borage extracts into breast milk? Does Borage has any long term or short term side effects on infants? Can Borage influence milk supply or can Borage decrease milk supply in lactating mothers?
Borage (Borago officinalis) is available as plant parts such as the leaf and flower and borage seed oil. Borage plant parts contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids that are toxic to the liver and lungs and possibly carcinogenic. These alkaloids might be excreted into breastmilk. Borage plant parts have been used as a mild diuretic, expectorant, to induce sweating, and in proprietary mixtures promoted to increase milk supply; however, no scientifically valid clinical trials support this use. Galactogogues should never replace evaluation and counseling on modifiable factors that affect milk production. Products containing other plant parts such as leaves should be avoided. Borage seed oil contains high concentrations of gamma-linolenic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid, and possibly small amounts of pyrrolizidine alkaloids. Supplementation of nursing mothers with borage seed oil increases the breastmilk content of gamma-linolenic acid and dihomo-gamma-linoleic acid, but not arachidonic acid. Borage seed oil is generally well tolerated in adults; however, only products certified as pyrrolizidine alkaloid free should be used. Heating breastmilk to 63.5 degrees C reduces the concentration of linolenic acid by about 22%. Freezing milk at -20 degrees C and thawing more than once decreases linolenic acid concentration by an average of 63%. Dietary supplements do not require extensive pre-marketing approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Manufacturers are responsible to ensure the safety, but do not need to the safety and effectiveness of dietary supplements before they are marketed. Dietary supplements may contain multiple ingredients, and differences are often found between labeled and actual ingredients or their amounts. A manufacturer may contract with an independent organization to verify the quality of a product or its ingredients, but that does certify the safety or effectiveness of a product. Because of the above issues, clinical testing results on one product may not be applicable to other products. More detailed information #about dietary supplements# is available elsewhere on the LactMed Web site.
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