Can I Eat Papaya If I am Trying To Conceive?

5 min read

Written by Ambili Kartha

Ambili Kartha

Papaya While Trying To Conceive - Is It Safe, Benefits and Risks

Papaya is a nutritious fruit with many health benefits, but when it comes to conceiving or getting pregnant, there may be some doubts because raw papaya is considered harmful during pregnancy. Raw Papaya contains latex, which may weaken the tissues surrounding the uterus. But, if it is fully ripe, it is safe to eat papaya while trying to conceive.  

Papaya is generally not recommended once you’re pregnant since it may increase your chances of an abortion. For the same reasons, it is generally considered unsafe when you are trying to conceive.

In This Article

Is Papaya Safe While Trying to Conceive?

As per a paper published by the International Research Journal of Pharmacy, the consumption of raw or semi-ripe papaya is likely to cause an abortion. This paper studied the anti-fertility effect of Papaya on adult and pregnant rats. Unripe papaya interrupts the estrus cycle in animals, causing abortion. Thus, eating raw papaya may affect fertility. 

When planning for a baby, you should be extra careful as far as the consumption of papaya is concerned. Unripe papaya contains latex, which is responsible for the constriction of the uterus and may lead to bleeding or miscarriage.

According to the British Journal of Nutrition, 88 (2), 199-203, 2002, a study conducted in vitro showed that the effect of ripe papaya juice did not shrink uterus muscles. But the crude or raw papaya, which contains latex, affects the uterine smooth muscle, leading to abortion.

Does Papaya Affect Fertilization?

Does Papaya Affect Fertilization_

Papaya contains latex (a milky white liquid present in raw papaya), which can lead to miscarriages. Latex is responsible for sudden uterine muscle contractions. Papaya produces the prostaglandin known as papain, which deteriorates the membranes in the uterus supporting the fetus.

Moreover, papain in papaya increases the estrogen level, which causes infertility in women. Raw Papaya also lowers fertility in men. It reduces sperm count in men and affects sperm movement. Thus,  raw papaya affects fertility in both men and women. So it is better not to consume papaya while trying to conceive.

What Are the Benefits of Eating Papaya While Trying to Conceive?

Raw papaya may not be beneficial for you while trying to get pregnant, but ripe papaya has some healthy benefits for pregnancy. Eating ripe papaya can help with the following:

  1. Papaya is rich in vitamins- A, B, and C; beta-carotene; potassium, folate, choline, fiber, etc., which are good and healthy for your body.
  2. Papaya is rich in fiber and antioxidants, which help with digestion. It also resolves constipation problems associated with pregnancy. So, you can tackle the problem before you get pregnant.
  3. Regular consumption of papaya can keep you hydrated and maintain the necessary mineral balance in the body.
  4. Papaya is a great source of vitamin C and other nutrients that can help during the process of conception and once you get pregnant.
  5. Papaya is an excellent source of energy, which can be beneficial during the process of conception.
  6. Papaya contains folic acid, an important nutrient that every woman trying to conceive must take. Folic acid intake helps prevent birth defects in your baby once you get pregnant.
  7. Consuming papaya can increase your hemoglobin level. If you are anemic and are planning to get pregnant, you can talk to your doctor about including papaya in your diet to naturally increase your hemoglobin levels.

[Read : Vitamins Which Help Conceive Faster]

Side Effects of Eating Papaya While Trying to Conceive

Side Effects Of Eating Papaya While Trying To Conceive

Before you conceive,  you should know the side effects of consuming raw papaya. In this segment, we will delve deeper into the side effects of consuming raw papaya. The possible side effects of eating unripe papaya while trying to conceive are discussed below:

1. Interference in Implantation

Raw papaya can interfere with the implantation of the fetus when you are trying to conceive. 

2. Risk of Miscarriage

Latex, the digestive enzyme in raw papaya, can lead to abnormal contractions of the muscles in the uterus. It also causes menstruation, leading to miscarriage.

[Read : Miscarriage]

3. Excess Bowel Movement

Papaya increases bowel movement and puts pressure around the uterus. It can lead to miscarriage.

4. Increases Estrogen Production

Papaya causes heat in the body and stimulates estrogen levels, leading to menstrual bleeding. 

Pregnancy is a beautiful phase in your life. So before planning for it, you need to know what might harm you or the baby. Raw papaya can cause an abortion. Hence, it is better to avoid papaya while trying to conceive. Papain, the chemical compound in papaya, is responsible for contractions in the uterus. This chemical can impact the development of the fetus, cause excessive bleeding, and cause miscarriage.

On the other hand, ripe papaya is a nutritional food and should be included in a diet while you plan for pregnancy.  But, the intake of the fruit should be moderate. If you are trying to get pregnant, consult your doctor or a nutritionist and get suggestions on the amount to consume of ripe papaya so that you are on the right track. You can include other nutritious foods with papaya in your diet when you plan for pregnancy.


1. Is Papaya Dangerous For the Fetus?

Though there is no scientific evidence that states that papaya affects human fetal development, it is better to avoid unripe papaya as it can cause early contractions.

2. Can We Eat Papaya During Ovulation?

Yes, you can eat ripe papaya during ovulation, as it is rich in antioxidants that protect eggs and sperm. They prevent cells from mutating and becoming abnormal.  It is an important fruit that also helps with healthy hormonal balance.

3. Why is Papaya Restricted During Periods?

Papaya produces heat and raises the estrogen level in the body. This causes more bleeding. So, it is better to avoid raw papaya. You can eat ripe papaya, but be mindful of the quantity you consume.

4. When is the Best Time to Eat Papaya?

Papaya should be consumed in the morning on an empty stomach. Papaya has anti-aging antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory benefits. It also helps with digestion.

5. Is It Okay to Eat Papaya Every Day?

If you have digestion problems, it is essential to eat papaya every day. Papaya helps in the faster metabolism of food. Eating it regularly in the morning can reduce heart disease, diabetes, increase blood flow, etc.

 6. Which is Better, Ripe or Unripe Papaya?

Ripe papaya is better to consume, as it does not have the same side-effects as raw papaya. 

 Read Also: Can I Eat Mangoes When Trying to Conceive?

Ambili Kartha,B. Sc Zoology (St Xavier’s college for women)

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