Skip to Content

Calendula use while Breastfeeding

Calendula Levels and Effects while Breastfeeding

Summary of Use during Lactation

Calendula (Calendula officinalis) flowers contain triterpene glycosides and aglycones, carotenoids, and essential oils. Topical application of calendula products has been used to treat sore and cracked nipples during nursing, either in homeopathic or pharmacologic preparations,[1][2][3] although little high-quality evidence supports this use.[4] One uncontrolled case series found that a cream containing Mimosa tenuiflora and Calendula officinalis was useful for healing cracked nipples during breastfeeding;[5] however, the lack of a control group and the presence of another ingredient makes the evaluation of calendula's efficacy impossible. Oral calendula has no specific lactation-related uses and no information is available on the oral use of calendula during breastfeeding. Calendula is "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) as a food by the US Food and Drug Administration when used as a seasoning or flavoring. Allergic reactions, including cross-reactions to chrysanthemums, daisies and marigolds, occur rarely.

Dietary supplements do not require extensive pre-marketing approval from the US Food and Drug Administration. Manufacturers are responsible to ensure the safety, but do not need to prove 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 not 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.

Drug Levels

Maternal Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects in Breastfed Infants

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

References

1. Stapleton H. The use of herbal medicine in pregnancy and labour. Part II: Events after birth, including those affecting the health of babies. Complement Ther Nurs Midwifery. 1995;1:165-7. PMID: 9456733

2. Kaplan B. Homoeopathy: 2. In pregnancy and for the under-fives. Prof Care Mother Child. 1994;4:185-7. PMID: 8680189

3. Petrie KA, Peck MR. Alternative medicine in maternity care. Prim Care. 2000;27:117-36. PMID: 10739460

4. Amir LH, Pirotta MV, Raval M. Breastfeeding - Evidence based guidelines for the use of medicines. Aust Fam Physician. 2011;40:684-90. PMID: 21894275

5. Mucci M, Sciocchetti M, Benvenuti C. Clinical efficacy and safety of Mimosa tenuiflora bark extract in the rhagades of the nipple. G Ital Ostet Ginecol. 2006;28:106-14.

Calendula Identification

Substance Name

Calendula

Scientific Name

Calendula officinalis

CAS Registry Number

84776-23-8; 70892-20-5

Drug Class

Complementary Therapies

Phytotherapy

Plants, Medicinal

Administrative Information

LactMed Record Number

940

Last Revision Date

20150107

Disclaimer

Information presented in this database is not meant as a substitute for professional judgment. You should consult your healthcare provider for breastfeeding advice related to your particular situation. The U.S. government does not warrant or assume any liability or responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the information on this Site.

Disclaimer: This information is not intended as a substitute for professional judgment. You should consult your healthcare provider for breastfeeding advice related to your particular situation. Use of this website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Online Privacy Policy.

More about calendula topical

Consumer resources

Professional resources

Hide