Traditionally in India mothers recovering from childbirth drank ‘Ajwain paani’ aka Ajwain water regularly. It helps to prevent bloating and flatulence as well as boost lactation. It is believed that if a lactating mother consumes ‘Ajwain paani’, it can prevent colic in her baby. Although I have not come across any scientific evidence to support this belief .
I consumed ‘Ajwain paani’ regularly after Anu’s birth. On the days I missed having it, I did experience flatulence and slight bloating. Luckily (or thanks to ‘Ajwain paani’), Anu did not have significant gas trouble or colic trouble during the 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding (except for two cranky episodes of gassy tummy).
Ajwain water aka ‘Ajwain paani’ recipe
- Ajwain (carom) – 1.5-2 tablespoons
- Saunf (fennel seeds) – 1 tablespoon
- Jeera (cumin seeds) -1 tablespoon
- Balant saunf (Dill seeds) – 0.5 tablespoon
- Water – 4-5 litres
Indian kitchens usually have these ingredients. Or you can easily get them from local kirana store or supermarket.
Heat the water and add Ajwain, saunf, jeera and Balant saunf to it. Let the water come to boil and keep it on low flame for 2-3 minutes. Switch off the heat and allow the water to cool. Strain it and store it in a clean bottle/vessel.
The Ajwain water is prepared in less than 10 minutes.
How to use Ajwain water
Include Ajwain water in your post delivery diet. Drink Ajwain water through the day or whenever you are thirsty. A useful tip I received in my pre-natal class was to make a habit of drinking sufficient Ajwain water before and after feeding. This way you don’t forget to hydrate yourself and keep flatulence and bloating at bay amidst caring for your newborn.
Note: Make a fresh batch daily, especially if you live in a hot/humid place. I made Ajwain water twice a day since the morning batch would at times spoil without refrigeration by the end of the day in Mumbai’s weather.