Curejoy Expert Dr.Janardhana Hebbar Explains:
It is a traditional belief that eating papaya can cause miscarriage and stillbirth. It is both a truth and a myth. The trick isn’t the quantity of the fruit but its ripeness.
Safe when ripe: A well ripened papaya is rich in vitamins C and E, fiber and folic acid. Papaya helps to prevent and control constipation and heartburn, which women suffer from during their pregnancy. Many experts recommend that pregnant women eat moderate amounts of ripe papaya.
Unsafe when Unripe: The papaya enzyme, papain, or vegetable pepsin, is present in the latex of the papaya when the outer skin is green. Unripe papaya latex may act like prostaglandin and oxytocin, which the body produces to trigger labor. Obstetricians commonly use synthetic prostaglandin and oxytocin to start or strengthen labor contractions. As the papaya ripens, the skin loses its green pigment, turning completely yellow when fully ripened and contains very little, if any, latex.
The British Journal of Nutrition reports that even the minutest amounts of latex may be dangerous for women who have a history of spontaneous abortion or premature labor due to increased contractile activity within the uterus.
If you are unsure, it is advisable to either avoid this entirely or work out with your obstetrician about the best way to enjoy this nutritious fruit safely.