The recommendation to not let laboring mothers eat changed eight years ago. In this day and age of instant news, and being able to pull up the most current research and recommendations in a second, why do so many hospitals continue to operate under such outdated guidance?
When mothers are not able to eat during labor, labors can slow down, and laboring women can just plain run out of the energy they need when it is time to push. I've seen mothers in the hospital literally exhaust themselves while in labor and in my opinion, some food would have helped mothers end birth with some energy in reserve. The body is expending enough calories during labor that ketosis is a risk if Mom doesn't eat. Ketosis increases blood acidity for both mother and baby which contributes to labor slowing down. Don't count on any calories from that IV bag either, dextrose solution is not typically used during labor because of associated risks of electrolyte imbalance.
Attending the birth confirmed to me yet again why I am a Certified Professional Midwife serving families who wish to do a home birth. My clients can eat and I insist on it during labor. I am not forced to adhere to protocols that have been changed for years. While it can take up to 17 years before a new recommendation is put into clinical practice, as a home birth midwife I can put the latest recommendations into practice as soon as they come out. I can provide my clients the most current evidence based care and support during pregnancy and birth, one reason why I am happy to serve my clients as a home birth midwife.