Sep. 11, 2012 at 9:51 AM ET
Never mind castor oil and spicy food. When it comes to jump-starting labor, Carson Daly's baby mama, Siri Pinter, is raving about something called a maternity salad. Served at a pizza joint in Studio City, CA, this supposedly labor-inducing meal is piled high with romaine, watercress, walnuts and gorgonzola cheese. But "it's the dressing that apparently does the trick," Siri wrote on her blog, SIRIouslyDelicious.blogspot.com, of the balsamic basil vinaigrette. While we don't know the secret recipe, Dr. Lisa Masterson, co-host of The Doctors, agrees, noting on air that since certain herbs are know to spur contractions, the herb-laced dressing is the likely baby-trigger.
Does it work? Well, Siri enjoyed the salad on September 4th and two days later the couple's second baby, Etta Jones Daly, arrived. Me? I opted for the whole walking-around-a-lot trick to kick-start labor. Just a few hours before my first son was born, I was walking (and shopping) the heck out of the baby section of H&M and going up and down dozens of subway stairs.
My friend Michelle went to the acupuncturist and her water actually broke on the table! My sister-in-law gave herself the one-two-shot of sex and spicy food and went into labor the next day. (Semen contains prostaglandins, which are similar to the labor-inducing drugs docs use in the hospital.) My friend Denise was overdue and opted for castor oil. "It was medically supervised—and successful," she remembers. And my sister scheduled a prenatal massage eight days before her due date in hopes the baby would come early. "I had enough!" she says. "Thank goodness it worked. I went into labor the next day."
Of course, none of these are guaranteed to get labor started, and for your baby's health, it's best to be pregnant for at least 39 weeks. But if you're past your due date, hugely uncomfortable and eager to finally meet your little guy or gal, that maternity salad might be worth a try. As with any herb or medication, check with your doctor first before taking it. And skip the gorgonzola: The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists warns pregnant women against eating soft unpasteurized cheeses, like gorgonzola, which can up a woman's risk of contracting listeriosis, a dangerous bacterial infection. You can buy the magic dressing by calling the restaurant.
A version of this story originally appeared on iVillage.