When I was expecting Tatum, I didn’t look into any natural remedies or tonics to use during pregnancy. That was not my mindset at the time. I pretty much floated along, doing what my doctor told me to to keep myself and my baby healthy, and that was about it. I took my prenatals, ate fairly well and stayed away from Coca-Cola and deli meat. You know, the basics! Now that I have more knowledge about what a woman’s body needs during pregnancy (and to stay healthy in general), I knew that I wanted to do much more than I did last time to ensure that I maintain a healthy pregnancy and help my baby to thrive, as well as prepare my body for labor, delivery & the postpartum stage as well.
When David and I decided to start trying for baby number two, I immediately started researching like a mad woman, as I do (I affectionately refer to myself as the Google Master), to see what I could do to boost my fertility and help make my body healthy for conception. I am an avid tea drinker, and I kept coming across articles referencing teas that were extremely beneficial to drink while trying to conceive and during pregnancy as well. I had no idea that there were so many herbal teas that could do SO much for me. Teas that can help replenish nutrients, tone the uterus and increase energy? I am all for that! Read on for a list of the teas that I have been drinking during my pregnancy to help create a healthy environment for my baby and to prepare my body for labor and delivery.
Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
During my first pregnancy, I thought red raspberry leaf tea was strictly for trying to naturally induce labor if you were overdue. I thought that before a certain stage in pregnancy it was unsafe to consume. Wrong! Red raspberry leaf tea is a HUGELY beneficial herbal tea for women to drink, whether you are pregnant or not. I have been drinking red raspberry leaf tea consistently for over two years now. I would regularly drink it around my menstrual cycle to help with my symptoms, and continued to drink it 4-5 times a week while we were trying to conceive. Now that I am pregnant, I drink one cup in the evening before bed. Red raspberry leaf tea is rich in vitamin C, vitamin E, calcium and iron. It also contains vitamins A and B complex and many minerals. My wonderful doula sent me an article about teas that are safe to consume during pregnancy that was extremely informative. Here’s a brief piece from the article highlighting some of the benefits of drinking red raspberry leaf tea during pregnancy:
“The benefits of drinking a raspberry leaf brew before and throughout pregnancy include:
~ Increasing fertility in both men and women. Raspberry leaf is an excellent fertility herb when combined with Red Clover.
~ Preventing miscarriage and hemorrhage. Raspberry leaf tones the uterus and helps prevent miscarriage and postpartum hemorrhage from a relaxed or atonic uterus.
~ Easing of morning sickness. Many attest to raspberry leaves’ gentle relief of nausea and stomach distress throughout pregnancy.
~ Reducing pain during labor and after birth. By toning the muscles used during labor and delivery, Raspberry leaf eliminates many of the reasons for a painful delivery and prolonged recovery. It does not, however, counter the pain of pelvic dilation.
~ Assisting in the production of plentiful breast milk. The high mineral content of Raspberry leaf assist in milk production, but its astringency may counter that for some women.
~ Providing a safe and speedy pariuntion. Raspberry leaf works to encourage the uterus to let go and function without tension. It does not strengthen contractions, but does allow the contracting uterus to work more effectively and so may make the birth easier and faster.”
I belong to a group on Facebook called Informed Choice: Birth and Beyond, and it has been a wealth of information for natural-minded mamas (if you lean towards attachment parenting, baby-led weaning, extended nursing etc., this is a great group for you!). The woman who runs it drinks a lot of herbal teas & tonics, and when she was expecting her latest baby, I read many posts from her about drinking nettle tea. I researched further and found that nettle tea was another highly beneficial tea for pregnant women. As the article states, “the list of vitamins and minerals in this herb includes nearly every one known to necessary for human health and growth.” Here are more benefits of nettle tea:
~ Increasing fertility in women and men.
~ Nourishing mother and fetus.
~ Easing leg cramps and other spasms.
~ Diminishing pain during and after birth. The high calcium content, which is readily assimilated, helps diminish muscle pains in the uterus, in the legs and elsewhere.
~ Preventing hemorrhage after birth. Nettle is a superb source of vitamin K, and increases available hemoglobin, both of which decrease the likelihood of postpartum hemorrhage. Fresh Nettle Juice, in teaspoon doses, slows postpartum bleeding.
~ Reducing hemorrhoids. Nettle’s mild astringency and general nourishing action tightens and strengthens blood vessels, helps maintain arterial elasticity and improves venous resilience.
~ Increasing the richness and amount of breast milk.
I have been talking with David about refusing the vitamin K shot after our baby is born, and drinking nettle tea in the last month before birth is a perfect way to ensure that my body is rich in vitamin K.
I love that something as simple as brewing a cup of tea can be so beneficial to your body, during pregnancy or otherwise. Here’s a few other articles that were helpful to me when I was reading about which teas to drink:
*This post is not meant to be used in place of medical advice. Please talk to your doctor or midwife before drinking herbal tea during your pregnancy!*