Herbal tea can be a wonderful drink during pregnancy, and some blends can even help relieve morning sickness or prepare your body for birth. Learn more about pregnancy herbal teas in our latest blog post.
There’s nothing quite like pregnancy for making you question every morsel of food or drink you put in your mouth. Even before you consider how to navigate bizarre cravings or morning sickness – which most definitely does NOT occur only in the mornings – choosing the right food and drink to nourish you and your baby can feel like a minefield.
Don’t worry though, because this blog post is here to put some of your questions to rest. If you’re wondering whether herbal tea is safe to drink during pregnancy, you’ve come to the right place.
We’ll look at which herbal teas are safe, and which you should avoid. We’ll also look at some of the herbal tea blends that are especially good for supporting your body during pregnancy, childbirth, and beyond.
So, get ready, as we give you the rundown of everything you need to know about pregnancy herbal teas.
Is Herbal Tea Safe During Pregnancy?
If you love herbal tea, you’ll be relieved to hear that there are indeed plenty of herbal teas that are safe to drink while you are pregnant.
However, we do need to qualify this answer slightly. Sadly, there’s not been much research into herbal teas during pregnancy. So, while most are likely safe, there are only a handful that have the scientific research to back that claim up.
Ginger is one of these – often used to ease the symptoms of morning sickness, ginger tea is even recommended by the NHS as a natural way to relieve nausea. Studies confirm that it is safe to drink up to 1 gram of ginger tea per day. That’s about the equivalent of four cups a day, so is plenty to keep you going.
Another tea that is considered safe during pregnancy is green tea. This herbal tea does contain small amounts of caffeine, so it is best to limit your intake to one or two cups a day. However, if you are missing your regular morning coffee, green tea might be a good option to give you a milder caffeine fix. And it is known for its many health benefits too.
Once you are out of the first trimester, peppermint is another popular pregnancy herbal tea. It’s caffeine-free, refreshing and soothing, and can even help to combat morning sickness and indigestion.
Studies show that peppermint tea is safe in pregnancy as long as you drink it in normal amounts – no more than 2-3 cups a day. Some people still prefer to avoid peppermint tea during the first trimester, however, as there is a small risk that it can stimulate menstrual flow (although only in high amounts).
Finally, one of the most commonly suggested herbal teas for pregnancy is red raspberry leaf, which has long associations with women’s health.
Red raspberry leaf is said to strengthen the muscles of the uterus, helping your body prepare for birth. Research suggests that it can shorten labour and reduce the likelihood of interventions during childbirth, without causing any adverse effects to mother or baby.
What red raspberry leaf tea doesn’t do is stimulate labour. We’re sorry to disappoint you if you are overdue and desperately looking for ways to get the whole show started! Despite the persistent rumours, there’s no evidence that drinking red raspberry leaf tea will kickstart your labour.
Nonetheless, you may still want to drink a cup of red raspberry leaf tea a day during the third trimester to prepare for birth.
How Much Herbal Tea Can You Drink When Pregnant?
How much herbal tea is safe to drink during pregnancy depends a little on which teas you choose. As we’ve seen, up to 4 cups of ginger tea is likely to be safe, while many suggest limiting red raspberry leaf tea to just a cup a day, at least until the very end of the third trimester.
The NHS recommend sticking to four cups a day or less, which is a good rule of thumb to follow. If you are unsure, you can always check with your midwife. And we also recommend keeping an eye on your own body – if you feel like you might be experiencing side effects from a particular tea blend, stop drinking it and try a different option.
Which Teas Should You Avoid in Pregnancy?
This is not an exhaustive list, and we always suggest doing your own research if you are trying a herbal tea blend that contains herbs that aren’t on the list above of safe pregnancy herbal teas. However, some herbal teas that you should avoid in pregnancy include:
- Blue cohosh
- Black cohosh
What Is the Best Herbal Tea for Pregnancy?
We all have our own personal tastes when it comes to herbal tea. However, our favourite tea blend for pregnancy is definitely Raspberry Leaf and Peppermint – it’s our go-to blend for pregnant women.
Peppermint is both uplifting and soothing, with a refreshing taste that can help to settle a choppy tummy. In the meantime, raspberry leaf helps to prepare your body for birth. It can help with recovery too, reducing bleeding and tightening the muscles of the uterus.