Herbal Tea’s for Nourishment during Pregnancy & PMS…
Herbs are wonderful in providing nutrients needed to a pregnant Mama or lady who suffers from PMS. Boost your iron levels with these nourishing and notifying teas. It is important before adding any herbal remedies into our diet that we research and understand each herb, their purpose and if they are safe for pregnancy. Herbs do have power, so we must take care to use the right herbs at the right time.
The herbs listed in the recipes below are perfect blends for pregnancy, milk production for nursing Mama’s and PMS symptoms. In both cases, drink regularly throughout the month in order to enjoy the full benefits. Pregnant Mama’s should start drinking this tea after the 2nd trimester (but not during the first).
Nourishing Tea recipe by Aviva Romm
Drink plain or with lemon juice & honey (raw & local). Nutritious, and full of iron.
- 1 ounce red raspberry leaves
- 1 ounce dried nettle
- 1 ounce dried oatstraw
- ½ ounce dried alfalfa
- ½ ounce dried red clover blossoms
- ¼-1/2 ounce dried spearmint leaves or hibiscus flowers (for flavor)
- ¼ ounce rose hips
- 1 quart boiling water
Mix all herbs and store in a glass jar from heat and sunlight. Put a handful of the mixture in a glass jar, add the
boiling water, cover and steep for 1 hour for maximum benefit,
steep for less time if tea is too strong.
1-4 cups daily, warm or cool, beginning in the second trimester (after 12 weeks pregnancy) and throughout postpartum to
promote milk production.
Variations “Nourishing Tea” recipe above:
- 1 ounce Dandelion leaf
- 1 ounce red raspberry leaves
- 1 ounce dried nettle
- ½ ounce dried red clover blossoms
- ¼-1/2 ounce hibiscus flowers
Lemon Balm Infused
- 1 ounce Raspberry Leaf
- 1 ounce Nettle Leaf
- 1/2 ounce Lemon Balm
- 1/4 ounce horsetail
- 1/4 ounce oatstraw
Rosemary Gladstar’s Recipes for Menstruation:
(not for during pregnancy)
Liver Tonic Formula for Menstruation
Use 1 teaspoon of herbs per cup of hot water, let steep for 5-10 minutes. Drink with honey or stevia to improve flavor. Drink 3-4 cups daily
- 2 parts burdock root
- 2 parts dandelion root
- 1 part chaste tree berry
- 1 part licorice root
- 1/4 part ginger
Herbs to AVOID during Pregnancy & Breastfeeding:
During Pregnancy – avoid most herbs during the 1st trimester. However many herbs can be effective for nausea and nourishing to the growing fetus, take care extra care and precaution in the first trimester and check with your doctor or midwife before starting anything new.
Herbs to avoid during Pregnancy:
Arnica, Barberry, Bee Balm, Black walnut, Blessed thistle, Catnip, Chapparal, Chicory, Colsfoot, Comfrey, Ephedra, Fenugreek, Gentian, Horehound, Horsetail, Ipecac, Juniper berries, Lobelia, Oregon grape root, Poke root, Rhubarb root, Rosemary, Uva ursi, Yarrow, Aloe vera, Buckthorn, Butternut, Cascara sagrada, Borage, Damiana, Dong quai, Licorice, Sarsparilla, Siberian ginseng, Vitex (can be used the first trimester), Angelica, Birthwort (bethwort), Black cohosh (may be used in the last 2 weeks of pregnancy), Blue cohosh (may be used in the last 2 weeks of pregnancy), Cotton root, Elecampane, Fenugreek, Feverfew, Goldenseal, Horehound, Lovage, Mistletoe, Motherwort, Mugworts, Myrrh, Osha, Parsley, Pennyroyal, Rue, Sage, Tansy, Thuja, Thyme, Turmeric, Wormwood.
Herbs that are used as spices and seasoning are mostly fine, however should only be used in small amounts. Keep in mind that everyone’s bodies reacts slightly differently. I personally used arnica topically during the first trimester with no issue, and I also ate parsley and turmeric on a regular basis. Do avoid sage during the first trimester and check with your care provider or a local herbalist before using any herbs on this list medicinally.
Herbs to avoid during Breastfeeding:
Alder buckthorn, Arnica, Autumn crocus, Barberry, Bloodroot, Blue cohosh, Borage, Broom, Butternut, Calamus, Cascara sagrada, Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Cotton root, Cowslip, Damiana, Ehpedra or ma huang, Feverfew, Ipecac, Juniper berries, Lily of the valley, Lobelia, Make Fern, Mandrake, Mistletoe, Nutmeg (small amounts are fine), Osha, Periwinkle, Peruvian bark, Pleurisy Root, Poke root, Rhubarb, Rue, Sage, Sarsaparilla, Senna,Stillingia, Tansy, Thuja, Wormwood.
Purchasing & Storing Herbs:
Herbs can be purchased at your local health food store or can be ordered online. It is important to purchase mostly organic herbs whenever possible in order to limit your exposure to unnecessary toxins. Inorganic herbs are sprayed with fungicides and insecticides for storage and may have been irradiated. Herbs should smell fresh and be full of color. For myself personally, I love to order from Frontier Herbs, Bulk Herb Store, or Mountain Rose Herbs. All three stores are great online ordering options and provide a good quality product.
Store your herbs away from the sunlight, preferably in a dark container or glass jar with a tight seal. This will ensure that they keep fresh.
The Healing Herbs:
What are the healing properties of the herbs in the recipes listed above? Below is a list of all of the herbs used, and a general description from Prescription for Nutritional Healing.
Red Raspberry Leaves
Reduces menstrual bleeding, relaxes uterine and intestinal spasms, and strengthens uterine walls. Promotes healthy nails, bones, teeth, and skin. Good for diarrhea and for female disorders such as morning sickness, hot flashes, and menstrual cramps. Also heals canker sores. Combined with peppermint, good for morning sickness. It is full of calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3, C, and E.
Acts as a diuretic, expectorant, pain reliever, and tonic. Good for benign protstatic hyberplasia, anemia, arthritis, rheumatism, hay fever, and other allergic disorders, kidney problems, and malabsorption syndrome. Improves goiter, inflammatory conditions and mucous conditions of the lungs. Used in hair care products, it helps to stimulate hair follicles and regulate scalp oil buildup. It is full of calcium, copper, essential fatty acids, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sulfur, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, C, and E.
Acts as a antidepressant and restorative nerve tonic. Increases perspiration. Helps to ease insomnia. Good for bed-wetting, depression, stress, and skin disorders. Is full of calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and E.
Alkalizes and detoxifies the body. Alfalfa acts as a diuretic, is anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal. It also helps to balance blood sugar, hormones, and promotes pituitary gland function. It is good for anemia, arthritis, ulcers, digestive system and skin. It is full of: calcium, copper, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, silicon, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, D, E, and K.
Red Clover Blossoms
Fights infection, suppresses appetite, and purifies the blood. Relieves menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. Good for bacterial infections, coughs, bronchitis, inflamed, lungs, inflammatory bowel disorders, kidney problems, liver disease, skin disorders, weakened immune system. Is full of calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B3, C and E.
High in vitamin C and bioflavonoids, hibiscus has slightly astringent properties. It is useful for for treating mild colds, flus, bruising and swelling. (description from Herbal Recipes, see below)
Good for bladder problems and all infections. A good source of Vitamin C when used fresh. Rose hip tea is good for diarrhea. Full of calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3,C, and E.
Dandelion leaf like alfalfa and burdock acts as a diuretic, cleanses the blood and liver and increases bile productions. Improves the function of the kidneys, pancreas, spleen, and stomach. Relieves menopausal symptoms and is also useful for anemia, boils, breast tumors, cirrhosis of the liver, constipation, fluid retention, hepatitis, jaundice, and rheumatism. It is full of calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3, and C.
Calming, antiviral, and antiseptic, this beautiful and fragrant member of the mint family is one of nature’s best nervine herbs. Lemon balm’s leaves and flowers contain volatile oils, tannins, and bitters that have a definite relaxing, antispasmodic effect on the stomach and nervous system. It is a excellent for stomach distress and general exhaustion and can be used as a mild sedative for insomnia. (description from Herbal Recipes, see below)
Horsetail is known for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antioxidant, coagulant, demulcent, diuretic and astringent activity. Reportedly, it has been used in the treatment of a number of health conditions which include brittle bone, hair, teeth and nails, white spots on nails, gingivitis, tonsillitis, inflammation of the mucous membranes of the mouth, rheumatic disorders, edema, osteoarthritis, diabetes, acne, wounds, itchiness, rashes, burns, frostbite, chilblains, athlete’s foot, cracked and tired feet, drawing out pus from boils and carbuncles, ulcers, fistulas, herpes simplex, dyspepsia (impaired digestion), gastrointestinal conditions, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory tract infections, bronchitis, fever, malaria, bladder problems, urinary tract infection, bed wetting in children, kidney stones (nephrolithiasis), prostate problems, hemorrhoids, muscle cramps, tumors, broken bones, fractures, sprains, nose bleed and other heavy bleeding. Horsetail is also known to strengthen the body’s immune system. (source)
Aids in the elimination of excess fluid, uric acid and toxins. It has antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, purifies the blood, restores liver and gallbladder function, and stimulates the digestive and immune systems. Helps to relieve menopausal symptoms and can also be used as a hair rinse to help promote hair growth and a healthy scalp. Burdock root traditionally is eaten in Asia in many dishes. It is a grounding root vegetable that can help bring on a soothing earthy “grounding” effect in the body. Burdock root is full of amino acids, calcium, chromium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C.
Chaste tree berry
Has a calming and soothing effect. Relieves muscle cramps. Regulates and normalizes hormone levels and menstrual cycles. Good for symptoms of PMS and menopause.
Fights inflammation and viral bacterial, and parasitic infection. Stimulates the production of interferon and may help inhibit replication of HIV. Cleanses the colon. Reduces muscle spasms, increases fluidity of mucus in the lungs and bronchial tubes, and promotes adrenal gland function. It is full of calcium, choline, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C.
Anti-inflammatory, cleanses the colon, reduces spasms and cramps and stimulates circulation. Ginger is a very strong antioxidant and effective antimicrobial agent for sores and wounds. Protects the liver and stomach. Useful for bowel disorders, circulatory problems, arthritis, fever, headache, hot flashes, indigestion, morning sickness, motion sickness, muscle pain, nausea, and vomiting. It is full of amino acids, calcium, essential fatty acids, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, and C.