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Stay Nourished and Hydrated With Pregnancy Tea

nina October 31, 2012

“Nina, you need to drink more water.” Aside from being reminded to eat plenty of protein, this was one piece of advice I heard often from my midwife. She kindly reminded me that in addition to adequate nutrition, staying hydrated is an important part of a healthy pregnancy.

Thankfully, you can increase hydration and the intake of essential vitamins and minerals with one simple tea.

By preparing what she called pregnancy tea after reaching my second trimester, a blend of nutrient-rich herbs, I could address my body’s need for hydration because unlike caffeinated tea, herbal teas count towards your water intake.

The mixture consisted of alfalfa, nettle and red raspberry leaf. I quickly added mint (either peppermint or spearmint, depending on what I felt like) to make it more palatable.

Before I get to the recipe, I thought I’d include a little run-down on the different herbs, why they’re so great and cautions for using them.

Alfalfa

Alfalfa is a slightly bitter herb often used for detoxifying in children and pregnant women. It does this by cleaning out the liver. Alfalfa also helps to change the body from acid to alkaline, promoting healing and increasing the ability to cleanse.

Alfalfa is rich in essential vitamins and minerals, including iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sulfur, chlorine, sodium, potassium, silicon, and trace elements. It is also a good source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C and increases available vitamin K and hemoglobin in the body, helping to prevent hemorrhage

Cautions: I’ve read conflicting advice on using alfalfa in pregnancy. Some sources say that it is possibly unsafe if taken in large amounts.  Most sources I’ve read encourage its use, especially toward the end of pregnancy. I still suggest its use in pregnancy tea, however, I recommend using a small amount for most of your pregnancy, with more being added in the last few weeks to increase available vitamin K.

Nettle

Nettle is well known as a uterine tonic rich in vitamins A, C, D and K, as well as calcium, potassium, phosphorous, iron and sulfur. The calcium content makes it an excellent herb to take for easing leg cramps and muscle spasms. Nettle’s calcium content also affects the uterus, helping to diminish pain during and after birth.

Cautions: Large doses may cause “digestive uneasiness.”

Red Raspberry Leaf

Red raspberry leaf is an oft-recommended pregnancy herb. Not only is it safe to consume daily after you reach the second trimester, but you can continue drinking it to promote uterine well-being when you’re not pregnant. One of its main actions is that of a uterine toner.

Red raspberry leaf contains an alkaloid, called fragrine, that tones the muscles in the pelvic region, including the uterus. The uterus is a hollow organ with lots of muscles that stretch and contract.

Keeping it well toned makes it easier for it to do its job – with less pain, too. Red raspberry leaf has concentrated amounts of vitamin C and also contains vitamin E. Raspberry leaf also contains easily assimilated iron and calcium.

Cautions: Because it does stimulate the uterus, some suggest avoiding it during the first trimester of pregnancy. However, because it works to tone the uterus gently, it’s used to prevent miscarriage. Ask a knowledgeable herbalist for more guidance.

Pregnancy Tea Recipe

This great tea contains vitamins and minerals essential to a healthy pregnancy. The recipe makes a large amount that should last a couple weeks. Drink hot or cold all throughout pregnancy.

Ingredients needed:

  • 2 cups red raspberry leaf
  • 3/4 cup peppermint
  • 1/2 cup nettle leaf
  • 2 Tbsp alfalfa leaf (increase to 1/4 cup in the last few weeks of pregnancy)

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together. To brew, steep 1 Tbsp of the mixture in 1 cup hot water.  You may want to add a little honey until you’re used to the taste. Store in a cool, dry place.

*Check with your healthcare provider before adding any herbs to your daily routine. They may offer substitutions or additions based on your specific needs.

Have you used a pregnancy tea before?  Did you find that it helped?

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15 Comments

  1. I love this tea! I’m in my 24th week of my first pregnancy, and it has been fantastic for keeping me hydrated. I enjoy drinking it much more than plain water. If it helps my labor and deliver go more smoothly, even better. 🙂

    Reply

  2. […] to good health, especially in pregnancy. Getting enough clear, uncarbonated fluids (water or this herbal pregnancy tea) helps maintain amniotic fluid volume and helps the liver and kidneys work more […]

    Reply

  3. […] Herbal Tip – Drink red raspberry leaf tea instead of a couple of your normal glasses of water to stay hydrated. It’s caffeine-free! You can also add some other herbs for this nourishing pregnancy tea. […]

    Reply

  4. Is it okay to start drinkign this now? I’m about 1 year away from trying to get preggers and want to be in top condition. Also where can i buy direct? the site link links to a ton of leaves not sure which is the one youre recommending.

    Reply

  5. […] (decaf, of course), chai lattes, or other expensive morning drink habits – Take your pregnancy tea to […]

    Reply

  6. Is it safe to start drinking this tea in the first trimester or is it necessary to wait until later?

    Reply

  7. […] Pregnancy Tea by Modern Alternative Pregnancy […]

    Reply

  8. I’m looking forward to trying this. I’m trying to get my iron levels up and am hoping this will help. Low iron is no fun! I’m 28 weeks and just wondering how much is safe to take? Do you drink like you would water?
    Thanks.

    Reply

  9. […] the herbs and make your own pregnancy tea using a recipe like this super happy belly tea or this pregnancy tea. You can buy the herbs online at Mountain Rose Herbs or Bulk Herbs […]

    Reply

  10. […] (decaf, of course), chai lattes, or other expensive morning drink habits – Take your pregnancy tea to […]

    Reply

  11. […] is a great herb that is rich in iron. You can take capsules, but I recommend drinking this pregnancy tea on a daily basis. This tea combines alfalfa, nettle and red raspberry leaf, all of which combine to […]

    Reply

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I’m Kate, mama to 5 and wife to Ben.  I love meeting new people and hearing their stories.  I’m also a big fan of “fancy” drinks (anything but plain water counts as ‘fancy’ in my world!) and I can’t stop myself from DIY-ing everything.  I sure hope you’ll stick around so I can get to know you better!

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