Finalist in the 2019 Writers Contest – Health & Well-Being Category
Freelance contribution by: Lucy Wyndham
One study found that 79% of pregnant women increase their consumption of herbal teas, with 38% drinking them as an alternative to their regular tea or coffee. While much of the information about the safety of herbal teas during pregnancy is conflicting, there are plenty of herbal teas that are generally considered safe and can actually help to relieve pregnancy symptoms such as nausea and vomiting.
Herbal tea can help with pregnancy symptoms
Herbal teas can help with nausea and sickness due to their ingredients and mild flavor, which can in turn make it easier to carry on with your day as normal and eat healthy and nutritious meals. Research shows that women with gestational diabetes can benefit from drinking green tea as the polyphenols and polysaccharides it contains can lower blood sugar levels. Research also suggests that green tea can reduce the amount of glucose that can pass through the intestines and enter the bloodstream, making it very beneficial for all diabetics. Therefore, it’s suggested that women with gestational diabetes drink a cup of green tea with each meal to improve their blood sugar levels, as well as ensuring that the meals they’re eating are healthy.
The benefits of herbal teas
When sickness kicks in, hydration is key. Some women want something other than plain water, so herbal teas are a good option. Some herbal teas provide essential nutrients; such as calcium, magnesium, and iron. Rooibos tea has antioxidant properties and is naturally caffeine-free, making it a good option. Ginger and mint teas can help to relieve nausea and sickness, chamomile tea can prevent insomnia, and red raspberry leaf tea may even promote contractions during labor as it’s believed to tone the uterine muscle. Nettle leaf tea is also a great option, especially during the second and third trimester, as it’s full of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, and K, iron, and potassium.
Herbal teas to avoid during pregnancy
Sage tea should be avoided during pregnancy as it contains thujone, which has been linked to high blood pressure and an increased risk of miscarriage. Parsley tea can also increase the risk of miscarriage and affect your baby’s development when it’s drunk in large quantities. Valerian is often used in blends that claim to help you sleep, but some experts recommend that pregnant women should avoid it. If you do drink it, aim for one cup a day at most for no longer than 6 weeks in a row. While chamomile tea can help with insomnia and relaxation, drinking too much of it can have the opposite effect; so again, drink it in moderation.
The good news is that you don’t have to go without your regular cup of brew, but you may need to switch to herbal tea. Fortunately, herbal teas can help to relieve unwanted pregnancy symptoms for a smoother and healthier pregnancy. As with anything, moderation is key, so don’t become dependent on herbal teas and listen to your body.
Photo “Teacup With Tea” is copyright under Creative Commons 2.0 Generic License to the photographer Julia Sakelli and is being posted unaltered (source)