Is Herbal Tea Safe During Pregnancy?

is herbal tea safe during pregnancy

Many pregnant women want to do everything possible to ensure the wellbeing of their unborn child, including eating a well-balanced diet packed with the essential nutrients required for its development and growth. One way many pregnant women obtain essential nutrients during gestation is through drinking herbal tea each day; but is this safe? And, if so, which types should you drink?

Caffeine should not be consumed while pregnant as it has been proven to interfere with fetal development. Some herbal teas may be safe in moderation; however, others could contain ingredients which have not been well studied and could therefore compromise pregnancy safety or pass through placenta and reach baby.

Some herbs have been shown to stimulate the uterus and may pose risks during pregnancy. Examples include spearmint, feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium), wild yam, cascara sagrada and hoarhound. Furthermore, others such as sage, licorice black bugbane and Chinese angelica have hormonal effects; safe small doses should be consumed only during the first trimester of gestation. Dandelion and rhubarb teas should be avoided during first trimester of gestation for best results.

Lemon balm, ginger root, red raspberry leaf and lavender teas may also be safely enjoyed while pregnant, and can provide soothing effects to alleviate nausea, vomiting and insomnia. They’re also high in vitamin C content which could potentially prevent scurvy.

Although most teas are generally safe during pregnancy, it’s wise to consult your healthcare provider prior to drinking any herbal teas for different purposes or in large amounts. They will provide guidance as to which herbs may cause risks as well as how much each herb you can safely consume.

If you are purchasing pre-packaged pregnancy tea, be sure to carefully read through its ingredients. The most suitable pregnancy teas will include herbs that are generally considered safe for consumption as well as no caffeine-containing additives; pregnancy teas can usually be found at health stores and Mama/Baby boutiques.

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