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Teas for each trimester of pregnancy

Thursday 12 May 2022

Your body changes so much through pregnancy, it needs to be nourished and nurtured in the right way, at the right time. Tea can be a great way to naturally do this. We caught up with Bethan from HotTea Mama for her top picks.

We were inspired to set up HotTea Mama as the generic ‘pregnancy teas’ available just weren’t doing what we needed them to. Hopefully explaining why we picked certain herbs and flowers for our teas can to help support you through your pregnancy and postpartum journey. 

Things to avoid

There are a few herbs and teas that you need to avoid at any point in your pregnancy.   

  • Firstly, make sure you limit your caffeine to a maximum 200mg per day. This level is completely safe according to the NHS guidelines and is the equivalent of 1 cup of coffee and 1 cup of black tea. 
  • Avoid liquorice if you’re at risk of preeclampsia or have high blood pressure. It is put into many fruit and herbal blends but will raise your blood pressure and can put you at risk. 
  • Raspberry leaf – only drink this from 32 weeks on – it is often put in ‘pregnancy tea’ but the NHS says not to drink it until your third trimester. Studies suggest it makes uterine muscles contract slightly and strengthens them. But, you don’t want your uterine muscles to be impacted early in pregnancy. 

First trimester

If you suffer from morning sickness (or all day sickness) during pregnancy, you are not alone. Hopefully it passes soon, but to support yourself, anti-inflammatory herbs can help ease sickness. 

Our Morning Rescue tea is full of these  – ginger contains gingerols which reduce inflammation and have been shown in studies with chemotherapy patients to reduce nausea during treatment. Citrals in lemon-y herbs work in the same way – lemongrass, lemon balm and lemon verbena all contain them and can help ease nausea. 

Second trimester

You may feel amazing in your second trimester, but it isn’t guaranteed.  If you’re missing the elusive pregnancy ‘glow’ that you were promised, our Get Up & Glow tea can help give you a boost. With grapes as the base, it is a great alternative to a second coffee.   

Third trimester

Prepare for labour with our Final Push raspberry leaf tea. Raspberry leaf has been used for millennia to help prepare the body for labour, with studies showing it contains an active ingredient called fragerine. Fragerine stimulated uterine muscles slightly to tone and strengthen them. Small scale studies show that those who take raspberry leaf in their final trimester had a shorter second stage of labour (where you push) and fewer interventions (use of forceps) in birth. There are not negative outcomes in drinking raspberry leaf, so whilst the results can’t be guaranteed, there’s no harm in trying! 

Fourth trimester

Whilst you aren’t pregnant anymore, the fourth trimester is still extremely challenging. Tea can help support your body if you plan to breastfeed or just need a little sleep support. 

Milk’s Up breastfeeding tea contains ingredients called galactagogues which are natural herbs that have been used to support milk supply for millennia.  Fenugreek and fennel have the most research behind them, and have been shows in small scale studies to help increase milk supply and fat content in those who drank it. Three cups a day is also a great way to stay hydrated while helping your supply. 

Night Owl calming tea can help ease anxiety and support sleep, which can be in short supply with a newborn baby around. The herbs and flowers selected have been chosen for their anxiolytic benefits (easing symptoms of anxiety) and have also been linked to improving sleep. Chamomile flowers and lavender include linalool which is hugely calming. Valerian root has been shown to be more effective than a sedative in one sleep study! 

Newborn Wonder is a blend of high caffeine white tea (c. 90mg of caffeine per cup) and rosebuds. It can give you a lift when you need it most but is more gentle than a coffee. This is because it includes theanine which is a natural relaxant and gives the tea a slow release effect of caffeine.  

So pick the right tea for the right time. They’re all delicious and can be enjoyed long after the specific trimester you need, but they should be able to give you a boost when you need it. 

About the author

Bethan – HotTea Mama

Bethan & Kate – the HotTea Mamas.

We met at university, and were inspired to set up HotTea Mama as we looked for natural ways to support our bodies through the ‘joys’ of womanhood.

Kate had two babies in the space of a year (she’s a hero). She had the idea for HotTea Mama when looking for ways to naturally support herself with some of the more challenging aspects of pregnancy and motherhood.

Bethan was the first non-Chinese person to get a degree in Tea Science from the University of Agriculture and Forestry in Fujian. This was after more than 15 years of working as a tea buyer and blender.

Using our shared experiences and Bethan’s tea knowledge, we created a range of teas for pregnancy and motherhood. We have since extended this to cover periods and menopause. Key issues we all face, and where a cup of the right tea, can be a great comfort.

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