Can I drink herbal tea when pregnant?

And after researching this I have a new saying, "If it don't make dough, then you'll never know."

You cannot patent chamomile. Because of that you can't make a lot of money on it, and because you can't make a lot of money on it, nobody will do any large studies on its effects on pregnant women.

As a general rule, teas made from fruit or herbs which are used in cooking are safe for you to drink while you're pregnant. That said, it's recommended that you not drink any single herb continually throughout your pregnancy (once again because they don't *quite* know what it will do until you test it on a thousand rats).

Now, as for which ones are considered safe and which ones aren't, good effing luck. There are blatant contradictions with herbal teas — one site will recommend a tea for all that ails you during your pregnancy and another will claim that your uterus will contract like nuts in ice water if you so much as sniff it.

Celestial Seasonings reports that they adhere to the guidelines that the FDA has published and not use any herbs that are considered dangerous even though they seem to have the odd no-no on their ingredient list.

I've cobbled together a list of the general consensus on what is okay and what is a no-no.

Probably Okay:

  • Chamomile
  • Citrus Peel
  • Ginger
  • Lemon Balm
  • Lime blossom
  • Linden Flower (unless you have a pre-existing cardiac condition).
  • Rose Hip
  • Dandelion
  • Mint
  • Raspberry Leaf*
  • Rooibos
  • Roasted Barley
  • Thyme


Not so much:

  • Alfalfa
  • Anise
  • Bearberry (Uva Ursi)
  • Black and Blue Cohosh
  • Calamus Root
  • Catnip
  • Chicory Root
  • Coltsfoot Comfrey
  • Devil's Claw
  • Dong Quai
  • Elderflowers feverfew
  • Ephedra (ma huang)
  • Fennel
  • Fenugreek
  • Gentian
  • Ginseng
  • Goldenseal
  • Groundsel
  • Hawthorne Berries
  • Hibiscus
  • Horehound
  • Juniper Berries
  • Kombucha Tea
  • Licorice
  • Lobelia
  • Mistletoe
  • Mother Wort
  • Nettles (stinging nettles)
  • Parsley tea
  • Penny Royal
  • Pokeroot Sassafras
  • Raspberry Leaf*
  • Rag Wort
  • Rosemary tea
  • Sage tea
  • Senna
  • Shepherd's Purse
  • St. John's Wort
  • Yarrow
  • Yellow Dock

On a side note, one site recommended that you shouldn't make tea out of plants unless you are certain what they are. Who the hell would do this? "Oh there's a neat plant. I think it's call Thistle Dick. Let's pour hot water over it and drink it!" If this is your logic, being damaged by tea will be the least of you kid's worries. Don't do that.

* Lastly, I've left Raspberry Leaf as its own little category here. There are sites that both strongly advise drinking it and strongly advise not drinking it during pregnancy and I'm not even going to pretend to know which side it correct. All I know is that I drank enough to float a fat man when I was told it would start labour when I was 41 weeks pregnant with my first son and it did bugger all.

Perhaps I should have curled up with a hot, freshly steeped cup of thistle dick instead. Mmmm.

search: herbal tea pregnant, herbal tea pregnancy, Celestial Seasonings pregnancy

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