Herbs Safe in Pregnancy

May 18, 2019

Herbs Safe in Pregnancy


You are pregnant and can’t survive the day without a cuppa or two? You are also most likely asking yourself which teas are safe to drink during pregnancy.

Regardless if you are an English Breakfast type of mama to be or a herbal tea fan, you will want to understand what is best to drink and what is best to avoid.

Before anything please have in mind – In pregnancy, probably more than ever, the rule of moderation is king. Keep a balanced mind and approach with your healthy diet. 2-3 cups of herbal teas that are generally recognised as safe can be a wonderful addition to your healthy pregnancy lifestyle so don’t exaggerate with the amount of teas while expecting.

Herbal Teas Generally Known as Safe in Pregnancy

Many mums will steer away from caffeine throughout pregnancy and naturally caffeine free herbal infusions are a perfect solution. There are many teas recognised as safe in pregnancy, if not drunk in excessive amounts.

This is the list of 5 safe most well-known herbal and fruit infusions for pregnant mamas:

  1. Peppermint & Spearmint

These two just might become your herbal tea favourites. Safe from the early stages of pregnancy, they are not only refreshing in taste but can help to relax the stomach muscles and settle an upset stomach. They are traditionally used to aid nausea in early pregnancy, a symptom many mamas will experience.

Both of these herbs are safe to be drunk alone or in tea blends throughout pregnancy.

  1. Rooibos

Generally known as safe in pregnancy, this naturally caffeine free tea will likely appeal to traditional black tea drinkers. It can be drunk from the early stages of pregnancy, although some mums don’t find the taste appealing in the first trimester. Rooibos is also known for its positive effects on digestion. It is safe for children so feel free to enjoy with the whole family. You can drink it with or without milk and with a dash of honey for a special treat.

  1. Ginger

Popular in pregnancy and widely used by expecting mamas this wonderful root is safe in moderation. This warming herb is known as the anti-nausea natural remedy and can relieve stomach issues related to pregnancy. There has been limited research that doses over 1500mg should be avoided in pregnancy, so avoid excessive consumption. A cuppa or two is absolutely fine, and even better if blended with other beneficial herbs. The research on benefits in pregnancy with the anti-nausea effect is substantial so give it a try if fighting morning sickness.

  1. Raspberry Leaf

Probably most well- known herb for use in pregnancy, this naturally caffeine-free herbal tea is traditionally drunk as a ‘tonic for uterus’. It is believed raspberry leaf can help and tone the walls of the womb and help mums prepare for labour. On the contrary to belief, there is no significant research to confirm that it can induce labour, but for precaution, it is still traditionally recommended to be drunk from the second trimester if prepared as a pure raspberry leaf.

You can start with one cup at 26 weeks if drunk as a part of herbal blend, build up to 2 cups at 32 weeks, and 3-4 cups from 37 weeks, if it feels right for you.


  1. Fruit teas

 (the fruit infusions) – apples, oranges, lemons, strawberries, raspberries can all make wonderful fruit infusions and be drunk safely hot or cold. Fruit teas containing common fruit are generally known as safe. Have a look at the ingredients list if you are buying a ready-made fruit infusion as it will sometimes be blended with herbs and very often liquorice, which you might want to avoid in pregnancy. Hibiscus will also often be added in fruit teas to add colour and although very limited research, there are some indications it stimulates uterine contractions. As precaution best to leave it for last weeks of the third trimester and again in moderation. 

Whatever your favourite go-to tea in pregnancy is, choose organic. This is the time when you will want to avoid the toxins present in pesticides and certified organic is the best way to do it.

Teas to avoid or limit in pregnancy

For classic black teas, you can enjoy in moderation as well, but just have in mind that they do have caffeine so you might want to limit their intake. 1 cup of standard English Breakfast will have around 40-50 mg of caffeine.

Some teas are best avoided during pregnancy, as there has been some controversial research about their safety, and although often not conclusive, until there is more data on their safety it is best to avoid in your 9 months of bliss:

  • St John’s Wort and Yarrow
  • Lemongrass – amounts used as a spice in culinary dishes are safe, but supplements and lemongrass tea should be avoided during pregnancy
  • Liquorice root – often used in teas to add to the sweetness it is best avoided in pregnancy as excessive consumption can cause high blood pressure and worsen preeclampsia
  • Ginseng

High in caffeine teas you might want to limit- matcha, oolong, yerba mate, green tea, black tea.

Please speak to your doctor, midwife and your herbalist if you have any concerns about any of the teas or herbs. Listen to your body and remember to stay moderate, sip, enjoy and relax.