All sorts of teas and tinctures have been used by our ancestors for centuries for many reasons whether these are calming, medicinal, healing or just for their delicious flavour.
Green tea, black tea, flowering teas, herbal and non-herbal teas, and blends are becoming increasingly popular as their known benefits are becoming more readily sought after as remedies for ailments.
Hibiscus tea is now trending as a health phenomenon for its benefit to lower blood pressure, keep weight off and help with healthy heart and liver function. But is this a healthy drink to have when you’re pregnant, trying to get pregnant or breastfeeding?
Like all medicines, as hibiscus tea is, self-medicating is not always the best idea. Always speak to your health care professional first.
What Is Hibiscus Tea?
The Hibiscus is a tropical bush that has a large colourful flower consisting of 5 petals. Various parts of the hibiscus plant are used for all sorts of traditional medicine, tinctures, and remedies. The tea itself is made by drying and brewing the petals, and can be consumed hot or over ice.
Benefits of Hibiscus Tea
Hibiscus tea is rich in antioxidants and polyphenols. It is suggested that it can help reduce blood pressure, help improve your liver through detoxification, fight bacteria and free radicals and aid weight loss. If consumed regularly, some say it can potentially prevent cancer cells forming.
Side Effects of Hibiscus Tea
Studies indicate that in general, hibiscus tea can be safely consumed in amounts of up to 3 cups daily for up to 6 weeks. Side effects, although not commonly reported, can include an upset stomach, gas, and constipation.
Research on hibiscus tea has been rather limited at this stage, so until further studies have been conducted, we recommend that it’s best to avoid it while trying to conceive, pregnant and while breastfeeding.
Can I Drink Hibiscus Tea While Pregnant, Breastfeeding or TTC?
Hibiscus tea is an emmenagogue, which means it’s a herb that is capable of stimulating the menstrual cycle by increasing blood flow to the uterus. This can interfere with your cycle while trying to conceive and with IVF treatments.
It is also dangerous during pregnancy as it can lead to cramping, bleeding, early labour and even miscarriage.
Hibiscus tea also has blood thinning properties, which can affect conception by making it challenging for a fertilised egg to implant on the uterine wall. If you’re pregnant and consuming the tea, it’s worth considering stopping as it can lead to increased bleeding if you have a caesarean, as well as an increase in post-birth bleeding.
I Accidentally Drank Hibiscus Tea While Pregnant—Should I Be Concerned?
One cup or a few of herbal tea is not going to make much an effect so do not worry about this. If you have concerns, then see your health care professional.
Some women consume hibiscus tea during the third trimester to prepare the body for labour. At this stage, more conclusive studies have been conducted on raspberry leaf tea during the third trimester.
Alternatives to Hibiscus Tea
Evidence shows that when consumed from 32 weeks onwards, the high fragrine content strengthens uterine muscles, which helps speed up contractions, resulting in a quicker birth with less stress on the baby.
Other benefits of consuming raspberry leaf tea include:
- Reduced bleeding post-birth.
- Relief from nausea, vomiting and cold sores.
For any medicinal ailment such as an herbal tea, it’s always recommended to consult your health care professional before consuming. Raspberry leaf tea should not be consumed prior to 32 weeks.
What Other Teas Are Safe During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding?
Many teas are safe during pregnancy but it’s best to limit any that contain caffeine and always speak to your health care professional before consuming on a regular basis. If you’re experiencing morning sickness, teas such as peppermint and ginger can reduce your nausea and balance blood sugar levels.
After pregnancy, when your body is producing milk for your baby, a special blend of fennel, fenugreek and caraway seeds offer therapeutic qualities that have traditionally been used to support healthy lactation and ease digestion for both mother and baby.
When you’re pregnant, trying to conceive or lactating, it’s important to do your research on what you’re putting into your body for the best possible health for you and your baby.
There’s lots of conflicting information out there regarding the health benefits of different substances, but as long as you consult a professional, you’ll be well on the way to a healthy conception, pregnancy and breastfeeding journey.
About the Author
Katie is the proud mum of two beautiful girls and has been responsible for all the designs, style and fit at Cake Maternity for over a decade now.
Katie is a nursing bra specialist and a fit, pattern, and grading technician. She is passionate about breastfeeding and the many benefits it offers to both mum, baby, and the environment.
She is determined to make the breastfeeding journey a comfortable, supportive, and beautiful one for all mums, understanding that it doesn’t always come easy to everyone. That’s why she has made it her mission to empower women as they mindfully navigate the world of motherhood and help make breastfeeding easier, through experience-driven innovation.