The first recorded use of Raspberry leaf tea as a medicine dates back to the 6th century.
The tonic of a raspberry leaf was used by midwives in the middle ages to help pregnant women through childbirth.
Still, hundreds of years later, Raspberry leaf tea is a favourite of women in Australia and all around the world for a whole variety of reasons.
But raspberry leaf tea can benefit everyone. Most people tend to only focus on the fruit while the leaf is rather an unsung hero of the plant.
Full of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals, the leaves can be used to
- lower blood pressure
- keep a healthy gut
- promote heart health
- shorten childbirth
- soothe a sore throat
The fact that it tastes delicious is just a bonus!
Raspberry leaf tea
Some choose to take raspberry leaf in tablet or tincture form. However, studies have shown that to get the full benefits of raspberry leaf, tea is best.
The tea can be made by picking leaves straight from the garden and brewing them in hot water. However, this can lead to a bitter taste, and it takes much longer to develop a flavour. Buying loose leaf tea or teabags provides a tested blend of tea leaves with a sweeter, more robust taste.
Our best-selling red raspberry tea is a tried and tested blend to ensure you enjoy all the benefits in the tastiest brew possible.
Bursting with vitamins and minerals, this wholly natural blend of goodness will aid you during and beyond your pregnancy.
The taste itself is fruity and strong. It has a similar flavour to rosehip or hibiscus tea with a stronger taste than white tea or teas such as chamomile or jasmine.
The flavour is bold and rounder than other teas, and, as you might have guessed, it tastes a bit like raspberries!
The benefits of raspberry leaf tea
Aside from being a tasty drink, the reported health benefits of drinking between three and four cups make it a great addition to your daily routine.
Drinking raspberry tea can add to a healthy diet.
The balance of nutrients and minerals boost your gut and control the symptoms of:
- stomach cramps
The antioxidants found in raspberry leaves can help prevent the degeneration of cells from outside foreign influences such as cancer, tobacco, stress, pollution and radiation.
The potassium in the tea means it can help reduce your blood pressure, lower cholesterol and keep your heart healthy.
The Vitamin C and gallic acid found in the leaves also help to prevent heart attacks and strokes. Additionally, the vitamin C which can be used by men to maintain a healthy prostate.
Red raspberry leaf tea is also great to drink if you’re feeling under the weather, as well as providing you with a hit of nutrients, it can help soothe a sore throat and reduce a fever.
However, raspberry leaf tea really comes into a class of its own is when it’s used to help pregnant and menstruating women.
Raspberry leaf tea and pregnancy
Throughout the centuries, raspberry leaf tea has mainly been used by midwives to help women through the trauma of childbirth.
Some also believe that drinking the tea regularly can increase fertility and aid women in falling pregnant.
Women were initially encouraged to drink a cup of raspberry tea to help deal with morning sickness.
As we’ve already discussed, the tea can have a calming effect on the stomach and can ease the feeling of nausea most women experience when pregnant.
The tea’s soothing and calming properties also help with other side effects of pregnancy, such as bleeding gums and cramping.
It’s so effective at dealing with cramps that it’s still used to this day by millions of women around the world do deal with the cramps caused by the menstrual cycle.
One study found that the fragarine compound found in the tea leaves could actually help coordinate contractions during labour and soothe and tighten the uterus.
This would lead to an easier birth with fewer complications.
Midwives encouraged the regular drinking of the tea because the nutrients in the leaves helped to strengthen the uterus and placenta.
The soothing and strengthening effect the tea has on the uterus has also been shown to reduce the chances of getting uterine fibroids as well as reducing the risk of uterine or ovarian cancers.
Studies have shown that ingesting the amount of zinc found in raspberry leaf tea can help a woman carry her baby to full term rather than giving birth early.
Historically, this means a more developed baby and a higher survival rate for both mother and child. In a group of 58 women who took red raspberry tea in a study in 1998, none gave birth early. The same study also found that these women were less likely to need a Caesarean section. Women who drank raspberry tea are also 11% less likely to need forceps during birth.
Magnesium is a key element found in raspberry plant leaves.
A growing baby can up to 7 mg of magnesium while in the womb. Taking a magnesium supplement often provides too much magnesium at one time resulting in the magnesium passing out in urine, rather than passing to the baby.
Drinking a few cups of tea containing magnesium-rich ingredients can help the baby develop at a steady pace without losing precious nutrients.
Nowadays, it’s thought that the minerals and nutrients in the leaves are good sources of iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium, which are crucial for maintaining a healthy body. This in turn, means a healthy baby.
Studies have found that this combination of nutrients can encourage a healthy flow of breast milk to nurse a new baby. In particular, the iron in the tea will ensure your milk is rich and contains everything the baby needs.
While still in the womb, the iron provides your baby with enough red blood cells to make them healthy after being born and no longer rely on you for food.
Another significant positive about upping your intake of raspberry leaf tea is that the leaves contain phosphorous.
During pregnancy, you have to be very careful about drinking caffeine as this can have some serious complications for your unborn child.
This often means soon-to-be mums feel tired and sluggish. Ingesting small amounts of phosphorous have been proven to prevent you from feeling lethargic and encourage wakefulness. So raspberry leaves are your new coffee!
If you’re pregnant and aren’t already convinced that drinking raspberry leaf tea is a good thing, then this might interest you; multiple studies have found that women who drank raspberry leaf tea regularly, had a shorter labour.
The average amount of time the tea can shave off your labour is just under ten minutes! Now, that’s got to be worth it!
Common questions about raspberry leaf tea
1) I’m in my first trimester, can I start drinking raspberry leaf tea immediately?
It’s recommended that pregnant women can start drinking raspberry tea after 32 weeks. This gives your body enough time to develop and benefit from the tea without interfering with those first crucial few weeks of development. At 32 weeks, drink one cup per day for two weeks. At 34 weeks, you can raise this to two cups per day if you do not experience any side effects.
2) How much raspberry tea can I drink?
Like all good things, raspberry tea should be drunk in moderation. If you aren’t pregnant, you can drink up to four cups a day without experiencing any side effects. If you are pregnant, it’s recommended that you start by drinking just one cup a day and building up to a maximum of three cups.
3) Can I drink raspberry leaf tea while breastfeeding?
Yes! The tea leaves are packed with vitamins and minerals, which will help your body regulate its supply and ensure the milk is rich and nourishing for your baby.
4) I’ve got lots of weird food cravings, will raspberry tea help my upset stomach?
Red Raspberry leaves will undoubtedly help calm and soothe your gut. The vitamins and antioxidants in the leaves will help balance your guts bacteria and help you avoid both constipation and diarrhoea, even if your cravings want something really weird!
5) Can raspberry leaf tea really make my labour shorter?
It really can. There are two main stages of labour. Studies have shown that drinking raspberry tea has no adverse effect on the first part of labour, but it can shorten the second part of your delivery by around ten minutes! It also helps coordinate and control contractions as it strengthens and soothes the uterus.
6) I’m trying to conceive; will raspberry tea stop me from getting pregnant?
No! In fact, it’s the opposite, drinking tea made from raspberry leaves can increase your chances of getting pregnant. Scientists aren’t exactly sure how it works, but the tea leaves can boost your fertility. Just two cups a day can increase your chances of conceiving.
7) I’m not pregnant, will raspberry tea help my menstrual cramps?
Yes. The same way that the tea soothes the uterus during pregnancy, it can help soothe and calm menstrual cramps. If cramps are particularly painful for you, drinking one or two cups of raspberry tea every day can help calm and minimise your cramps. Drunk over an extended period of time, the tea helps strengthen the uterus walls and can lessen cramps in the future.
8) Does raspberry leaf tea taste nice?
If you like the taste of raspberries, then yes, it tastes delicious. The leaves taste slightly like the fruit but with an extra layer of vibrant floral flavour. Think of it as a cross between eating raspberries and smelling a rose. The leaves give the tea and lighter, fuller flavour than the fruit, which makes it a wonderfully refreshing drink.
9) If it safe to make raspberry tea myself using the plant in my garden?
Yes, it is. Make sure you wash the leaves properly in lukewarm water and ensure you are not using any harsh chemicals on the plant, such as insecticide or pesticide. If you wash the leaves properly, there is no reason you can’t make the tea yourself. We’ve included a couple of recipes below for you to try.
10) Where can I buy raspberry leaf tea?
If you don’t want to make the tea yourself, you can buy raspberry tea online or in your local health food store. Our blend of raspberry tea is formulated to give you the best taste possible, so you don’t have to worry about adding sweeteners.
As you might expect, with so many benefits, there has to be a small downside.
Just as raspberry tea can help cure stomach upsets and ease symptoms of diarrhoea, an excess of raspberry tea can cause an opposite issue.
Raspberry leaves are naturally high sources of tannins. Too many tannins can cause constipation.
Somewhat bizarrely, too much of the tea leaves can induce diarrhoea as well.
Depending on your gut’s bacteria, the tea may have laxative properties. It’s safest to avoid drinking too much raspberry leaf tea.
Just two or three cups a day is enough to reap the many benefits of the tea while avoiding some nasty side effects. Pregnant women should aim for only one cup if they plan to drink it regularly.
Another potential side effect is that for all the good work raspberry leaf tea does for the uterus, it may also induce Braxton Hicks.
Braxton Hicks are false pains that mimic labour contractions. They can occur at any towards the end of the second trimester or into the third.
It’s thought that drinking too much raspberry leaf tea in the first trimester can increase the chances of getting Braxton Hicks contractions. If you do experience Braxton Hicks contractions, you should stop drinking the tea – clearly, your uterus is already strong enough!
Raspberry leaves also contain small amounts of Potassium, which is fine to ingest in small doses.
However, if you drink too much tea with potassium in, it can cause hyperkalaemia which in turn causes kidney failure.
This is incredibly rare, and if you are only drinking a few cups a day, not something you need to worry about.
Three teas you should avoid during pregnancy
Raspberry leaf tea has many benefits for pregnant women. However, some other common teas are actually harmful to pregnant women and should be avoided for the baby’s safety. If you are pregnant and regularly consume any of the teas below, we’d suggest you switch it out for a cup of our certified organic red raspberry leaves tea instead.
greens teas contain a surprisingly high amount of caffeine. Consuming more than 200 mg of caffeine while pregnant has been proven to lead to low birth weight. This is because the caffeine restricts the blood flow to the baby via the placenta. So, if you’re a green tea addict, swap the green for some red raspberry!
While one small cup of chamomile tea at the end of the day can help you relax, you shouldn’t be drinking more than one cup. Drinking multiple cups of chamomile tea every day can lead to preterm delivery and even miscarriage. To be safe, better to avoid it altogether and find another way to relax.
Otherwise known as Angelica is definitely one to avoid.
Like raspberry leaf, Dong Quai can affect the uterine walls. However, while raspberry leaves work to strengthen and soothe the uterus, Dong Quai can cause unnecessary contractions and stimulations, which can cause a miscarriage.
Find raspberry leaf tea in Australia
If you are looking to add some raspberry-leaf goodness to your diet, then there are several ways to enjoy the benefits of raspberry leaf.
Health companies have hit upon the health benefits of raspberry leaf and have formed capsules, tablets, and powders to supplement your diets.
These manufactured products are often combined with other complementary vitamins and minerals and can be taken alongside a healthy diet.
However, the quick breakdown and digestion of these within your gut means you won’t get the full benefits. They also don’t taste as good.
A tincture is a liquid which contains an alcoholic extract of the red raspberry leaf. The strength of the tincture will determine how many nutrients your body gets from the infusion. Rather than destroying the herb, alcohol is often used to help bring out some of the nutrients and minerals that our body cannot digest on its own.
Think of them as a concentrated shot or an injection of goodness. If this sounds like something you’d like, here’s an easy recipe to make your own:
- Take a quart (32oz) or similar sized jar and filling it halfway with your raspberry leaves.
- Add just enough boiling water to wet the leaves. Not enough to get them soaking wet, just a couple of splashes, so they aren’t too dry.
- Fill the jar with velar, flavourless vodka. Close the jar tightly and place in it a cool, dry area. You’ll need to shake or turn the jar every few days. After around five weeks of shaking the jar, the mixture will be fully steeped. Strain out the leaves keeping the remaining liquid in a bottle. It’s best if you can store it in a bottle with a dropper. Now, enjoy!
Add a few drops to a drink once or twice a day. Don’t worry – you only need a few drops as it is very concentrated, so you don’t need to worry about getting drunk!
Raspberry leaf tea
However, arguably, the best way to enjoy the benefits of raspberry leaves is to brew them into a delicious tea. The hot water helps to release some of the nutrients and minerals, allowing your body to digest and process them more efficiently than other forms such as tablets.
Even drinking tea is more relaxing for the body than taking a shot of tincture or popping a tablet. So, if you’d like to try a cup of delicious raspberry leaf tea, we’ve got some simple recipes for you to try.
- Bring a cup of water to the boil. Once it has reached boiling point, remove it from the heat and let sit for one minute. This will allow the water to cool just enough, so the leaves don’t burn. Add one teaspoon of leaves and allow to stew for ten minutes. After ten minutes, remove the leaves. Add one teaspoon of honey for sweetness.
If hot drinks aren’t for you, this iced tea recipe will let you enjoy the raspberry leaf goodness throughout the hotter months.
- Bring one cup of water to the boil. Once the water has reached boiling point, add one teaspoon of raspberry leaves and one teaspoon of nettle leaves (careful if you collect these yourself as they can sting). If you don’t like the taste of nettle leaves, you could try adding hibiscus flower or rosehip instead. Allow to stew for five minutes before adding one teaspoon of sugar or your favourite sweetener. Allow to stew for another five minutes. Remove the leaves and allow to cool. Fill a glass with ice, and then pour the mixture on top of the ice.
The bottom line
While drinking an excess of raspberry leaf tea can cause some discomfort, especially to your gut, the benefits far outweigh the negatives. And you’ll only experience the negatives if you are drinking more than four cups every day for an extended period.
Particularly for women looking to control menstrual cramps or hoping for an easy labour, the tea can have some seriously powerful, and positive, effects. Of course, if you are pregnant, you should always check with your doctor before taking a supplement.
Overall, raspberry leaf tea is packed full of vitamins and antioxidants, which can help you feel at your best.
Our specially blended raspberry leaf tea has been created so you can enjoy the benefits of raspberry leaves in a delicious, easy to use. So, if you don’t want to hassle of making your own tea, click here to shop our unique blend online.
If you’ve tried raspberry leaf tea and it has helped you, then we’d love to hear from you.
Please get in touch, or you can share your experiences in the comment section below.
- Have you found our raspberry tea has helped you through your pregnancy?
- Did you drink raspberry leave tea during one pregnancy and notice the difference?