When I think of raspberry leaf tea, I am reminded of the times I drank a lot of it during pregnancy and childbirth. Specifically, I remember the labour I had with my son Dustin because I was so full of inner peace sitting in a rocking chair at the maternity centre in Manhattan, sipping raspberry tea and timing my contractions. It was a busy night that night and only one midwife was on duty and she was busy with other labouring moms. The tea helped to sooth my labour contractions and my nerves. This turned out to be a really good thing considering he was my largest baby and the difficult part of the labour was during the actual delivery (exit inner peace).
Raspberry leaves are the leaves of the perennial bushes that grow red raspberries. The leaves offer several medicinal benefits but its main use is during pregnancy and childbirth. It is high in vitamins B and C as well as the minerals magnesium, potassium and iron. If is known to increase fertility in both men and women. It helps in lessening a heavy period and menstruation pain. During pregnancy, it aids in the prevention of morning sickness. It also contains the alkaloid fragrine which tones the uterus and pelvic muscles which are known by some to lead to shorter and easier labour if taken regularly throughout pregnancy and during labour. Drinking after childbirth is said to aid in milk production and helps in the prevention of post-partum depression.
Aside from fertility, pregnancy and childbirth, raspberry leaf is a great help in strengthening the adrenal glands and dealing with hypertension making this a key benefit to menopausal women and anyone going through a stressful time in their life.
Because of its high concentration of vitamin C, this is also a great tea to drink during colds, flu and other illnesses. Raspberry leaf is also anti-inflammatory and is often used as a mouth wash for mouth ulcers and throat infections. It is also soothing for stomach ailments and an aid against diarrhoea.
To prepare raspberry leaf tea pour one cup boiling water over a teaspoon of dried leaves and let it steep at least 15 minutes. I prefer using tea balls whenever I am making just one cup of herbal tea. These can be purchased through a variety of shops and at Amazon.