Pregnancy Health: Red Raspberry Leaf Tea

Pregnancy Health: Red Raspberry Leaf Tea

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For a bit of a different post this month, I’m passing on one of my favorite ways to drink Red Raspberry Leaf Tea. Perhaps you’ve heard of this “women’s health” herb-there are seriously so many reasons why you should be consuming Red Raspberry Leaf on a regular basis, even when you’re not pregnant! It’s high in minerals and vitamins that your body needs, and has the added benefit during pregnancy of helping to tone and prepare your uterus in preparation for labor. In light of this fact, it’s wise to avoid this herb during the first trimester, as that is one season in which your uterus needs no extra stimulation. But once you reach the second trimester, I highly recommend making this supplement part of your daily routine. You can receive benefits by taking this herb in capsule or tincture form, but tea form is a great way to get the maximum benefit out of this particular herb.

If you’re wanting to learn more about the benefits of Red Raspberry Leaf, here are some great resources to check out:

One of the downsides to this tea, though, is that it doesn’t remotely taste like raspberry! And if yours does, the you’re drinking the wrong thing! If I drink red raspberry leaf tea straight, it doesn’t take long to be turned off-which is why today I’m sharing with you my favorite way to make it. If you have a favorite method, share it in the comments below so we can benefit from it, too!

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First, gather your ingredients:

  • Organic Cut & Sifted Red Raspberry Leaves (I use Frontier Co-op brand that I purchased through Amazon)
  • Raspberry Zinger Herbal Tea Bags from Celestial Seasonings
  • Lemon
  • Stevia or your choice of sweetener (honey also works)-pictured above is the NuNaturals Pure Extract Stevia that I use.
  • Purified Water

Fill a small pot with about 4 c. of purified water, bring to a boil. Turn off and add your tea: I like to use several re-usable tea strainers, that I fill with Red Raspberry leaves. For one batch, I use about 1/3c. total of loose leaves. Then I add four bags of Raspberry Zinger tea, to help improve the flavor. Stir this around, then cover and let steep for about 20-30 min.

Pour your concentrated tea into a glass pitcher (about a half gallon), and add the juice of half a lemon. Next, add a few dashes of stevia or other sweetener to taste. Fill the rest of your pitcher with purified water, and let sit until cool. Pour over ice, and enjoy! I store this in the fridge, and drink it cold, and I can consume so much more tea this way. Even my children love it!

An invitation to attend…

An invitation to attend…

Gentle Delivery Childbirth Services first Celebrating Birth Expo!

Ever since relocating to State College, I’ve wondered what could be done to help moms in this area become more aware of their birth options and support services available to them. Many of the families I work with have moved here in relation to work or studies at Penn State University,  they don’t have family or friends nearby, and aren’t sure how to connect with or find out about the resources that this area has to offer. It’s my hope that this event will enable these moms to be introduced to area doulas, childbirth educators, midwives, lactation consultants, massage therapists, chiropractors, and more…and help to raise awareness of the availability of midwifery care and homebirth through the screening of the new film “Why Not Home?”.

Collages2I would love to see you there! Please help us to spread the word by inviting your friends and family to attend. Perhaps you’re looking for a fun activity to do with your mommy friends…or perhaps you’d like to know more about working with midwives…or perhaps you’re interested in promoting birth options in this area…or perhaps your a new mom or expecting mom, and you want to learn more about what this area has to offer…whatever the case, this event should be a great experience-and there will be chances to win great prizes and sample products at the vendor displays! Come and spend the morning with us!

To find out more about the sponsors helping to make this event possible, check out the website page here. And to RSVP for your free spot, check out the Eventbrite page. Feel free to invite your friends using the Facebook event page.

Feel free to check out the trailer for “Why Not Home?” here.  Here’s a quote from the director of the film, which will give you some background on what the film is all about:

I grew up hearing the story of the doctor and the surgical procedure that saved my life and my mother’s (I was breech, delivered by cesarean section). I never considered that I might give birth outside of a hospital–until I got pregnant.

At that time I had been a nurse for five years and a nurse practitioner for three. Home birth wasn’t part of my culture and wasn’t something my training had directly addressed. Prompted by a colleague’s experience, I started researching, asking questions, and considering my options in and out of the hospital. It was based on that research that I decided I wanted to pursue a home birth. As a low risk mom, it seemed I had the best chance of a safe and uncomplicated natural birth in my own home surrounded by people I knew and trusted. Some of my family and colleagues disagreed.

The decision wasn’t easy to talk about. It’s such an emotionally charged topic. Everyone has an opinion and a story to tell.

Since then I’ve met more health care providers, doctors, nurses, and midwives, who chose to give birth at home. These are not the women most Americans picture when they imagine a home birth mom. These professionals have direct and sometimes daily experience with the risks inherent in birth. Like all women, they wanted a safe birth, yet unlike 99% of women in the US, they chose to give birth at home. This is their story.

Too often polarization occurs on the topic of home birth. By focusing on hospital birth providers who choose home birth, I hope to bring a voice of moderation to the discussion. Together, we can move toward real improvements to maternity care in hospitals and at home.

What if the choice of where to give birth wasn’t limited by cost or insurance coverage, fear or misinformation? What would change if families had access to the care provider of their choice in the setting that best fits their unique needs and values? It’s worth at least asking, “Why not home?” 

This looks like it will be an exciting day, and I hope to see you there!