Best Tea for Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Apr 29, 2024
mother with baby, red raspberry leaf tea, ginger tea

Welcome new momma! You have been blessed with a new little one, a treasure, and you want to keep him/her safe from anything harmful. While natural pregnancy and breastfeeding are wonderful options compared to modern pharmaceuticals, in your search for alternatives, you realize that not all herbs are safe for your baby at this delicate time of his/her life! You likely have a lot of questions, especially about safe herbs and teas to use. 


God made many wonderful, natural plants to use at all times of life, so if you’ve been wondering about herbs and tea for pregnancy and breastfeeding in particular, you’ve come to the right place! We love guiding mamas, new and seasoned, as they navigate the many dos and don’ts of herbal medicine and motherhood.


There’s much to learn about the best tea for pregnancy and herbs for breastfeeding. Discover herbal remedies backed by research, find out which herbs to avoid, and how to incorporate the best herbs into your diet. There are several safe and effective options to support maternal and infant health, from ginger and raspberry leaf tea to fenugreek and fennel seed. There's something for every mom and baby!



The Legal Stuff

This blog is provided by St. Fiacre's Farm LLC for informational purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice, and you should always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for any medical questions or concerns. Please note that we may earn a small commission on any purchases you make through our affiliate links, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support!


Safe Herbs & Teas During Pregnancy

As mothers, we all want what is the absolute best for our children, and often, new little ones inspire us to dig deeper into the foods, herbs, and medicines that we consume while pregnant and nursing. Nothing inspires learning, like having a new tiny baby that we are responsible for, and that depends on us. Perhaps we are looking for alternatives to pharmaceuticals and want to go the more natural route when it comes to infant care. Or perhaps your new little one has many allergies and sensitivities. Over the years we have helped many expectant mama's safely navigate herbs through their pregnancy and beyond.


Whatever the case may be, God made some wonderful herbs that are safe to use even when pregnant and nursing, but you will want to make sure that you dive into the details of each one. Just because herbs are natural does not mean that they are safe for every instance or every person; they come with their precautions, just like pharmaceuticals. As always, make sure that before using that, you contact your midwife, doula, herbal practitioner, or medical physician to ensure that the herbs are right for you and your baby's needs.


Many herbs have not been clinically tested for safety on pregnant and nursing mothers because of ethics reasons and so you may often find an herb states that it is safe in food form or not enough information is available to say if it is safe medicinally or not. We always encourage our readers to learn more and dive deep into every monograph for each herb that the are wanting to use so that they understand how it may help or harm them.


Whether it be herbs in general or herbal teas, here are a few examples of some tea options for pregnant women that are safe in moderate amounts (this is not an extensive list):


  • Lemon balm tea: This can promote relaxation and soothe anxiety.
  • Raspberry leaf tea: Could help prepare the uterus for labor.
  • Spearmint: May help you feel relaxed and reduce nausea; avoid it in large amounts.
  • Chamomile: Promotes relaxation, may reduce gas, and helps induce sleep
  • Nettles: High in nutrients, especially iron, folic acid, and vitamins A, C, E, F, K, and P.
  • Rose Hips: High in vitamin C, helps absorption of iron and calcium.
  • Milky Oats: Nutritive herb supporting the nervous system in cases of anxiety.
  • Ginger tea: Anti-nausea, avoid in large doses, especially near birth
  • Echinacea: May reduce the duration of colds while pregnant
  • Cranberry: Helps and may prevent UTI


While not every herb is safe to use during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as you can see, there is a great start to options that you have on hand! Let's dive deeper into some of these herbs, and as always, I recommend downloading our herbal journal pages and taking notes so that you can reference them later. It will be easier to have them on hand in your own writing during bouts of morning sickness or times of rest.



Studies Supporting Teas for Pregnancy

Safety is of the utmost importance when it comes to tea for pregnancy and breastfeeding; as we mentioned earlier, not all herbs have been studied for safety for use during pregnancy and lactation. I'd like to share some of my favorite resources with you so that you can dive in and read about the herbs that you are wondering if they are safe for you and your little one (there is just not enough space here to share it all!) 


The book Medicinal Herbalism by David Hoffman is a great resource for all things herbs from a medicinal perspective but he has the most comprehensive guide that I've come across for herbs for pregnancy and herbs for breastfeeding. It is worth the investment to have this book on your herbal shelf that contains many medicinal studies to back up all of his information. He takes extreme caution and it's a great starter guide.


The Botanical Safety Handbook is a huge book and a big investment. It is mentioned in the Medicinal Herbalism book (above), which gives a good overview for a more affordable price, but if you want to get really serious about safety, this is your guide! 


The German E Commission on Herbs is a committee made up of experts formed by the German government in 1978 to find out if herbs sold in Germany were safe. They spent a lot of time studying herbal use during pregnancy and breastfeeding, and have a ton of evidence-based recommendations that we often rely on. The monographs may be viewed online here while a hard copy of the book may be expensive and hard to find.


A more recent study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine considers ginger the best tea for pregnancy thanks to its ability to soothe nausea. Plus, it doesn’t have any adverse effects on mama or baby’s health! That's a win for that morning sickness!



Best Herbs for Pregnancy Nutritional Benefits

Not only do these herbs boast medicinal properties for pregnant and breastfeeding women, but they also offer several nutritional benefits! A couple of our favorite nutritive herbs, like nettle leaf and dandelion greens, are rich in essential vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, and vitamin K. Let's take a deeper dive into some of these nutrition-filled herbs so that you can incorporate these nutrient-dense beauties into your diet, which could help support your overall health and well-being during this special time.



Raspberry leaf tea is by far the best tea for pregnancy available, though you will want to ensure that you are in your 3rd trimester before drinking it in medicinal amounts unless you have the green light from your midwife or doctor. Using raspberry leaf in the 1st trimester could cause the uterus to have contractions to some degree putting you at risk of a miscarriage. 

Raspberry leaf, Rubus idaeus, is a part of the rose family and not just for the yummy red berries. It is rich in iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium, and B vitamins, it's no surprise that its often used to make tea, which helps make the perfect tea for pregnancy! It may also ease menstrual cramps, calm diarrhea, boost the immune system, helps calm cold and flu symptoms, soothe sore throats, exercise the uterine muscles to help ease labor, and tighten and tone the uterus.



Stinging nettle is safe in moderate amounts (think food amounts) and is high in all sorts of vitamins and minerals such as iron and folic acid, as mentioned earlier. It has helped speed wound healing and reduce blood sugars; it is full of zinc, calcium, and potassium. Nettle is like God's natural multi-vitamin! It is a blood builder; traditionally, midwives even use it to slow post-partum bleeding. Stinging nettle is also an anti-inflammatory and, as such, is commonly used to aid in allergy relief.


Find our favorite raspberry leaf and nettle tea that was especially crafted for woman looking to nourish their bodies during pregnancy.


Herbs for Morning Sickness and Anxiety

Along with nourishing our bodies during pregnancy with herbs, many expecting mothers also face the dreaded morning sickness, nausea, or some related digestive issues. Along with morning sickness, we may also experience bouts of anxiety or sleeplessness, but there are herbs that can help with that, too!



Ginger, while able to help relieve nausea, is also commonly used as a digestive aid, reducing bloating and improving overall digestion. Ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties, and regular consumption may help reduce inflammation and provide soothing relief from muscle soreness.

Ginger is also known as an immune booster and improves circulation, promoting better oxygen levels in the body. Studies have shown that it is safe to use during pregnancy but should be avoided in large doses near or during birth, as it can increase bleeding.



Lemon Balm tea is a great tea to wind down with at night because, as I always say, "lemon balm brings calm"! It's important to remember our nervous system while we are growing a new little one, and lemon balm is a great tea to drink while pregnant in normal amounts, say 2-3 cups a day.

There have been no official studies on the effects of lemon balm on pregnant or nursing mothers. There is some evidence that lemon balm may reduce lactation in larger amounts, so nursing mothers may want to avoid more than the occasional use. 




Safe Herbs for Breastfeeding

Many years ago now we adopted a new born baby and I was trying to induce location for this wee one so that she could have the best nutrition possible. Herbs were very much a part of that process! Including the ones that I'm sharing with you here today. In fact the very nursing tea that I drank gallons off was the jumping point for our tea and herbal business that now supports our family.

Once you’ve given birth, you still need to be cautious about what you’re putting in your body. Your little one will rely on you for all of their vitamins and minerals for many months to come. Fortunately, there are herbs out there that have been shown to increase milk production. Great news for mamas who may be struggling with breastfeeding — there’s no shame in it, and many mothers have been there!


Fenugreek is a well-known galactagogue, a fancy word for something that promotes lactation. Fennel seed tea is another one of the most popular herbs for breastfeeding, as it has been shown to increase milk supply as well. Blessed thistle (different than milk thistle) and alfalfa could also support breastfeeding moms as they can promote location, too. 


Something to avoid if you’re nursing? Herbs like peppermint and sage, as they have been shown to actually inhibit milk production. And you certainly don’t want that! 


Our favorite nursing tea is full of helpful herbs like alfalfa leaf, fenugreek seed, fennel seed, raspberry leaf, lemon balm, and more. As you can see, it’s chock full of the best of the best for breastfeeding!



Herbs to Avoid and Other Precautions 

 We have covered a few of the herbs that are safe to use during pregnancy as well as those safe to use during breastfeeding, but I also want to make sure you have a handy list of herbs to avoid - or at least some of them. 

This is not a comprehensive list — and again, please consult your doctor or midwife with questions and as always reference your herbal monographs for more detailed safety concerns. 

Herbs to AVOID if pregnant or breastfeeding:

  • Licorice root
  • Tansy
  • Safflower
  • Rue
  • Castor Oil
  • Aloes
  • Rhubarb
  • Mugwort
  • Buckthorn
  • Yarrow
  • Comfrey
  • Barberry
  • Borage
  • Angelica
  • Wormwood
  • Thuja
  • Coltsfoot
  • Goldenseal
  • Oregon Grape
  • Hops
  • Red Clover
  • Poke Root
  • Pennyroyal
  • Celandine
  • Feverfew
  • Nutmeg (in large amounts)
  • Butternut
  • Senna
  • Cascara Sagrada
  • Quinine
  • Lily of the Valley
  • Cotton
  • Periwinkle
  • Mistletoe
  • Juniper

As you can see, this list is long, though not exhaustive, so I encourage frequently to dive deep into each herb. Also, keep in mind that some herbs are safe for pregnancy in the 3rd semester, but not in the 1st semester, and some herbs that are safe for use during pregnancy are not safe during breastfeeding and vice versa. I hope that this article can provide you with some of the tools needed to get started in learning more about herbal medicine!





Best Teas for Pregnancy Frequently Asked Questions

What tea is safe while pregnant?

During pregnancy, certain herbal teas are considered safe when consumed in moderation. Some of the best teas for pregnancy include ginger tea, which can help with nausea, and raspberry leaf tea, which can support uterus health. Lemon balm tea is another favorite, thanks to its calming properties. Check-in with your mid-wife and/or doctor before you incorporate any new teas into your diet to make sure they’re safe for you and your baby!

What is the best tea for giving birth?

Raspberry leaf tea is considered the best tea for late pregnancy and giving birth. It has been shown to tone the uterus and could even shorten labor! Some mamas find it beneficial to prepare their bodies for childbirth in the weeks leading up to delivery. Again, always ask your midwife and/or doctor what they recommend before consuming tea for pregnancy.

Is peppermint tea safe for pregnancy?

Peppermint tea is generally considered safe for pregnancy, but it could worsen heartburn and acid reflux if you drink too much of it. Some healthcare professionals recommend skipping it in the later stages of pregnancy as it could cause your uterus to stiffen. After you’ve given birth and are breastfeeding, it’s best to avoid it. It has been shown to interfere with milk production, and no nursing mom needs that!



Incorporate the Best Tea & Herbs for Pregnancy into Your Daily Routine

Whether you prefer sipping on a cup of warm herbal tea, adding fresh herbs to your meals, or using herbal tinctures, there are countless ways to welcome the healing power of herbs into your life. Don’t be afraid to experiment to find out what works best for you and your unique needs — as you know, no two mamas are alike. Remember these quick tips to make herbs a simple addition to your daily life during this very important time of growing a sweet baby!


  • Nettle leaf tea: Nettle leaf is rich in nutrients like iron, calcium, and vitamin K, all of which are essential for expectant mothers.
  • Add an extra dose of garlic to all of your savory dishes. It can support your immune system, plus it’s packed with antioxidants. Plus, who only adds one clove of garlic anyway?!
  • A red raspberry leaf tincture could actually tone your uterus, which will make giving birth easier. Make sure to pack this one in your birthing bag as it's best for the 3rd trimester!
  • Lemon balm tincture has been shown to reduce stress, anxiety, and insomnia, making it a good choice for moms who may be feeling a bit nervous about birth. During pregnancy, we would recommend a glycerite form that is alcohol-free.
  • Make tea time a daily ritual with our two favorites:  Farmer’s Wife Raspberry Tea and Ma’s Nursing Tea


The best tea for pregnancy is whichever one fits your particular situation the best and prepares you ready to embark on on a life changing journey: motherhood. Consult our guide above, do your research, talk to your mid-wife and/or doctor, carefully choose where you’re sourcing your herbs, and you’ll set yourself up for a safe and enjoyable pregnancy incorporating the herbs that God made! 


Make sure your grab your herbal journal pages here if you haven't already downloaded them before diving into this post.


 I'd love to know, have you tried red raspberry leaf tea before? Some people have told me that the taste is similar to black tea without the caffeine. What do you think? Leave me a comment below and checkout what others are saying!


More Herbs for Additional Hormone-Related Issues


Are you getting weekly tips on all things herbal?

Growing, creating, recipes, herbal medicine tips, and more every week right to your inbox (including sales on herbal goodness!) Make sure you grab it here!

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.

Latest Tips & Recipes 

DIY Mushroom Coffee Recipe & Mushroom Tea Benefits

May 28, 2024

Apple Cider Vinegar and Cranberry Juice & Other Shrub Recipes

May 21, 2024

Healthy Alternatives to Soda + DIY Soda Recipes

May 14, 2024