Two friends reached out today with nearly identical requests: they were seeking herbal tea suggestions for menstruation.
Coincidentally, I was brewing up my favorite moon tea blend for myself! How serendipitous!
This tea supports women before, during, and after menstruation and is easy to adapt for cramps, heavy periods, or PMS symptoms, or even for use during pregnancy.
The heart of this blend is wild red raspberry leaf.
Red raspberry leaf is a renowned women’s tonic that I learned about when I was pregnant with my first child and was told by my midwife to drink a quart of raspberry leaf infusion each day to prepare for childbirth.
This highly nourishing herb supports and tones women’s reproductive systems, and is recommended for women during a variety of stages of fertility, most notably as my midwife did, during the third trimester of pregnancy.
Because raspberry leaf it rich in iron, it also helps to restore strength in the body by replacing iron lost during bleeding, both during menstruation and postpartum. It is also an important herb for treating diarrhea and can be a useful herb to help reduce excessive menstrual bleeding.
Indeed, there are countless uses for the humble, often overlooked plant.
Raspberry leaf is rich in iron, niacin, and manganese. It’s also easy to identify and forage, for those who are interested, or can be purchased at your local natural foods coop or online (Mountain Rose Herbs is one shop I trust for ethically grown, quality herbs.)
Fennel & Ginger Root
Both fennel and ginger can help quiet cramping – both menstrual and digestive – and make raspberry leaf tea even more delicious! If you aren’t crazy about the flavors you may substitute lemon balm or peppermint leaf instead, or choose from the list of optional ingredients below.
- 1/4 cup dried wild raspberry leaf
- 1″ piece of fresh ginger root, thinly sliced or grated
- 1 1/2 tsp fennel seed
The ingredients listed below are also wonderful herbs to make a habit of, during any stage in your cycle. Nettle leaf is a miraculous, nutrient-dense herb (more information on my personal blog about nettle, here). Licorice root supports adrenal glands, reproductive system, and endocrine system. Burdock and dandelion are excellent for digestive health and liver function, and a sluggish or taxed liver can lead to more difficult menstrual cycles. Add none, any, or all!
- 2 tbsp dried nettle leaf
- 1 1/2 tsp licorice root
- 1 1/2 tsp burdock root
- 1 tsp dandelion root
- Place all ingredients in a quart-sized mason jar.
- Slowly pour freshly boiled water over herbs to gently warm your jar, then fill to the capacity.
- Cover with a plate and steep for 10 to 20 minutes.
- When ready to serve, pour infusion through a fine mesh strainer into a mug and sweeten with raw honey if desired. Any remaining tea can steep longer, intensifying the flavor and infusing it with even more goodness. Dilute with additional hot water if flavor becomes to strong for your liking.
- Drink a quart a day as desired.
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