Introduction & Question

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Joined: 01/19/06
Posts: 550
Introduction & Question

Hi everyone,

My name is Nathalie and I just found out that I am pregnant and due in early January with my third child. My last delivery ended in a C-section because my son was OP, so I am really hoping for a VBAC this time around. My first was a vaginal delivery with epidural and although the recovery was a breeze, my son's shoulders got stuck on the way out and I strongly suspect it was because they had me lying almost flat on my back while pushing. I have done so much research since my C-section and I feel a lot more informed this time around. I really want to go natural. No epidural, no drugs of any kind.

During my first pregnancy, I developed Pre-Eclampsia in the third trimester. I did not get it during my second pregnancy, and I really want to do everything possible to avoid it again during this one. My Naturopath suggested eating lots of protein, taking a B-Complex vitamin high in B6 and drinking Raspberry Leaf and Nettle teas. I picked up some Raspberry Leaf tea today, but I am not sure wether or not I should start taking it right away. I have read conflicting information on it. Some say it's not safe to drink until the last trimester and others say it is safe to drink 1 cup a day through the first two trimesters and then increase it during the last. Has anyone taken Raspberry Leaf tea throughout their entire pregnancy ? If not, when did you start ? I will be calling the Naturopath on Monday to ask her about it, but I was hoping someone on here might have some experience they could offer. Biggrin

shiregirl's picture
Joined: 09/23/10
Posts: 390

Welcome and congrats!!!!!!! I hope you get that vbac you'd love to have! Smile

I am not too sure about the tea myself, I have wondered that before. Interested to see what people have to say...

emommyof2's picture
Joined: 09/26/10
Posts: 310

Welcome and I hope you get the VBAC your trying for!

I was told to drink Red Raspberry Leaf tea before I ever got pregnant to help strengthen my uterus (I had a bad tear and hemorrhaged) I drank it the whole way through this pregnancy and the last as well. My midwife asked me to stop drinking it these last few weeks as I was having (unrelated) pre-term labor issues, but now its safe to start up again.

The reason I was told to stop was because it is a uterine tonic that strengthens your uterus, and since mine seemed keen to overwork itself right into early labor, they just wanted to remove any stimulants. Truth of the matter is it won't START labor that is not already about to start, its simply rich in stimulants that increase the blood flow to the uterus, up your iron levels and help your body make all those good things that help you get through labor with less stress.

The same actually can be said for 'most' of the herbal prescriptions midwives offer, such as EPO they are helpful in getting the body on track to do what it is designed and ready to do, but they don't actually -start- things. (though I still say EPO works better than people give credit for) Black/Blue Cohosh however and those types of herbs VERY MUCH start things up so should be avoided through early pregnancy.

Your best bet is to discuss this with your care provider, see what makes them feel best, and use your own judgement! If you think its too early, you have a history of pre-term or miscarriages, I would say avoid it because its likely just going to stress you out Blum 3 I can personally attest to the fact that even if you only take RRL Tea in the last trimester, it helps! Speaking of.. only 3 more days and I can drink as much as I want YAY! I miss my tea Sad

jonibug's picture
Joined: 11/27/06
Posts: 781

Welcome to the board and H&H9M to you!

MandyMommyto1's picture
Joined: 06/27/09
Posts: 534

Welcome! I drank RRT throughout my last pregnancy, I just kept it to 1-2 cups a day for the first half or so, then the second half I drank it whenever I wanted.

tanismom's picture
Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 717

Hey Nathalie! Great to see another July 09er on here!

ITA w/Eirinn. I drank RRL and nettles throughout my pregnancies without a problem. I never thought about how much. The thing is, that it's not a drug, there are no immediate irreversible effect w/these herbs . So if you are drinking a few cups a day and you notice some cramping or tightening of your uterus, you could cut down and see how that goes. Nettles are not a tonic, they are a nutritive herb - extremely high in iron and b vitamins and all sorts of yummy wonderful things that your body and your baby needs.
I just found a huge patch of fresh nettles out in the wilderness around the town where I live and tomorrow I'll be going to harvest them for salad, soup, etc... You can't OD on nettles!
RRL is a tonic, as Eirinn said, it will support your uterine muscle to be toned and strong and ready for birth. If you are drinking RRL from a packaged tea bag then I wouldn't worry at all about getting enough to cause any discomfort. If you are preparing a medicinal infusion from the loose leaves, then I would suggest starting with 1 cup a day and gradually increasing and seeing how your body takes it.

GL! I'm sure you're going to have your VBAC!!

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

welcome, Nathalie! I had a friend in high school whose name had the same spelling as yours.

Pre-e is most common in first pregnancies. Nothing has been proven to prevent it yet, but the things your naturopath mentioned probably won't hurt. You might want to be careful with protein--too much can be rough on your kidneys and having prior pre-e increases your risk of kidney damage. 60-80 grams a day should be enough (80-100, as recommended in the original Brewer diet, might be too much)

I drank a tea with red raspberry leaves and nettles during my second pregnancy. I brewed my own using dried leaves that I bought at the health food store--gound herbs in commercial tea bags are not as potent. I started drinking it at about 20 weeks, and I think I brewed it too strong because it seemed to cause more frequent BH contrax (but not real labor), so just to be safe, I brewed it weaker until I was further along, but once I did that I was fine.

renee24's picture
Joined: 08/06/06
Posts: 1096

congrats on your pregnancy. It's great to see another July momma over here. I have no advice for pre-e but it sounds like you're covered from the others so HH9M!

mommys's picture
Joined: 05/08/06
Posts: 6264

Welcome! I don't have any advice, but it is wonderful to read that you are researching and gearing up for a VBAC.

Joined: 01/19/06
Posts: 550

"MrsMangoBabe" wrote:

Pre-e is most common in first pregnancies. Nothing has been proven to prevent it yet, but the things your naturopath mentioned probably won't hurt. You might want to be careful with protein--too much can be rough on your kidneys and having prior pre-e increases your risk of kidney damage. 60-80 grams a day should be enough (80-100, as recommended in the original Brewer diet, might be too much)

Good info, thanks. I have heard of the Brewer Diet, but I've never really researched it so I wasn't aware that it required that you eat so much protein. I don't know if I could eat that much protein. It seems a little much to me. I definitely fall into the 60-80 grams category. The only thing my Naturopath said is to try to include some type of protein at every meal. So if I eat toast in the morning, I try to eat it with peanut butter or to have an egg with it. If I have crackers as a snack, I have a little bit of cheese to go with it etc...

I was able to verify with my Naturopath and she did say that it was perfectly safe for me to have 1 cup a day of RLT during the 1st & 2nd trimesters. I will try to pick up some Nettle tea this afternoon while we're out. I've only had one cup of RLT so far because I've had a lot of cramping on and off. I may just stick with the Nettle tea for now until the cramps slow down.

Thank you so much for the warm welcome. I really appreciate all the advice. I'm glad I found this board. There is so much information on here. Smile

renee24's picture
Joined: 08/06/06
Posts: 1096

glad your doc was help.

tink9702's picture
Joined: 09/28/08
Posts: 2977

Hi Nathalie! I sure hope you get the birth you want! I'm mostly a lurker on this board, but the ladies here are wonderful, knowlegable and so supportive!

I wanted to say that increasing your protein can really help with morning sickness/nausea as well so it's beneficial all around IMHO.