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Fertility Tea For Women: 10 Herbs To Help Your Body Get Ready For Pregnancy

It’s indeed a wonderful feeling - when you decide to have a baby.

Physically, your body gets ready for pregnancy every month. It goes through a series of steps that create optimal conditions for success. It’s a biological  symphony of sorts - hormone levels increase and decrease on cue from each other and trigger a synchronised sequence of steps - follicles are stimulated, ovulation happens, optimal conditions are created for fertilisation.

On successful fertilisation, the uterus gets ready for implantation and to support and nourish the baby through the stages of pregnancy. If fertilisation doesn’t happen, the uterus proceeds to reset, and start the cycle all over again.

But then, our diet and lifestyle choices, and social and environmental factors do have a significant impact on hormone levels. Slightly off balance, and your body has to work much harder to get all the steps right. Majorly off balance, and the probability of success goes down significantly.

Some gentle daily support can go a long way in making it easier for your body to conduct its magical symphony.

Here are 10 herbs that can give your body the gentle support it needs to stay in the optimal zone for a successful pregnancy.

Raspberry Leaf

Raspberry leaves help strengthen and tone the uterus, and offer healing benefits.

Raspberry leaf is a well-known herb that has traditionally been used for decades against various ailments according to handbooks and articles. 

Raspberry leaves are high in carotenoids, citric acid, tannins, vitamin A, B complex, C, and E. They also have an easily assimilated form of iron, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and silica.

There is evidence to suggest that fragrine, an alkaloid in Red raspberry leaves helps tone and tighten muscles in the pelvic area. Also, its astringent properties are considered to have a healing effect.

Herbalists suggest using raspberry leaves to help heal and prepare for pregnancy for at least 3 months prior to trying to conceive. Herbal teas are an excellent way to get their benefits.

Chasteberry (Vitex) Fruit

Chasteberries help improve the chances of pregnancy, especially in women with luteal insufficiency.

Chasteberry

Chasteberry (Vitex agnus-castus), or monk’s pepper, is the fruit of the chaste tree. It is native to western Asia and southwestern Europe, and is now common in much of the southeastern United States. Chasteberry has been used for more than 2500 years to treat a variety of menstrual irregularities and fertility disorders.. In ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome, it was used for a variety of gynecologic conditions.

Some of these traditional uses seem to be backed by modern research. Several clinical studies have shown that consumption of chasteberries increases the chances of pregnancy, especially in women with luteal insufficiency. 

Chasteberry’s therapeutic effects are attributed to its indirect effects on various hormones - inhibition of the release of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), stimulation of luteinizing hormone (LH) levels, reduced prolactin release, normalized luteal phases, improved luteal phase progesterone synthesis, and increased luteal phase estradiol.

Interestingly, this hormonal effect appears to be dose-dependent: low doses work better. Consuming it in tea form is therefore an excellent option.

Lady's Mantle

Lady's mantle promotes healthy ovulation by regulating progesterone levels.

Lady's Mantle

The Lady's mantle is a well acknowledged medicinal plant, which is traditionally used in folk medicine and in range of herbal remedies, as a supportive and healing herb for women's health. 

Lady's mantle is believed to help balance reproductive and thyroid hormones. It stimulates the production of progesterone which is essential to regular periods – low levels of progesterone can result in eggs not being released and irregular menstruation.

Lady’s Mantle is also used as a uterine tonic, toning the uterus in readiness for conception.

Shatavari

Shatavari enhances follicular growth and ovulation, tones the uterus, and regulates hormonal balance.

Shatavari

In Ayurveda, Shatavari is considered as the herb-par-excellence for all aspects of women's health, and is included in every women's health tonic.

Psychological, physical and physiological stress disturbs reproductive health by inducing generation of reactive oxygen species and thereby oxidative stress. Increased oxidative stress is known to affect physiology of ovary, oocyte quality and cause female reproductive health disorders. To overcome stress-mediated reproductive health disorders in women, Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus) is frequently recommended in Ayurvedic system of medicine. 

Researchers have proposed that Shatavari may improve female reproductive health including hormonal balance, follicular growth and development, oocyte quality and fertility possibly by reducing oxidative stress levels and increasing antioxidants level in the body. 

Ginger

Ginger supports healthy follicle maturation, and implantation.

Ginger has a long historical medicine use dating back 2500 years in China and India. Many of its benefits are attributed to its powerful antioxidant properties.

Antioxidants help suppress the buildup of free radicals. Low levels of free radicals are known to act as modulators in female reproductive pathways. 

Research indicates that ginger supports healthy follicle maturation and implantation, because its antioxidants have a beneficial impact on Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF):

  • VEGF controls follicle maturation - the crucial follicles transition from pre-ovulatory to peri-ovulatory stage that precedes ovulation.
  • VEGF is known to play an essential role in the regulation of blood vessel development in the endometrium, which is critical for successful implantation.

Interestingly, small amounts of ginger seem to work better than large amounts. All the more reason to consume ginger in herbal tea form!

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha offers stress support and improves sexual health.

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha, one of the most important and widely used herbs in Ayurveda, is well known for its beneficial impact on energy, vitality, strength, and sexual and reproductive health.

From a women's reproductive health and fertility perspective, studies have indicated that Ashwagandha helps:

  • decrease the effects of chemical toxins on gonads and increase gonadal weight
  • enhance follicle growth
  • improve luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and testosterone balances
  • improve sexual behavior indices such as female sexual function index and female sexual distress index

Also, Ashwagandha's ability to modulate cortisol levels is known to help improve stress levels and sleep quality - both of which are known to have a definite impact on reproductive health.

Adding a small amount of whole Ashwagandha root to your herbal tea is an excellent and safe way to derive its multiple health benefits.

Rose Hips

Rose hips provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory support.

Rose hips

Antioxidants play a vital role in reproductive health and fertility. The local cellular environment influences oocyte development, ovulation, successful fertilization, and maintenance of early pregnancy.

Vitamin C is very important for female reproductive health. It improves progesterone levels and chances of ovulation. There is also some research that links carotenoids levels with improvements in fecundability (time to pregnancy).

Rosehips are rich in compounds having antioxidant properties, like vitamin C, carotenoids, and phenolics. Good reasons to add them to your daily tea!

Lemon Balm

Lemon balm helps improve mood and sleep quality.

Lemon balm

Lemon balm has a long history of use as a herb that helps improve sleep quality, mood, and stress. Its wonderful flavour and aroma make it an excellent addition to your herbal tea.

These benefits are backed by early research:

  • Lemon balm increased calmness and alertness in adults during a stress test.
  • Adding lemon balm to a food or drink reduced anxiety and improved memory and alertness during mental testing.
  • Lemon balm helped improve sleep quality.

There is also evidence to suggest that lemon balm helps improve sexual health - including sexual desire, arousal, and satisfaction - by increasing dopamine levels.

As is true for so many herbs, small amounts of lemon balm seem to work better than larger amounts.

Peppermint

Peppermint offers optimal stress support.

Peppermint

Peppermint leaves are known for their potent stress-reducing benefits and calming benefits. 

Research indicates that the aromatic oils in peppermint leaves help reduce cortisol levels - and thereby help modulate stress levels. 

The easiest way to consume them is to add a few leaves to your daily herbal tea.

Rooibos Leaves

Rooibos provides antioxidant and anti-inflammatory support.

Rooibos

Naturally caffeine-free, Rooibos, with its distinctive earthy, smoky, nutty, and sweet flavor is a wonderful base for herbal teas. It is also associated with several health benefits due to its antioxidant properties.

Rooibos tea is also known to support healthy fat and sugar metabolism, and beneficial for heart health. All of these little benefits to your overall health do add up to contribute to your reproductive health as well.

A Note of Caution

Some ingredients such as lady's mantle and chasteberry are intended to be used prior to pregnancy. It is best to avoid these ingredients post-conception.Also, the interactions of herbs with prescription medication cannot be ruled out, in general. Some of the herbs, when consumed in large quantities, are known to interact with medicines that are metabolised in the liver, with blood thinners, and with thyroid medication. If you have a medical condition, or if you are on regular medication, you must consult your physician before consuming these or any other herbal teas or supplements.

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