During pregnancy, consumption of caffeinated drinks is strongly advised against as it can be harmful to the fetus. Herbal teas are great since they usually don’t contain caffeine unlike the regular tea and coffee do. This is why herbal teas are such a hit amongst pregnant women. It is a great alternative for those who are addicted to beverages like tea and coffee.
Out of all herbal teas, peppermint tea is a favourite with expecting moms. Peppermint is nothing but a hybrid of spearmint and watermint. Mint is easy to find and you can even grow it in your garden to obtain fresh leaves for the tea. But is the regular consumption of peppermint safe for you? Read on to find out.
Benefits of Peppermint Tea During Pregnancy
The reason for peppermint tea being a popular choice of beverage is not just because of its refreshing taste. It is because it has a whole lot of benefits. Menthol in mint is known to help solve any digestion problems. It also allows the body and mind to remain stress-free and relaxed, which is necessary while pregnant.
1. Relief for nausea and vomiting
A common problem faced by most pregnant women is morning sickness. The smell of peppermint tea is known to help with reducing the urge to vomit. This is why most pregnant women resort to drinking this first thing in the morning.
2. Soothing effect
The antispasmodic property of peppermint tea helps to soothe the respiratory airways as well as to allow the muscles to relax. This is why drinking the peppermint tea has a soothing effect on pregnant woman, allowing her to breathe easier. It also helps alleviate stress.
3. Lowers the blood pressure
During pregnancy, women may observe an increase in their body temperature as well as blood pressure. Drinking peppermint tea can help reduce the blood pressure, thus making you feel more relaxed.
4. Builds immunity
When you are pregnant, the last thing you would want is to fall sick. But with all the body changes that a pregnant woman undergoes, along with the pains and nausea, it is easy to fall sick. Consumption of mint tea helps prepare the immune system to fight against any bacterial infections.
5. Improves digestion
Peppermint tea can be used to treat gastrointestinal problems. If you face any indigestion problems or bloating while you are pregnant, peppermint tea can help relax your stomach muscles. It will also help relieve stomach pains. It promotes healthy bowel movement and can even stimulate bile flow.
Side Effects of Mint Tea During Pregnancy
Although there’s a lot of benefits of having mint tea while pregnant, there are a few risks of having peppermint tea when you are pregnant. This is why you should be cautious about having mint tea and how much of it you consume in a day.
1. Worsens heartburn
If you experience heartburn during pregnancy, then it is probably better to avoid drinking mint tea. Peppermint tea is known to relax the stomach muscle and thus ease any indigestion or nausea. But it may also relax the sphincter (muscle connecting stomach and oesophagus) which can cause the stomach acids to travel upwards causing heartburn and acid reflux.
2. Interact with medications
There are chances of certain common medicines like antacids to interact with the peppermint tea. So if you are taking any such medication, it is better to avoid having peppermint tea if you are taking any medication.
3. Risk of miscarriage
There is no scientific evidence to prove this but the peppermint tea may cause the uterus to relax thereby increasing the chance of a miscarriage. Women who have had a miscarriage before should avoid having peppermint tea. It is not recommended to drink peppermint tea while pregnant and even while breastfeeding.
Those who have never tried peppermint tea before should not attempt to start when they are pregnant. It is possible to have an allergic reaction to peppermint tea. Due to the change in the hormone levels, body temperature and blood pressure, there is an increased risk of developing an allergy.
Too much of anything is bad for you - even water. So drinking too much peppermint tea can also have its own effect on your health. It can cause a number of discomforts such as drowsiness, slow heart rate and muscle pains.
Ideally, you should consume only 1 or 2 cups of peppermint tea in a day. Having more than this can cause problems. Before you start having mint tea, it is better to have a word with your doctor, especially if you have had a miscarriage before. To prepare a cup of mint tea, you would require just 1 tbsp of mint leaves in one teacup (150 ml) of hot water. Avoid adding more than a spoonful of peppermint leaves to it.
Have you tried drinking mint tea during your pregnancy?