Red raspberry leaf is an amazing herbal remedy that has a pleasant taste, similar to black tea, but without all the caffeine. As the name gives us such a blatant clue, the leaves are from the fruit known as raspberries. The leaves are most beneficial to women’s health issues and have been used for centuries as a tradition folk medicine.
The History of Red Raspberry Leaf
Nowadays, raspberry leaf is the number one household remedy to speed up childbirth. However, in the past raspberry leaf was used to treat various maladies. In 1735, the Irish Doctor of Divinity and naturalist, John K’Eogh came up with the suggestion of using the flowers and honey to treat eye inflammations, fevers and boils. For hundreds of years, Native Americans and Europeans treated pregnancy related issues with raspberry leaf teas and extracts.
Besides the leaves being an important factor to relieving health problems. The roots were also of importance. The Chippewa and Omaha tribes used the roots to cure bowel problems such as dysentery and diarrhea.
The roots of the Rubus species of Raspberry Leaf were the preferred choice of the Appalachia to make a tea that was drunk to medicate those who were hemorrhaging or suffer from hemophilia. The tea solution was sometimes taken every three hours, because it was said it could relieve summer sickness and diarrhea. Also, the leaves helped to soothe bee stings when they were rubbed in the affected area. The raspberries themselves are often touted as a superfood and for good reason. In addition we compiled the 15 Top Superfoods You Need to Know About.
In 1830, a nineteenth century polymath named Constantine Samuel Rafinesque, came to the conclusion and reported that almost thirty wild species of raspberry leaf were used to treat cholera, viral skin conditions, dysentery and diarrhea. He remarked that the Cherokee chewed the raspberry leaves to relieve them of a cough, the leaves were used as a sort of cold bandage to treat piles and raspberry leaf was combined with lobelia to treat gonorrhea.
Rafinesque observed the ripe fruits of the plant were made into preserves, jellies, jams and syrups that were used to cure other illnesses. Besides the Native American tribes using red raspberry leaf and its fruits to cure ailments, 19th century doctors also used the roots to help cure their patients of the same medical conditions.
In general, the key actions of the raspberry leaves are the following:
- used as an astringent
- used as a stimulant
- used as a tonic
- used as a digestive remedy
- help with the preparation for childbirth
The fruits of the raspberry leaf are used for entirely different purposes. The following are a few things they can help do:
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How Raspberry Leaf Works on Hormones
Midwives and herbalists have recommended red raspberry leaf for years to women, especially in their third trimester of pregnancy. Red raspberry leaf is the oldest and most traditional herbal medicine for child bearing women, because the leaves can shorten the duration of labor during birth.
A scenario many women like to get over and done with right away, hence the popularity! In order to prove whether red raspberry leaf did indeed help with child birth, researchers at Westmead Hospital in Australia conducted a study between women who went through labor and childbirth taking red raspberry leaf to those who didn’t.
During the study, raspberry leaf was very beneficial throughout the duration of labor, cutting back the amount of time in delivery without posing any side effects or negative reactions. Another positive note for all moms-to-be, is that the women who took red raspberry leaf in the study were less likely to need any form of artificial intervention such as caesarean section, forceps or vacuum birth.
Red raspberry leaf, also known as its scientific name Rubus Idaeus, has been a uterine tonic in pregnancy and used to prepare women for birth since the late 16th Century. It’s interesting to note that red raspberry leaf does not give the body plant estrogens nor does it change the estrogen levels in any way. However, it does work by interacting directly with the uterus.
The reason for this is that the leaves of the raspberry plant are full of antioxidants, vitamin C and A tannins, calcium as well as chemical called fragrine that helps to relax the pregnant uterus. A quick side note, the raspberry fruits have ellagic acid, which can tweak estrogen levels when consumed, but raspberry fruits are never found in supplements nor are they recommended to pregnant women.
How Red Raspberry Leaf Affects Menopause
Raspberry leaf takes the gold star for treating female afflictions, including the dreaded symptoms of menopause. The medical textbook definition of menopause happens 12 months after you had your last menstrual cycle. Although that is the medical perception, menopausal symptoms start a couple of years before that happens.
The fluctuations of hormones bring about hot flashes, moodiness, night sweats, irregular or heavy periods as well as insomnia. Red raspberry leaf helps to treat heavy menstrual flows and erratic periods that some women experience during menopause. Also, it helps to detoxify excess hormones which is ideal during moments of hormonal shifts in menopause.
While menopause is occurring, the adrenals are getting ready to call the shots as the ovaries slowly retire. The most common menopausal symptoms are due to exhausted adrenals and red raspberry leaf helps to relieve the adrenals during this transition.
Red Raspberry Leaf for Postpartum Bleeding
Postpartum bleeding, or bleeding from the vagina after giving birth, is a natural condition when the uterus recovers from pregnancy. The leaves of the red raspberry plant can help the uterus get back to its pre-pregnancy form. The tannins, which are naturally astringent, help to tone the uterus after giving birth. Red raspberry leaf is widely noted for rejuvenating and strengthening the uterus. When the uterus gets backs to its non-pregnancy size, the bleeding will stop.
Red Raspberry Leaf for Bleeding After a Miscarriage
Most miscarriages happen within the first trimester of pregnancy. The usual miscarriage symptom is vaginal bleeding, that is usually brown or red in color. Depending on the dosage of red raspberry leaf, the herbal remedy can either ease or intensify the bleeding. Considering red raspberry leaf tea is a uterine tonic to ease labor and decrease the chances of medical complications, like excessive bleeding, pre-term delivery or pre-eclampsia.
The tannins in the tea, strengthen the uterus, which is the cause of soothing the bleeding that comes with a miscarriage. What’s more, raspberry leaf has iron, which is a mineral that is vital for the prevention of anemia. Anemia commonly occurs when a person’s diet is iron deficient or when the body loses a lot of blood, like in the case of a woman during miscarriage.
Taking Red Raspberry Leaf While Pregnant and Breastfeeding
Research on red raspberry leaf has shown that it cuts down the risks of artificial rupture of membranes, unexpected caesarean sections and the use of forceps during delivery. There is some evidence to suggest that adding red raspberry leaf during week 32 of a woman’s pregnancy can increase the strength of the uterus wall and ease postpartum depression.
Some pregnancy teas often include red raspberry leaf, since it helps to tone the uterus muscles, which greatly reduces the amount of time a pregnant woman is in labor and lessen labor pains. The American Pregnancy Association claims that red raspberry leaf can increase breast milk supply, supports the uterus to get it back to pre-pregnancy size and scales down postpartum depression.
How Much Red Raspberry Leaf Tea Should Be Consumed To Induce Labor?
Giving birth takes a toll on your uterus and women are generally looking for a fast recovery times, since taking care of your baby is your number one priority. Most experts advise women to drink 2-3 cups of red raspberry leaf tea per day starting in the third trimester.
When you begin taking red raspberry leaf tea, you should start with 1 cup per day and check out how your body feels. If you don’t experience any adverse reactions, you can slowly increase the amount of red raspberry leaf tea to 2-3 cups per day.
As you gradually drink the tea from your third trimester to your delivery date, the active compounds will start to add up in your body. The uterine wall will have the support it needs, so when you go into labor, the process should be faster and easier. The contractions will be more productive, which should help provide a shorter delivery time.
Red Raspberry Leaf Isn’t Just for Women!
Even though red raspberry leaf is typically recommended to women, men can take advantage of its many health benefits. The raspberry leaves have a vast range of nutrients which can keep everybody healthy and used as a treatment for poor health. Red raspberry leaf tea has the following nutrients that the whole family can enjoy:
Seeing that red raspberry leaf has the ability to detoxify extra hormones, it’s a good tonic to consume and eliminate the extra hormones, such as artificial estrogens that we consume in commercial meat and milk, plastics, food additives and chemical fumes.
Men who carry these extra estrogens and too much unresolved stress can be at risk for an anomaly called “andropause”, also known as male menopause. Male menopause occurs when testosterone levels drastically drop.
Also, men who are going through a mid-life crisis are advised to drink red raspberry leaf tea, since it helps exhausted adrenals. Also, the vitamin C in red raspberry leaf can boost the immune system and increase the production of white blood cells in the body. Not to mention the potassium in the tea can reduce blood pressure and protect the cardiovascular system from heart attacks, strokes and atherosclerosis.
Red Raspberry Leaf Tea for Skincare
As in the past when the Chippewa and Omaha tribes used red raspberry leaf for bee stings, it’s great for overall skincare. It helps to heal skin irritation because red raspberry leaf has high concentrations of vitamin E and C, along with many antioxidants. Red raspberry leaf can alleviate inflammation from psoriasis, acne and eczema. It can be used topically or internally to achieve this effect.
Red Raspberry Leaf Tea for Weight Loss
Red raspberry leaf tea is perfect for enhancing the body’s metabolism to lead to the breakdown of fat cells. The tea can help you feel satiated for longer, while red raspberry leaf provides you with the essential nutrients that boost your energy levels.
Does Red Raspberry Leaf Have Any Side Effects?
Red raspberry leaf should be taken in moderation. If you have experienced any unusual pregnancies or deliveries, don’t take red raspberry leaf because it could worsen or complicate issues. Whenever a baby is overdue, the contractions during a vaginal birth are very intense. Taking red raspberry leaf tea during these contractions might put more stress on the baby.
It’s not recommended to take red raspberry leaf if you have any spotting or bleeding during the second or third trimester. Red raspberry leaf will stimulate the uterus, which could may the bleeding worse. If you are planning on having a Cesarean, you may want to lay off the red raspberry leaf tea. It is perfect to take after the procedure to support the uterine wall after delivery. If you previously had a Cesarean and want a vaginal birth in your next pregnancy, you should ask for advice from your doctor.
Red raspberry leaf has laxative and diuretic effects on some people. Also, it has relaxing and sedative properties. If you are taking any sleeping or anti-anxiety medications, you should speak to your physician before drinking this tea, because it could give you complications.
Raspberry the fruit has been known for many years as being a nutritious and delicious fruit that makes wonderful jams and adorns creamy cakes. What is appealing the health and medical community are the leaves and roots from raspberry plants. The health benefits can provide immense support for women’s health, while providing holistic care and well-being for the entire family.
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