These herbal teas may be just what you need for a boost.
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Introduction – Tea Coziness
Today, I am tea enthusiast, though, it wasn’t always so. I used to happily drink my daily cup of home brewed, hand-ground coffee, finished with a dot of maple syrup, a spot of raw milk, and occasionally collagen powder or MTC oil. I thought I was really doing my body good; my spirit soared with that morning brew.
That is, until I experienced terrible pain flare-ups from what would soon be diagnosed as coming from endometriosis. I found myself once again grasping for a diet overhaul to bring healing back. I had transitioned from one form of diet that immensely helped my prior pain, to a more acidic diet to address some thyroid issues, and I know now that what I was eating was causing inflammation and internal stress. Yep, I gave up coffee cold turkey two years ago. I rediscovered, as I had learned years before, the delicate power of herbs; delicious herbal teas to the rescue!
What is herbal tea? Herbal teas come from plants. I grew up drinking jasmine tea at the occasional family outing to the local Chinese restaurant and enjoyed its warming presence back then. It was a cozy memory, my family and I all enjoying a mug of hot tea as we waited for our meal.
Drinking herbal preparations as tea
Aside from happy family memories, switching to tea now was more about eating to live, and not living to eat. Is herbal tea good for you? While I now love the taste of tea, I also love that tea boasts of many medicinal compounds. When you are battling a condition that can be as destructive as endometriosis, all of the things you put into your body must be useful for healing (ideally).
Most of you know how to drink tea, but for those who are not familiar I’ll share a few tips that I’ve learned. To gain the full benefits, heat the water to 160° – 180° F. If you boil the water and then let the water sit for 1 minute, that should get you to the right temperature. You may wish to use a teapot and teabag or a fine mesh strainer for loose leaves. Seep the tea for 30 seconds to 5 minutes or simply follow the instructions found on the tea box if there are any. I tend to seep the tea for a lot longer than this. I prefer a stronger tea most of the time. It’s up to your preference for the strength of flavor!
Herbal tea is a great belly filler also while you are hopefully meal spacing and not snacking all day.
Read on to discover my top 5 recommended herbal teas!
My top herbal tea recommendations for endometriosis
There are many benefits for your health. You may choose herbal tea blends of the below recommendations, loose leaf herbal tea or buy the packets. For the following recommendations, I would also recommend using organic herbal tea.
Red Raspberry Leaf
This is one of my go-to teas for women’s health in general and also for endometriosis. Red Raspberry leaf tea helps to tonify and strengthen the uterus and has a very mild taste. It’s recommended to drink this daily. If you are sourcing your leaves from actual raspberry plants, you will need several full grown plants to source from. I don’t have that many raspberry bushes so I buy from a reputable brand.
The European monograph (similar to the FDA found in America) on raspberry leaf has approved its use as a traditional herbal medicinal product for the symptomatic relief of minor spasms associated with menstrual periods, for the symptomatic treatment of mild inflammation in the mouth or throat, and of mild diarrhea. (source) It is also commonly used as a tonic for pregnancy, for help alleviating nausea, help with labor and contractions, and it also helps with post-labor bleeding. (source)
I have been using this organic loose leaf red raspberry tea for awhile now and love making my own special batch daily.
Green Tea (Decaffeinated)
I recently began adding decaf green tea to my diet after learning about the benefits long-touted in East Asian culinary traditions. I personally do not partake in caffeinated drinks for many reasons, though primarily for their negative effects on my central nervous system and on fertility in general, but that’s another post for another time. That said, I am aware of the positive benefits of caffeine in proportion.
For those familiar with traditional Chinese medicine, green tea is considered an herbal remedy that helps the stomach with digestion, reduces inflammation, alleviates dampness, and improves clarity in thinking. (3) (If you are looking for ideas about how to improve your digestion, check out my post on the topic). For those of us with endometriosis, our digestion could use some extra support and our bodies would benefit from a decrease in inflammation.
Green tea also is high in antioxidants which have the awesome capacity to protect your cells and eliminate free radicals (think, bad cells which weaken healthy cells throughout the body creating conditions for disease); research shows it may increase your lifespan by drinking it regularly. (source)
Overall, this decaf green herbal tea contains so many positive components of what I was looking for that I highly recommend it not just for battling endo but also for improving your health overall. I searched a long time for what was the most economical but also had rav reviews online. I am a happy customer.
Now onto my next recommendation! Nettle tea leaves contain healing properties and are widely known for being anti-inflammatory as well as high in components that help fight free radicals. (Again, free radicals are cells that roam throughout the body looking for cells to bond with, and once bonded, the healthy cells begin to malfunction). However, nettle leaf tea didn’t make my list for those reasons, but for another. Nettle tea is a great option for women with iron deficiency (also called anemia). You can use that link to read my post on how to naturally build up your iron levels if you have anemia or low ferritin blood levels. For those who have suffered at one point or another, or currently suffer from very heavy periods, you know that it’s easy to become anemic. Or, if you are on a plant based diet it can sometimes be difficult to consume proper levels of iron. Nettle leaf is a nice option for naturally increasing iron levels through diet. (source)
Nettle tea has also been found to include vitamins, chlorophyll (a green algae that helps build red blood cells), and helps with detoxification. It is also considered safe also if you are trying to conceive.
In my post an helping a diagnosed iron deficiency, you can find more information about which nettle leave tea brands I recommend. Check out the link (above).
Peppermint Leaf Tea
Peppermint leaf tea is chocked full of benefits for women with endo and it helps with digestion, bloating, and inflammation. It also has a reputation for being antispasmodic which is helpful for those with painful periods. The tea is also full of important vitamins such as calcium (known to help ease spasms) and potassium. And let’s face it, if you are here, you probably have or have had painful periods.
Furthermore, a research study found that antioxidant supplements can reduce pain in the endometrium. (source) Since this herb is high in antioxidants, it should help to ease your symptoms over time.
I always recommend an organic brand if you can’t grow your own. Here is a suggestion if you are looking for a good brand of organic peppermint tea leaves. Peppermint as a plant is also very easy to grow and it grows rather invasively! Perhaps you could grow a plant in a container garden, which is most economical!
Dandelion Root Tea
Dandelion root tea has many wonderful properties for relieving endometriosis symptoms. It is widely known for detoxifying the liver as well as providing many vitamins including A, C, iron, calcium and potassium which help the body maintain crucial tasks. The liver plays a vital role in many woman’s endometriosis symptoms because it serves as a filter to everything that comes into the body. When the body becomes burdened by processed foods, toxins found in water, air, and plastics, excess hormones, and anything else it wasn’t meant to process, it usually becomes sluggish in efforts to clean up the waste. While this will be expanded upon in later posts, it is suffice to say an herb’s ability to safely detoxify the liver will help the body.
If you really get into this tea for the liver detox and the way it makes you feel, I highly recommend buying the larger amount of dandelion root loose leaf tea and brewing the tea yourself. When you have a good handful of the dried root, you can have a more potent dose of healthy leaves! I’ve had good experiences the the brand in that link. If you are just starting out, perhaps you want to dabble a bit at first with a smaller quantity. Then, I really recommend this dandelion tea brand.
Cautions about some herbs for women with endometriosis
Many other websites and online materials usually include herbal preparations such as ginger tea or cinnamon tea as helpful for women with endometriosis. While yes, there are benefits of these herbs, let me point out a caution before you heavily rely on one of these herbs. According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), many women with endometriosis have a state called excess heat. The excess heat could be due to liver stagnation (Liver Qi Stagnation) or Kidney Yin deficiency with excess heat (Ki Yi -) primarily. Ginger and cinnamon are considered warming herbs, and will add more heat to an already warm system. Warming herbs may be helpful for some women with endo such as those with low progesterone or whose system needs a temperature boost during certain portions of the cycle, but for others, they may worsen an already warm system. Everybody does not fit into the same one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to this condition.
Please also note that many herbals may not be for everybody, due to their contraindications. A contraindication is something like having a blood thinning condition, or being on blood thinners, and then taking an herb such as turmeric, which helps to thin the blood. In this case, your blood may become too thin. Do your own research and see what you come up with!
A note about sweetener
Most of us like a little bit of sweetness with our food. After all, we are biologically wired to eat glucose in abundance in order to stay alive and function properly. There are many sweeteners that are considered optimal when it comes to various diets. Some of these natural sweeteners, such as honey, agave syrup, and maple syrup, should be utilized as they are a whole food alternative to synthetics that tax our bodies when trying to break them down.
However, the research shows that sugar tends to age us and tamper with our endocrine system (the hormones, ladies). Even sweeteners with arguable good properties, such as honey with its great digestion-boosting enzymes may be worth cutting out if you are concerned about your fertility. For those of you who are also dealing with strong sugar cravings and possible blood sugar dysregulation (fairly common with endo sufferers), then you might want to regulate your sugar intake.
Also, while we’re on the topic, you’ve probably heard a lot about candida. Many times if you have gut issues and have an overabundance of sugars in your diet you may be prone to candida which is an overgrowth of a certain bacteria in your gut that is addicted to sugars. Are you taking a probiotic? Probiotics help to rebalance the gut AND help reduce period pain; and, you can check out my post on this topic as well.
Next time you’re looking to grab a drink, consider a choice which will help your body grow healthy and strong! A whole world opens up when you begin to consider plant-based medicine as an opportunity towards healing.
Perhaps as you sip on your newfound favorite herbal tea you will get some deep rest and relaxation in as well in order to further heal.
There are many other quality herbal teas that I did not cover in this post, but stay tuned for a Part II of my herbal tea recommendations for endo!
Have you tried these before? Which herbal teas helped you the most? Please comment below!
(1) Goodson, Amy. “Red Raspberry Leaf Tea: Pregnancy, Benefits and Side Effects.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 30 July 2018, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/red-raspberry-leaf-tea.
(2) Ferlemi, Anastasia-Varvara, and Fotini N Lamari. “Berry Leaves: An Alternative Source of Bioactive Natural Products of Nutritional and Medicinal Value.” Antioxidants (Basel, Switzerland), MDPI, 1 June 2016, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4931538/#B13-antioxidants-05-00017.
(3) Wang, Yuan, et al. Ancient Wisdom, Modern Kitchen: More than 150 Recipes from the East for Health, Healing, and Long Life. Da Capo Lifelong, 2010.
(4) Gunnars, Kris. “10 Evidence-Based Benefits of Green Tea.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 6 Apr. 2020, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/top-10-evidence-based-health-benefits-of-green-tea#2.-May-improve-brain-function.
(5) “Nettle Root for Iron Deficiency | Livestrong.” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, https://www.livestrong.com/article/164690-nettle-root-for-iron-deficiency/.
(6) Santanam N;Kavtaradze N;Murphy A;Dominguez C;Parthasarathy S; “Antioxidant Supplementation Reduces Endometriosis-Related Pelvic Pain in Humans.” Translational Research : the Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 31 May 2012, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22728166/.