Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wellness Wednesdays: How to Make a Red Raspberry Leaf Infusion

Red Raspberry Leaf Tea is a wonderful tonic for women during pregnancy and afterwards. I drink it religiously during the first day or two of my period. It's a life-saver with cramps.

A few years back, when I was subbing at my local Baltimore City school, one of the teacher assistants was having awful cramps. I lived half a mile away, so during my lunch break I went home and brewed up Red Raspberry Tea. She drank it and later asked me what was in it, her pain stopped so quickly.

Infusions are different than brewing up a cup of tea. The magic number is 7. If you are using tea bags, the ratio should be 7 teabags to 1 cup of water.

If I don't grow the herb, I usually buy it from Mountain Rose Herbs. They come in plastic bags, so I generally store them in mason jars or other glass jars.

How to Make an Infusion with Leaves....

1. Take two handfuls of cut-up leaves or three handfuls of whole leaves.
2. Put in glass quart jar.
3. Fill to top with boiling water.
4. Put lid on.
5. Steep for four hours.

I reuse the leaves 2-3 times by just filling up the jar again with boiling water.

According to Susun Weed (herbalist extraordinaire and writer of the book Herbal for the Childbearing Year )....

Rubus is the best known, most widely used, and safest of all uterine/pregnancy tonic herbs. It contains fragine, an alkaloid which gives tone to the muscles of the pelvic region, including the uterus itself. Most of the benefits ascribed to regular use of Raspberry leaf tea throughout the pregnancy can be traced to the strengthening power of fragine or to the nourishing power of the vitamins and minerals found in this plant.

She lists the following; vitamin C, vitamin E, calcium, iron, vitamin A and B complex, phosphorous and potassium. That sounds like an awful lot of goodness, doesn't it?

**** A Reminder, please check with your Doc and get the okay, okay? ******

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