How the humble cup of tea could be helping to raise a whole new generation of Brits
It is estimated that in Britain alone we consume a staggering 165 million cups of tea daily or the equivalent of 60.2 billion per year! Yet despite being a nation riddled with naughty health habits, it’s good to know that in fact the glorious British institution “the tea break” may actually help to increase your fertility according to Harley Street Fertility Clinic nutritionist Neema Savvides.
So, whether you like the traditional ‘builders brew’, or are a convert to herbal infusions- here is our nutritional guide to the health properties of some of the nation’s favourites!
Traditional English Breakfast Tea
This traditional British staple contains fertility boosting properties for both men and women as it’s rich in antioxidants claims nutritionist Neema Savvides. However, Neema warns that drinking too much ‘caffeinated tea’ might not have such a positive effect on your health so make sure to keep a check on your caffeine intake if you are pregnant.
Ginger and Lemon
“Energizing ginger and lemon teas are a great anti-inflammatory, which is particularly useful for women suffering from endometriosis” says Neema. These teas are also cleansing, pain relieving and can improve circulation to the reproductive organs.
The superstar South African export is famous for its numerous antioxidants and is an excellent source of vitamin C – essential for boosting sperm levels and quality. Additionally, rooibos does not contain caffeine – which in high dosages can affect a person’s fertility.
The wonderfully aromatic Jasmine tea has been used in China for its medicinal qualities for centuries and in some ancient Chinese manuscripts, jasmine was used as an aphrodisiac and fertility booster. There may be some truth to the legends as studies have shown that jasmine tea has strong aromatherapy qualities that are good for the body during pregnancy.
This super tea is regularly praised for its numerous health benefits. Neema comments; “Research shows that hypoxanthine and polyphenols, the two main ingredients in green tea, may lead to a higher percentage of viable embryos. Additional research shows that these compounds can help to increase egg maturation and possibly cause the eggs to be more fertile. Antioxidants and polyphenols can also support fertility health by repairing the damage that food, water, environment, stress, disease, and aging causes. It is therefore no surprise that green tea is touted as being a potent aid in increasing immunity towards diseases and other medical conditions. Men can also enjoy drinking green tea to improve their fertility as well, as advocates believe it can help with sperm motility and low sperm count.”
Nettle tea benefits women throughout their pregnancy claims Neema, but also helps to promote fertility. Full of goodness, nettle leaves contain vitamins A, C, D and K. By sipping this tea, women also boost their levels of calcium, potassium, iron, and sulphur. It is also good for foetal health. So, if you have fresh nettles in your garden, why not use them to make the tea throughout the spring and summer?
“Rejuvenating and refreshing mint tea is a wonderful relaxant. Although the health benefits of mint tea are much stronger if you are able to use fresh mint leaves” says Neema. Never a symptom to be underrated, stress can reduce fertility and even stop ovulation altogether for short periods of time, so any stress-reliever is good for those who are trying to conceive. Like red raspberry leaf tea, mint tea can also reduce pregnancy nausea. Another useful property of mint tea is that it contains vitamins A, C, and B12 as well as the essential pregnancy B vitamin folate, which is the natural form of folic acid.
Apple and Cinnamon Tea
Studies have shown that cinnamon has a positive impact on women suffering from hormonal imbalances due to PCOS. There is also evidence that cinnamon supports healthy circulation to the reproductive organs.
Raspberry Leaf Tea
Raspberry leaf tea, particularly the wild variety is very high in calcium. Like nettle and red clover, red raspberry leaves serve as a soothing uterine tonic and hence a very effective fertility herb.
If you are currently undergoing fertility treatment, you may wish to check with your healthcare professional regarding caffeine intake.