Raspberry Leaves

Rubus idaeus, Rosaceae. The parts used are the leaves and the fruit.

Raspberry leaves are the best known of all herbs used during pregnancy. It can be taken throughout the pregnancy and during the labour.

Functions of raspberry

Raspberry leaves have primarily been used to:

  • encourage a safe, easy and speedy childbirth,
  • encourage and stimulate milk production, and
  • speed recovery from the birth.

Raspberry leaves are both relaxing and toning or astringent, with a particular affinity for the uterus. The astringent properties help to strengthen and tone up the uterus and pelvic muscles. The more soothing properties help to relax the uterus. The tonic and relaxant qualities reduce the pain of uterine contractions during childbirth and also make the contractions more effective and productive.

Raspberry leaves also tone the mucous membranes throughout the body and are useful for allaying diarrhea and stopping hemorrhage. They have digestive properties which are effective in quelling the nausea associated with pregnancy.

It is also valuable in easing mouth problems, such as mouth ulcers, bleeding gums and inflammation. As a gargle it will help sore throats.

Dosages

Raspberry leaves are best taken as a warm infusion. Pour a cup of boiling water onto two teaspoonsful of the dried herb and let it infuse for 10 to 15 minutes. This may be drunk freely. As a tincture take 2-4 ml of the tincture three times per day.

If the herb is being used during pregnancy take a cupful of the infusion from the third month and from the sixth month take a cupful three times per day. When the contractions begin take a cupful per hour for as long as you can.

Continue the mixture after the birth. Once to three times per day to tone and strengthen the pelvic tissues.

References

Hoffmann, D. 2000, The New Holistic Herbal. Element Pub.

McIntyre, A. 1995, The Complete Women's Herbal. Henry Holt Reference Books.

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