Since ancient times, people have recognized the value of the medicinal properties of chamomile. Tea made by steeping dried chamomile flowers in boiling water is a popular beverage. Chamomile tea is an effective natural remedy for allergies, inflammation, muscle spasms, insomnia, ulcers, and chickenpox. Drinking chamomile tea is said to have a calming effect because of its anti-inflammatory and nerve-calming properties. Many nursing mothers consider drinking this but worry about whether or not it’s safe while breastfeeding. Keep reading to find out about the positives, negatives, and safety measures to take when drinking chamomile tea while breastfeeding.
How To Make Chamomile Tea?
In order to make chamomile tea, you need to first steep chamomile flowers in hot water for 5-10 minutes. If you prefer it, you can use a chamomile tea bag instead. During this time, make sure the mug is covered with a saucer. After it has cooled down a bit, take a sip. Be careful not to burn your tongue!
Is It Safe To Drink Chamomile Tea During Breastfeeding?
It is absolutely safe to drink Chamomile tea during pregnancy, provided you take it in moderation. The good news is that according to the FDA, there are no known side effects to taking chamomile tea while breastfeeding. It comes under the GRAS Category (Generally Considered As Safe). However, it is also important to note that there have not been sufficient studies conducted on the safety of chamomile tea while breastfeeding.
Thus, it is important to consult a medical professional or expert before including chamomile tea in your diet. They can provide you with the daily limit that is appropriate for you and your baby.
Benefits Of Drinking Chamomile Tea During Breastfeeding
Chamomile comes from a plant that belongs to the daisy family. They contain apigenin, a bioflavonoid, which is the reason for most of its health benefits. Here are a few of those benefits:
1. Increases breast milk
The best way to increase breast milk is, of course, pumping and nursing regularly. There is not enough research conducted on the topic to conclude beyond doubt that drinking chamomile tea while breastfeeding increases breast milk. However, there have been cases where drinking chamomile tea had galactagogue effects. To increase breast milk supply in new mothers, we recommend these foods.
2. Helps reduce stress and anxiety
Chamomile has antidepressant and anxiolytic properties. That is, they are proven to help control depression, anxiety, and stress. It has a chemical called apigenin that blocks the anxiety-inducing effects of another chemical messenger (GABA) in the brain1.The effects of anxiety are mitigated, and the central nervous system is calmed as a result. In fact, due to recent findings, chamomile is being implemented in the treatment of General Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
3. Improves quality of sleep
Sleep is something that is often severely compromised during pregnancy. When the baby is born, the new mother’s sleep schedule seldom gets better. Waking up multiple times in the middle of the night in order to nurse the baby is a common source of stress for moms, and once you get up, it can be difficult to go back to sleep.
Chamomile tea provides the best solution for that. It has sleep-inducing properties that are great for soothing your body back to sleep2. It also does not contain caffeine which makes it safer and more effective.
Related Reading: 8 Indian Home Remedies For Baby Sleep
4. Improves digestion
Chamomile tea has been used as a home remedy for centuries to treat any and all digestive issues. Whether it is diarrhea, dysentery, or nausea, chamomile tea can help alleviate digestive problems3.
The carminative properties of chamomile tea make it effective in treating gastrointestinal disorders like gas. It is therefore so effective at relieving flatulence and easing gas pains in the digestive tract, which are common among lactating women. It also helps calm the intestines by relaxing the intestinal muscles4. For a new mother, who simply cannot afford to deal with such inconvenient complications, chamomile tea can be a blessing.
5. Boosts immune system
Pregnancy, and the period after, is a time when both mother and infant are especially prone to contracting illnesses and infections. Chamomile tea can help ward off these illnesses and boost your immunity.
Chamomile contains several anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is a rich source of antioxidants, making it a very effective shield. They are regularly used to treat colds and sore throats5.
6. Controls diabetes
As mentioned above, chamomile tea contains anti-inflammatory properties. These are useful in both protecting the pancreas and controlling blood sugar levels. It lowers blood sugar, thereby helping to keep it at a healthy level.
The reduction of blood sugar levels, the enhancement of liver glycogen storage, and the inhibition of sorbitol in human erythrocytes are all mechanisms by which chamomile may help alleviate hyperglycemia and the complications of diabetes6.
Thus, drinking chamomile tea is very beneficial for breastfeeding mothers with diabetes.
Related Reading: Can I Eat Spicy Food When Breastfeeding
7. Helps the heart
Chamomile contains many flavonoids. These serve to lower blood pressure as well as cholesterol. The Apigenin content improves your HDL function and also controls your cholesterol. Thus, drinking chamomile tea during breastfeeding gives you a healthier, happier heart7.
8. Good for migraines
Chamomile tea, with its nerve tonic properties, soothes the nerves and provides a calming effect on the head. Breastfeeding mothers who are prone to migraines can find relief from their symptoms with this8.
Risks And Precautions When Drinking Chamomile Tea While Breastfeeding
Even though chamomile is generally considered one of the safest herbal teas, there are a few things you should know before drinking it.
· May cause allergic reactions:
Allergies are more common when consuming chamomile tea than when consuming other types of tea because it comes from a flower. When chamomile is consumed orally, it has the potential to trigger allergic reactions such as a swollen throat and difficulty breathing9. If you have an allergy to the family of daisies, you should avoid chamomile. Included in this category are ragweed, marigolds, and chrysanthemums.
· It can interact with medicines:
Herbal teas, including chamomile tea, can cause interactions with prescription drugs, which is a major safety concern10. It may,
- Interact with blood thinners and increase the risk of bleeding
- Combining chamomile tea with analgesics, narcotics, anticonvulsants, certain antidepressants, and alcohol may cause drowsiness
- For nursing women who are already taking diabetes and blood pressure medications, drinking chamomile tea along with these medications can cause excessive drops in blood sugar and blood pressure
- Because chamomile has properties that are similar to estrogen, it has the potential to reduce the efficacy of hormone therapy. If you are taking estrogen or birth control pills, it is recommended you do not use chamomile along with them
Caution is advised when incorporating chamomile tea into your diet. Read about the precautions to take when incorporating chamomile tea into your daily diet while breastfeeding.
- Don’t drink chamomile and other herbal teas available on the market that claim to boost milk production until you’ve talked to your doctor. It is likely that these products contain more than one herb and some ingredients that are unsafe for lactating women
- The first-time users should keep an eye out for side effects. Some of the most common mild allergic reactions are feeling sick, dizzy, or having stomach pain
- But if you have a history of allergies to the daisy family, you should probably avoid drinking chamomile tea. Stop drinking the tea immediately if you experience any adverse reactions, such as wheezing, vomiting, stomach cramps, diarrhea, or a rash
- It’s possible that chamomile would react negatively with anesthetics and other drugs used in the operating room. So it is advisable to avoid chamomile tea two weeks before a scheduled surgery. Therefore, two weeks prior to surgery, you should stop drinking chamomile tea
Other precautionary measures include:
- Follow the package’s instructions for preparing chamomile tea. A strong cup of tea may make you sick to your stomach
- Before incorporating chamomile tea into their daily diet, nursing mothers who are taking medication must obtain a physician’s approval. This reduces the likelihood of drug interactions
Related Reading: 9 Biggest Challenges Of Breastfeeding No One Prepares You For
Does Chamomile Tea Increase Breastmilk?
There is some evidence that drinking chamomile tea can stimulate lactation. A few hours after consuming chamomile, a lactating woman reported an increase in lactogenesis and breast tension11. Even though additional research needs to be done to confirm this theory, chamomile tea is a good option for nursing mothers who are looking to increase the amount of milk they produce.
Who Should Avoid Chamomile Tea?
The following groups should avoid chamomile unless advised otherwise by a doctor: Unless otherwise directed by a medical professional, chamomile should be avoided by those in the following categories:
- People who have severe allergies, especially to pollen, should avoid chamomile because it may contain traces of pollen from other plants and trigger an allergic reaction
- There is insufficient evidence to conclude that chamomile is safe for patients with kidney or liver disease. Because of the potential for chamomile tea to exacerbate liver, kidney, and bladder problems, those with these conditions should avoid it.
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to chamomile, even a mild one, it’s best to avoid it altogether during lactation because sensitivities tend to grow more severe over time
Because of its potential medicinal properties from its bioactive phytochemicals, chamomile has been used as herbal medicine since ancient times. You can take Chamomile tea in the morning. You can start your day with a cup of chamomile tea. It’s a great way to maintain a healthy digestive system and get a much-needed energy boost to get through the day.