Herbal teas for fertility are NOT your mother’s chamomile
Written by Diana Palmentiero
It’s been over 6 years now but every once in awhile, someone will remember that I had problems conceiving. And if that someone knows someone who is having fertility issues, who do they contact for advice? Me! Usually they remember that I used “acupuncture and herbal teas” to help conceive my children. However, they usually forget that the herbal teas I used were not the kind that you can buy in a local supermarket. I often wished that they were those teas. The ones I used did not smell or taste very good, at all. Compared to using fertility drugs which made me feel like I had PMS 24/7, I would recommend these awful teas, along with acupuncture, to everyone with fertility problems.
The teas I used were prescribed by an acupuncturist with years of experience. My first acupuncturist, Michael Berkley, would prescribe herbal teas from a pharmacy in Chinatown, Kamwo. These teas were vacuum packed at the pharmacy and then sent to my office in mid-town Manhattan. I am not sure what my mailroom thought about the big boxes that they were dropping off in my office. To heat them up, I would drop the packs into a cup of hot water and let them heat up for a few minutes. After that, I would pour the tea into the mug. The smells that would come from my office were not the most pleasant. If I haven’t said, “Thanks” to my fellow officemates for putting up with the smell, I am going on record now.
The next time I tried to get pregnant, I had the same fertility issues. Once again, I turned to acupuncture and herbal teas to help my body become ready for pregnancy and stay pregnant. This time the acupuncturist that I saw, Yaron Seidman, was the acupuncturist and pharmacist, all in one. At the end of my acupuncture session, I would leave with a bag of teas which I would brew at home in a big, black pot. And now for my second apology, to my family for putting up with the smell of those teas.
Recently, Mike Berkley wrote an open letter which he posted to Facebook and his blog at The Berkley Center to Reproductive Endocrinologists ("REs"). In part the letter basically asked that REs have an open mind before suggesting to their clients not to take herbal teas while trying to conceive. My belief is that the Chinese people must be doing something right if there are over 1 billion people in China and they have been using them for thousands of years. These teas have almost no negative effect on the babies that are being born. Has anyone noticed the increase in the rates of autism over the last 20-30 years? To me, it seems to be in correlation to the increased use of fertility drugs in the last 20-30 years. Coincidence? It certainly makes me wonder about it. I’m so glad that both of my children were conceived with the help of acupuncture and herbal teas. So when people ask about the acupuncture and herbal teas, I tell them this. The teas may have smelled and tasted awful but the end result was totally worth it.
Diana Palmentiero is a Certified Wellness Coach and co-founder of Fertility Wellness Group. Fertility Wellness Group offers on-line fertility enhancing workshops that will help empower women to write about their own fertility struggles which will lead to positive endings. You can learn more about her at www.fertilitywellnessgroup.com/