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The 14 Best Natural Teas for Period Cramps

The 14 Best Natural Teas for Period Cramps

best tea for period cramps

A while ago, I wrote a post filled with all the natural ways to reduce period pain. In that post, I mentioned that sipping on herbal tea can soothe cramps and bring you a ton of other health benefits too. So, this post is an expansion of that point and will bring you the very best teas for period cramps.

I always start my morning with a short meditation, followed by making a mug of hot tea and bringing it up to my home office while I write. There’s something so nourishing about taking ten minutes out of your day to brew and sip on a cup of tea. It absolutely counts as an act of self-care. And there are certain natural teas you can make (or buy) bursting with so much goodness for your body and mind!

It has been reported that around 80% of women experience period pain in their lifetime. Most women suffer discomfort when they bleed, particularly on day one of their cycles. And in 5-10% of cases, period pain is severe enough to disrupt women’s lives.

What causes this pain?

  • Contractions in the uterus or womb
  • Fibroids in the uterus
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Endometriosis
  • Hormone levels and imbalances
  • Heavy periods

Symptoms you might experience while on your period:

  • Cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Bloating
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea

tea for period cramps

Drugs vs. a natural approach

Most of us resort to popping paracetamol or ibuprofen to ease this pain each month (I used to do this too), but think about how many pills that adds up to each month, year, and over your lifetime. And do they even work? I’m still undecided about that.

One thing is for sure—you’re filling your body with unknown chemicals, and this is never a good thing. I’m all for modern medicine and the advances that mean we can live longer and cure cancers and diseases. But I personally don’t like to make it my first go-to solution.

Before synthetic drugs, there was plant medicine. The witches, medicine women, and midwives had vast knowledge of plants, herbs, and flowers. They would use these to concoct natural remedies for all sorts of things, including easing period pain, bringing on a period, and helping women to conceive.

Plants are natural, magical wonders that we don’t appreciate or utilize enough!

Why it’s important to stay hydrated on your period

It’s essential to stay hydrated all day, every day, and the days when you bleed are no different. We should all aim to drink between 8-10 glasses (2-3 liters) of water daily. This will vary depending on your climate and how physically active you are each day.

If you become dehydrated during your period, you’ll feel even more tired, achy, and cranky because you’ve not enough oxygen pumping to your blood cells and vital organs. Although you might feel bloated while bleeding, drinking water will help flush nasty toxins out of your body, prevent your blood from thickening (which can help reduce cramps and other aches), and even make your period end faster.

Drinking herbal tea that is either caffeine free or naturally low in caffeine (like green tea) adds to your daily water intake. So it makes sense to drink something hydrating you and helping with those period cramps.

Foods and drinks to avoid while bleeding:

  • Processed foods
  • Foods with a high saturated fat content
  • Refined sugar
  • Coffee
  • Tea that is high in caffeine (like black tea)

Let’s explore the best natural teas to drink to ease period cramps.

The best tea for period cramps

It’s best to drink these herbal teas a few days before you’re due to bleed and on your heaviest bleeding days for maximum effect.

If you’re not yet tracking your cycle, you can do it with Natural Cycles (which doubles up as a natural contraceptive method).

FYI: You will need something to steep your tea in for most of these recipes, like a French press, cafetiere, teapot, or mason jar.

If you’re foraging for plants and flowers, make sure you understand what’s edible and what’s not.

Always consult your doctor before you start consuming a new herb because everyone has unique bodies, health, and circumstances that all come into play.

And if you’re purchasing dried flowers, herbs, or tea bags, I always recommend opting for organic varieties because these come without nasty added chemicals.

1. Ginger tea

tea for menstrual cramps

First up on this list of the best tea for menstrual cramps is ginger tea. It’s high in gingerols and shogaols, which help reduce inflammation and pain. Ginger has also been studied to see its effect on women who are menstruating, and it was found to reduce the pain women felt during the first few days of bleeding.

How to make it

The great news is ginger tea is so simple to make at home. I love this recipe by Cookie and Kate. Grab a fresh stick of ginger, an optional extra (cinnamon stick, fresh turmeric, or sprigs of mint), some fresh lemon or orange slices, and a dash of honey or maple syrup to sweeten it. Delicious!

2. Hibiscus tea

These beautiful flowers have been used in various plant medicines since ancient times. Hibiscus tea is brilliant for soothing period cramps, PMS, and regulating your periods. It can also help to lower your blood sugar levels and aid a healthy metabolism—great for anyone who regularly gets a dose of menstrual munchies!

However, hibiscus tea is also known to affect your estrogen levels which can bring on your period, so it’s wise to avoid this if you’re pregnant or trying to conceive. On the other hand, it’s great to sip on if your period is late and you’re concerned you might be pregnant (and don’t want to be).

How to make it

One cup of dried hibiscus flowers will make around two liters of tea, so divide this recipe depending on how much you wish to make.

Brew your flowers in cold water. Let it sit and steep for one to two days. When you return, your water will have turned a beautiful shade of magenta! Strain your tea.

You can then heat this up or cool it in the fridge, depending on whether you’re in the mood for a hug in a mug or a refreshing glass of iced tea. Sweeten with honey or maple syrup.

3. Rosehip tea

Rose hips have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for a long time. They are well known for being beneficial to women’s reproductive health, helping to regulate periods, and reducing uterine cramps. They’re also a terrific source of vitamins C, E, K, and B,

How to make it

Fresh rosehips have the most goodness, but you can use dried ones too.

If using fresh rosehips, you’ll need a quarter of a cup to one cup of water. One heaped tablespoon (crushed) should be plenty if using a dried version.

Boil some water, and let your rosehip tea steep for about 15 minutes. Strain, sweeten, and serve.

4. Chamomile tea

You’ve probably heard chamomile tea is recommended when you want a peaceful, dreamy night of sleep. But chamomile is also anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic, which can work wonders for period cramps. One study found that drinking two cups of chamomile tea each day the week before you bleed and during the first five days of bleeding can reduce period pain.

How to make it

You can use freshly foraged or dried chamomile flowers to make this tea or opt for an organic chamomile tea bag. Because it’s quite a popular herbal tea, it’s easy to find this in the grocery store or online.

If you’re using flowers, you’ll need about a tablespoon of dried flowers and about six tablespoons of fresh flowers per cup of water. This lovely Alpha Foodie recipe has all the details.

Add some lemon, vanilla, or even some lavender to boost the flavor of this delicious tea.

5. Rose petal tea

rose petal herbal drink

Next up on our list of the best tea for period cramps is rose petal tea. Rose petals can help reduce menstrual cramps, moderate your hormones, and ease mood swings.

One study found that drinking two cups of rose tea daily for one week before your period over six cycles reduces pain and increases women’s overall well-being.

How to make it

This rose tea latte recipe is divine. I’d recommend swapping out the cream and using a plant-based milk of your choice for a latte that’s kinder to your stomach!

To make one latte, you’ll need a quarter cup of boiling water, a rooibos tea bag, a tablespoon of dried rosebuds, vanilla extract, milk, and a sweetener.

Steep your tea bag and rose buds in the water for around five minutes, then strain.

If you want frothy milk, you can froth it in a french press or cafetiere. Add to your rose water the vanilla and sweetener, scatter some pretty petals on the top, and enjoy!

6. Fennel tea

Because fennel is packed with antioxidants, including vitamin C and quercetin, it reduces inflammation and eases period cramps. One small study found that consuming fennel can help significantly reduce period pain in women.

How to make it

You’ll need one to two teaspoons of freshly crushed fennel seeds for every cup of boiling water. Steep your seeds with the water for 5-10 minutes, depending on how strong you like your tea, then strain and serve.

7. Cinnamon tea

Another of the best teas for period cramps is cinnamon tea, and it’s especially wonderful during the fall and winter seasons of the year.

Although cinnamon is now commonly used to flavor food, it has been used for centuries to heal the body. It’s an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fungal. It can help improve digestion, blood sugar levels and reduce menstrual cramps, PCOS symptoms, and heavy bleeding.

How to make it

All you need is one to two cinnamon sticks, and you can add these to any other kind of tea bag you like (white tea, apple and cinnamon tea, and ginger tea work well). Steep your cinnamon in the boiling water (covered) for about 5-10 minutes.

For a milky cinnamon tea like this, heat one cup of milk until it’s giving off steam (before it starts to boil), and steep your cinnamon and teabag in the milk. Sweeten to taste with honey or maple.

8. Raspberry leaf tea

raspberry leaf herbal drink

Raspberry leaf tea comes from the leaves of a raspberry plant. It is packed full of amazing tannins and compounds that help fight PMS symptoms, menstrual cramps, nausea, and diarrhea. It relaxes the muscles in your body, which can reduce uterine contractions and help you flow better.

Raspberry leaf tea is great for pregnant women wanting to reduce morning sickness. It is sometimes also drunk to prevent a miscarriage.

How to make it

If you’re not a big fan of plain herbal teas, you must try this red raspberry leaf latte recipe by Meg Unprocessed.

All you need is some raspberry leaf tea leaves or a tea bag, a cup of boiling water, some dates, and a tablespoon of your favorite nut butter. Although it doesn’t taste like raspberries, it tastes yummy, and you get all the added goodness from the raspberry leaf tea.

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9. Nettle leaf tea

You might know nettle from childhood as that plant that made your skin sting, but nettle is a deeply nutritious plant that is bursting with vitamins and minerals that are great for our bodies. It can strengthen the adrenal glands, act as a diuretic, support the liver and kidneys, cleanse our bodies of waste, and help us feel lighter and brighter.

Because nettle helps the body cleanse itself and process extra estrogen more efficiently, it makes a great tea for anyone who wants healthier periods. It can also reduce the feelings of bloating and boost your iron levels, which is vital for our energy levels since we lose a lot of iron every time we bleed.

How to make it

It’s pretty simple to forage for nettle leaves in wild hedge lands and forests (make sure you wear gloves!), but it’s just as easy to find nettle tea bags.

If you’re making it at home, check out this simple recipe on the Nourished Kitchen. You’ll need two ounces of nettle leaves for eight cups of water to make this infusion, and the tea will steep for between 4-12 hours.

10. Green tea

Green tea has been found to reduce both period cramps and bloating, boost dopamine levels and reduce anxiety—exactly what you need when you’re PMSing hard.

Green tea is naturally low in caffeine, giving you a little burst of energy during this tiring phase of your menstrual cycle. If you prefer, you can opt for a decaffeinated version.

Green tea is my go-to tea every morning, and my current favorite is Tick Tock Rooibos organic green tea.

How to make it

Grocery stores are full of green tea varieties in loose-leaf tea leaves and bags. Experiment with different blends and flavors until you find one you love. Always opt for unbleached, organic brands when buying tea bags.

11. Spearmint tea

Spearmint tea is one of the best natural teas for women with PCOS and period cramps. On top of this, people have also raved about its effect on reducing hormonal acne. It’s worth giving this natural method a try before slathering your face in prescribed chemicals or going on birth control.

How to make it

Spearmint tea can also be found in both loose-leaf and tea bag forms in grocery and health stores. You’ll often find it blended with other herbs such as peppermint, fennel, or licorice.

12. Peppermint tea

Peppermint tea is another minty variety that can be sipped on to reduce period cramps. It can decrease muscle spasms and ease painful cramps and IBS. It can also help with headaches, bloating, and diarrhea, all common side effects we experience when bleeding.

How to make it

I love this recipe by The Spruce Eats. Use peppermint or spearmint leaves to make this tea; add honey to sweeten and lemon to freshen. This can be enjoyed hot or cold.

13. Turmeric tea

best tea for period cramps

I couldn’t list the best teas for period cramps and not include turmeric. Although it has recently had a comeback thanks to all those insta-influencers sharing their delicious turmeric latte recipes, turmeric is a spice that has been used to boost health for centuries.

My South-Asian parents were ahead of their time regarding turmeric lattes. However, understandably, my brothers and I did not appreciate these golden lats at five years old.

Turmeric looks quite similar to ginger in its natural form (I definitely got confused when buying fruit and veg out of a local farmer’s truck while living in Bali!). It can help alleviate all kinds of pain, including arthritis and menstrual cramps.

How to make it

Get started by checking out Real + Vibrant’s turmeric latte recipe here. It’s super simple to make, and you’re getting three powerful plants in one here: turmeric, ginger, and cinnamon!

14. Dandelion tea

Finally, on our list of the best tea for period cramps is dandelion tea. This tea is also brilliant for flushing out toxins from your body, aiding weight loss, and restoring balance in your hormones. It will leave you feeling refreshed and purified all over.

How to make it

You’ve probably got these lovely dandelions in your back garden, but they may not be safe to eat (pesticides and animal excretion can make them poisonous). But don’t worry; you can purchase some roasted dandelion leaves or ready-made dandelion tea bags.

If you’re going to have a go at making your own, check out two recipes here for dandelion root tea and dandelion flower tea.

Other ways to soothe period cramps

Drinking these herbal teas is one of many ways to naturally soothe period cramps without relying on drugs. Here are some others:

  • Use a heat pad
  • Get a massage
  • Have an orgasm (check out this article on period sex)
  • Stay hydrated
  • Eat healthy, plant-based foods
  • Enjoy some dark chocolate

Looking for more natural ways to ease those menstrual cramps? Check out this post:

14 Natural Remedies To Stop Period Pain

Enjoy your tea ritual!

Brewing or steeping a hot mug of herbal tea is a wonderful way to pause and take some time out of your busy day to reflect and find stillness in the chaos. And the added bonus is that sipping on the right tea can help balance your sacred cycle and relieve you of discomfort. Treat yourself to a beautiful teapot, a new mug, and some organic herbs or herbal tea bags that get you excited for a tea ritual!

Combine the herbal tea with some other natural methods for easing period pain over your next few cycles and see what happens. Is the pain lessened? Are you reaching for paracetamol less often? Tell me how you get on in the comments below!

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