One of the first things I learnt about pregnancy is what I shouldn’t eat or drink. The intake of caffeine has been found to be detrimental to fetal development so naturally, I stopped drinking coffee, tea and coke. For the uninitiated, drinks containing guarana or mate should also be avoided because the caffeine content is even higher.
It was winter during my first trimester and I was desperate to wake up to a cup of hot something. I relied heavily on milo and horlicks as alternatives for hot drinks because the only decaf cappuccino I bought tasted really bad. Then I explored yogi pregnancy teas. They were not quite my cup of tea because of the strong spiced tastes. I also read about red raspberry tea leaves and tried. It was alright but didn’t become a favourite. Only after further research did I find out that the drinking of red raspberry tea is controversial and some advocate abstinence during the first trimester.
Last month, more than halfway through my pregnancy, I discovered that I could have drunk rooibos or honeybush tea months back. Comically, we always had rooibos vanilla tea in stock because it’s one of the Mister’s favourites. But it didn’t come to his mind as well that it’s naturally caffeine free. Anyhow, a box of rooibos vanilla and rooibos cream caramel made a preggie very happy for weeks after.
If you are in Germany, this is a must try. It’s the best caramel tea I ever had. Not only does the scent fill the nose, the flavour comes through on the tongue as well.
Then I started to miss Earl Grey. Searches for decaf earl grey were futile, even in the organic supermarkets, until I went shopping for tea one day with a friend. There is a tea shop in a tourist area in Bremen known as Schnoor. It’s a lovely place with the highest grade teas. There, I found, for the first time, rooibos earl grey. I was really excited. But 100 grams cost 10 euros. I couldn’t justify the price. We moved on and went into another popular tea shop, Bremen Tee Handelskontor.
To my delight, they have an enormous variety of rooibos tea, from rooibos chocolate to rooibos Apple-Amaretto. Obviously I bought my first love, Earl Grey. At 3,80 Euros for 100 grams, it’s a winner in quality and price.
So if you are pregnant or allergic to caffeine, look out for rooibos or honeybush tea. Even original non-flavoured rooibos will leave you wanting another cup because it’s lighter than black tea and has no bitter aftertaste (even without sugar). It’s be claimed that rooibos tea leaves contain a high level of antioxidants and drinking two cups of tea bring health benefits. According to wikipedia, “animal studies suggest it has potent antioxidant, immune-modulating and chemopreventive effects. In addition, rooibos tea has not been found to have any adverse effects.”
If you are craving coffee, try coffee from the brand Café Hag. I had a pot once during a ‘kaffee und kuchen’ session with a friend at a hotel cafe. It was my first coffee in months and it was pure enjoyment. It’s mild, not sour and does not leave a bitter aftertaste. If you prefer something stronger, try Dallmayr. Nescafe Instant Cappuccino is however unpalatable. Retrieve it foc from my kitchen cabinet anytime.