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What is Red Raspberry?


Family: Rosaceae
Raspberry is a red spherical berry that grows continuously on the branches. It is harvested when it comes off the torus/receptacle easily and has turned a deep color (red, black, purple, or golden yellow, depending on the species). This is when the fruits are most ripe and sweetest. Excess fruit can be made into raspberry jam or frozen.

Raspberry is a delicious fruit loaded with powerful phytonutrients and antioxidants that can strengthen the immune system and help the body ward off diseases. Antioxidants in Raspberries: Vitamin C, dietary fiber, B vitamins, folic acid, magnesium, copper, iron and ellagic acid, quercitin, anthocyanins pigments, catechins, and salicylic acid. Yellow raspberries and others with pale-colored fruits are lower in anthocyanins.

Red raspberry is valuable as a strengthener and toner of the womb during pregnancy, and helpful in restraining hemorrhage during labor and assisting contractions. Its astringent action is also helpful in reducing fluids for a variety of other conditions including diarrhea, leucorrhea and mouth problems such as; bleeding gums and inflammations.

Season: Raspberries are available from May through November, but they can now be obtained year-round.
Varieties: There are three main varieties; black, golden and red, the latter being the most widely available.

Medicinal Properties: Antispasmodic, astringent, alternative, stimulant, tonic.

Health Benefits:
Red raspberry leaf tea has been used for hundreds of years by women throughout their pregnancy to ease the pains of labor, to prevent miscarriage, and to increase the milk supply.

For more than 2,000 years, red raspberry was considered a minor healer, beneath blackberry. In the 1940s it emerged from blackberrys shadow and replaced it in herbal healing. It became the herb for pregnant women.

Physicians prescribe a number of red raspberry preparations for morning sickness, uterine irritability, and threatened miscarriage. Red raspberry is also included in many herbal pregnancy blends in the United States.

Red raspberry leaves contain tannins, which are astringent and help explain its traditional use as a diarrhea treatment.

Raspberry tea is one of the best herbal teas for pregnancy: to relieve nausea, prevent hemorrhage, reduce pain, and ease childbirth.

The leaves of raspberry is used fresh or dried as herbal teas to regulate menstrual cycles and to decrease heavy menstrual flow.

The fresh juice, mixed with little honey, makes an excellent refrigerant beverage, to be taken to reduce fever.

Externally, because of its astringent qualities, raspberry tea is used as a gargle, mouthwash. It can also be used for bleeding gums and other oral inflammations.

Raspberries contain an antioxidant ellagic acid which protects your cells from becoming damaged and slows the growth of abnormal cells.

Raspberries may help normalize glucose levels and therefore may be helpful to people with diabetes.

Raspberry relieves urinary irritation, and soothes the kidneys and the entire urinary tract.

Raspberries contain powerful antioxidants that can prevent overgrowth of certain bacteria and fungi in the body.

Raspberry can help prevent age-related cognitive decline.

Raspberry can prevent degeneration of eyesight.

Raspberry promotes healthy nails, bones, teeth, and skin. The tea is also used for measles.

Research:
One animal study showed red raspberry helps reduce blood sugar (glucose), suggesting possible value in treating diabetes. Another study showed red raspberry root tannins of value in treating a rare form of cancer. Tannins have both pre- and anti- cancer action. All indications of the health benefits of herbs.

Eating red raspberries may possibly prevent cancer by inhibiting the abnormal division of cells. Research has found that black raspberries appear to be as helpful as red raspberries in preventing or slowing the growth of cancer. In a study it was shown that one cup of raspberries per week will stop prostate cancer growth for a period of up to one week.

Standard medical advice warns pregnant woman against taking any drugs during pregnancy; however, red raspberry used medicinally is an exception to this rule. There is no reports in the medical literature of any problems with it, but as with all herbs, it should be used in recommended medicinal amounts in consultation with your physician.

Contemporary herbalist recommend red raspberry for diarrhea, and to treat nausea and vomiting; especially in morning sickness of pregnancy. Science has shown it to be helpful in pregnancy. An animal study, in 1941, showed it contains a uterine relaxant principle. Over the next 30 years, several other studies confirmed this finding.

Suggestions:
Other herbs containing anti-abortive actions include black cohosh, blue cohosh, chamomile, cramp bark, false unicorn, and lobelia.

Precaution: Raspberry tea may sometimes be too tonifying in the early stages of pregnancy; it should be discontinued if contractions increase.

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