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TIPS tested teas4mum - 2011 Print E-mail

 

TIPS-tested teas4mum - 2011

 

Testing carried out in November 2010

 

We have tested 6 teas for you.

 

The following eight awards have been allocated
(click on one of the links below to read the full reviews):

 

Best of the best – Neuner's Organic Nursing Tea

Best organic tea – Neuner's organic Baby Stomach Ease

Best maternity tea – Cool Mama

Best breastfeeding tea – Neuner's Organic Nursing Tea

Innovative – Ready Mama

Highly commended – Weleda Nursing Tea and New Mama

Best range – Neuner's

 

 

TIPS to go - follow this link to download a summary of the awards

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You can also find out more about the testing process in the following sections:


 

 

 

 

Awards

Neuner's Organic Nursing Tea

RRP: £4.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per tea bag: 24.75p

Distributor for the UK www.neuners.co.uk

Supplied and manufactured by Neuner’s GmbH, Austria  

 

Award: Best Breastfeeding Tea and Best of the Best

Established in 1978, Neuner's is a family run company known for its top quality herbal teas and supplements. To this day, Neuner's herbal teas are based on family recipes that are kept a closely guarded secret. Parent Testers were full of praise for this blend. They were particularly impressed by the clear images, information on pack and online, and by the organic ingredients – this tea is caffeine-free and doesn’t contain GMOs (genetically modified organisms). The delicate taste and smell of the infusion was also a firm favourite. Parent Testers noticed a definite improvement to their milk supply. They also told us that their baby was less windy.  As a result of this positive feedback we are delighted to give Neuner’s Organic Nursing Tea not one but two awards. 

This is what some of the Testers said:

  • It has a natural sweetness to it that is very pleasant
  • I started to leak milk again, could express more and felt a more powerful let-down
  • The sachets kept the tea bags fresh and easy to take on outings
  • I like the concept that you don’t need to go down the medication route
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Neuner's organic Baby Stomach Ease

RRP: £4.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per tea bag: 24.75p

Distributor for the UK  www.neuners.co.uk

Supplied and manufactured by Neuner’s GmbH, Austria  

 

AwardBest organic (breastfeeding)


Established in 1978, Neuner's is a family run company known for its top quality herbal teas and supplements.  To this day, Neuner's herbal teas are based on family recipes that are kept a closely guarded secret. We tested this tea with two groups: breastfeeding mothers and pregnant mothers. Neuner’s Baby Stomach Ease Tea is suitable for babies* who suffer from colic, and can be given to babies by cup, bottle or in formula feeds. It is also suitable for mothers to use during pregnancy or in the postnatal period (see maternity review below). Breastfeeding mothers will pass on the benefits to their baby through their breast milk. When asked if this tea helped with their baby’s digestive symptoms 75 per cent of Parent Testers agreed it did. 

This is what some of the Testers said:
  • Yes it really helped to ease his colic
  • I would use it again if my baby had an upset tummy or wind
  • I liked the way the packaging allowed for easy dispensing of each teabag
  • My friends love it and want to know where to buy it from.
*Please note that this herbal infusion is not a substitute for breastmilk or infant formula, nor a remedy or drug. Always consult your doctor, midwife or health visitor for advice about feeding your baby.

 

Award: Best organic (maternity)


Established in 1978, Neuner's is a family run company known for its top quality herbal teas and supplements.  To this day, Neuner's herbal teas are based on family recipes that are kept a closely guarded secret. We tested this tea with two groups: breastfeeding mothers and pregnant mothers. Neuner’s Baby Stomach Ease Tea is suitable for babies who suffer from colic, and can be given to babies by cup, bottle or in formula feeds. It is also suitable for mothers to use during pregnancy or in the postnatal period (see breastfeeding review above). Pregnant mothers can drink this tea to help with minor digestive problems they experience during pregnancy. Once Parent Testers realised this tea had dual uses they were more than happy to recommend it to their friends.

This is what some of the Testers said:
  • It was very drinkable hot or cold
  • It felt very pleasant to drink with a nice calm feel to it
  • I will be keeping some for my new baby in case they suffer from colic
  • I liked the fact that it was also suitable for babies and free from additives
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Cool Mama

RRP: £2.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per bag: 14.75p

Supplied and manufactured by www.mamatea.com 

Award: Best maternity

Mama Tea is a fairly new brand of herbal teas. Necessity is the mother of invention and this is the case for Anna-Louise Simpson, founder of Mama Tea. Each tea in the Mama Tea range contains carefully sourced herbs (all caffeine free though not organic) from around the world.  These herbs have been cleaned using an explosive technique which leaves all ingredients clean and fresh ready for expert blending. The full range includes five blends, each with a specific use in mind (available in tea bags or loose leaf tea). Cool Mama is for the pregnant mother containing herbs to help with mild digestive problems. Parent Testers particularly liked the fact that each tea bag is wrapped individually - this means they can easily be carried in a handbag while out and about. This was a particular favourite with pregnant Testers who agreed that drinking Cool Mama tea helped with indigestion and heartburn. All Testers praised its mellow spearmint flavour, saying it was a refreshing alternative to peppermint teas which can be too strong.  For these reasons we are delighted to award Cool Mama Best Maternity Tea Award.

This is what some of the Testers said:
  • On the days I did not drink the tea I found I had to use my antacid medicine
  • It took away my heartburn which I really appreciated
  • Not only did the tea aid my digestion, it eased the nausea as well
  • It’s nice enough to consider drinking after pregnancy too!

 

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Ready Mama

RRP: £2.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per tea bag: 14.75p

Supplied and manufactured by www.mamatea.com

 

Award: Innovative (maternity and postnatal)

Mama Tea is a fairly new brand of herbal teas. Necessity is the mother of invention and this is the case for Anna-Louise Simpson, founder of Mama Tea. Each tea in the Mama Tea range contains carefully sourced herbs (all caffeine free though not organic) from around the world.  These herbs have been cleaned using an explosive technique which leaves all ingredients clean and fresh ready for expert blending. The full range includes five blends, each with a specific use in mind (available in tea bags or loose leaf tea). Ready Mama contains raspberry leaf and motherwort blended with hibiscus, rose petals, echinacea and rosehip to help prepare the uterus for labour and delivery. Ready Mama is recommended for use after the 38th week of pregnancy. It is also ideal during labour and in the immediate early postnatal period. All Parent Testers agreed they would buy this tea again. Some had experience of using it in their previous pregnancies with good results. Ready Mama is certainly a safe and gentle alternative to induction of labour which is why we are happy to award it our Innovative Award.  

This is what some of the Testers said:

  • It really does help during labour and I drink it solely for this reason
  • This time I plan to use it during labour too!
  • Gorgeous – one of the nicest teas I have ever had!
  • I found it very calming and relaxing before labour
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Weleda Nursing Tea

RRP: £5.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per tea bag: 29.75p

Supplied and manufactured by www.weleda.co.uk 

Award: Highly commended

Made in Germany, this nursing tea is already a common remedy for new mothers in Europe. This tea is part of an extensive range of products manufactured by Weleda - a company with outstanding ethical and environmentally-friendly credentials. Weleda provide comprehensive advice about pregnancy, baby skincare and breastfeeding on their website.

Parent Testers were pleasantly surprised at the increase in the amount of milk they were able to express when using Weleda Nursing Tea.  56 per cent of Testers reported improved supply or flow. Another beneficial side-effect was the reduction of wind and colic which helped parents to settle  their babies more easily. 

This is what some of the Testers said:
  • I experienced a more even supply of milk in both breasts
  • I would certainly say his evening colic/wind has dramatically improved
  • It settled my daughters tummy and she was more calm on the days I drank the tea
  • The smell of the aniseed was lovely!
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New Mama

RRP: £2.95 for 20 tea bags

Price per tea bag: 14.75p

Supplied and manufactured by www.mamatea.com

 

Award: Highly commended

Mama Tea is a fairly new brand of herbal teas. Necessity is the mother of invention and this is the case for Anna-Louise Simpson, founder of Mama Tea. Each tea in the Mama Tea range contains carefully sourced herbs (all caffeine free though not organic) from around the world. These herbs have been cleaned using an explosive technique which leaves all ingredients clean and fresh ready for expert blending. The full range includes five blends, each with a specific use in mind (available in tea bags or loose leaf tea). New Mama contains fennel and lemon balm with liquorice, fenugreek and nettle to help improve milk production and flow. Parent Testers particularly liked the fact that each tea bag is wrapped individually - this means they can easily be carried in a handbag while out and about. They were surprised at how sweet this tea tasted in comparison to other blends. As well as helping to boost milk supply, this tea also seemed to calm the digestion of both mother and baby.

This is what some of the Testers said:

  • I felt more relaxed after drinking it and as a result I produced more milk
  • It was sweeter than expected but delicious to drink
  • I think my son is feeding quicker and he has less wind
  • The price is very reasonable which is one of the reasons I will recommend it

 

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Neuner's

Distributor for the UK www.neuners.co.uk

Supplied and manufactured by Neuner’s GmbH, Austria 

Award: Best range

 

With five generations’ worth of experience blending organic herbs and tried and tested family recipes, Neuner’s had the edge over their competition. Their philosophy that prevention is better than cure fits well with the hands-on approach of this specialist family-run company. Parent Testers were reassured by the use of organic herbs which are also caffeine-free and do not contain GMOs (genetically modified organisms). For this trial we only tested the two mother and baby teas but there are another 11 varieties of teas in the range covering six wellness blends and five classic herbal teas. So whatever remedy you are looking for, it is likely that Neuner’s will have the perfect blend to suit your needs.

 

 

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How the TIPS Award Scheme works

Only products that comply with our strict criteria can be submitted for a TIPS trial – this is part of our robust selection process explained in the ‘Methodology and criteria’ section below. This means that any product accepted to go through to the testing programme is already a winner.

When selected for a trial, volunteer Parent Testers receive products to test and are asked to provide their comments using a detailed questionnaire. Testers’ feedback is collated, evaluated and reviewed by Sharon Trotter.

On completion of the judging process, awards are confirmed and the results are published on the TIPS website.

I would also like to say a special thank you to our team of dedicated parent testers whose comments and detailed feedback allow the TIPS testing programme to achieve a level of independence and impartiality that is second to none.

Please note that products tested by TIPS are not free or promotional products, but samples for the sole purpose of independent testing.  Only Testers who have agreed and signed a copy of the TIPS Award Scheme terms and conditions can take part in a TIPS trial.

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About this trial

 

At TIPS, our aim is to source the best products available. This is our first teas4mum trial.

TIPS tested a breastfeeding tea in 2008 – this was an in-depth pre-production trial and the results were not published. However, the feedback was so positive that I wanted to set up a standard TIPS trial of breastfeeding teas and of teas suitable for use during pregnancy.

Six teas (some with multiple uses) were selected for this trial and tested under three categories: four breastfeeding teas, three maternity teas and one postnatal tea. 60 samples, supplied by three manufacturers were sent to 30 mums-to-be and breastfeeding mums (feeding babies from birth to 33 months of age).

Testers completed and returned detailed questionnaires.

I felt it was important to ask Parent Testers what name they felt most comfortable with for teas aimed at increasing a mother’s milk supply. Some manufacturers use the word ‘breastfeeding’ (often used in Europe) or ‘nursing’ (this is more commonly used in the USA) while others use terms that we associate with feeding.

From the feedback we received, we know that most Parent Testers wanted to know exactly what each tea was for and who it was for (for example mums-to-be or breastfeeding/ nursing mothers). Of the 30 mothers who responded, 66 per cent thought the term ‘nursing’ worked best, 33 per cent preferred ‘breastfeeding’.

Regulations prevent UK tea manufacturers from using the term ‘breastfeeding’ or ‘nursing’ in marketing and on pack. This can make it difficult for UK brands to compete with teas manufactured elsewhere, but sold in the UK. I hope that highlighting  this issue will put pressure on those involved with legislation to review the present situation. Allowing UK manufacturers to use the same terminology as their non-UK competitors would let them provide better, clearer, information on pack and online. This would in turn make it easier for consumers to compare and choose products.

 

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Methodology and criteria

 

The subject of milk production is too complex to cover here. We do know that long before prescription drugs were available women used natural herbs (also known as herbal galactagogues) and changed the way they eat to help boost their own milk supply. Over 400 herbs are used by mums around the world to help with milk supply and breastfeeding problems (Wesson 2009 and 20100). In this trial we are testing only dried herbal teas – we are using tea bags but these varieties can also be bought as lose leaf tea. Liquid herbs are also available – they are dried herbs that have been macerated (by soaking or steeping) in a solution of alcohol and water (also known as tinctures).

As a passionate supporter of breastfeeding I believe, first and foremost, that ongoing support and positive encouragement are vital to breastfeeding success (Trotter 2008 and 2009). Nonetheless I agree that natural remedies can prove extremely useful and they don’t usually have the side-effects associated with prescribed drugs.

When setting up this trial, I tried to source what I believed to be the best breastfeeding and pregnancy teas, but ultimately these are my own personal favorites. Criteria for this trial was to include teas that are:

  • caffeine free
  • made using natural ingredients, preferably organic
  • blended to provide a tasty and refreshing alternative to tea and coffee
  • are safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding
  • help with some minor ailments of pregnancy  or boost your milk supply while breastfeeding

How awards are allocated:

  • Best of the best is for the highest scoring product overall.
  • Best organic is for products certified organic in origin and made to the highest possible standards.
  • Best breastfeeding tea is for  the Testers’ favourite breastfeeding teas on trial
  • Best maternity tea is for the Testers' favourite maternity tea on trial
  • Innovative is for the tea Testers thought was particularly innovative
  • Best range is for the Testers favourite range of teas
  • Highly commended is for teas with high scores but not best in their category.

 

 

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Guidelines for Testers (this was provided to all Testers who took part)

 

 

Dear Parent Tester

Thank you for agreeing to help us test teas to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.

Please feel free to tell me exactly what you think, good or bad. This information will be made available to the suppliers. My aim is to provide them with data that will enable them to improve their products for you, the customer.

How to test

I would like you to use each tea for at least two weeks. This should give you a chance to find out whether the tea works for you or not. You can then complete the questionnaire.

Please take time to read the following information before you start testing the tea.

 


Safety first

Herbal supplements and remedies should only be taken on the advice of a herbalist, lactation consultant or doctor. Please discuss before taking the teas as some herbal supplements and remedies can alter the effects of certain drugs, including prescription medications.

Do not use if you know you are allergic to any of the ingredients.


 

Things to remember when testing your Teas 4 mums

Maternity teas:

 

  • during the first three months of pregnancy (also called the first trimester) you may  want to drink teas that are designed to calm your digestion and help reduce the symptoms of morning sickness. Mild herbal and fruit teas are ideal throughout your pregnancy because they are naturally caffeine free
  • raspberry leaf tea helps to prepare the uterus for labour - it is recommended for use after the 38th week of pregnancy although it can be used throughout the third trimester of pregnancy. If there is a history of premature delivery or a highly sensitive uterus it is better to wait until the final two weeks before using this variety.
  • raspberry leaf tea is also ideal for use during labour and in the immediate early postnatal period because of its proven qualities to help with the involution of the uterus after delivery. This helps to tone the uterine muscles allowing them to return to their pre-pregnant state.
  • The Baby Stomach Ease tea is not only ideal for helping babies with colic but also suitable for mothers to use during pregnancy or in the postnatal period. Breastfeeding mothers will pass on the benefits to their baby through their breast milk.

 

Breastfeeding teas:

Breastfeeding relies on a delicate balance of supply and demand. This can be helped by:

 

  • unlimited access to the breast* (baby-led feeding)
  • close contact with your baby (sling wearing is excellent for this)
  • co-sleeping (see advice in Babycare - back to basics™ leaflet enclosed)
  • co-bathing, as described in my Nursing in Practice article on breastfeeding – to read this go to: http://www.sharontrotter.org.uk/NIP2008%20breastfeeding.htm
  • expressing (if necessary but preferably not in the first 6-8 weeks) – you can find out more about this in the TIPS breastfeeding factsheet
*The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the UK Department of Health (DoH) recommend that you should exclusively breastfeed for a minimum of six months, with continued feeding for two years and beyond. It is safer for a breastfeeding mother to drink herbal tea so the effects can be passed to her baby while feeding. This will avoid confusion and help the establishment of successful breastfeeding.

     

    If you have followed this advice but feel your milk supply could do with a natural boost, you may like to consider a natural herbal remedy;  a breastfeeding tea.

     

    Completing the questionnaire

    There are five sections in the questionnaire:

     

    • about you and your baby: in this section we ask a few questions about you and your baby  - this helps us understand why the teas may help you
    • the product: in this section, we ask about the packaging and  the information provided
    • use of product: this includes questions about ease of use, taste, smell, whether you would carry on using the product, whether this helped your digestion, how the product compares with other remedies
    • feedback: in this section, we ask for comments on your favourite features, suggestions for improvements, and comments on the price
    • awards: in this section, you can suggest an award for the product you have tested.

     


    Conclusion and references:

    As you can see, there are many aspects to consider when testing this seemingly simple product. Only if Testers tell us that they enjoyed using a tea and that it did help them, will a tea4mum win a TIPS award.

    Teas containing top quality ingredients and manufactured with close attention to detail  may be able to achieve this.

    I hope you will find these guidelines useful as you test the tea4mum.

    Thank you again for all your hard work. You can be sure that your independent testing and comments help us give parents the best and most unbiased advice.

    Kindest regards

    Sharon Trotter - Founder and Director of TIPS Ltd

    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

     

    References:

    Trotter S (2008). Breastfeeding basics: advice for new mums. Nursing in Practice (September/October 2008) Number 44 – (Children’s health): 23-5

    Trotter S (2009).New toolkit for Breastfeeding supporters. Midirs Essence: Issue 27 (May 09)

    Trotter S (2010). Babycare - back to Basics™. TIPS Ltd. Scotland (Version 7)

    Wesson N (2009).Breast milk production and the role of galactagogues. MIDIRS Midwifery Digest, vol 19, no 3 September 2009, pp400-407

    Wesson N (2010). Breast milk production and the role of galactagogues: Part 2. MIDIRS Midwifery Digest, vol 20, no2, June 2010, pp223-226

     

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    Please note that products tested by TIPS are not free or promotional products, but samples for the sole purpose of independent testing. All Testers must agree and sign a copy of the TIPS Award Scheme terms and conditions before taking part in a TIPS trial.

     

    Disclaimer. TIPS Ltd is not responsible or liable for any failings of products that have been submitted for the testing programme. The responsibility remains with the individual manufacturer. Research is constantly changing and whilst every effort is made by TIPS Ltd to ensure the information contained in the guidelines is accurate and up-to-date, parent testers must still be encouraged to seek the advice of their midwife, health visitor, lactation consultant or GP if they have any concerns.

    TIPS Ltd© 2010

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    Neuner's Organic Nursing Tea

    AW_best-of-the-best_tea4mumt4m-Neuners-logo
    AW_best-breastfeeding_tea4mum

    tea


    Neuner's Organic Baby Stomach Ease

     

    AW_best-organic_tea4mumt4m-Neuners-logo

    tea


    Cool Mama

    AW_best-maternity_tea4mum
    logot4m-cool-mama

    Ready Mama
    AW_innovative_tea4mum
    logot4m-ready-mama

    Weleda Nursing Tea
    AW_highly-commended_tea4mum weleda logo blue

    tea

    Coming soon to the UK website. For more information please call Weleda on 0115 944 8222

    New Mama
    award logo
    logo tea

    Neuner's
    AW_best-range_tea4mumt4m-Neuners-logo
    logo logo

    logo


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