Last update Oct. 19, 2014


Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Shrub which is native from South Africa that is used as a tea since 1930. Constituents are: flavonoids, antioxidants like aspalathin, quercetin, rutin, nothofagin, luteolin, orientin among others, phenol acids, low tannin. None has shown to have a caffeine-like effect.

Absorption through the gut and skin is poor. Anti-oxidant property has not been found to be higher in the milk from mothers who have taken rooibos or whatever herb.

Effectiveness on traditional indications like antispasmodic or sedative effect has not been shown. According to the Commission E of the German Ministry of Health it is an useless medication.

Commonly used in South Africa. Despite of a lack of scientific evidence, it seems to be harmless with a not abusive consumption.

At latest update, relevant information on excretion into breast milk was not found.

Moderate and occasional use is recommended while breastfeeding.


We do not have alternatives for Rooibos since it is relatively safe.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Rooibos is also known as


Rooibos belongs to these groups or families:


Main tradenames from several countries containing Rooibos in its composition:


  1. Kavurt S, Bas AY, Aydemir O, Yucel H, Isikoglu S, Demirel N. The effect of galactagogue herbal tea on oxidant and anti-oxidant status of human milk. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2013 Abstract
  2. Sinisalo M, Enkovaara AL, Kivistö KT. Possible hepatotoxic effect of rooibos tea: a case report. Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2010 Abstract
  3. Joubert E, Gelderblom WC, De Beer D. Phenolic contribution of South African herbal teas to a healthy diet. Nat Prod Commun. 2009 Abstract
  4. Stalmach A, Mullen W, Pecorari M, Serafini M, Crozier A. Bioavailability of C-linked dihydrochalcone and flavanone glucosides in humans following ingestion of unfermented and fermented rooibos teas. J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Abstract
  5. Huang M, du Plessis J, du Preez J, Hamman J, Viljoen A. Transport of aspalathin, a Rooibos tea flavonoid, across the skin and intestinal epithelium. Phytother Res. 2008 Abstract
  6. McKay DL, Blumberg JB. A review of the bioactivity of South African herbal teas: rooibos (Aspalathus linearis) and honeybush (Cyclopia intermedia). Phytother Res. 2007 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  7. Shimamura N, Miyase T, Umehara K, Warashina T, Fujii S. Phytoestrogens from Aspalathus linearis. Biol Pharm Bull. 2006 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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e-lactancia is a resource recommended by Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine - 2012 of United States of America

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