Life in Japan Motherhood in Japan Pregnancy & Birth In Japan

6 Best Japanese Drinks For Pregnant And Nursing Women

Staying hydrated is key when you’re pregnant or nursing (or when you’re pregnant and nursing!). While water is no doubt the most important drink that helps us reach our daily fluid intake, sometimes water just doesn’t cut it. And, sometimes you just want to drink something sweet! Here’s my personal selection of 6 best Japanese drinks for pregnant and nursing women.  Even though my breastfeeding days are behind me, I still stand by these drinks!

6 Best Japanese Drinks For Pregnant And Nursing Women

1. Yakult Morning Blend Aojiru (朝のフルーツ青汁)


Literally meaning “green juice,” aojiru has been around in Japan since the 1940s. It’s a powder blended with other green leafy vegetables. Older Japanese like my in-laws swear by this drink, which is the reason why I drink it. (They send us boxes of the stuff). You’ll find aojiru powder everywhere, in drugstores, supermarkets, convenience stores and even in ready-to-drink form in vending machines!

I’m updating the list with a newer, tastier version of aojiru powder! Normally, to drink aojiru I’d have to add honey or add it to yogurt,  acai bowls and soy milk. But this version from Yakult has a nice fruity flavor because it also contains bananas, mango, acerola berries, and apples. Available on Amazon Japan

2. Kikkoman Soy Milk (豆乳)

I’ve been drinking Kikkoman’s soy milk years before I was pregnant  because I just don’t like the taste of milk. You might immediately recognize Kikkoman as the soy sauce maker, so it’s only natural that they make soy milk, right?

There’s plenty of soy milk brands on the Japanese market, but Kikkoman’s soy milk stands out with its simple colored packaging that clearly states the flavor along with a whimsical drawing of the main ingredient. Kikkoman soy milk is sold at drugstores, convenience stores, and supermarkets.

Whenever I see a new flavor in the store I instantly pick it up and have yet to be disappointed. I even loved their ginger ale soy milk.  I recommend the annin dofu, banana, amazake, and matcha flavors. Check out the full lineup (in Japanese) here and Amazon Japan to buy your favorite flavor in bulk. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can order a  12 flavor sampler on Amazon Japan

3. Wakodo “Milkman” Series (優しい牛乳屋さん)


There are many non-caffeinated milk teas out there, but Wakodo delivers when it comes to taste. Gyunyu-ya san “Yasashii” (やさしい)series is the non-caffeinated version of Wakodo’s best selling powdered tea mixes that first came out in 2005.

When you’re craving milk tea (or coffee), do your favor and head straight for Wakodo. I’ve tried nearly every non-caffeinated milk tea in the maternity section, but Wakodo tastes the best. Available on Amazon Japan.

4. Coca-Cola Soukenbicha (爽健美茶)


It’s time for a random fact: Did you know that Coca-Cola is one of Japan’s largest tea makers?

One my favorite summer drinks is Sokenbicha, a caffeine and “sugar-free tea that offers refreshment, health and beauty,” according to Coca-Cola. In fact, the kanji on the bottle actually read, “refreshing healthy, beauty tea.”

Sokenbicha is a fragrant blend of 15 ingredients with a very slight bitter taste. It’s sold in vending machines, drugstores, convenience stores in a 600mL PET bottle, which makes big difference in the summer! On our train rides from from work/daycare, I pour half into my daughter’s 350mL water bottle and I drink the rest.

I consider Sokenbicha the sophisticated, “adult” version of the kids’ drink, mugicha, and my daughter will drink it with no complaint. Actually, Sokenbicha also has a mujicha (barley tea) blend as well! Both versions, as well as Sokenbisui (water) are available on Amazon Japan.

5. MUJI Non-Caffeinated Herbal Teas, Latte & Chai (ノンカフェインハーブティー、ラテ&チャイ)

MUJI has a fantastic lineup of herbal teas and other non-caffeinated drinks. The herbal teas range from your standard rooibos tea to exotic blends like elderberry and hibiscus. MUJI also sells powdered latte and chai, which are also caffiene-free. When browsing in-store, be sure to choose among the packages with a red circle with the text ノンカフェイン  (non kafein | caffeine-free).

The availability of drinks varies form season to season but you can always check the current lineup at MUJI’s official website.

6. Suntory Non-Aru Kibun (のんある気分)


You’ll find plenty of non-alcoholic beers in Japan, but I doubt it’s because beer manufactures felt pity for pregnant women. I suspect it’s simply due as a means to alleviate the pressure of drinking alcohol at work functions.

At any rate, there are two major brands of alcohol-free cocktails here, made by Suntory and Asashi. I find that Suntory’s Non-aru Kibun is more widely available than Asahi’s. Plus, in true Japanese fashion, Suntory frequently adds seasonal flavors to their lineup. To start, try this 8 flavor sampler available on Amazon Japan.

When you think about it, you’re just drinking carbonated juice, but somehow these taste like the real thing. Suntory states on the label and on their website that their product contains 0.00% alcohol-free and that it is safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women to drink.

For more drinks for pregnant and nursing women in Japan, check out my list of 10 Japanese Drinks Rich in Iron.

6 Best Japanese Drinks For Pregnant And Nursing Women

 

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