Agnus Castus and Female Health
Agnus Castus ( also known as Vitex, Vitex agnus-castus, chaste Tree, Chasteberry and monk's Pepper) is native to the Mediterranean region and to central Asia. It is a deciduous bush or small tree belonging to the vervain family (verbenaceae).The dried fruit have a pepper like flavour and aroma and have been used for 2,500 years in many aspects of maintaining a healthy female reproductive system. The use of Agnus Castus in female health was recorded by Hippocrates (460-377BC) who is known as the father of modern medicine and his name is still honoured today in the Hippocratic oath taken by doctors.
The Benefits of Agnus Castus
Premenstrual Syndrome- symptoms of premenstrual syndrome such as irritability, mood swings, anger, headache and breast fullness have been shown to significantly improve after taking Agnus Castus. In a German study of 1,542 women, 90% reported relief from symptoms after treatment averaging 25.3 days.
Menopause-women approaching the menopause can experience a reduction in the luteal phase (second half) of menstruation when progesterone is produced, upsetting the balance with oestrogen. Agnus Castus can help restore this balance, regulating the cycle.
Abnormal Bleeding and Irregular Menstrual Cycles- too frequent periods and spotting between periods can be caused by high oestrogen levels. Agnus Castuscan help correct this by boosting progesterone levels, balancing oestrogen.
Period Pains-Agnus Castus has been used to treat dysmenorrhoea (painful and difficult menstruation)
Premenstrual Water Retention- Agnus Castus has a dopamine like effect. Dopamine is a hormone required for correct fluid balance.
Infertility- Agnus Castus has been used with some success in treating infertitlity in cases of established luteal phase defect (short second half of the menstrual cycle) and high prolactin levels.
Acne- Agnus Castus can help control acne in teenagers, young women and men as it inhibits the action of male androgens (sex hormones) which can worsen acne.
Agnus Castus acts on the pituitary gland where one of its effects is to stimulate the production of the luteinising hormone.The luteinising hormone is involved in the development of a small gland in the ovary called the corpus luteum where progesterone is made.If the corpus luteum doesn not develop properly, the luteal phase (second half) of the cycleis reduced and too little progesterone is produced resulting in premenstrual syndrome, irregular menstrual cycles, abnormal bleeding, perios pains and acne.By normalising the function of the corpus luteum, these unpleasant effects are avoided. Agnus Castus has been used successfully for over 2,500 years, but persistence is sometimes required as the effect can take up to three months to develop.
Medical Advice should be sought before taking Agnus Castus with endocrine therapies such as hormone replacement therapy, oral contraceptives and diabetic medication.
Not recommended for use during pregnancy or lactation.
Leave a comment
Comments will be approved before showing up.