Read this on Vitex (Chastenberry) Anyone using it?
Found this article from a news source I get monthly on natural progesterone creme. Anyone using Vitex or Chastenberry herb for balancing hormones. I'm willing to give it a try, but I'm wondering if I can do this myself or do I necessarily need a Naturopath etc to follow through with me on this. Anyone have any answers here? Thanks
Here's the article that I copied and now pasted here.
For young women like yourself, Vitex IS definitely a good starting point to correcting and maintaining hormone balance.
Vitex used in combination with other herbs, dietary changes, and nutritional supplements ought to be a young woman's first line of defence against PMS, PCOS, irregular periods, acne, infertility, etc. And only when this approach fails to render results should she seriously consider hormone replacement therapy.
Vitex Agnus Castus, also called Chaste Tree or simply Vitex, is a timeless herbal remedy for women of any age.
Vitex is the small pepper-like fruits of a Mediterranean shrub, and can be used as a powder, powdered extract, tea, or especially as a tincture, for many ailments resulting from hormonal imbalances.
Hippocrates -- the father of medicine -- first mentioned Vitex in 450bc. Since then, traditional herbalists have recommended the herb for ailments including fevers and headaches, to dispel wind and to promote urination. Most commonly though, Vitex was used in the treatment of 'female problems' and the herb's popularity as a remedy of this kind has continued to grow with time.
Vitex is one of the most important herbs for regulating female hormones. The benefits of Vitex stem from its actions upon the pituitary gland - specifically on the production of a hormone called luteinizing hormone (LH).
By increasing progesterogenic activity, Vitex can help to balance progesterone and estrogen production by the ovaries throughout the menstrual cycle. This herb helps to regulate irregular periods, tending to shorten a long cycle and lengthen a short one.
Working closely with a competent naturopath, herbs such as Vitex can often bring a woman's hormones back into balance, in some cases increasing her fertility, relieving insufficiency of the corpus luteum (luteal phase defect) without the need to supplement progesterone.
Vitex can bring down testosterone levels in women when the hormone is too high, and is thus helpful for polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). It often helps to relieve the symptoms of perimenopause and HRT withdrawal.
Acne associated with PMS may also be reduced using Vitex.
It may be effective in helping the body to regain a natural balance after the use of birth control pills.
Vitex takes time to work, and should be taken for at least a month. Most authorities and researchers recommend a 4-month course, up to a 6 or even 8-month course. As always, start taking an herb in a low dose, and slowly increase to the full dose, over a week. This prevents the body from being too disturbed by any changes that the herb might be stimulating, and checks for individual sensitivities.
Vitex is extremely safe with an exemplary record of use over some 2400 years. It has none of the side-effects sometimes associated with the use of synthetic hormones as it works together with your body's natural hormone production instead of overriding it.
This herb is not recommended if you are pregnant or nursing. And, it is not to be taken with other hormonal medications such as oral contraceptives, synthetic HRT, estrogen or progesterone.
In light & love,