Vitex, also known as Chaste Berry, is a herb that has been used for many centuries to help with all sorts of female issues. As one of the oldest phytomedicines, Vitex was used by ancient Greek physicians, the English, and the Catholic Church to suppress the libido.
Other common uses for this well-known herb long ago include promoting the external healing of wounds, remedying complaints related to the spleen, and during child childbirth. In America, early physicians used Vitex as an emmenagogic and to stimulate lactation. It has been called one of the most useful fertility herbs on the planet, and many women swear by it to help them get pregnant.
One of the things Vitex is best known for is its ability to help with hormonal imbalances. When the hormones are out of whack, such as during PMS, or for women who suffer from PCOS, Vitex can be extremely helpful.
This is because Vitex can promote ovulation and menstruation, preventing amenorrhea and other common conditions that compromise the ability to conceive. Many menstrual problems are caused by either luteal phase defects or corpus luteum inefficiencies, two issues related to insufficient progesterone during menstruation. By taking Vitex, women can find help fix these issues.
Vitex is not a hormone on its own. However, it is able help to balance and nourish other hormones and body processes. Vitex helps to increase the production of LH in the body, and also inhibits the release of FSH. This helps to increase the levels of progesterone in the body.
Vitex can help increase the luteal phase of the cycle, which is very helpful as well. By inhibiting the pituitary gland, Vitex can minimize the amount of prolactin that is secreted, promoting a healthy cycle. This is even more useful if you are under a lot of stress.
It usually takes between three and four cycles to really notice relief with Vitex. Do not expect to notice relief immediately, because that is not how this herb works.
Every woman has different needs when it comes to Vitex, so it is important that you find your own naturopath to help you determine the ideal dosage for your particular case. The average length of treatment with Vitex is three months.
It is usually taken in a capsule form. However, there are other forms of the herb available. If you do happen to get pregnant while taking Vitex, consult your naturopath about whether to continue treatment during your pregnancy. Some women do and some do not, it just depends on your specific case.