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Chasteberry
 (Vitex agnus-castus)

General Description:  Chasteberry Tree is from the fruit of the vitex Agnus-castus that grows along the Mediterranean Coastal regions and central Asia.

Part Used:  Leaves, flowers and root bark.

Uses:    

 acne

 uterine bleeding  

  breast pain 

 increases production of breast milk

 hot flashes

 excessive menstrual bleeding

Action: Acts on pituitary cells in the release of prolactin by binding to the dopamine receptors.  Inhibits release of prolactin at higher doses.  Stimulates release of prolactin at lower doses  and has progesterone and hydroxyprogesterone effects.  It also has anti-inflammatory, antiandrogenic, antieoplastic  and antimicrobial effects. 

Dosage:          

20 mg of crude fruit    

40 mg of fruit in cold water, then boiled.    

Cream is also available

Due to wide variety of dosages, read manufactures label

Precautions/Adverse Reactions.   May cause nausea, vomiting, itching, early on set of menstruation and increased menstrual flow.

Contraindications:  Should not be used if trying to get pregnant or pregnant, lactating or taking hormone replacement therapy

Nursing Considerations:

           In women trying to get pregnant could cause miscarriage or lead to multiple pregnancies.

        Will have no effect if currently taking dopamine receptor blockers, such as haloperidol.  

        May take up to 18 months to see results.    

        Use cautiously with hormone replacements and birth contraceptives. 

(References)

Aloe ] Bilberry ] Black Cohash ] Chamomile ] [ Chaste Berry Tree ] Dong Quai ] Echinacea ] Evening Primrose Oil ] Feverfew ] Garlic ] Ginger ] Ginkgo ] Ginseng ] Guarana ] Hawthorn ] Horse Chestnut ] Kava-Kava ] Ma Huang ] Milk Thistle ] Nettle ] St. John's Wort ] Saw Palmetto ] Tea Tree Oil ] Valerian ] Yohimbe ]