Botanical name: Vitex agnus-castus
Other names: Chasteberry, Chaste Tree Berry, Abraham’s Balm, Monk’s Pepper, Vitex
Chaste berry is mostly used as a hormonal normaliser due to its effect on the pituitary gland. It has the reputation of being both an aphrodisiac and an anaphrodisiac, which demonstrates its ability to have the apparently opposite effect, depending on what is required by the body to bring balance. In women, it is used for PMS, dysmenorrhea, irregular menstruation, menopause, to promote milk production and to rebalance hormones after oral contraceptive use. It has also been used for teenage acne (both sexes) as well as attention deficit and hyperactivity.
As the name implies, chaste berries are famous as an anaphrodisiac for both men and women. The name “Monk’s Pepper” is due to its usage by men of the cloth for that purpose, and according to Wikipedia: “Pliny, in his Historia Naturalis, reports the use of stems and leaves of this plant by women as bedding “to cool the heat of lust” during the time of the Thesmophoria, when Athenian women left their husbands’ beds to remain ritually chaste.”
However, they have also been used as an aphrodisiac, as one of the main uses of Chaste tree berries is to balance the hormonal system. It is used for PMS, menstrual disorders, menopause, fertility and breast milk production. It has also been used to rebalance the hormones after oral contraceptive use.
Preparation: 1 tsp/cup, steeped for 10 minutes, 3 times daily. 1.5g – 3g per day. Also great as a liquid tincture: 1-3 ml first thing in the morning.
Reference: Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitex_agnus-castus, Davis Hoffman (2003), Medical Herbalism, p. 595-9, Matthew Wood (2008), The Earthwise Herbal, p. 523-526.
Chaste Tree Common Uses
Chaste Tree Actions
Chaste Tree Recipes
Chaste Tree Precautions
Do not take in conjunction with progesterone drugs, the contraceptive pill or hormone replacement therapy. May aggravate menstrual cramping that is not accompanied with premenstrual moodiness and breast pain.
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