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chasteberry plant

© 2018 Steven Foster

A chasteberry monograph for the home

Latin Name: Vitex agnus-castus


Common Names: chasteberry, chastetree, chaste tree berry, Vitex, monk’s pepper, lilac chastetree


This chasteberry monograph provides basic information about chasteberry—common names, usefulness and safety, and resources for more information.

Source: https://nccih.nih.gov/

Chasteberry Basics

  • Chasteberry is the fruit of the chaste tree, which is native to Central Asia and the Mediterranean region.
  • The plant was believed to promote chastity (hence its name). Monks in the Middle Ages reportedly used it to decrease sexual desire.
  • Chasteberry was also used for reproductive disorders.
  • Today, chasteberry is used as a dietary supplement for menstrual problems, menopause symptoms, infertility, and other conditions.
  • Chasteberry is available as a liquid extract, capsules, tablets, and an essential oil.

Chasteberry in Health Research

  • There’s not a lot of strong research on the effectiveness of chasteberry for any condition. We do have some clear safety information on the herb.

Chasteberry Research Summary

  • A few preliminary studies found that chasteberry may improve some symptoms of premenstrual syndrome but the evidence isn’t firm.
  • Researchers have studied chasteberry for breast pain and infertility, but there isn’t enough reliable scientific evidence to know if it helps.
  • There’s no evidence that chasteberry helps with menopausal symptoms.

Chasteberry Safety

  • When used in limited amounts, chasteberry appears to be generally well tolerated. Few side effects have been reported.
  • Women on birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy, or who have a hormone-sensitive condition (such as breast cancer) should not use chasteberry.
  • People taking dopamine-related medications, such as certain antipsychotic drugs and Parkinson’s disease medications should avoid using chasteberry.

Chasteberry References

 

PubMed Articles About


Source: National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)[Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US), National Center for Biotechnology Information; [1988] – [cited 2018 Apr 5]. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/