Vitex is one of the best herbs for balancing hormones and relieving symptoms of PMS or pre- or peri-menopause. For younger women, Vitex helps to balance hormones and alleviate symptoms of PMS including cramping, mood fluctuations, irritability, pre-menstrual headaches, breast tenderness, and even other issues caused by hormone imbalance including ovarian cysts, endometriosis and fibroids. One may need to use Vitex on a longer-term basis to help alleviate these larger issues. The longer one has suffered from these issues, the longer one may need to use the herb. This is also an extremely helpful herb for women who have recently discontinued the birth control pill, had an IUD removed or who have recently given birth. Vitex is the herb of choice for women trying to conceive as conception is much easier to achieve once the hormones are in balance, and to maintain the pregnancy once conception has occurred.
For older women, Vitex is most helpful to menopausal women who are still cycling, but is of little use if the bleeding cycle has ceased. (Black Cohosh may be more appropriate for these women. Although studies point to this, our herbalist Pam as well as other clients have reported that Vitex has worked better for them than the Black Cohosh in relieving hot flashes and night sweats, as well as other menopausal complaints, such as mood fluctuations, irritability, foggy brain, and memory issues. Everybody's body is different - its a matter of finding which herb works better for you.)
Vitex works on the pituitary gland, which is responsible for signaling the body to make certain amounts of each hormone, therefore, it helps to bring balance at the core of the issue, regardless of which way a woman is out of balance.
Vitex is not recommended for use during pregnancy, simply so that the pregnancy hormones can do what they need to do naturally. For women who tend to chronically miscarry, Vitex is actually safe and beneficial to help support hormonal balance through the first trimester, thus possibly preventing further miscarriages.
Although Vitex is considered a prolactin-inhibitor, studies have shown that it actually helps support and even increase milk production in breastfeeding mothers. This makes it the perfect herb for breastfeeding women who are experiencing PMS or hormone imbalance. Keep in mind that if the menses has not returned after birth, Vitex may cause it to start.
Note: Vitex works extremely well, but it can be a little slow-acting. It may take several weeks of use (4-12) before the best results are achieved. The longer a woman has had hormone imbalance, the longer she may need to use Vitex. For those trying to conceive, it is recommended to use the herb until pregnancy is achieved. (Please see Pam's blog post about Fertilty & Hormones for more on how hormonal imbalance can affect and even cause fertility issues.)
Dosage Suggestions: Use 2 droppersful (squeezes) twice a day, each and every day of the cycle, including during menstruation. Best results are gotten with consistent use. For menopausal women, they may find that using 3-4 droppersful (squeezes) twice a day works better for them. Pam reports that using 4 Vitex caps (1 cap is the equivalent of 1 dropperful of tincture) twice a day keeps her from experiencing any negative menopausal issues. Click HERE for more information on tinctures, how to take them, what a dropperful is and why it doesn't fill up the entire glass tube.
Helpful Hint: This 4oz. bottle of tincture will last for one month only. Results typically aren't seen until after 6 weeks of use, so one bottle may not be enough (although its the largest bottle we carry). A 200 count bottle of capsules will last 7 weeks, and the large 400ct. will last about 3 months.
TESTIMONIAL: I purchased your Vitex and within 6 weeks finally conceived and held the pregnancy. Now, I am 39 weeks pregnant, due to deliver our baby girl in one week!! This is after three years of trying to conceive and having 10 miscarriages, only until I used your Vitex herb with no problems or side effects, we got pregnant spontaneously and have had a perfectly healthy pregnancy. All of the many doctors and specialists I had seen over the course of the three years of miscarrying and infertility told me that my husband and I would never be able to have our own biological baby, and in fact, the only way we could is to use an egg donor and Invitro Fertilization! So we researched the use of natural herbs and then we were fortunate to be referred to Pam Caldwell at Herb Lore for her expert advice and guidance and to purchase their wonderful organic herbal products. Another thing I would like to share is the fact that I am 41 years old. So I highly encourage and hope that all women who are having difficulty with fertility or having miscarriages to try the simple, safe and far less expensive method that I did to reach their goal of starting their precious families like we have done. J.S.
Do not use Vitex in conjunction with the birth control pill. It may render it less effective and may result in pregnancy.
Ingredients: Organic Vitex Berries extracted in organic grape alcohol. This product comes in the alcohol version only, as the Vitex Berry will not give its medicinal properties up to anything less potent than alcohol. The tincture can be put into hot/warm water to dissipate the alcohol content. (Do not burn yourself with the hot water.) All Herb Lore tinctures are gluten-free.
Vitex is also available in all-vegetarian capsules. (Vitex Capsules)