Many things can cause infertility and irregular periods but finding the root to these issues can involve uncomfortable tests and procedures. Sometimes, the issue can be resolved by merely cleaning and toning the organs necessary for a healthy reproductive system. For years, ayuervedic doctors and Chinese apothecaries have used herbs to support reproductive functions. These therapies are natural, non-invasive, and provide a safe and healthy solution for many reproductive conditions.
Chaste Tree or Vitex Berry (Vitex agnus-castus)
Chaste tree berry, also known as vitex berry, has been used for over a millennia to balance sexual hormones. It’s innate ability to stimulate the anterior pituitary functions have a stabilizing effect on hormone production (reference 1 and 2).
For females, chaste tree berries decrease the secretion of prolactin, which in turn, causes more progesterone to be produced during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. The average luteal phase lasts approximately 14 days. If a female’s luteal phase lasts less than 12 days, pregnancy is less likely. Because chaste tree berries also increase the luteinizing hormone, the female’s luteal phase is lengthened, improving the chance of pregnancy. When your hormones are balanced, many of the issues involving irregular periods or harsh PMS, can be resolved.
The recommended dose is 80 to 240 milligrams per day. Most women notice an improvement within two months, however, a six-month treatment is recommended for serious hormone imbalances. This herb is best used as a long-term treatment.
Black Cohosh (Actaea racemosa)
Native American Indians used black cohosh to help clean the uterus and prepare it for conception. They also used it to reduce pain and symptoms associated with hormonal changes. It is a useful remedy for those who have irregular or painful menstruation. This is also a popular herb for treating uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts and endometriosis, due to its anti-inflammatory properties (reference 5). This bitter herb is best taken in pill form, but is also available in tincture form.
The recommended dose is 80 to 160 milligrams, or 8 drops of tincture per day. It is best taken with meals. Most women experience improvements within four weeks. Do not use this herb for more than six months unless directed to do so by a medical professional.
Red Clover Blossoms (Trifolium pratense)
Red clover offers a very gentle yet effective tonic for the entire reproductive system. It is both an alterative, meaning it cleans the blood (reference 6) of impurities, and a tonic that nourishes the reproductive organs (reference 7). It is high in calcium and magnesium, which are helpful in easing menstrual cramps and other PMS symptoms (reference 3).
This herb takes some time to work and can be taken long term for lasting results. It is best to prepare this herb from whole dried flowers and leaves, which tend to be more potent than their fresh-picked counterparts. Many herb supply companies offer this herb in bulk.
To reap most of red clover’s benefits, prepare as a tea. In a half-gallon container with a lid, add three cups of dried red clover flowers and leaves, one cup of dried red raspberry leaves, and a half cup of dried peppermint leaves. Boil water, and then remove it from the heat. Allow the water to sit for five minutes before pouring it over the herbs. Cover the container and allow the herbs to steep for four hours. Strain the mixture, and then keep the tea in the refrigerator. Enjoy this tea hot or cold one to three times per day.
Red Raspberry Leaves (Rubus idaeus)
Red raspberry leaves were popular with the Native American Indians to ease painful heat cycles in their mares as well as for young women trying to conceive. The herbs primary property is an antispasmodic, effective in relieving deep cramps, irritability, and muscle aches. Its toning effect makes this herb a perfect choice for women who want to conceive. It tones the uterus and helps to create a nourishing environment to support a fetus (reference 4).
Most women experience improvements after only a few weeks of consuming raspberry leaf infusions one to three times per day. Dried leaves are best, and you want to make sure that the water is not too hot or you will burn the leaves.
Dong Quai (Angelica sinensis)
If your uterus is not cleaning itself out completely, it may have problems supporting a fetus. Dong Quai’s primary property is an emmenagogue, meaning it promotes menstruation. It is also a powerful tonic, which strengthens the uterus.
This herb is best used under a doctor’s supervision. Talk to an herbalist or an apothecary to determine the best dose for your particular situation. Because this herb promotes blood flow, those who have heavy periods or taking blood-thinning medications should avoid this herb.
Herbs can be found at most health food and supplement stores. They can also be purchased online but the potency may be questionable. To ensure you get the best quality herbs, visit an herbalist or an apothecary.
Herbs are powerful remedies for many conditions and should be taken with care. If you are pregnant or taking medications, check with your doctor before embarking on any herbal therapy.