Finger hemp (Latin: Vitex agnus-castus L. or Agnus castus for short) is also called a neat tree. In the Middle Ages, it was considered to inhibit pleasure. Today, it is mainly used for PMS, but also for irregular cycles and unfulfilled desire to have children. The effect of the medicinal plant is, among other things, a consequence of the inhibition of the hormone prolactin. Here you can learn more about the Vitex plant, its effects and uses.
Appearance and appearance of Vitex Viteks agnus-castus
Vitex agnus-castus L belongs to the genus Vitex and thus to the hemp family. Its five to seven times, finger-like leaves are similar to those of the hemp plant. Vitex agnus-castus grows as a shrub up to five meters tall throughout the Mediterranean region up to the Crimea. The medicinal plant prefers moist soils and warm to temperate climates. They are often found on embankments or near water bodies. Large dense inflorescences consist of numerous small blue-violet, white or pink flowers. The stone berries, which look like a grain of black pepper, develop from the flowers.
In our country, Vitex agnus-castus is sometimes used as an ornamental plant in gardens. This plant shows its attractive inflorescences in late summer. The plant is especially popular in the wild and bee gardens. It blooms from July to August, and with its many flowers rich in nectar, it is great for honey bees, wild bees and bumblebees.
The Vitex preparation is certified and is made from the organically grown plant Vitex agnus castus.
It is used to stabilize hormonal disorders in women, imbalance of progesterone and estrogen, during excessive menstrual bleeding, changes during the menstrual cycle, irregular menstruation and preventively.
Ingredients and effects of Vitex
Vitex agnus-castus contains essential oils, diterpenes, flavonoids and iridoid glycosides (for example aucubin or agnuside). Dried fruit extracts of the medicinal plant are used for medicines. They reduce the release of the hormone prolactin, a dopaminergic mechanism of action.
Prolactin is responsible for breast growth during pregnancy. During breastfeeding, prolactin ensures the production of breast milk. Researchers have shown that the symptoms of PMS and an irregular cycle in women can be associated with increased prolactin levels.
Areas of application Agnus castus
Vitexas extracts are often used for PMS, and traditionally for menstrual cycle disorders (excessive or irregular menstrual bleeding). In addition, Vitex is sometimes recommended at the beginning of menopause, when the menstrual period becomes increasingly irregular.
Premenstrual syndrome: PMS
In premenstrual syndrome (PMS), symptoms appear four to 14 days before the start of menstruation. Typical symptoms of PMS are headache, abdominal pain, skin changes, a feeling of tightness in the breasts, a feeling of “bloating”, sleep problems or fatigue. Mental symptoms are also common. Many women feel irritable, tense, depressed or have mood swings. Symptoms usually subside when the menstrual period begins.
Supplements like Vitex 400 mg can help with these symptoms. Vitex contains dry extract. Studies and many experiences of patients show that this extract has a positive effect on the symptoms of PMS. The preparation is taken continuously over a long period of time. The effect usually occurs within three to six weeks.
Irregular menstrual cycle
The female cycle lasts an average of 28 days. Ovulation takes place about 14 days before it occurs menstruation . If the fertilized egg is not implanted, the lining of the uterus is rejected in the form of menstrual bleeding. For many women, however, the cycle can be longer or shorter. Supplements such as Vitex with the extract regulate the female cycle.
Vitex for women who want to have children
Many women also take preparations with Vitex extract when they want to have children. A regular cycle is important for egg maturation. Disorders of the menstrual cycle can be the reason for the unfulfilled desire to have children. When a woman’s cycle length varies, it is much harder to determine when to ovulate. If the desired pregnancy comes for a long time due to irregular cycles, natural remedies with Vitex can help regulate the cycle.
Please note: Herbal medicines can also have interactions and side effects. Therefore, pay attention to the cartridge package, seek medical advice if you have any questions or contact your pharmacist.
Type of use:
You take one capsule two or three times a day for 8 to 12 weeks. Vitex works mildly, it is necessary to take it for a longer period of time for long-term results.
Do not take during pregnancy.