Standardized: chaste tree
Other: agnus-castus, chasteberry, monk's pepper
Vitex agnus-castus L.
Plant Family: Verbenaceae
The chaste tree is a small shrub with lance shaped leaves and purple flowers. It is native to the eastern Mediterranean and has since been cultivated in temperate climates around the world. Its peppery fruit has been used for over two thousand years; at least since the time of the Greek physician Dioscorides who recommended it to help the wives of soldiers remain chaste while their husbands were in battle. The vitex berry was used by both men and women in ancient Greece and Rome, and by monks during the Middle Ages in order to suppress sexual desire. Pliny the Elder noted that Athenian maidens would put the leaves under their beds during the festival of Thesmophoria to help preserve their chastity.
Vitex supports physical and emotional health during a woman's menstrual cycle and in the transition into menopause; relieving mild mood changes, occasional cramps, water retention, and hot flashes.*
Uses And Preparations
Usually used as a tincture, however may be cracked and sprinkled on food, producing a slight pepper taste or as a tea infusion.
Specific: Vitex berry is not recommended for use with hormonal contraceptives.
General: We recommend that you consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner before using herbal products, particularly if you are pregnant, nursing, or on any medications.
*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. For educational purposes only.