Agnus Castus

Botanical name

Vitex agnus-castus

Common Names

Chaste berry, monk's pepper

FAMILY

Lamiaceae (Labiatae)

Description

Originating from the Mediterranean, this deciduous shrub is known to attract butterflies.

Part supplied

The whole berry.

Food Use

Recipes

Use 1 teaspoon of dried herb to one cup of boiling water to make a tasty tea. Infuse for 5-10 minutes. Sweeten with honey or lemon to taste.

Alternatively add half a teaspoon (2.5 ml) of tincture to a cup of warm water for a quick alternative to tea.

The herb can be added as a flavouring to gin, vodka and other infusions.

Medicinal Use

Useful in PMT, the menopause and skin conditions that are hormone-related, including acne in teenage boys. A amphoteric herb, Agnus Castus has the ability to act in different ways to normalize function, depending on its environment. 

Key actions: Galactagogue (enables milk flow), prolactin inhibitor,  dopaminergic agonist, indirectly progesterogenic.  

In clinic: Herbalists use this herb to decrease libido, in cases of inadequate lactation and for a range of gynaecological issues.  

If you are interested in the medicinal use of this herb please consult a herbalist. Herbs are generally used at medicinal strength, in blends, prescribed for each unique patient's condition.

Directions

Decoction: About half a teaspoon (0.5 to 1 g) of herb to a cup of cold water, bring to the boil and leave to sit for 15 minutes. Or steep 1 teaspoon bark in cold water overnight. Flavour with lemon, ginger or honey if desired. Drink 3 times a day unless otherwise told by a medical herbalist.

Tincture: Take 2.5 ml (1:5 in 60% tincture), 3 times a day or as directed by a practitioner.

Fluid extract: 1:2 Take 0.8 ml, 3 times a day or as directed by a practitioner.

Dried Herb: Maximum of 3 g per day may be taken as a powder or capsules.

Other Uses

Cosmetic Use

None known.

Other Uses

None known.

Cautions

Contraindications

None known.

This herb is considered safe in food amounts. Do not take if you are allergic to this plant or other members of this plant's family (Lamiaceae). Not all herbs are suitable in pregnancy, breastfeeding or for young children. If in doubt, please ask us or your medical herbalist.

Side effects

Could cause nausea, headaches and skin conditions such as acne or rashes but side effects only seen in a tiny percentage (1 to 2% of study participants). 

Plant extracts cause few side effects when taken correctly but if a side effect is experienced please contact us.

Interactions with drugs

It is not recommended to use orthodox oestrogenic or progesterogenic medications together with Agnus Castus. They have not shown to interact however, it is thought that Agnus Castus could react with dopamine receptor antagonists. 

Herbal remedies and supplements can interact with medicines. If you are taking medication please check with your medical practitioner, or call us, before taking herbs, supplements and medication together.

More Information

Articles

There are currently no articles related to this herb.

Recipes

Look in our recipes section for more uses of this herb.

Research

Read the latest PubMed research on this herb.

Add to BagVitex agnus castus - Chaste tree berry 100g £5.75
Add to BagVitex agnus castus - Chaste tree berry 500g £19.00
Add to BagVitex agnus castus - Chaste tree berry 1kg £38.00

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