|Botanical Nomenclature||Vitex agnus-castus|
|Common Name||Abraham's Balm, Chaste Tree, Chasteberry, Lilac Chastetree, Monk's Pepper|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Vitex agnus-castus is a deciduous shrub growing from 1 to 6m. The linear leaves are green on the upper side and gray on the underside. The fruits are small and brown and the flowers are lilac or red in inflorescences. The flowering and the harvesting take place from July to September.|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||Fruits, seeds|
|Active Substances||Castine (bitter agents), vitexin, casticin (flavonoid), aucubin (glycoside) and essential oil, which contains cineol, limonene, alpha-, beta-pinene, triglycerides|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||The herbal extract is used to regulate the hormone's balance, the menstruation cycle and premenstrual syndrome, as inhibits prolactin's secretion and controls the ratio between progestogens and estrogens. Also, the whole plant has astringent, soothing, galaktagogo and diuretic properties. Even if further studies must be done, the plant is used for the treatment of infertility, prostatitis, the swelling of the testes and ovaries.|
|Method of Administration||The plant is administered to regulate the hormonal balance in the form of herbal tea (0,5-1g of dried herb in a cup of boiled water, 3 times a day), tincture or tablets (one a day, 1g).
Warning: The use of herb preparations is not recommended without seeking advice from your physician or pharmacist. The substances they contain may interact with the subscribed drugs that the patient already takes, thus eliminating their therapeutic efficacy or inducing toxicity. They may also burden further weakened vital functions of the body thus exposing the patient to increased morbidity and life threatened conditions.
|Toxicity- Adverse Effects||Possible allergic reaction. Avoid plant's consuption during pregnancy.|
|References||1)http://www.votana-shop.product_details&product_id=202&flypage=yagendoo_flypage_1.tpl&pop=0&vmcchk=1&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=256 2) http://www.douni.gr/?section=ingredients&id=21&icategory=9 3)http://www.ftiaxno.gr/2012/11/blog-post_7722.html 4) http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-968-vitex%20agnus-castus.aspx?activeingredientid=968&activeingredientname=vitex%20agnus-castus 5)http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-agnus-castus.html 6)http://www.healthy.net/Health/Article/The_Chaste_Tree_Vitex_agnus_castus_The_Monks_Protector/430|