Relieve symptoms naturally using herbs for menopause. Menopause, the natural process in which women cease menstruating and lose the ability to have children, occurs in women between the ages of 40 to 60. Menopause ends when periods cease for 12 consecutive months. Menopause occurs naturally. Surgery, chemotherapy or radiation also can induce menopause. Symptoms include hot flashes, changes in menstruation, insomnia, irritability, and weight gain. Not all women experience all of these symptoms. Some woman experience only hot flashes, while others sail through this time with little discomfort.
For some women, severe discomfort sends them to the doctor's office looking for relief. Recent news stories reporting heart disease or other dire consequences of hormone replacement therapy cause women to go searching for natural relief from menopausal symptoms. From hot flashes to night sweats, herbs for menopause naturally and inexpensively alleviate symptoms.
How Herbs Work
Many herbs work through phytoestrerols. Phytoestrerols are estrogen-like compounds in plants that mimic the action of naturally occurring estrogen inside the body. Do not take phytoesterols if you have a history of estrogen-sensitive cancers or benign tumors and conditions. Phytoeserols may stimulate these growths. Conditions that preclude use of phytoesterols include known cancers or tumors of the breast, uterus or ovaries.
Herbs for Menopause
Scientifically Researched Herbs
This chart presents the most useful herbs for common menopause problems. Find these herbs at a local health food or natural food store. The exact dose for each herb varies according to one's weight and general health. Please consult a qualified medical practitioner, herbalist, or holistic healthcare professional before taking these or other herbal remedies.Depression frequently accompanies menopause. Herbal remedies for depression are frequently prescribed by naturopaths for menopause symptoms too.
|Herb||Actions and Uses||How It Is Taken|
|Black cohosh (cimicifuga racemosa)||Estrogenic herb that relieves hot flashes||Capsules or tablets, tinctures|
|Chaste tree (Vilex agnus-castus)||Hormone balancing herb used to relief depression||Capsules or tables, tinctures|
|Damiana (Turnera diffuse)||Pituitary regulator; excellent herb to improve waning sexual desire||Capsule or tablets, tinctures|
|Dong quai (Angelica sinensis)||High in natural plant estrogens; reduces hot flashes and other estrogen-deficiency symptoms||Capsule or tablet|
|Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)||Improves brain function and memory||Capsule or tablet|
|Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)||Powerful adrenal stimulant and estrogenic herb; be careful not to take more than recommended; can deplete potassium and interact with prescription medications; consult physician before taking.||Capsules, tablets, tinctures, tea|
|Raspberry (Rubrus idaeus)||Excellent estrogenic herb. General action upon menopausal symptoms||Most commonly as tea, although capsules available|
|Red clover (Tritolium pretense)||Red clover contains coumenstrol, a plant estrogen that stimulates the ovaries; used to relieve hot flashes||Capsules or tablets; can also be taken as tea|
|Saw palmetto (Serenoa serrulata)||Treats urinary incontinence, fluid retention, and urinary difficulties||Capsules or tablets|
|Wild yam (Dioscarae villosa)||Used by women around the world and a powerful estrogenic; anti-inflammatory action and can relieve heavy menstrual bleeding||Dried extract or a cream rubbed into the skin|
Remember that herbs are medicine and may include side effects. Women report side effects from black cohosh including stomach upset and headaches. Licorice powerfully affects blood pressure, so use with caution and always discontinue use if headache, dizziness or any other discomfort begins after taking licorice.
Other Herbs to Try
The National Institute of Health website offers additional herbs and dietary choices that relieve menopausal symptoms. Free fact sheets contain useful tips for treating menopause naturally.
Free Fact Sheets Online
- Get the facts about menopause and complimentary and alternative medical treatments for menopause symptoms. The National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health is a government-sponsored organization that contains useful information and many downloadable fact sheets, as well as the latest scientifically-based research on natural therapies.
- The North American Menopause Society provides information on natural remedies for menopause symptoms.
As with all therapies, inform your doctor of any herbal supplements, tinctures or products you are taking. If you have serious medical conditions, discuss proposed alternative therapies with your doctor first before taking herbal remedies.