DISCLAIMER: I have a few male readers, so if you are male, this post isn’t for you. Sorry guys 😉
Often times women have female issues, whether it be balancing, or even some support. In researching, I have found the amazing Chaste Berry. It is said to be great for PMS, PMDD, PCOS, and numerous other ailments and symptoms. Chase Berry goes by a few names, but one common name is Vitex, which is popular among those trying to conceive. I am not a doctor or a healthcare professional, so please do some research before trying. In my case, I bought the Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine which you can find on Amazon. It is a fantastic book and very informative!
Per the American Family Physician website at www.aafp.org, Chasteberry (Vitex agnus-castus), or monk’s pepper, is the fruit of the chaste tree. It is native to western Asia and southwestern Europe, and is now common in the southeastern United States. It has been used for more than 2,500 years to treat a variety of conditions. In ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome, it was used for many gynecologic conditions.
With our homesteading venture, we have made many changes to how we live and heal ourselves. People often tackle a few changes but are those changes really worth the trouble if you only change a few things? It is like exercising everyday expecting big results and not changing your diet. It is counter intuitive. Recently, we have made the decision to add Herbalism to our skill set. An act of producing your own medicine for common ailments such as colds, flu, burns, and wounds to name a few.
Out of all of the ways to use Chaste Berry, I chose to make a tincture. An herbal extract of the berry. Chaste Berry tinctures do not work overnight. They must be taken over a period of time. A tincture is an alcoholic infusion which extracts medicinal properties of plants, herbs, roots, berries, and flowers, basically the entire plant. Any part of that plant can be used and may be used for different uses.
Here is what you will need:
- Glass pint jar with a lid
- Whole Organic Dried Chaste Berry
- 90 or 100 Proof Vodka (some use Brandy)
With a mortar and pestal, grind the berries coarsely to expose as much surface area as you can. This makes sure that all of the goodness of the berry is extracted. Fill the jar half way with the berries and fill the jar up with Vodka. As it sits, you may have to top off with more Vodka because the berries will reconstitute and absorb the alcohol.
Shake well and store in a cool, dark place upside down. Let sit for 2-3 weeks, then strain the berries. Put the berries in a food processor and puree them. This ensures that you are getting every possible property out of the berry. Add back in your jar and let sit for another 2-3 weeks. Then strain and compost the berries. For my own purposes, I use 1 tbs twice a day in the morning and at night.
Herbs, berries, and roots can be found at the Bulk Herb Store or any natural health store. I am not sponsored in any way, this is where I got a lot of the herbs and berries that we use. In natural food stores, I found they were kept over by the bulk spice section and not within the supplement section.
Total Cost: Estimated $6.25
For the books I have purchased and the many methods of herbal extraction please visit the Herbalism Page.