Black cohosh is a herb whose root is used for medicinal purposes. The herb is quite popular for taking care of women’s health issues symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), painful menstruation, as well as menopause and for inducing labor in pregnancy. It is also effective for promoting digestion, treating osteoporosis, improving sleep, and also for treating cardiovascular problems, arthritis, breast cancer, and infertility.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the health benefits of black cohosh.
Cimiracemate, one of the active components in black cohosh, has anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, the herb contains isoferulic acids, which are popular for also combating inflammation. According to some studies, black cohosh, when used in combination with poplar bark, sarsaparilla, willow bark, resin, and guaiacum can significantly reduce the symptoms of inflammatory conditions such as arthritis.
Black cohosh is a powerful natural sedative that is effective for a good night’s sleep. This is why it is commonly recommended for individuals who suffer from stress, chronic anxiety, and insomnia.
However, it is not advisable to take black cohosh if you’re already on medication to induce sleep. This is because the herb’s natural components are quite potent and may result in harmful side effects when taken along with other medications.
Since the herb is a natural analgesic, it can induce labor in pregnant women by stimulating contractions. In fact, homeopathic practitioners usually give pregnant women who are past their delivery date black cohosh to avoid a slow and painful labor.
It should, however, be noted that although the herb can help make the birthing process easier, it can lead to a miscarriage if taken at the early stages of pregnancy. Additionally, black cohosh should never be taken by itself during pregnancy; it should only be taken along with other recommended herbs. It is, therefore, very dangerous to self-administer this herb without first consulting with a medical expert or skilled midwife.
Alleviates Symptoms of Menopause
To effectively manage common menopausal symptoms such as mood swings, night sweats, hot flashes, and cramps, black cohosh might come in handy. As a traditional remedy, black cohosh has proven to be helpful in improving the symptoms of menopause.
Some studies suggest that black cohosh can relieve hot flashes in menopausal women much more than conventional antidepressants. Interestingly, men also suffer symptoms of andropause similar to menopause in women. Thankfully, black cohosh is also beneficial for relieving symptoms of andropause in men too. However, caution must be exercised while taking black cohosh as excessive estrogen can further worsen the hormonal imbalance in men.
For both men and women, it’s advised that black cohosh should be taken under the supervision of a medical expert.
Improve Healing of Fractures with Osteoporosis
People suffering from osteoporosis are often prone to fractures and bone loss. Although more research is needed, according to some studies, black cohosh can improve the healing process of fractures in people with osteoporosis.
Prevents Weight Gain in Menopausal Women
As a result of hormonal imbalance in menopausal women, they are likely to experience weight gain. As black cohosh alleviates the symptoms of menopause, it may also help women shed some weight as well as prevent heart attacks, high cholesterol, strokes, breast cancer, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Promotes Digestive Health
Black cohosh is effective in maintaining digestive health and improving the potency of nutrient we take as well as in the removal of waste products. Yes, the herb helps to reduce incidences of constipation and gastric ulcers. That is not even all it does—the herb also helps to alleviate nausea, morning sickness, bloating, flatulence, bloating, and cramping.
Induces Ovulation in Women with PCOS
Infertility is one of the consequences of a low level of estrogen in women. However, as black cohosh contains compounds similar to estrogen, it may be effective in inducing ovulation and increasing the chances of getting pregnant.
Relieves Muscle Spasms
Black cohosh contains antispasmodic properties that help in preventing muscle spasms or pains related to muscle injury, strain, and nervous tension. The herb aids in the proper functioning of muscles as well as nerves.
Promotes Skin Health
Due to the fact that estrogen levels are lowered during menopause, it can cause harm to the body. In fact, it can lead to certain skin issues such as crow’s feet, dry skin, acne, rashes, and wrinkles. Black cohosh helps to regulate the body’s estrogen levels and may also improve the skin texture.
Side Effects and Precautions
- We have already established that black cohosh contains a wide diverse range of health benefits. However, there have been reports of the herb causing liver damage, particularly after prolonged use.
- On the issue of whether black cohosh causes or prevents breast cancer –some women with breast cancer actually believe that their hot flashes reduced after ingesting the herb. However, medical experts believe that black cohosh may interact with conventional cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation. So people undergoing treatment for any form of cancer should steer clear of black cohosh to avoid complications.
- When taken in the wrong dosage, some people may experience side effects such as diarrhea, dizziness, headache, constipation, and nausea.
Before incorporating this potent herb into your daily regimen for any health condition, it is very important to consult with a medical professional.