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Ask the Herbalist: Women's Issues

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: I am almost 33 and for over 14 years, I've suffered from irregular menstruals. Its now to the point that I don't menstruate at all. I have started to change what I eat. I started buying organic foods vs. Non organic. Are there specific foods I should avoid? I'm lactose intolerant so I don't drink milk but I do eat yogurt.  I started seeing a natural doctor and she put me on something called "folliculinum". How effective is this treatment? I initially got a period but that was 2 to 3 months ago. Really frustrated and at my wit’s end. Been on so many birth control pills,  Metformin, etc. Feels like nothing works.

I suffer from: weight gain,  bad acne,   hair thinning, facial hair, discharge, and within the last year and half, night sweats that wake me up in the middle of the night. So now my sleep is disrupted all the time. Seems like this will never end.

I know I need to make a more dietary/life style changes with what I eat. But in addition to this, should I continue with the folliculnium?  The only thing it seemed to do was lower my sex drive, which was amazing because I'm single and the "hormones hitting the roof" was becoming beyond annoying.  Can I take folliculnium with something else? When I intially started it,  I tried taking vitex tincture. I only had a couple of swallows but it was so bitter, so I didn't continue. I soon got my cycle after (for 2 weeks).

(Exhaling). The more I read, the more I understand how what I eat is important. Is there a specific dietary plan I should follow. Thanks.

ANSWER: Folliculnium is a good Homeopathic remedy, but I feel that is not what is needed here due to the length of the symptoms and the other issues ytou mention.

Diet is a very important part of your healing process. What I truly recommend is that you allow me to do a full evaluation for you and then design an individualized treatment plan, otherwise I would just be giving you general suggestions. If you are so inclined just click on the banner or contact me directly at: admin@tcmconsultants.org  Now then, here are some generalized suggestions. 

I suggest you eliminate form your diet: Red meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy and all fried foods. You should enhance your diet with fresh oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines). Eat fresh garlic and onions daily. Buy locally grown veggies and eat them daily steamed or raw, and eat plenty of fresh fruits.  You should begin a light exercise program such as jogging or walking 1 to 3 miles daily. 

There are several tried and true traditional Chinese formulas that would be of great help, but to determine which we would need to do an evaluation. Here are some of the Western remedies you may want to try. Drink infusions of Green tea daily and add to these 10 drops extract of Chinese angelica, 10 drops extract of Agnus castus and 10 drops extract of False Unicorn. Sweeten only with honey and drink 3xs day. 

QUESTION: I have been diagnosed with PCOS about 10 years ago. I have gotten my period a few times a year for years. I had a baby 2.5 years ago, and was hoping that my body would regulate postpartum, but it hasn’t. I have had my period only 1 x in the past 11 months! I am still breastfeeding, but only once a day.  I have a lot of facial hair growth, a lot of stomach fat, acne, and pretty much ammenorrhea. What herbs do you suggest for me to take to bring on a period?

ANSWER:  Glad to be of service. A consultation would be more accurate, but in general terms I will do all I can to help.

First thing that comes to mind is diet. I strongly suggest that you avoid: Red meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy, all fried foods, and all foods containing preservatives. In as much as possible eat organic. Drink coffee and alcohol moderately. If you smoke: Quit!

Enhance your diet with plenty of cold water oily fishes such as, mackerel, salmon, herring, anchovies and sardines. Add also to your diet: bean sprouts, yogurt, fresh garlic, onions, honey, nuts, seeds, fresh steamed vegetables and fresh fruits. Try to eat only foods grown organically without toxic pesticides. Use Kosher salt. If you must use sugar use Stevia.

To encourage hormonal balance we suggest you take a tablespoon daily of Linseed oil. Supplement daily with a good multi vitamin multi mineral containing all the amino acids, and add 1000mg Vit.C 1x day.

Drink infusions of Chinese Angelica daily and Wild Yam in equal parts adding a pinch of Fenugreek, and add to this 15 drops of extract or tincture of Agnus Castus and 15 drops of False Unicorn. Extracts and tinctures work much better and faster. Sweeten these only with honey and drink 3xs daily. These will help normalize your periods.

I also encourage you to adopt a low-level regimen of exercise: jogging, walking, Yoga, T'ai Chi Ch'uan or Qi Gong. Your local library will have books or videos on the last 3 to help get you started.


QUESTION: I am 24 years old, I have been suffering from a cyst in the right ovary for 1 and half years. Initially it was just a simple cyst but now  my ultrasound says that it is a endometrioma. It says adnexal right ovary cyst with internal echoes and few  thin septae. And my right ovary is not seen separately.

Doctor asked me to do a laparoscopy and take it out. Is there any herbal medicine for curing this.  I started doing castor oil pack , will it help?  Can you suggest me some herbal medicine. and what exercise should I do? 

ANSWER: First you should eliminate from your diet foods that stagnate the system, such as: pork, red meats, white sugar, hot dogs, bologna, dairy products, chocolate, pasta, egg yolks, alcohol, cigarrettes and excess coffee.   Eat: lean fish, sardines, oysters, salmon, flounder, chicken, turkey, venison, rabbit, cornish hen spinach, broccoli, kale, whole-wheat bread, honey, and in particular steamed fresh vegetables and fruits.

Supplement with: a good multi-vitamin, multi-mineral daily, and add 1,500mg of Vit. C, 400mg of Vit. E, Evening Primrose 3 capsules, 3xs day and Golden linseed 2 capsules, 3xs day.

I would suggest infusions of False unicorn root with 10 drops of tincture of Agnus castus will help if drunk often daily for 3 months. You may add a pinch of Wild yam to these, sweeten only with honey and drink 3xs day.

Another combination you may find of use is:
A decoction of White peony, Chinese angelica and Rehmannia in equal parts. Drink in large doses throughout the day.
An infusion of St. John's Wort with 25 drops of tincture of Black cohosh will also prove of help. Drink 3 or 4xs day.
Sweeten these with honey.

You must relieve stress. Stress has been implicated as a factor of the hormonal imbalances which are a part of endometriosis.  I suggest and recommend a low-level exercise program such as T'ai Chi, Yoga or Qi Gong. You may also incorporate to these meditation and breathing exercises. Your local library may have books that will help get you started on these, if not I am sure they will be able to order them for you.

QUESTION: I’m a 53 yr old woman I was told by my doctor I had a cyst. On my last doctor s visit she tells me I have ovarian cancer I’m going to get a second opinion. I bought some burdock and aloe vera from whole foods store but I take blood thinner medicine from my doctor. I want to go by the way of herbs for my health and healing but I need help. Will you help me.

ANSWER: Thanks for writing.  You need to maintain a good diet, eliminate foods that stagnate the system, such as: Heavy red meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy and all fried foods.

Enhance your diet with plenty of fresh fish (mackerel and salmon are particularly useful here) fresh garlic and onions daily, brown rice, raw or steamed vegetables and fresh fruits.

Burdock is good for detoxification and aloe vera good internally for constipation and externally for wounds.

There are many herbs and herbal formulas that may be of benefit to you, but it is beyond the scope of this site to actually individualize a treatment plan for you.

Generally though, these are some of the herbs may be of help: Green tea, Espinheira santa tincture (a South American holly), Turmeric (between meals take 500mg 2xs day), and Astragalus.

You may make an infusion of Green tea and add 15 drops of Espinheira santa tincture and 10 drops of extract or tincture of Astragalus. Sweeten with a bit of honey and drink 2-3xs day.

Also add 25 drops of extract or tincture of Astragalus to all your broths, soups and stews.

Other products are Quescetin tablets (take 250mg 2 or 3xs day) and Soy isoflavone concentrate tablets (take 3,000mg daily).

There are also several traditional Chinese herbal formuals that would certainly be of great help, but we would need to do a diagnostic evaluation to individualize the proper treatment plan for you. If interested you may contact us at: clinician@doctor.com  Hope this helps.

QUESTION: I was taking saw palmetto for hair loss, and excess body hair, and it helped me a lot, but I stopped taking it after I heard that on the long run it can make me not get my period anymore is that true?
Another questions can I take saw palmetto while I'm trying to conceive will it help me in that or no?

ANSWER: Whatever helped you it was not Saw Palmetto. Saw Palmetto is a tonic, it is used to treat hormonal disorders, urinary problems (enlarged prostrate gland), reduced sex drive, testicular atrophy and is also very often used as a diuretic. Saw Palmetto will not affect your period, but it will not help
with the hair problems nor will it help you to conceive.

QUESTION: Is it safe to give a healthy fifteen year old girl the Chinese herb formula shakuyaku-kanzo-to (as I understand an equal mix of white peony and licorice)? She has low estrogen and high testosterone (confirmed by testing) that this formula is supposed to help. She is 5’9 1/2” and weighs about 125 lbs.

ANSWER: The spelling you give is to a Kampo formula (Japanese) adapted from a Chinese formula Shao Yao Gan Cao Tang or Licorice and Peony Decoction.

For the condition you are trying to treat this is not the appropriate formula. This formula treats: Muscle spasms, Cramps in the calf muscles, Restlessness, Abdominal pain, Menstrual cramps and other Acute pain conditions. Thus, it becomes not a matter whether it is safe (which it is), but a matter that this is not the appropriate formula. I certainly do not suggest it.  My sincere suggestion is that you allow me to do an evaluation, to then develop an individualized treatement plan for her. If interested you may contact me directly at: admin@tcmconsultants.org    An evaluation would allow us to determine which formulas are the adequate ones for her. Evaluations are usually 3 to 5 pages long, thus there is charge of $35, but this will get you in the door. She and you would receive a detailed evaluation, if ordering from us $5 off on every order forever and unlimited access to responses directly from me by email. After the 3 months if necessary a re-evaluation is done cost $20. This is payable by Paypal to: clinician@doctor.com

Once payment is received you will get a set of questions from which we can proceed with the evaluation.

QUESTION: I am 38 years old. I was on birth control pills for two and a half years after the birth of my son (from 2006 March until 2008 October). Then I stopped and was drug free for about 2 years. However, because my husband and I were not sure we wanted another child for sometime due to our financial condition at that time, I got an IUD inserted (2009 August).  I moved to the USA after the insertion and after 7 months of the IUD insertion I started having problems with my period (2010 April). They stopped. I waited for a couple of months and then had the IUD removed thinking it would bring back my periods. But that didn’t happen. I went back to the doctor and she gave me Provera which did help me get back my period for that particular month (2010 august). She suggested I wait for my natural cycle but didn’t have my period the next month. She gave me Provera again. But this time it didn’t work and I did not have any period. Then I got my hormones tested and they came back with low thyroid levels, high cholesterol and low estrogen. My doctor ignored the low estrogen levels and started me on Levothyroxin 75mcg since January 2011. I was also on Niacin but due to hot flashes after taking the capsule, I stopped.

By that time we had decided we wanted another child but these problems had started. I also started with bad headaches on the right side of my head, neck and shoulder – throbbing and pain that left me low on energy, warbled speech and bad moods.  My doctor in the US kept ignoring the other hormonal tests, got angry when I asked questions and wanted to do a uterine test and dye test so I was a little upset and went back to India to get treatment. There the gynecologist tested me for all hormones and thyroid and said I had very low levels of estrogen along with high cholesterol and low thyroid function. She started me on estrogen supplements, Novostat 10mg,  and thyronorm  75 mcg. This was in April 2011. Then I had 4 regular cycles in May, June, July and August. I also did two Ultrasound scans of my ovaries and they were fine except for calcification which was lesser in the second scan.  She started me of F-Gam, DHEA along with estrogen supplement (birth control pills) I came back to the US in September 2011 but didn’t have any period that month. I was supposed to discontinue the estrogen if I did not have any period so I didn’t take anything. Since September I have been waiting for a period and all I get is a brownish discharge every now and then (discharge with slimy threads). I am currently on DHEA and F-Gam fertility tablet along with Novostat 5 mg and thyronorm 50mcg. I am truly fed up with taking so many medicines. I have not been able to lose any weight despite exercising and walking and have ended up with sore muscles and joint pains (rheumatoid arthritis tested negative) which have also deterred me to keep on with exercising and losing weight. I was once a very active person who worked, took care of her home, husband and kid and was mostly positive about life. Now I am a totally different person. I want to have a child but haven’t been able to. I want to get off these medicines and start with herbal medication that would bring me back to my older self more naturally. Is it possible for my period to come back and be regular again, get pregnant and have another child and have a proper functioning thyroid. My doctor said that my hormonal report did not suggest I was menopausal yet that’s why having regular periods was important for me. Would herbal therapy be good for me.   Please help me.

ANSWER: The length of your questions make it impossible to answer them fully and it is beyond the scope of this site.

I will do my best though, but what you sincerely need is a full evaluation, at the end of your answer I will provide you with details. 

It is possible that with help your normal periods can resume. It is also possible to improve your thyroid function, and yes herbal therapy can help with this. Western medicine is geared to only treat symptoms, whereas alternative medicine, in particular Traditional Chinese Medicine, treats ill health. 

I recommend that you do a 48 hour fast drinking only fresh water and Green tea with 25 drops added of extract or tincture of Dandelion root. Sweeten only with honey and drink 4-5xs per day. Extracts and tinctures work better and faster. This will enable you to rid the body of toxins.

After your fast continue drinking the infusions for 5 days, 3xs day. In your particular case we suggest that you begin by avoiding foods that stagnate the system, such as: Red, meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy and all fried foods.  Avoid excessive coffee and alcohol, chocolates, chips sodas and colas.

Enhance your diet with plenty of fresh salmon, mackerel and sardines, brown rice, yogurt, honey, fresh garlic and onions, fresh raw or steamed vegetables and fresh fruits. Exercise is very important also. You can begin a low-regimen such as Tai Chi or Yoga, just 15 minutes per day would be great. 

As to herbal medicines there are many that would probably serve you well. You may want to try infusions of Wild Yam and adding 15 drops extract or tincture of Chinese angelica. If you get pregnant or suspect you are discontinue the Chinese angelica. Sweeten only with a bit of honey and drink 2-3xs day.

There are other herbal therapies and herbs and formulas that may be more appropriate for you individually, but to determine which, you would need a full evaluation. For that we encourage you to visit:


QUESTION: Hi. I am close to being 40 and overall very healthy but for a while my stomach was bloated and had bad periods and started taking maca with dim for about 4 months and it has helped a lot .  I  retain water close to getting period  and wanted to know how safe it is to incorporate dandelion pills to help with  retention and how long is  it ok to continue taking  maca?  Thanks for sharing your expertise!

ANSWER: Herbs and herbal formulas should be taken for more than 90 days, then stopped for 14 days, to assess what the next step should be.

You may incorporate the Dandelion to the Maca. Extracts and tinctures always work better and faster. Ten to fifteen drops of each 3xs day.

QUESTION: I am 40 and lately I have been feeling stressed out and fatigued . My menstruation usually last for 4 days but the last time I just had it for 2 days. My doctor seems to think its hormonal imbalance.  Is Vitax safe for balancing hormones while breast feeding? Any other recommendations?

ANSWER: Avoid foods that will stagnate the system, such as: Red meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy and all fried foods.  Avoid coffee and alcohol, and also avoid chips, soda and colas, all processed foods and foods containing additives and preservatives.  Enhance your diet with plenty fresh oily fish (salmon, mackerel and sardines), honey, brown rice, yogurt, green leafy vegetables, chicken, turkey and fresh fruits. Engage yourself into a low-level regimen of exercise, such as Yoga, Tai Chi or walking.  Vitex is not safe if breastfeeding. Unfortunately there are very few herbs that are safe while breastfeeding. I suggest you may want to write us back once the breastfeeding is totally over. Sorry I am unable to help more for now.

QUESTION: First I want to say I am fascinated with you page.  What an amazing source of healthy information.

1-      I have an almost 6 months baby and i am back at work and still breast feeding, since I pump at work.  I am under some stress, and these two things made my milk production go lower. and this baby drink 9oz per feed. I've been drinking Raspberry leaf tea, but if there is something stronger i would love to take it.  I am planning on breast feeding until he is 1 year old and I would love to store some milk and be way head on my storage. 

2. My hair and nails got so strong and thick while pregnant and for the past 3 months I 've been losing a lot of it and not the past 2 weeks my nails have gotten weaker. What can I do?

3. My skin is not looking very good either, I am having some break-outs.  I was told Oregano Oil pills would do it, but then I read it is not recommended when breast feeding. Is this right? Anything for breakouts?  Muchas Gracias Carlos for all your help.

ANSWER: If you are going to rely on breast milk I would suggest drinking infusions (teas) of Alfalfa and adding 25 drops of extract of Fenugreek and 20 drops extract of Blessed thistle. Sweeten only with a bit of honey and drink 3xs day.   

In Traditional Chinese Medicine we sometimes use He Che Da Zao Wan or Geije Da Bu Wan. The first remedy will help supplement Blood, Qi and Jing (Blood, Essence and Spirit). The second is excellent as a long term general tonic or following debilitating illness, surgery, childbirth.

For hair I would suggest the herb Fo-ti. Boil a handful of the herb (enough to make 2 cups), then add to that 15 drops of essential oil of Rosemary. soak your hair in this, get rid of the excess water and wrap your hair in a towel for 15 minutes. Use a mild baby shampoo to wash. Do every other day for 3-4 weeks. 

As to nails some people have found that taking Biotin for l9ong periods of time is of help and others have used Lemon juice on their nails every day and that also seems to help. Here's a remedy from Australia:  Dip your fingernails in colorless iodine once a day for 1 week; then once a week for 3 to 4 weeks; then once a month. It dries almost instantly. It begins hardening the nails under the cuticle and as the nail grows out it stays hard and unbreakable. 

I would not suggest Oregano pills now or ever. There have been no valid significant studies that would encourage me to do so. I do suggest that you take oatmeal baths. Aveeno makes a good formula for this or you can just use a sock full of oatmeal. With break-outs I encourage you to avoid foods that stagnate the system, such as: Red meats, pork, white sugar, dairy and all fried foods. In Traditional Chinese Medicine we often use a formula named Margarite Pills. I hope this helps.

QUESTION: Hi, I have been looking for answers all over the internet and haven't found a solid answer yet. I have an above average amount of vaginal discharge and it is a huge annoyance. I have seen my doctor about it and have tried a few different treatments but she can't find anything unusual about it and
nothing she knows can help get rid of it so I went looking into herbal remedies. I came across dong quai as a treatment for many female issues and thought I'd give it a try, and after finding a bottle of 550mg capsules I thought maybe I should look up if this will interact with my birth control. The herbal sites I look at don't really say and the other sites I find say it may act like St. John's wart. My question is will it react with my birth control (Junel fe1/20) or will it not?

ANSWER: Here's the scoop an individual should never self-medicate, but under the supervision of a practitioner, Chinese angelica is safe, if it is the appropriate herb to use, unfortunately once you are pregnant or suspect you are, it is not.  Capsules or pills do not work as well as an extract. Dosage: Ten drops 2xs day in an infusion of Green tea and also add 15 drops extract of Astragalus to this.  Consult a local practitioner before increasing. Once you are pregnant or suspect you are discontinue the Chinese angelica.

I would better suggest to you that you may need to detoxify your system. Towards that end, I encourage you to do a 48 hour fast, drinking only infusions of Dandelion root and plenty of fresh water. Drink the infusions 4-5xs for 48 hours. If necessary sweeten only with a bit of honey. If hunger overtakes you, eat yogurt. After your fast continue drinking the infusions 3xs day for 5 days.

All of us are different, we have different medical issues, different backgrounds, differently genes and react differently to different things, to answer even if it is Chinese angelica that you would benefit from,  you
would need to do an evaluation. If interested in this you may contact me directly admin@tcmconsultants.org

QUESTION: Sorry to trouble you, but I was googling the Internet for side effects of vitex, as I've been taking the Nature's Way vitex, 400mg three times a day to rebalance my hormones after taking birth control pills for about a year. I am 23 this year. I am taking vitex and maca (from NOW Foods). I believe I'm experiencing some side effects as I feel drowsiness very often, I'm at the 18th day of both vitex and maca,and I only am aware of it since a couple if days ago, about 3-5 days?

Would it be that my hormones are starting to rebalance itself? I read one review that says that, or am I overdosing on it? Shall I reduce my intake of the vitex?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much.

ANSWER: Thanks for getting in touch. Without knowing any prior medical history it is really hard to say. In my practice I seldom suggest pills, capsules or tablets, much better are extracts and tinctures; they are in essence in a purer from, and the dosage is easily controlled, plus they are more effective and work faster.

I suggest reducing the dosage for a few days. I don't know the product of the company and worry that even the preparation may not be for you. Reduce the dosage for a couple of days, if things don't change eliminate the product from your routine.

You may  always write us again for suggestions or help, but please include some medical history as well as age, weight and height.

QUESTION: Please help my mother's been taking Premerin, since after her hysterectomy (is that how it is spelled?) that is for at least 7 years. Are there health food and herbal alternatives that you van recommend?

ANSWER My first suggestion is that you follow a proper diet.

Avoid salt, pork, red meats, white sugar, pasta, all dairy products, beans, cabbage, prunes, strawberries, caffeine, alcohol and cigarrettes. Also avoid all fried foods.

Enhance your diet by eating plenty of lean fish, carrots, corn, apples, oats, soy and soy based products, whole grain cereals, steamed green leafy vegetables and plenty of fresh fruit. Add fresh garlic to your diet often. Eat plenty of pumpkin or sunflower seeds daily.

I suggest drinking infusions of Wild Yam and adding 15 drops of extract or tincture of Agnus castus. Sweeten only with a bit of honey and drink 3xs day.

Other herbs to consider are Black cohosh and Licorice in infusion and there are still others such as Chinese angelica in combination with Dandelion.

If there is pain the herb Cramp bark may prove of help.

You may want to massage the abdomen with 10 drops of essential oil of Fennel diluted into 2 teaspoons of almond or hemp oil. This helps with water retention and hormonal imbalance.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine depending on the individual client treatement plan we sometime use Da Bu Yin Wan, Zhi Bai Ba Wei Wan and He Che Da Zao Wan.

I certainly hope this helps. Good luck!

QUESTION: I have had Amenorrhea for a year and a half and while I started with stress relief and healthy diet changes it wasn’t enough. I just started taking Dong Quai this week and I started my period. My question is do I keep taking it just until my period is over and then start it again in a month’s time or do I take it continuously for several months? And is there a way to tell when I should stop and let my body take over?

ANSWER: Great question. You should stop while you have your period, and then continue after the period is gone. You may do this for 3 months or so, then stop for 30 days before starting again. Your body should give you hints as to when its ready to take over.

Pay attention if taking this and your bleeding increases, or if you become pregnant, discontinue its use immediately. 

Here's a good link on this: http://www.sisterzeus.com/Angelic.htm


QUESTION: I would like to know what herbs I can take to help my problems.  I have polycystic ovary syndrome and am dealing with menopause.  I gained 50 lbs in one year (I attributed this to quitting smoking) but then when I was told I had PCOS I was also told this more than likely attributed to the weight gain.  I exercised and dieted for six months (and was strict) and didn't lose a pound.  The doctor said it was due to the PCOS but the medications he wants to prescribe for it seem to have horrid side effects, so I'm not interested.  But I'm tired of being overweight.  Can you help?  Any suggestions?  Also, the hot flashes and mood swings are really starting to suck.

ANSWER: Increase your intake of foods that supplement and nourish the liver like beets, carrots, dark green vegetables, and lemons. As mentioned above, enhance your diet with plenty of cold water fishes (mackerel, salmon), fresh garlic and onion, raw or steamed vegetables, honey, brown rice and fresh fruits.

A good infusion to treat PCOS is: Chinese angelica and Wild Yam in equal parts adding a pinch of Fenugreek, and 10 drops of extract or tincture of Agnus Castus and 15 drops of False Unicorn. Extracts and tinctures work much better and faster. Sweeten these only with honey and drink 2xs daily.

Add to your daily vitamins 50mg of Zinc. To encourage hormonal balance we suggest you take a tablespoon daily of Linseed or Evening Primrose oil.

In TCM the formula Gui Zhi Fu Ling Wan has been used with some measure of success to treat PCOS. It promotes blood circulation, removes blood stasis, and with consistent use eliminates masses in the abdomen. The formula is used to treat the retention of blood stasis in the uterus.

 hope this helps. Maintain a smile, a positive attitude, and avoid stress.

QUESTION: It is a privilege that you might  answer a question that I have....I have had estrogen positive receptor breast cancer just over a year ago, had a double mastectomy, chemo  and also found out that the cancer had spread to two lymph nodes in the same side that the cancer originated. I am now on the "lovely" Rx tamoxifen for 5 years. Yes, I am very aware of the side effects. :(

My question is this...I have heard a lot about a mushroom - Chaga. I have heard of it's awesome healing benefits, however, it appears to produce/stimulate estrogen in the body ( or am I wrong?) I hope I am!!

Would you suggest to stay away from drinking a tea of this mushroom? I was going to drink @ least one cup of this a day - every day....maybe I should not?  Thank you so very much for answering my question.

ANSWER: Unfortunately there has not been enough research on this mushroom. We have it on good source that the best way to prepare this is drinking after an extraction process, since the active ingredients are deep within the Chaga and are not digestible. Therefore if you intend to use it you should look for an extract or tincture.  In as far as the stimulation of estrogen there is little data on that.

To restore hormonal balance we suggest that you take Evening Primrose or Fish oil capsules because they contain essential fatty acids which are essential to you. Add to that 1,000mg Vit. C 3xs day.

We recommend infusions of Dandelion, False unicorn and Agnus castus in equal parts. Add to them a small piece of Siberean ginseng root. Sweeten only with honey and drink 3xs day.

Zinc is also a very important mineral to maintain in your system. To that end we suggest eating oysters often, and supplementing with a good multi-vitamin, multi-mineral containing all 22 amino acids.

Include in all your broths, soups and stews: Astragalus root, Chinese angelica and a small piece of white Chinese ginseng. It is reported that folks using the above daily have increased their survival rate from cancer seven-fold.  Canadian doctors have claimed a measure of success with the formula called Essiac, ask your local herbal shop regarding it.

I also sincerely recommend a diet that includes plenty of garlic, citrus fruits, black currants, tomatoes, broccoli, cabbage and potatoes, wheat germ, nuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, seafood, brazil nuts, lemons, grapefruit, cherries, red pepper and bananas.

Sorry I could not help more, but I hope my suggestions may serve you well.

QUESTION: I was diagnosed with uterine fibroids. Two weeks before my cycle I get severe bloating, to that of a 3 month pregnancy. Two years ago I had uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) which shrank the fibroids.  Two years later, the fibroids are back. 

I asked a health food store representative what she recommends for fibroids and was told to take Red Clover Chaparral (which break down the tumors) and CAC (?) which acts like a laxative to move the fibroids out of the body.  I should take 24 drops of this tincture twice daily for 3 months.

Based upon your knowledge, do you agree?  (I read couple sites on the net where Chaparral can lead to liver damage.)

Do you have a natural, safe, precise (step-by-step) recommendation for eliminating fibroids?

ANSWER: I definately do not agree. The side effects of Chaparral can outweigh its benefits.
Unfortunately health food stores representatives are not practitioners, they are salesmen with just a tiny bit of knowledge about herbs or herbal remedies.

There are several wonderful Traditional Chinese Medicine formulas that can certainly be considered in your particular case, as there are also several Western remedies that may be applicable. We personally have experienced great results treating several cases with recurring fibroids.  You ask me for a natural, precise suggestion, or rather an individualized treatment plan which is beyond the scope of this site, but you may contact us at: clinician@doctor.com and we will be happy to help.  Whatever you do, I suggest avoiding the Chaparral, as to the other CAC (?), sorry we have no idea what they may be.

QUESTION: I ran across your site in doing research on my skin problem. I hope that you will be able to help me.  My problem all started 2 years ago when I turned 30 years old.  I am female, by the way. I had really bad headaches, so I had gone to see my Doctor.  I had a CAT Scan and an MRI done. Both were normal. During this time, I had a few pimples (4 or 5).  I had asked my doctor if she could prescribe me something for them. She prescribed Differin Gel. After using Differin Gel for 1 week, I noticed my skin being very oily and I was starting to break out everywhere. I stopped using it. My doctor prescribed me an antibiotic both internal and external.  It did nothing.  I have been to 3 dermatologists (they all want to give me accutane), a naturepathic Doctor, an acupuncturist, and still no cure.  I have been told that the Differin is not the cause, but it's hard for me to believe that in ways. I don't understand if it was the Differin why my skin hasn't healed 2 years later from it. 

These are the supplements I take daily:
6,000 i.u, vitamin d3
16,000 i.u. vitamin A
3 capsules Daily Multi Vitamin from a company called Premier Research Labs
3 capsules PRL Vitamin C
2 Tablespoons of PRL Zinc
2 Tablespoons of PRL B- Complex
1,000mg. MSM
1 Tablespoon Udo's 3-6-9 blend
1 Probiotic Garden of Life
Drink Kefir daily
Drink warm lemon water first thing in morning. 

On my skin I use olive oil to remove my makeup and than follow with a lime oil glycerin soap and I use lavender oil mixed with neem oil on my pimples. I also use castor oil at times. I've used yogurt, egg masks, apple cider vinegar toner, baking soda, basil water in the past and Nothing helps. My skin is still oily, which I know causes the pimples.  What do I do to stop this oil?  In desperation, I didn't want to but I've been on Orth Tri Cyclen Birth Control for 6 months now.  There is no difference in anything since taking the Birrth Control.  I am at my wits end and don't know what else to do/try.  I've just started drinking dandelion tea too.  I've had blood work done as well for my hormones and thyroid and everything came back normal.  What is going on?  My diet is good, I think. I only drink purified water, no processed foods, and I rarely eat sweet/sugar anymore.  I was eating gluten free for a while, and for 10 days I was only eating fruits and veggies and there again was no change.  I am a very small person, so I can't afford to eat only fruits/veggies for a while. 

Do you have any suggestions/advice for me?  I'd appreciate anything you can tell me.  I've tried to find a natural skin specialist in my area and I can't find any.

ANSWER: It looks like you have had a hard time with this condition. From what you tell me the one thing that I personally feel you are doing correctly is drinking infusions of Dandelion root. I would further suggest that you obtain either the extract or tincture of Dandelion root and add 25 drops to a cup of Green tea, sweeten only with a bit of honey and drink 4-5xs day. Extracts and tinctures work better and faster. 

Diet is the next thing that is very important, I would encourage you to avoid all red meats, all dairy, white sugar, pork and all fried foods. Avoid excessive caffeine and alcohol. Also avoid sodas, colas, chips, foods containing preservatives and all processed foods.

You should enhance your diet with plenty of fresh fish (salmon and mackerel), plenty of fresh garlic and onions daily, shrimp, chicken, turkey, brown rice, dark leafy green vegetables (raw or steamed) and plenty of fresh fruits. Use only a very mild soap, preferably one made by Aveeno; and buy their oatmeal baths and do them 3xs week. You may also just take a sock fill it with oatmeal, tie it and throw it in your bath water. 

It is also important that you begin a low-level regimen of exercise to help rid the body of toxins. I suggest you find tapes or books at your local library on Tai Chi or Qi Gong. Ten minutes per day would do a world of good.

Therre's only 3 ways that the body can get rid of toxins, and these are by breath, by sweating or by urination and defecation. You need to allow your body to do this. The Dandelion will help you internally and the exercise externally. If you have problems with constipation I encourage you to drink fresh carrot juice daily. 

Beyond these mentioned I sincerely suggest an ancient Chinese remedy named Margarite Pills. Do a search in Google to find them or write back if you can't. These taken 8 pills 3xs day will certainly be of great help. These are normally taken for a period of 90 days.  Continue drinking plenty of fresh water, and avoid stress. Qi Gong and Tai Chi will help you in this and will help improve your breathing and overall mental state.

Most of all, smile and think positive. This too shall pass.

QUESTION: Thank you thank you for your time. I am healing myself from endometriosis, a condition caused by an estrogen dominance in the body. I have been taking vitex and dong quai tincture, 75-25% blend, as well as turmeric capsules and various other herbs and minerals to help balance my system, including wild yam essential oil, and milk thistle to strengthen the liver. I recently came across a new herb for me, SHATAVARI, which apparently also helped balance the hormones in the female body. My concern is over doing it, yet as a novice it is hard to pick and choose and know what's best and what can combine with what for optimal effect.... any information regarding using shatavari with the other herbs I mentioned, especially vitex?

ANSWER: It never ceases to amaze me, that while folks are interested in herbs and herbal formulas, and know that for the most part they are safe, cheap and effective, they choose to medicate themselves without first consulting a trained professional and many times employ the incorrect herbs, formulas, dosages and frequency of intake. 

Truly, it is not a matter of "pick and choose". I will gladly share my knowledge with you and give you a suggestion or two, but I sincerely recommend that you allow us to do an evaluation and develop a treatment plan that is individualized for you. If you are interested you may contact me for details at: clinician@doctor.com or at admin@tcmconsultants.com  

Shatavari is an ancient Ayurvedic remedy to prevent miscarriage and premature birth. It is not indicated in treating endometriosis.

You must relieve stress. Stress has been implicated as a factor of the hormonal imbalances which are a part of endometriosis.  I suggest and recommend a low-level exercise program such as T'ai Chi, Yoga or Qi Gong.
You may also incorporate to these meditation and breathing exercises. Your local library may have books that will help get you started on these, if not I am sure they will be able to order them for you. 

To treat endometriosis I suggest, that to encourage hormone balance, a diet including oily fish, such as mackerel and sardines be followed.

Eat plenty of steamed fresh vegetables, fresh garlic and fresh raw fruits.  Also eliminate from your diet such foods as: Pork, heavy red meats, white sugar, salt, eggs, pasta, soda, colas, alcohol, all dairy, all processed foods, all fried and greasy foods and all foods containing additives and/or preservatives.  Generally speaking, infusions of Chinese Angelica and White Peony in equal parts with an addition of Agnus Castus extract 10 drops have been significantly helpful to others in the past. Sweeten with honey and begin drinking 4 or 5 times a day 10 days before your next due date.

There are several Traditional Chinese Medicine formulas that have been very helpful in treating this condition, but to indicate which ones, at what dosage and what frequency accurately we would need to do an evaluation.

Smile often and keep a positive attitude!

QUESTION: Hello I am wondering if you could give me some suggestions for low progesterone, low testosterone, and low estrogen. My progesterone levels are lower than the estrogen levels. I am experiencing hot flashes, extreme mood swings, low libido, depression, weight gain, and acne. I am only 34 and would like some relief.

ANSWER: It seems that you may be experiencing pre-menopausal symptoms. This at 34 indicates that you appear to be suffering from an overall imbalance. 

The first thing I would address is your diet. I suggest you eliminate foods that stagnate the system, such as: Red meats, pork, all dairy, white sugar and all fried foods.  Avoid snacks like potato chips and sodas, and limit your intake of caffeine. Limit your use of alcohol and if you smoke, quit! 

You should enhance your diet with fresh fish, in particular salmon and mackerel, chicken, turkey, include in your diet garlic and onion daily, brown rice, fresh local steamed vegetables and fresh locally grown fruits. 

You should begin a low-level regimen of exercise daily. such as T'ai Chi Ch'uan. Your local library will have books and videos on this. 

I would suggest drinking infusions of Dandelion 4-5xs day to clear out toxins. To these I would add 5 drops of False unicorn extract or tincture and 10 drops of Agnus castus extract or tincture, and 10 drops of extract or tincture of Angelica root. Sweeten only with a bit of honey.  Discontinue the Angelica days you begin ovulating and resume afterwards. 

There are several Traditional Chinese formulas that would certainly be of use to you. To determine which are best for you we would need to do an evaluation. should you wish one, please contact us directly.  We will be happy to do an individualized treatment plan for you. 

Another big part is trying to relieve stress. Think positive!  Read literature that relaxes the brain and literature that enhances knowledge.   I hope this is of some help. Good luck!

The article on Breast Keloids, sounds like it was written about me. Where in the world can you get violet leaves, or s. oldama that you suggest to soften hardness for the breast?  It's about time someone like you tells people not to have breast implants, and learn to love ourselves.  Since I was a child I was made fun of for being flat chest.  The teasing was horrible! Even when I had breast implants, which I wear a size 34 bra now, I have heard only a few people make remarks about how small my breast are.  Even the woman who did the mammogram one time, said, "You have such little breast tissue."  I am sick and tired of these kind of people.  I wish to the good Lord I would of had support from someone like you not to have listen to the world, and had implants.  I have had repeated surgeries because of calcium built up on the implants and scar tissue that I felt like I was having a heart attack and having a hard time catching my breath.  The doctor told me the other day, I have capsular contracture again.  There is 1 in 400-500 people that get this, and I am one of them.  He said not to do anything for now.  That if they started moving higher and got real hard, to come see him again, and he would remove the implants from underneath the breast muscle, and put on top of the muscle this time.  He told me NOT to wear a bra.  Thanks for listening.

ANSWER: I am sorry you are having such a hard time. I am the new Ask the Herbalist, and did not write that previous article.  However, I can suggest something, I believe with help you. 5 nites per week, put castor oil packs on your breasts, (see the downloads). This is a wonderful old remedy for softening up the scar tissue, and moving stagnant tissue and energy in the body), and you can get violet leaves at   www.mountainroseherbs.com . Organic wonderful quality. Also make sure you are eating a fruit, nut seed, whole grain, low meat, high health, diet. Some meat OK, but not heavy meats often. Raw juices is good. Look up Jack Lalaine, he has a good juicer that is inexpensive, there are better ones, but way more expensive. The raw juice will help flush the calcification out from the tissues. We make some of our blends to assist in flushing, read the downloads for more info.

QUESTION: I am a 64 female, well past menopause.  I now have excessive sweating all the time.  Not just at night.  Very uncomfortable, hair wet and damp.  Can you suggest something that might help?

ANSWER: Please read over the downloads, on the cleansing program, and gall bladder flush. Personal experience, and many case histories have shown, a build up of toxins, and imbalance in the body, will contribute to the nite sweats after menopause. Unless you have had your ovaries removed? If you could read this over, think about it, then let me know about the ovaries, I could suggest some herbs for you to try. Most likely a Chinese blend, with herbs to support the symptoms, and the clean diet, to support the body.

QUESTION: I am 53 years old and about to stop my periods for good.  At least I hope so.  I haven't had a period in 2 years and now I am having a period and it has been going on for 17 days.  It heavy, I don't feel weak, but it has been 17 days losing a lot of blood.  Is there anything I can do to stop it?  I tried taking Cayenne Pepper in hopes that might stop it.  It didn't work?  Any suggestions?  I had Endermology done and they hit an organ that I believe activated this.  I need to get it stopped or I am going to have to go to the hospital.  What do you think?

ANSWER: As the MD's are the ones who probably caused this, according to you, I would definitely go see them, for your safety, number one, and for the fact it was them.  There are plenty of Chinese herbs you can take.  An easy one to start with is, Yunnan Baiyao. If you don’t live near Chinatown in a large city, you will have to order it from us. Go to Chinatown, immediately, even see a Chinese herbalist there, ( he will prescribe other blends as well,)and also get some YB to have at home, it is wonderful stuff, for emergency use, and it works. Use a half vial in the AM and PM, and take the little red pill in vial at nite, Do this for10 days.

QUESTION: Thanks for the info.  I managed to get this from the Oceanic Oriental Supermarket here in Tampa.  It was the only place that carried it.  It was rather strange though.  I took 2 capsules and it felt as though it was messing with my heart.  Like I was going to have a heart attack.  Maybe that was too much at once.  It wasn't in the form of red pills.  It was actually yellow in capsules.  I hope I got the right stuff because it was spelled different too.  It Was spelled Yunnan Paiyao.  Anyway I already noticed a difference but am kinda afraid to take any more because of the sensations I felt around my heart.  It wasn't a tightening it was like tingling.  I am going to try 1 in the morning and 1 at night for the next day or two it has seemed to improve though already.  It slowed down a little.  Now do you have any recommendations for good Heart Health and weight loss.  I am so heavy I can't seem to loose weight no matter what I try.  Exercise, endermology, diet of course, I have basically stopped trying to eat meat except chicken and fish, and eat a lot of variety of vegetables and fruits of all kinds.  Nothing works. 

ANSWER:  I suggest you take one pill per day, not two, I always use the powder. I am sending in a download, a cleanse using our Life Force Fiber Food, and other of our herbs,.plus I  would special blend for you as well, if needed. The heart issues, of course the weight, and do the cleanse , plus gall bladder flush, ( yes this really helps the heart and all the organs of the body). Take COQ10, pure no additives, ( we have this), 100 mg 4 times daily, with 1000 mg Ester C,. each time, plus Hawthorn capsules, 3 two times daily, this will help you tremendously, to build, heal and strengthen the heart, also use the Essence, Holly and Bleeding Heart, 10 drops per day of each.

QUESTION: I started bleeding again.  So I am back on the Herb you recommended. 

What is Ester C?  What is Essence, and Holly and Bleeding Heart are they drops?  I want to do the Gall bladder flush.

ANSWER:  Your internal organs are probably lower than they should be from toxin, and build up, a cleanse would be excellent. Ester C is a type of easily used C. and works very well, to build and detox. The bleeding heart is a flower essence in liquid alcohol, suspension, easy to use, 10 drops or less at a time, for emotional health. If you use the Yunnan, do not use more than 10 days at a  time, it can cause adrenal exhaustion.  Use the herbs recommended on the cleanse, you can order those from me. See download for castor oil packs on abdomen.



QUESTION: I am working on a herbal formulation that helps to treat the symptoms of menopause.
The formulation currently consists of the following
Red Clover         250 mg 25:1 (8%)
Black Cohosh    40 mg 8:1 (2.5%)
Vitamin B6        12 mg
Red Clover equal to 20mg
Black Cohosh equal to 1mg Triterpenoids.

We need to remove the Black Cohosh due to safety warning issues and reformulate.
My question is: what other herbs could we put with Red Clover that would compliment this plant without negative effects,  for the treatment of menopause.  Do you have any relating references, case studies or information, or the like to support any claims and or safety, drug interaction etc.  

ANSWER:  Thank you for the inquiry. In chinese medicine, there are very many herbs to be used for this condition, and much of it is documented. I enjopy combining the western herbs with the eastern herbs, and it seems to work well in formula.
Some places for you to look are the books on Traditional Chineses Medicinal formulas. Here are some tried and true combinations, which you could add western herbs to or not:
Two Possible Formulas for you to Try:


The first is for Hot Flashes that are really bad, as well as dehydration. All ingredients are well known and researched TCM herbs that are %100 safe, even for a child.

TCM HotFlashBuster #1
1-part…HuangBai(Phellodendron Rt.)
1-part…ZhiMu(Anemarrhena Rt)
1-part…DiGuPi(Lycium Rt)
1-part…YinChaiHU(Stellaria Rt)
1-part…MuDanPi(Moutan Bark)
1-part…DanShen(Chinese Salvia)
1-part…JinYinHua(Honeysuckle blossoms)
2-part…QingHao(Sweet Artemesia)
2-part…BaiShao(White Peony Rt)
2-part…GouQiZi(Lycium Fruit)
2-part…NuZhenzi(Privet Fruit)
2-part…TianMenDong(Asparagus Rt)
1-part…TuSiZi(Dodder Seeds)
1-part…WuWeZi(Schizandra seeds)

The second is if you have a tendency to get Bloated or swollen:

TCM HotFlashBuster #2

2-part…QingHao(Sweet Artemesia)
2-part…BaiShao(White Peony Rt)
2-part…GouQiZi(Lycium Fruit)
2-part…NuZhenzi(Privet Fruit)
2-part…TianMenDong(Asparagus Rt)
2-part…HuangBai(Phellodendron Rt.)
1-part…ZhiMu(Anemarrhena Rt)
1-part…DiGuPi(Lycium Rt)
1-part…YinChaiHU(Stellaria Rt)
1-part…MuDanPi(Moutan Bark)
1-part…DanShen(Chinese Salvia)
1-part…JinYinHua(Honeysuckle blossoms)
1-part…TuSiZi(Dodder Seeds)
1-part…WuWeZi(Schizandra seeds)
1-part…Houpo(Magnolia Bark)

EXCELLENT Western Formula:
These Herbs also tincture well together. Tinctures a are concentrated,powerful form of herb delivery. One teaspoon is enough FOR 3 times a day as a medicinal dose.

Western Hot Flash Buster Formula Reportedly very effective:
Best is to get 1 ounce (or 25 grams) for each “Part” in the formula.

3-parts…Marshmallow Rt.(Althea)
2-parts…Asparagus Rt.
2-parts…White Peony Rt.
2-parts…Spirulina Powder
1-part….Lemon Balm(Mellissa)
1-part….Dandelion Rt.(Taraxacum)
1/4-part..Turmeric Rt and/or…
1/4-part..Fennel seeds

  I have been taking Vitex for about a month now to help with PCOS, I have heard false unicorn root is also a wonderful herb for treating woman's conditions, however I was wondering if it is safe to mix Vitex and false unicorn root, or will it have an adverse effect ?

ANSWER: I am not aware that there is a problem taking the two herbs together, however, it would be safer to use a complex blend or formula, that is proven, such as a Chinese herbal patent, or Chinese, North American blends that have a good reputation.  With PCOS, it is important to remember to eat a healthy diet, with low processed foods, zero white flour or refined sugars, high whole foods, this is more important than herbs, though using the two together is most beneficial.

Hi, I am 35 yrs of age and suffer polycystic ovaries syndrome.. so my main problems are my hormones...facial hair, and I am overweight and i am dying to fall pregnant.  Any advice??  I tried for a week to take Vitex....two tabs a day....and then some one told me they could be dangerous....so I stopped.  I am having a period now and it's quite heavy and more painful than usual.  Should i continue?  If not where is my hope to conceive or ovulate?  Where is my hope to reduce facial hair. Please don't say eat healthy and low fat.  I have tried  the diets of the world but can't lose weight permanently.  Help me please.

ANSWER:  I don't think I can help you. Your statement, "don't say eat healthy, low fat" tells me that you are not really willing to make any substantive changes, which is what it requires to take charge of your health. The fact that you are looking for a "quick fix" or a "magic pill" tells me that you are probably better off going elsewhere. My first instructions, recommendations and suggestions ALWAYS involve a change in diet. Diet is not something you TRY. It is a way of life and if you don't choose to eat a healthy diet for the rest of your life, the maladies and illnesses that will most likely befall you are really a matter of choice on your part.
You only took the Vitex for 2 weeks. Herbal treatments take time. You didn't ruin your health overnight. You will not repair it overnight. You need at least 3-4 months of an herbal treatment for a chronic condition to see real changes and that ALWAYS includes a healthy diet and exercise every day. It is a holistic approach and if you aren't willing to do that, you're really wasting your time and money.

QUESTION: Do you know of a natural method to increase my hairs’ speed? I dyed my hair darker than it naturally is and now I want my hair to grow back to its natural color ASAP!!!
And do you know of a method to increase breast size naturally?  These are 2 very strange questions... but I hope you have solutions!!!

ANSWER: No and NO!  Your hair will grow at its own speed. There are no natural ways to speed it up, regardless of what you may read. Same goes for breast enhancements. Those are scams.
Eating a good diet and eliminating things like sugar, caffeine and white flour as well as artificial sweeteners, preservatives and colors will go a long way to improving your hair's health and vitality.

QUESTION: I am 43. I am interested in decreasing the length of my cycle. Do you have any suggestions?

Seriously? I recommend you don't fool around with nature. Why on earth would you want to decrease the length of your cycle? If it's normal and you don't have any problems, I'd suggest leaving well enough alone. You'll hit menopause soon enough and then you'll have a whole new set of fun experiences!

QUESTION: I suffer from sore nipples prior to my periods. I've heard of using comfrey leaf in a poultice to relieve the soreness. I have been taking vitamin E, flax seed oil & water retention capsules to see if that will help me. Other than waiting for my period to begin, is there anything you can recommend?

ANSWER: A comfrey leaf poultice might be your best bet. Is it the entire breast or just the nipples? You may want to try aloe or calendula. Evening Primrose oil, black current seed oil or borage oil are high in GLA which has been shown to have positive effects on PMS symptoms, especially breast tenderness. You may want to try those as well.

I really enjoyed reading your website about overall women's health.  There was some Q & A that I found similar to what I am looking for, I hope you can answer some of my questions cited below:

I recently found out that I have a condition called "endometriosis" along with some adhesion or scar tissues around my reproductive organs such as ovaries & tubes.  My question to you is: what Chinese herbs would be useful to treat these conditions?

Since I heard there is an ancient Chinese medicines/herbs that can help treated this, I would like to know if you know anything about them besides acupunctures.

Second question, I have just got a Lupron Dupot PE shot to suppress my ovaries from menstruating for at least 2-3 months and will have a follow-up in June for pelvic ultrasound to see if this medication shot works.  Do you know anything about this shot?

From what I was told that-if this Lupron works well for me to help shrinking or reducing the cyst growth on my right ovary-then, a laparoscopy is not necessary.  However, i also have a pelvic mass on my left ovary & my right is larger.  Is there any way that you can recommend me to take any natural herb remedies instead having a "potential surgery"??

I am aware of the Endometriosis Association & I have checked into their wonderful website.  It was very resourceful and I found a wonderful Endo Specialist before I learned of their recommendations.  I was referred
by my GYN doctor and I hope I am on the right track.

Although, I am 37 years old, I have not had any children of my own but would like to start my own family after I am corrected of this Endo condition I have.  The specialist that will helps me thru the next step to try conceive by treatments in either natural or IVF. I do hope it isn't too late for me to have one of my own as much as my lovely & support husband would love to have children with me.  The bottom line is I  just want to focus on my health first before my condition can becomes worse.  I didn't realized that I have had this condition all these years. I have a long history of having irregular periods at times & not knowing when they will occur.  I have also taken birth control pills to help regulate my period for a short term of 3 months.  Then, I also have heavy period cycles & bled nearly 2 to 3 weeks before it ended.

As of now, my period becomes lighter but not much of heaviness as I used to. It last for about 7 to 8 days.  But, the first 3 to 4 days are heavy at times and I have a lot of "pulps" coming out after urinating or showering.  This is what my doctor found out that I have an endometriosis because he detected
both of ovaries have "chocolate cysts" and not possible sure if I have corpus leumen until laparoscopy.

So, please be kind to reply all my concerns above & I would love to hear from you with any possibilities to bring good resolution. I am a firm believer and I hope I won't be so frightened to deal with all these womanly natures.  I look forward to hearing from you, shortly.

ANSWER: If you've read my column at all, you should know that I am not an authority on Chinese medicine or herbs. You would need to talk with a specialist concerning that. Acupuncture as well, although I have many friends who have benefited from it, so it is certainly an option for you.

There are several herbs that may be helpful in addressing the endometriosis. They are: dandelion root, wild yam root, burdock root, pau d'arco root, oregon grape root, vitex and dong quai root. I can make a custom tea for you if you like. Vitamin E is also helpful as it is a natural antagonist to estrogen which is related to endometriosis. It helps normalize hormone production and is essential to the health of your reproductive organs, so you may want to make it part of your daily ritual. GLA and Omega 3 oils are also found to be helpful. You can find these at your local health food store.

All of this, of course, goes back to your liver and making it healthy. Pure, natural foods will go a long way in helping you bring your body back into balance. No alcohol, white flour, sugar, artificial sweeteners or caffeine.

The shots you are taking are most likely messing up the balance of estrogen in your system, so they aren't helping you. I realize that birth control is important, but the number of letters I get every day from women with
problems with their periods and infertility after years of these types of birth control is growing daily. I can't help but believe that it may play a part, so I can't advise you on that aspect. Personally, I wouldn't do it.
I'm in menopause, but I don't take any type of synthetic hormones and trust herbs and healthy eating habits to get me through it.

Can you please advise how long it is safe to use Black Cohosh for menopausal symptoms.  I've been using it continuously for around a year now, along with Sage tincture, and am beginning to wonder if I should take a break from them.

ANSWER: I personally don't ever recommend taking any herb for extended periods without giving the body a break.. We can build up a tolerance for them, just like anything and even the safest of herbs may lose some of their effectiveness. You might want to take a 2 week break and then take it for 3-4 months, then a 2 week rest etc.

m not sure if you can answer this but I thought I would give it a try. I'm 17 and my period comes pretty normal. I have it for about 3-4 days and then its finished, so I think. After and day of not bleeding I start bleeding again for 1 day. Can you tell me what's up with that?

ANSWER: It could be many things, and I can't diagnose, but you are still young and your hormones are still adjusting. It may just be that. Break through bleeding is more common than you think. Are you on birth control? That can cause it. Also, if you are sexually active there could be something going on. If you have any concerns, please see your medical advisor. Just to make sure that it's nothing serious. Better safe than sorry!

I'm interested in the use of herbs for natural breast enlargement.  I found a program at www.flat2fab.com that uses fenugreek, red clover & saw palmetto pills, and massages with fenugreek extract, licorice root, and hops extract.  Have you heard of anyone having success with herbal breast enlargement?  Thanks.

I personally hate these type of products. They give herbs and herbalists a bad name. The herbs you described have estrogenic properties. What's actually happening to you is similar to what happens when you're pregnant. Your breasts swell because of the hormones. It can cause an unbalance in the hormone levels which could lead to other issues. The problem is, 9 times out of 10, once you stop taking these "miracle products", your breasts return to their original size. So you have to commit to taking this stuff forever! Great gig for the company, and they make plenty of money doing it, but a lousy thing to do to women in my opinion.

There is a breast enhancement cream called contour that I have heard about and I was wondering if you can help me determine if its safe to use. I want to use this product but I want to be sure that it is completely safe. They claim that it is safe because its ingredients are all herbal. The ingredients they listed is Sabal, Damiana, Dong Quai, Blessed Thistle, Kava Kava, Dandelion Root, Oat Bran, Wild Mexican Yam, and Motherwort. I have researched these herbs but I need help from a professional herbalist to tell me whether I should use it or not. And I was also wondering if it might have any bad affects on my reproductive system since I am only 19 years old and want to have children in the future. Please help.

ANSWER: Probably a more accurate question is, "is it harmful".  If you ask me "should I use it", I'm going to say no, because it's not natural, (meaning you're trying to change your body artificially), and it doesn't work. These breast enhancement lotions and potions are a hoax and a farce and I hate them. Natural or not.

That said, the herbs in the mixture are a combination of tonic herbs for the liver and hormone herbs. It's quite possible they may cause your breasts to firm up, since the estrogen will do that, much the same way it does when you become pregnant or when you are on your period. But when you stop taking in the hormones, things are going back to normal.
I don't know if there's anything else in the combination, where it's made, if the herbs are organic, etc etc etc, so is it safe? Hard to tell, but I don't like messing with hormones unless something isn't working properly. Could it affect you later? Who knows. If you take it long enough, it could screw up the balance of your hormones.
All in all, these things are money traps and not very effective. You are probably a beautiful young girl and think that bigger breasts will make you more attractive. These companies play on that attitude.
So, although I didn't give you a definitive answer to your question, perhaps I gave you some things to think about to re-evaluate the issue. Just because something has all natural, or herbs in it, doesn't automatically make it a good thing.

QUESTION: I have uterine fibroids.  So sometimes I am anemic. Well I made this iron rich syrup with yellow dock root, dandelion root and black strap molasses.  Started taking it a week ago.  But a few days ago I
had sever cramps and eventual bleeding.  Although I had fibroids for a while I never had irregular menstruation.  I did went to the emergency room and of course I am told to remove the fibroids because they are now causing irregular period.  My question for you is - do you think the syrup cause these symptoms and what is best way to get some iron in take daily without taking those huge tablets that the doctor prescribed.

ANSWER: I can't say whether the syrup caused the problem or not. If the only ingredients in it are what you listed, I don't see anything there that should cause that reaction, but everybody's system is different.

If you are anemic, iron is very critical to your health. Dandelion is an excellent source of iron, so perhaps you should try a dandelion tea and see if that helps at all. Other foods that are considered good sources of iron
are: Raw liver extract, blackstrap molasses, bananas, kelp, leafy greens, apples, apricots, broccoli, egg yolks raisins, yams and whole grains. Sugar reduces the iron absorption rate, so omitting sugar from your diet is something else you can do.

QUESTION: What herbs are best to take for ovarian cysts?

ANSWER: Ovarian cysts can be caused by a number of things and there is never one magic herb to treat anything. Rather, it involves a lifestyle change in diet, supplements and herbs to help it along. I recommend the following:
First, build up your immune system. - Vitamins A, C, E and selenium every single day. Also a cleansing tea at least once a quarter made of yellow dock, dandelion, burdock roots, ginger, astragalus, vitex, pau d'arco, and licorice root.
           Next, eliminate sugar, white flour and refined foods from your diet. Chocolate, cola and black and green teas should go as well. These are methyl-xanthines and have been linked to ovarian cyst production.
        Eliminate red meat, because of the estrogens. If you must eat it, do so sparingly and only organically raised.
          Decrease milk and dairy products. These are also sources of exogenous estrogen. Yogurt or cultured milk, like buttermilk is OK.

Increase foods high in vitamins C, E and selenium like dark, green leafy vegetables. Spinach, kale, collards all fit into this category.
Finally, a good liver cleanse tea to ensure the liver can help balance the endocrine system is essential. I have a liver cleanse tea that would work great for this. They can be found on my website at www.allgoodegifts.com in the Apothecary. If you'd like a custom mixture using the herbs identified above, select custom for the blend and in the comments section of the checkout, put "cleansing tea for ovarian cysts".

QUESTION: I've had irregular periods for several years now.  I'm very overweight and suspect that the irregular periods have to do with my hormone levels.  I say this because a gynecologist put me on birth control medication approximately eight years ago to make my periods more regular and, while on them, my period was perfect -- I knew exactly what day each month it would begin and end, which day would be the heaviest, etc.  I never had any spotting between periods, which I hear some women have when taking birth control medications. Unfortunately, I had to go off the birth control medication because it seemed to raise my blood pressure too high (my mother had the same problem when she took birth control medication).  My "normal" periods lasted for one month after going off the birth control medication and then became erratic

I have heard that chasteberry is a good place to begin for getting periods regular.  I have high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes and take oral medications for both.   Will chasteberry make either high blood pressure or diabetes worse?  My medications are the generic versions of Dyazide, Vasotec, and Glucophage.  Are you aware of chasteberry interacting negatively with any of these medications?

ANSWER: Chaste berry is very good for regulating periods. I cannot speak to the possible drug interactions with all of your medications, but by itself, it should not affect your diabetes or blood pressure in an adverse manner. Speak with your pharmacist concerning the drug interactions.

My Feminini-tea is great for regulating periods. You can find it on the website at www.allgoodegifts.com in the Apothecary.

QUESTION: Can you please tell me if saw palmetto  is safe for women to use.  I know it has many health benefits other than for men's health.  However, I have read precautions on some supplements saying it should be used  by men only.  How does it effect women's hormones. Does it increase the level of estrogen and if so does this present the same danger that synthetic estrogen does?  Thank you for your  help.

ANSWER: Of course you can use it. As a matter of fact, women suffering from hirsutism, an excess of testosterone in their system causing unwanted hair growth, have used saw palmetto quite successfully. However, it is not a substitute for estrogen. If you are looking for something to supplement your estrogen, the better choices would be wild yam, sarsaparilla, and vitex. The real question is, why do you need extra estrogen? Are you post-menopausal? If not, then a better choice would be something to bring your endocrine system back into balance so it produces the proper hormones on its own.  I have a tea called Endo Tea on my website at www.allgoodegifts.com under TEAS in the Herb Shoppe.

QUESTIONS: I'm only 17, and I always have random vaginal discharges. I remember in health I was told that this was normal, but sometimes it seems to be a lot and it is a very white color, sometimes with an odor. And during sex, I become very dry and my boyfriend has to use his saliva for that to be different, and besides that, I tend to queef a lot. Also, whenever I have sex, I find a lot of white fluid on the sheets under me.
I went to my gyno, and was told that I'm in good health, but I don't know if there really is anything wrong or if I can stop this. It's embarrassing
being that I'm only 17. Please help if you can. It would be greatly appreciated.

ANSWER: I cannot believe your gynecologist told you that a white discharge with an odor is normal and healthy! I would go back to him and have him do a smear to see what's going on. Once you know, you can treat it. It sounds like a yeast infection to me. If you're having oral sex, that's a safe bet. The human mouth is the most disgusting, germ-ridden place on the body. And lots of times, that's exactly what happens. Oral sex, yeast infection. Also, you can pass it back and forth from you to your partner. Are you using a condom? If not, you should be. It could be any number of STDs that are out there floating around. I can't even keep up with them anymore. Get a diagnosis from your doctor. Tell him exactly what you've told me. This is not normal and if he tells you it is, see another doctor.


I am 53 and I have been suffering from insomnia, anxiety, heart palpitations from menopause.  I am taking vitamins and red clover, vitex and I have primrose oil.  I am taking flaxseed and I have cod liver oil.  I was taking vitex in the day and red clover at night.  I am suffering from chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia also so I am exhausted and have chronic sinusitis on top of it all a drip that gives me earaches and infections.  If you can give me any advice I have seen dozens of doctors and no help and if you can help me for anything, let me know and is red clover like a sedative at all and should be taken at night?  I have no flashes from red clover but I tried valerian and melatonin for sleep.

ANSWER: The things you are taking are some of the best herbs for women going through menopause. I have a tea for sleep containing valerian, hops and skullcap. You need to take it on a pretty continual basis. It isn't a quick fix. You also need to be very careful about what you eat. White sugar and White Flour (the White DEATH!) need to go - completely. Every day I read about one more thing that is attributed to just these two things. It's amazing. When I stopped the sugar and white flour from my diet, the "allergies and life-long chronic sinus problems" I had suffered with since childhood completely disappeared. It was amazing. I can tell now if I eat something with white flour or sugar in it because my head stuffs up and my throat gets a phlegmy. YUK!  Anyhow, you seem on the right path. I have a tea for women going through menopause called Crone's Tea. Also my Restful Night tea is available on my website at http://www.allgoodegifts.com/ under TEAS in the Herb Shoppe.  One last thing. One of the best things for relaxation is lavender. Get some lavender spray - Pure, please!  I also have that available on the website under personal care products. Spray your linens before retiring and it will help relax you.

QUESTION: I am someone who suffers from endometriosis, psoriasis, and who has been very slim since elementary. Is there any herbs I can try or research that can help me with my endometriosis and help me to decrease my metabolism and increase my appetite. I have made an appointment with an herb therapist to help me out, but I want to know other opinions too! Please give me some advice or lead me on the right path. Thanks.

ANSWER: Endometriosis is caused by an overproduction of estrogen in the system. The best and most natural way to deal with it is through a pure diet with no sugar, processed foods or white flour, and natural remedies to bring the endocrine system back into balance. I have a tea called Endo Tea that I developed just for this purpose. It contains dandelion root, wild yam, burdock, pau d'arco vitex dong quai, sassafras and cinnamon. You can find it on my website at http://www.allgoodegifts.com/ under teas in the Herb Shoppe. Since you have an appointment with an herbalist, I would say that's an excellent first step. If you are taking traditional birth control pills, they may be contributing to your problem.

QUESTION: I was interested in finding out about herbal hormone replacements, if you can help me please email me back

ANSWER: It kind of depends on what you are looking to do. Are there particular things you are experiencing that you need assistance with, or do you just want something to help normalize hormones? Are you pre or post menopausal. It makes a difference.  A broad answer would be Chaste berry or vitex, motherwort, St. John's Wort, black cohosh and wild yam root.  A combination of these herbs will provide a "normalization" of the hormones associated with women's issues.  I have a medicinal tea I make for my menopausal clients called Crone's Tea. You can find it at my website at http://www.allgoodegifts.com/ under Teas in the Herb Shoppe.

I am currently on birth control. Are there any herbs that I should not take?

ANSWER: Is it possible to talk you out of the birth control? Just kidding. It's probably doing you more harm than good. I'm not an authority on drug interactions, but I'd need to know what you're taking.

QUESTION: I would like to know, how many times can I drink a Tea made with: Chaparral, Verbena, and Pau D Arco.  They are for shrinking Fibroids in the Uterus.

ANSWER: Although the verbena should not cause much of a problem, Pau d'arco and Chaparral shouldn't be taken continuously for long periods of time. Both are very strong herbs and should only be taken under a health practitioner's guidance. I wouldn't take more than 1 cup a day and not continuously for over 2 weeks.


QUESTION: What can I do about chronic bacterial vaginosis that doesn't go away with conventional medicine. I'm breastfeeding my daughter too.  Please help, I've been suffering with this for 9 years.  Just to clarify - these suggestions are ok while I'm nursing? I would take
garlic pills? I'm taking prenatal vitamins - does that cover the B complex?  How much would the custom formula be?

ANSWER: Yes, all of that is fine while you're nursing, that's why I suggested those particular solutions. No harm to the baby. The prenatals you are taking will not give you enough B complex. You'll need to get additional B. All my teas are the same price, even the custom formulas. 12 tea bags for $4.00 or 4 oz loose in a tin for $8.00. Keep in mind that I only use pure organically grown herbs in all my formulations. Go to the website at www.allgoodgifts.com and look in the Herb Shoppe under TEAS. Choose custom blend and in the comments in the checkout, just write Vaginitis tea for douche, nursing mother, (so I know which herbs to use)  Get a good quality acidophilus and take it every day. Garlic and B complex are important too.  You can make a douche of water and calendula, garlic and some tea tree oil.

QUESTION: I am a 21 year old female who has been sexually active since I was 15.  My problem is I cannot naturally become "lubricated" and that has become a turn off for myself and for my partner.  It is embarrassing and I was hoping you might have some suggestions. Thanks

ANSWER: This problem is more common than you think. Make sure you are drinking at least 2 quarts of water and/or tea per day. Take 400-600 I.U. of Vitamin E daily.
        A salve of comfrey leaf and root, St. John's Wort and Calendula may also be helpful. I can custom make one for you if you're interested. E-mail me with the word ORDER in the subject line for more information.
          Always lubricate your vagina before sex. Even the oil from a vitamin E capsule can be used safely. Try integrating it into your foreplay so it isn't such a turn off.

QUESTION: I have always had problems with my menstrual cycle.  I got my first period when I was 17 years old.  It was very irregular.  When I hit 18 my period started to come every month.  It was pretty steady until I turned 23,  Then they became irregular again and when I turned 26 I stopped getting my period all together.  My doctor said there was nothing wrong with me and that I should lose some weight.  I am over weight.  I would like to have a baby but obviously if I'm not menstruating that isn't going to happen. I really don't
want to take fertility drugs and want to try a safe natural way.  Should I start drinking red raspberry leaf tea?  What would you suggest? I thank you for any information you can give me!

ANSWER: My first suggestion to you is to find another doctor. Anyone who tells you there is nothing wrong with you when you're experiencing symptoms like you described does not have your best interests at heart.
You need to find out why you aren't menstruating. This could be hormonal or it could be something more serious. Find another doctor, preferably one who specializes in women's issues, and have some blood work done to determine what's really happening.
             If you are indeed overweight, you didn't say how much overweight, you should certainly consider losing that before trying to get pregnant. It could be harmful for you and for your baby. I can't recommend anything until we know why you aren't menstruating. If you have a diagnosis, write back to me and I'll be happy to make some suggestions. I have a tea I make that is a cleanser for the endocrine system to help the hormones, but if your problem isn't hormonal, that won't help you. Let me know what you find out!

QUESTION: I was wondering whether or not there was an herbal remedy for my situation.  I have a very important weekend coming up, and I believe I am due to begin my period during that time.  Is there something that may allow me to postpone menstruation?  If there is, where would I be able to find such a remedy, and
a price for such.

ANSWER:  I wouldn't advise trying to manipulate your periods. Your menstrual cycle is a combination of carefully timed hormonal releases and your body's physiology. Tampering with the delicate balance of your normal bodily functions and cycles can be dangerous and would cause more harm than good. No matter how important the weekend.

QUESTION: I'm hoping to find some information about herbs for my family.  My 11 year old daughter just began her menses and I'm looking for an herbal tea combination to provide her and myself with some nourishment and comfort during this time of physical upheaval.  Any information would be useful.

ANSWER: I have a wonderful "Feminini-Tea" that I make if you're interested. E-mail me with the word ORDER in the subject line for more info. My favorite herbs for women during menstruation are raspberry leaf, vitex and cramp bark.

I am menopausal and have night sweats I would like to take Black Cohosh for it but don't know how much to take, could you please advise.

If you are buying the Black Cohosh capsules, there should be directions on the bottle. I prefer a nice tea that combines Wild Yam, Licorice, Black Cohosh, Ginseng and False unicorn root.

What herb can be helpful in treating uterian fibroids, blocked fallopian tubes and adhesion of organs in the abdomen.

Uterine fibroids are benign tumors, generally solid in nature that grow on the uterus. They can be symptom free or can cause bleeding or pain. Not much is known about them except that they are dependent on estrogen for their growth. Estrogen treatments, birth control pills and pregnancy can all contribute to the growth of uterine fibroids.  First and foremost, you need to take a good look at your diet. Estrogenic foods, or foods that contribute to estrogen production, include dairy, eggs, red meat and fat. Also, sugar, caffeine, white flour and refined foods should be eliminated.  Once you are eating healthy, you might try the following: (The recommendations are in no way meant to prescribe. Please see a qualified medical professional for that.) A liver cleanse tea made of yellow dock root, wild yam root dandelion root, Oregon grape root, burdock root and chaste tree. (My company, All Goode Gifts has a great liver detox tea if you're interested. Go to www.allgoodegifts.com)  Chaparral capsules made from equal parts of chaparral powder, pau d'arco powder, yellow dock root powder and chaste tree powder. Take 2 capsules three times a day for three months. (I can make these up for you if you like. Go to the website and e-mail me) Adhesion of organs in the abdomen is something I'm not at all familiar with, but my suggestion to you is to seek medical advice.

I would like to know if there is and herbal remedy or poultice that I can apply on this vaginal cyst. The glands are located in the 4 o'clock to 8 o'clock position in the lower vaginal cavity. I do not want to go through any surgery because of the delicate nature of the area. I have been applying aloe vera and see some relief shrinkage.  Some say bromelin (fresh pineapple) red clover or sweet clover pills helps in the
lymph area.

Have you had this examined by a medical professional? You don't want to mess with anything like this in case it is serious. There are some remedies that can be used for vaginal cysts, but I would make sure it is benign and not something more serious before proceeding.  That said, check your diet and make sure you are avoiding estrogenic foods such as dairy, eggs, red meat and fat. emphasize a diet rich in dark green leafy vegetables, whole grains and fresh fruit. Diet is essential in any cleansing/building program and should be carefully considered when developing a natural program for cyst conditions. The following herbs taken in a tea or in capsules are helpful: chaparral, pau d'arco, yellow dock root, vitex, wild yam, dandelion root, Oregon grape root, and burdock root. You can also make what's called a bolus.  Mix 1 cup of coconut oil with 3 parts slippery elm powder, 1 part black walnut hull powder, 1 part myrrh powder, 1 part pau d'arco powder and 1/2 part goldenseal powder. Add one to 2 drops of tea tree oil.  Make sure all the herbs are very finely ground. mix until you have a workable paste roll into boluses the size and shape of your pinky finger. store them in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid in the refrigerator. Insert one each night into the vagina. Use a panty shield, as the coconut oil will melt and  make a bit of a mess. Every couple of days, gently douche with a mild vinegar and water douche to remove any residual herbs.

I am interested in stopping the hot flashes if you can help I would be so grateful.  My doctor took me off hormone replacement because of the cancer reports but I need something for the night sweats.

Hot flashes are a common problem, though still not fully understood. There are several things you can do to reduce the severity and sometimes eliminate them completely. As always, my first line of defense is the diet. It will do you know good to keep putting junk into your body while you take an herbal remedy to help your symptoms. Try the following: Stick to a grains based diet and eliminate ALL sugars and sugar-rich foods. (This would include fruit and fruit juices for the time being). There is a formula called "Dr. Christopher's Change-Ease formula" that is available in most health food stores. Take 2 tablets 3 dimes a day and continue for 3 months. Concentrate on foods rich in calcium and vitamin E.  Take ginseng daily. Drink sage tea every day. one Tablespoon of sage per cup of water. Steep for 20 minutes. (Garden sage is fine. Make sure no pesticides have been used on it).  The following herbs are helpful for relief of hot flashes: sage, blue vervain, motherwort, blessed thistle, rosemary, ginseng, false unicorn root, black Cohosh, licorice and wild yam.  You might also try a dermal progesterone crème with wild yam in it. I use one, and it is absolutely wonderful. There is a company called "The Key Corporation". Contact them for their Endo Crème 9000.

'm a 39 year old female.  A few months ago, i started spotting between
my periods, first just for a couple days after my period ended and just a couple days before it started, but then pretty much everyday between periods.  I've been to my gyno, they ran all the tests, could find nothing
wrong, so they put me on birth control, which did the trick, but caused horrible headaches, so i stopped using it.  Of course I'm back to spotting again.  I've seen herbs for menopause, and also heard about raspberry leaf for controlling bleeding.  Could you give me more info?

ANSWER:  Birth Control pills seem to be the panacea of the day for all female problems. Unfortunately, messing with a woman's estrogen production isn't a good idea. There are several things you can do.  First,
try to include seaweed in your diet every day. You can take it in capsule form. Make sure you are taking an iron supplement. If you are spotting, you are most certainly anemic or heading in that direction. Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables, root vegetables, high quality protein foods and whole grains.

Make a tea of the following:
2 parts wild yam root, 2 parts licorice root, 1 part burdock root, 3 parts dandelion root, 1 part comfrey root, 2 parts sassafras and or birch bark for flavor, 1 part cinnamon, 1 part vitex, 2 parts pau d'arco and 1 part ginger
root.  Use 4 to 6 tablespoons of the herb mixture per quart of water. Heat slowly and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently for 20 minutes with the pot covered. strain and drink 3 to 4 cups daily for at least 4 months.


I'm a 57 year old female expetancing night sweats, is there any thing that I
can take to help lessen them.

ANSWER: Night sweats come on for many reasons, but considering your age, I would guess part of it could be menopausal. Excessive sweating can also be the result of hypoglycemia or hyperthyroidism. Your doctor can test for either of these conditions. There are several herbs you should avoid if you are sweating excessively. These include cinnamon, ephedra, green tea (except decaffeinated,) Japanese mint, juniper berries, kudzu, ledebouriella, lobelia, mate, red cedar, sassafras and yohimbe. Avoid coffee, tea and other stimulants. Avoid highly spiced foods, especially if you live in a warm climate. Avoid MSG. Sage and walnut leaf can be helpful in alleviating excessive sweating. You can take them as a tea, or in a bath bag.

My husband and I are trying for baby #2. Conventional medicine is not doing the trick.  I am currently taking clomid to stimulate the ovaries to ovulate with no luck.  I want to try an herbal approach and have been doing a lot of research.  I just cant seem to find out if Black Cohosh and Vitex can or should be used together.  Everything I have read on the two makes me think that they would cancel each other out.  Can you let me know what you think?

ANSWER:   Your question is a common one, but your approach has me a bit puzzled. Black Cohosh is a uterine stimulant that is often used to bring on contractions. It is only to be used in the last week of pregnancy. If you have been taking Black Cohosh hoping to conceive, it's no mystery to me why you haven't. Although it is used for it's estrogen-like qualities, and that may have been what threw you off, it will not help you increase your fertility or ability to conceive.   Since this is Baby #2, I'm assuming there are no other conditions that would prevent normal conception. The following formulas have a reputation for increasing fertility.

Take 2 tablets of dong quai three times a day, except during menstruation.. (Have your husband take 2 capsules of ginseng every day)

Fertility Tea
3 parts wild yam root                1/2 part dong quai                                    1/2 part false unicorn root
2 parts licorice root                    a pinch of stevia for sweetness                   1/4 part orange peel
4 parts sassafras bark or root      1 part ginger root
1 part chaste tree or vitex          1 part cinnamon bark

Use 4 to 6 Tbls of the herb mixture per quart of water. Add the herbs (put them all in a muslin bag or large tea ball if you have one.) to cold water and bring to a slow simmer over low heat. Keep the pot tightly covered. Simmer gently for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to infuse for another twenty minutes. Drink 3 to 4 cups daily. Hubby can drink this too, but substitute ginseng for the dong quai in his mixture.

I have a problem with progesterone and I have heard that chaste berry (vitex) can help in this area my question is I am taking Gonal-F which is a FHS for infertility will that affect the meds and should they be taken together.  Also after my IUI they usually put me on progesterone supplement to help raise my progesterone since it is so low but even on the supplement. I had a miscarriage the last time I got pregnant.

Chaste Tree, or vitex (the berries are the part used) has a stimulating effect on the pituitary gland, which regulates and normalizes hormone production in both men and women. For this reason, it has an excellent reputation as a tonic for the endocrine gland and is used to normalize the reproductive systems of both men and women. It can also restore and balance our stores of energy. It is the herb of choice for many women to relieve the symptoms of menopause and PMS and to regulate any kind of menstrual dysfunction. As to taking it with your current medications, please consult your doctor as drug interactions can be very serious. Never mix herbs and prescription drugs without the advice and guidance of a medical professional.

In your letter, you asked the question on Chaste Tree as well as a problem with progesterone. There are many natural progesterone creams available at health food stores. Look for one with Wild Yam in it. Lastly, you mentioned a miscarriage and I didn't know if you were looking for an herb to assist with that or not. To address that briefly, nutrition is critical. No alcohol, coffee or tobacco if you are experiencing chronic miscarriages. Black Haw Root taken as a tea is regarded as an especially effective miscarriage preventative. It can be taken, through the entire pregnancy. False Unicorn root is another herb used for women who have experienced multiple miscarriages. A tincture, 3 to 5 drops per day for the first trimester is the usual dose.

I have been taking 800 mg of Vitex each morning for the past month for
fertility. I am wondering if it is a safe to drink "Female Toner" by
Traditional Medicinals during my periods as I have in the past. Would it
interact with the Vitex at all? Also, is it true that I should discontinue
the Vitex after six months?

ANSWER: Vitex is considered one of the herbs beneficial in increasing fertility.  Some of the others are: Astragalus, dong guai, false unicorn, wild yam and licorice.  I don't know what's in the female tonic, but I like the Traditional Medicinals teas very much.  There are no known cases of vitex causing problems after extended us.  If, however, you do become pregnant, you should discontinue use of all medicines and herbs until consulting with a medical professional.


MORE ON BREAST ENLARGEMENT (You guys just don't get it, do you?)
  Sorry to be one of the many women to ask you about what herbs play in the part of breast-enlargement. I understand you believe it's a waste of time. Well, I was wondering if there's any harm in trying. Some women  actually achieve results 2-7 months after using a combination of fennel, fenugreek, wild yam, etc. Does that mean that their results are only temporary? And is there any danger in taking larger quantities of there products? (say 3 capsules of wild yam, fenugreek, and fennel 3x a day along with a few cups of tea from the mixed fresh herbs)? I've already bought these products, and I don't want them to go to waste, maybe just for the other benefits I can take them? I really hope to hear from you soon:)!!!
I feel kinda disappointed, I guess I'm not the only one

ANSWER:  I am sorry you are disappointed.  There is no harm in trying.  If someone not associated with a product told me they actually got results from a product I would be glad to get these testimonials  posted to our site.

Unfortunately I am not sure the industry that produces products that play on human emotions are willing to use their pure profits to do the proper testing to verify a theory that some combination of herbs actually promotes breast enlargement.

I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings or burst anyone's bubbles...hope is a great human emotion/feeling. 
Being a man I guess I don't understand the need to enlarge the breast given to you by nature.  Please enlighten me.  My issue is the pressure caused by society imposed  on the person that does not have what is considered by the fashion industry a perfect body.  Or the teasing a little girl who has not developed yet gets when she is in school and desperately wants to be a woman before her time has come.
It it ultimately your choice what your do with your body, if you don't like what you have been dealt you can always try to change it.  This is what I can honestly say about the herbs you mentioned here are the normal results achieved.

Fennel, tastes good if you like licorice and calms the digestive tract.  Helps to increase milk flow in lactating women.

Fenugreek, helps control blood sugars and has a very bitter taste, helps to jump starting the digestive process if taken before meals.  It has also been used in formulas to promote milk flow.

Wild Yam helps with spasms, calms digestive tract is good for gas, diarrhea and menstrual cramps.  This plant does not have any human hormones or steroids.

I have had many questions on this subject, it and losing weight are probably the most answered questions to date.

  Please tell me if there are any harmful effects from taking  two 500 mg  capsules
to give my libido more drive at age 43 for a healthy normal female.

  Horny Goat Weed, also known as Yin yan huo, lustful sheep plant and stinking lascivious goat plant is Latin Named: Epimidium macranthum and E. grandiflorium

Horny Goat Weed is not meant for long-term use it is normally used for impotence, frequent urination, pre-ejaculation, low back pain, pain in knees, male infertility, cold in the kidneys, popular TCM herb for men who need help keeping it up.  For short term use: a little helps - a lot burns out the kidneys. Often used by older men short term.

Contraindications: Excessive heat signs.  Long term use. Prostitus, excessive libido, excessive use could damage you and cause: dizziness, vomiting, dry mouth and nosebleeds.

Additional:  Sheep and goats eat it and then mount anything! This herb is rarely if ever used alone traditionally.  Sometimes found in a liqueur in Chinatown.  Not to be used for more than 2-3 weeks at a time.  



  I am 16 years old and I'm 4 foot 11 inches tall. I'm a pretty small girl. I weight about 105 -110. My shoe size is 5 to 5 and a half. And size 3 pants.  So from my description you can tell I'm rather tiny but my breast are a size 34c.  I know theirs girls with bigger breasts then mine but its hard for me to find shirts that fit right. And their are all kinds of products sold in stores and on TV to help enlarge your breasts.  you know the kind where you take 1 or 2 pills a day till you get the size you want and then stop taking them and they will stay that size. (I don't know if that stuff really works or not) My sister is 20 and is the opposite of me. she buys stuff to make them bigger. Anyhow can you suggest some kind of herbal pills i might be able to get over the  counter in a store that might decrease my breast size. or if I have to send away to get it that's fine too. If there is no pill you can find do you know of any exercises I could that might make them smaller or at least firmer?  thank you for your time and i hope to hear from you soon.

ANSWER:  You are in a unique position, most of the questions I get from young girls and women are how to increase breast size.  You may simply want to wait another 4-6 years until you are in your early 20's and see how you feel then.  If you are uncomfortable with the way you look or are teased at school I am sorry.  You are a beautiful young women and need as much self confidence as you can muster, you may want to find someone to talk to it about.  I would be glad to help if I could.

My first thought is there is probably no product out there that would work for your problem.  I am sorry, but that is my honest answer and I agree with you that there is probably no product out there to enlarge breasts.

But, if you are will to try anything, you might try Figwort also known as Carpenter square a Native American Herb.  Its Latin Name is Scrophularia nodosa and S.marylandica (the S. is abreviation for Scrophularia).  It has been used in the past for swellings, cysts, etc of the breasts and other parts of the body. You can take it both internally (make a tea or take a tincture) and rub it on externally or make a strong tea then soak a cloth in it and place on your breasts several times a day.

Additionally I would try Chaste Tree Berry (to balance your hormones), Red Clover (for swellings and lymph edema) and Dandelion Leaves (as a diuretic to reduce swollen breasts) these can be done as a tea or an alcohol extract called a tincture.

My other suggestion would be clean up your diet, eat only organic foods, produce and especially meats, chicken, turkey and dairy products.  Many of today's animals are injected with drugs to make them bigger, these drugs are called steroids, and they are passed onto the people that eat the products made from them.  My daughter is only two and we only let her eat organic produce and products.

Additionally many household products, have chemicals that act like hormones on the human body, be careful not to inhale or handle them with bare skin, avoid them or use them with gloves and in well ventilated rooms.  There are natural household cleaners, soaps, etc., available at health food stores or natural grocers that try not to use these harsh chemicals in them.

One final tip, don't cook in microwave ovens with plastics, the plastic containers can pass chemicals into the foods cooked this way and they also act like hormones on the human body.

You had asked about firming them up, not sure what you meant here, breast tissue does not have muscle in it, but the muscles in the chest wall behind them and your back and shoulders help support and pull up the breast you can build these muscles up to lift the breasts.

One final thought you may want to get properly fitted for a bra, this will help support the breast and confine them more so clothes may fit better.  Larger department stores and specialty stores strictly for bra fittings are available, get you mother, older sister, aunt or a friend to go with you.

  Everyone is always trying to increase their bust, I on the other hand just finished breast feeding my baby after several months and am waiting for my milk to dry up.  I want to make the swelling go away, or help it at least and maybe help my milk dry up in the meantime.  It has been several days and they are still sore and swollen.  The baby made the transfer to the bottle wonderfully, I on the other hand want to chop off my chest!  Any advice? 

  Herbs that have been used in the past for this include Sage, White Sage and additionally the Chinese herb Angelica dahurica is very drying

  I'm 29 years old my DRs have been watching 3 cyst's on the ovaries the one on the right is blood filled and the two on the left on fluid filled one is complex and one is simple they have beenthere for four cycles I had two ultrasounds they are the same size still. My question is my dr. said they are concerned about the one that is complex why? they said it is a good sign cause there not getting any bigger.

ANSWER:  From a site on the Internet on Ovarian Cysts

The most common site of a pelvic mass is the ovary. The age of the woman gives the doctor great insight into how serious the finding of an ovarian cyst can be.
Finding a cyst in a young girl before she's begun menstruation is alarming and can be malignant 50% of the time. An ovarian cyst in a post-menopausal woman is also frequently malignant. In both of these age groups, diagnostic surgery to make an absolute identification is needed. This can be done by either diagnostic laparoscopy which is inserting a tube with a camera attached to it through the belly button, or diagnostic laparotomy which is making an incision through the abdomen, and looking at the ovary.
The most challenging area of patient care for a doctor are the cysts that occur between these two extremes in there productive life of women. A sonogram can help in the diagnosis.
The most common cysts found are the functionalcysts. A functional cyst can be one of four types and are not malignant:follicular, corpus luteum, theca luteum, and polycystic ovaries.
A follicular cyst occurs when the normal follicle, or sac that matured to release an egg, does not shrink after release of the egg. These are soft, have thin membrane walls, and contain clear fluid. These can rupture, causing sudden, severe pain which gradually goes away over several days. Usually, however, they spontaneously disappear over the course of one or more menstrual cycles. They can cause changes in your periods and pelvic pain. Depending on the size of the cyst, it can just be observed or treated with birth control pills.
Corpus luteum cysts are less common, but cause more symptoms and problems. They become larger than follicular cysts, thus causing more pelvic pain. They result when bleeding occurs in the follicle after an egg is released. This type of cyst often causes a delayed period and if it ruptures, can cause bleeding into the abdomen which may necessitate surgery.
Theca luteum cysts, the least common of the functional cysts, are often associated with an abnormal pregnancy. They most often occur in both ovaries, unlike the functional cysts described above. They disappear without treatment after the pregnancy is terminated.
Polycystic ovaries are multiple clear fluid filled cysts in both ovaries and are associated with menstrual problems and hormone imbalances.

Endometriosis can cause complex ovarian cysts or endometriomas, also commonly called chocolate cysts. Up to 60%of women with endometriosis have ovarian involvement.

Hopes this helps

  I recently had a mammogram and they found a "cyst." Small, but this is the first time I've ever had anything wrong with my breasts. I can't stop thinking about it, even though they tell me not to worry about it.  My question - A friend told me that Red Clover helps get rid of cysts. If this is true, how much do I need to use a day to make it effective? She's talking Red Clover as a tea. I drink a lot of tea. Always DE-CAF, and a lot of Jasmine tea.

  Your friend is correct.  Red Clover is used for lymphatic drainage and swellings especially in the breast, which includes cysts.  It could actually work better when combined with Saw Palmetto berries.
Red Clover is also used as a preventative for breast cancer or to treat cancer as a lymph drainage herb.
This herb is also rich in flavanoids, minerals, vitamins and the isoflavones such as those found in Soy.
The suggested dose would be as a Tea 1-2 teaspoons of ground Red Clover flowers (adding in the Saw Palmetto is extra), Steep in 8 oz water for an hour, drink 2- 6 Cups a day.
It can also be taken as a tincture 60-90 drops up to 4-6 times a day.

  I have just been diagnosed as having a uterine cyst, which my doctor classifies as a cross between a cyst and a growth (it shows up as a mass of cells/blood? encircled by a lining), about 4 cm across in my uterus. it was there 6 weeks ago and seems to have grown abt a cm in the meantime. I am still waiting for blood results on cancer markers, but would like to know what herbs I could take to help, if it is indeed cancer. I am 29 yo and have a 15 month-old child, I hope to have more children in the future.

ANSWER:  Without a clear diagnosis I cannot help but on a general level.  Here is what I can provide right now.

Herbs that have been used for cysts include

Dan shen, Red Root Sage, Latin Named: Salvia miltiorrhiza
Gui pi, Cinnamon (Chinese cinnamon not Ceylon), Latin Named: Cinnamonium cassia, C. quizhi (use twigs), C. rouqui(use thin young bark)
Dang Qui, Tangkuei,  Dong Quai, Latin Named:  Angelica sinesis
Mu dan pi, cinnabar skin, Tree Peony, Latin Named: Paeonia suffruticosa
Xiang fu, Nut sedge, Chufa grass, Latin Name:  Cyperus spp
Xia ku cao, Self Heal, All Heal, Heal -all, Latin Name:Prunella vulgarus
Blue Cohosh,  Papoose Root, Squawroot, Latin Name:    Caulophyllum thalictroides
Saw palmetto, Latin Name:  Serona repens
Chaparrel, Latin Name:   Larrea divaricata, L. Mexicana, L. tridentata
Red Root, New Jersey Tea, Latin Name:  Ceanothus americanus
Angelica, Latin Name:  Angelica archangelica, A atropurpurea
Burdock Root, Latin Name: Arctium lappa, A. minor
Chaste Tree,     Monks pepper, Latin Name:  Vitex agnus-castus
Red Clover, Latin Name:  Trifolium pratense
Violet, Latin Name: Viola odorata, V. papillonacea, V. xeodensis
Thuja, Flat cedar, Latin Name: Thuja occidentalis

I have answered quite a few questions on herbal medicine and cancer you may want to read my other responses online.  I would use immune modulating herbs and a formula called Fu Zheng.

  I am a 41 yr. old female who can't seem to get rid of a vaginal discharge.I've been checked by five different doctors, and all of them said I had a yeast infection. There is a clear to gray color with minimal itching. I have taken everything over the counter, but to no avail. I"ve also been giving stronger prescriptions, but still the discharge doesn't stop. Please help! 

ANSWER:  What you are describing is called leukorrhea, it is sometimes associated with pregnancy.  Leukorrhea is a white discharge from the vagina. Causes include: Trichomonas maginalis or chlamydia; Candida albicans or yeast infection; excess douching; vitamin B deficiency; antibiotic use; contraceptives; and intestinal worms. This condition is especially common in pregnant and diabetic women. Symptoms include: vaginal discharge, burning, and itching. Bloody discharge may be a symptom of more serious disorders.

You may want to check for dietary  connections, reduce refined and processed carbohydrates, sugar and dairy.

Please get checked for diabetes or pregnancy before proceeding with any new therapies.

Some herbs specific to Leukorrhea include

Agrimony, Latin Name: Agrimonia spp   
Shan yao, Mountain Medicine, Chinese Yam, Latin Name:   Dioscorea opposita/ D. batatas
Bu qu zhi, Latin Name:  Psoralea corylifolia

For mucopurulent discharge
Uva Ursi, Bearberry, Kinninnik, Latin Name:  Arctostaphylos uva-ursi 
Wild Indigo, Latin Name: Baptisia tinctora  this one needs to be used with caution

For infections

use garlic, Echinacea, barberry, Oregon grape, Coptis

  Please let me know...is there any cream, lotion or medicine for small sized breasts? and explain how does it work?

ANSWER:  I know of no herbs or combination of herbs in pill, tea, tincture, salve, ointment or other form that can truly help with this issue.

That said, I will tell you that most of the products on the market use herbs or herbal combination that normally have the action of increasing milk flow in nursing mother's.  These herbs such as Fennel, Fenugreek, Blessed Thistle and Goat's Rue have also had anecdotal references to increased breast size for these nursing mother's but this is explained as the following: their milk flow increases so their milk glands increase to produce the increased flow and store the milk until use, this is associated to these nursing mother's breast enlargement.  Whether any of these herbs will have the breast enlarging effect on a non nursing mother is unknown.

Saw Palmetto has also been associated with enlargement of breast tissue because of its Estrogen like effects and actions.  Although traditionally it was never used by the Florida Indian tribes for this use, it was a food crop to them.

Blessed Thistle was used in Europe and England for young girls who were late bloomers and had not entered puberty at the correct age.  The girl after consuming the herb experienced the normal course of events leading to their first menses which is enlargement of breast tissue and pubic hair.  Whether this herb will work once a women has already gone through puberty is hypothetical, for some women this herb will swell the breast but this may be more a short term uncomfortable effect then truly a long-term enhancement.

All I can tell you is if you wish to try herbs for this don't be disappointed if they do not work.

Please read my other answers online about breast enhancement whether herbal or surgical; it is one of the most asked questions along with how to use herbs to lose weight.

  I would like to know what I can use for night sweats along with lack of sleep and mood swings. I think I am being menopausal and I am experiencing these symptoms

ANSWER:  The simple answer to your question is Black Cohosh, take with food its usual side effect is upset stomach.

  I noticed that you have some very strong feelings about women wanting to enlarge there breasts.  I am 25 yrs old and was a very late bloomer. I married at 18 yrs and gave birth to my daughter at 19.  My problem and question is that when I became pregnant I was not finished puberty, My breast were still growing and when I became pregnant I went from a size A cup to a double D.  I now have  saggy old lady breasts with stretch marks that I find not only embarrassing but have left me feeling totally ashamed of my body. My husband has never complained but he is a kind man and knows how much this problem bothers me.  I have tried vitamin e oil for the scars but they are too deep and I have tried bust exercises as well. I do not desire bigger breasts at all but I do desire firmer breasts ....even just a little lift would suffice.  Is there anything that can be done?  I am still a younger women and I have never been able to enjoy youthful breasts.  What would you advise?

ANSWER:  I am not sure I can help.  Here is the information I can provide:

My first thought is to enhance your breasts from sagging with support devices.  Talk to a specialist that deals with breast issues, look for a breast center. They can advise on clothing, swimwear and bras to wear to enhance your look.

Thank you for providing as much information as you have and reading my other answers online.   Plastic surgery for breast enhancement is not my idea as necessary surgery, but always the choice is with the individual.   The process the female breast goes through during pregnancy and post delivery during milk production, stretches the tissue, muscle, ligaments and skin around the breast usually past their elastic range.  Which means they cannot return to their normal size, the rubber band is weakened and nearly broken.  Many women chose surgery to correct these conditions, I am not sure there is a natural product that could help return this tissue to its original shape and size.  Surgery of any kind is risky, cosmetic surgery is your chose to make.  Although not natural, it can give many women the result they desire to produce a breast of correct size and shape.   You sound like an intelligent women, research your options, decide on the risks, interview as many surgeons as you can, ask for references, talk about complications.  Cosmetic surgery on the breast usually interrupts the ability to provide milk to infants, if you are planning on having more children and breast feeding (the best thing for the child) wait until you have your last one to move on this idea.

I have found some stretch mark herbal remedies see the following.  I don't have first hand knowledge of their use and results but respect the source I found them in.

Neroli essential oil is made from orange blossoms and is said to help with stretch marks and scarring when applied to the skin because it is suppose to stimulate new cell growth to help fill in the skin.  Apply to affected are two to three times a day.  Almost all essential oils including this one, need diluted in a carrier oil, look for an aromatherapy or essential oil book for more information.  A good health or herbal store in your area should be able to advise on use and products.

Here is a recipe for an Anti-Stretchmark Oil: 3 drops each of frankincense and myrrh essential oil; 6 drops of lavender essential oil; 4 drops of geranium essential oil; 2 fl oz of Calendula Carrier Oil. Apply to affected areas morning and night

One more thought, I can't stop myself from getting on my soap box.  Your husband has no complaints and he is the one that loves you including your breasts, why would you want to change yourself, you on the inside is the one that he loves?  And apparently he loves the way you look also (ask him)

I would ask myself who else do I need to impress with perky breasts?  My answer would be only my husband.  Just a thought!

additional answer: I recently came across this herbal remedy thought you might be interested in it.  It involves the use of Lady's Mantle, Latin Named: Alchemilla vulgaris

"The leaves are accounted good for lank sagging breasts, to bring them to a greater firmness and smaller compass." According to the Colonial Dames of America.

To firm breasts which sag from child-bearing or old age, make an infusion of the fresh plant in 2 pints of boiling water and after 5 minutes strain and place cloths in waters for covering the breasts. Wring out surplus moisture and leave breasts for 10 minutes repeat several times a day for several weeks will restore a youthful firmness to the breasts.

You may also want to take the herb internally at the same time.  External and internal use of an herb is normally recommend when possible.

The suggested dosage:
As a Tea:  1-2 teaspoons to 8 oz water, steep 30 min, drink 2 cups a day
As an Alcohol Extract: 30-40 drops, 3 or 4 times a day

  I am currently going through menopause and am experiencing severe
depression.  I have a feeling of doom and all of the changes are throwing me
into depression which I can't seem to throw off.  I have also had breast
cancer and am afraid to take hormone replacements.  Is there some herbal
remedy that can help menopausal depression.  

ANSWER:  The simple answer to you question is Black Cohosh.  This herb is indicated for this specific menopausal effect and it may help any others you are experiencing, hope you become well

Here is a company claiming these herbs all together will help firm and enlarge breast. 
Is this possibly true? Their address is 4ISIS.com.  Do you have any suggestions? 

ANSWER:  My answer is probably not, the ingredients listed in their formulas are the following, of the ingredients listed.

Blessed Thistle, Fenugreek and Fennel are used to increase milk flow in lactating women (nursing mothers) obviously a nursing women's breast size increases because it fills with milk and milk production glands increase to hole the milk.

Hops is sedating.

Wild Yam Extract has phytoestrogens it is good for menstrual cramps w/ nausea, gas, diarrhea 

Saw Palmetto is used to balance hormones in male and female body.  It is used for sexual neurosthenia, prostatitis and a reproductive tonic for FRS and MRS.  It has been used for women with ovarian cysts, polycystic ovarian disease (PCOD), uterine fibroids, UTIs.  Although no evidence exists, it has been used for delayed growth of testicles, breasts and ovaries if there is delayed growth in juveniles.  It works via 5 alpha reductase inhibitor.

Chaste Tree does not contain phytoestrogens  works via the pituitary balancing the FSH (folicle stimulating hormone) and LH (lutenizing hormone).  Use for elevated estrogen and normal to low progesterone OR normal estrogen and low progesterone.  Elevated estrogen due to exogenous estrogens (in meat, dairy, plastics, pollutants) which lead to PMS-anxiety (use with motherwort and blue vervain), Menstrual irregularities, polymennoraghia, fibroids, ovarian cysts especially functional cysts, menstrual headaches, swelling painful breasts (with red clover and maybe a diuretic), part of a protocol for endometriosis.  Vaginal dryness with oats and shatavari.  For women coming off of birth control pills (erratic cycles).  Stimulates prolactin.  The herb for menopause: regulation of hot flashes especially night sweats with sage and ox-eye daisy.  menopausal anxiety, irritation skin crawling( formacation).  Works best long term

Black Cohosh is a good connector herb between Female Reproductive and Nervous System.  It is good for menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, anxiety, post partum pain or depression, lower back pain associated with menses, dysmennorhea, amennorhea, specific for uterine pain, testicular pain, pain associated with prostititis, uterine fibroids, uterine prolapse, used in the last 2 weeks of pregnancy to ease delivery

Damiana is good for sexual inhibition due to a distraction of time & energy, increase libido.

Dong Quai strengthen and nourishes and moves blood associated with female reproductive issues, such as amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea, fibroids, ovarian cysts, menorrhagia.  Helps with many PMS, menses and menopausal issues.

MSM is not a herb

Lycium is good for the eyes, good for liver and diabetic conditions.

Royal Jelly is not a herb

Scullcap is sedating

Evening Primrose Oil is rich in essential fatty acids

Comfrey is healing to the skin, increase cell proliferation, rich in nutrients

White Willow Bark is a pain reliever, astringent

Ma Huang is ephedra a energy stimulant, very astringent

Guarana is a stimulant, very astringent

Passion Flower is good for insomnia and circular thinking, good for spasms and tremors.

Bilberry very good for vessels wall strength strengthens capillary integrity especially in the eyes.

Horsetail is rich in minerals very high in silica good for nails, skin and hair

Cayenne good for impaired circulation, increases blood flow, good pain reliever but may get initial flush to area or hotness.

Here are my comments.

Some of these herbs work best fresh not dry.

Is the pill or cream going to get into the system and work at all?

Are the correct parts of the plant being used?

Is the amount you are getting in the pill or cream therapeutically active and is there enough in the pill or cream to work, if they could work?

Will they do anything, are you throwing your money away?

You probably already know my opinions on this subject of breast enlargement, if not read my other answers online, this is one of the most asked question next to weight loss.  I am afraid there is not an herbal answer.

Hope this helps.


ISIS® Proprietary Blend Containing:

Blessed Thistle (Herb), Hops 4:1 Extract (Flower), Wild Yam Extract (Root), Fenugreek 4:1 Extract (Seed), Saw Palmetto Extract (Berry), Chaste Tree (Berry), Fennel (Seed), Black Cohosh Extract (Root), Damiana (Leaf), Dong Quai (Root), Msm (Methyl Sulfonyl Methane), Lycium Chinese Herb 10:1 Extract (Wolfberry), Royal Jelly, Scullcap Concentrate (Root) And Curcubita Pepo Pumpkin (Seed).


ISIS® Proprietary Blend Containing:

Deionized Water, Butylene Glycol, Mineral Oil, Pueraria Mirifica Extract, Glyceryl Stearate (And) Peg-100 Stearate, Polyacrylamide (And) C13-14 Isoparaffin (And) Laureth-7, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Evening Primrose Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Panthenol, Proprietary Herbal Blend (Saw Palmetto, Chaste Tree Berry, Fenugreek, Fennel, Comfrey, White Willow Bark, Ma Huang, Black Cohosh, Guarana, Passion Flower, Bilberry, Horsetail, Cayenne), Menthol, Phenoxyethanol, Citric Acid, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Fragrance.

End of Answer

  I am a 55 year old female who had taken birth control pills for years.  Last year I went off the pill.  I still have all my parts.  I have found that my libido and some off my strength have gone.  I am currently
taking  progonol ( a creme made up from women's international phamacy) which is a form of progestrone.
I also started taking black cohash (3 capsules of 40mg of standardised a day.  I am finding myself a little
nausea, and not a lot of increase in my libido.  Any suggestions?        

ANSWER:  Black Cohosh can cause this side effect, take it with meals to alleviate it.  
For a great herbal/sexual combination we have a blend called Replenish Compound.  This formula helps to increase vaginal lubrication, balance endocrine system (hormones), increase sexually activity and longing, as well as help the nervous system as a sexual tonic.

ANSWER:  These herbs have been traditionally used of fibroids

Plant Name: Sheperd's Purse, Latin Name:  Capsella burse-pastoris, stops bleeding, reduces fibroids,  to shrink fibroids use with  White Pond Lily, Raspberry Leaf.  For prolapsed uterus or with heavy bleeding use with Lady's Mantle.

Bai shao yao \BaZhow\, White Peony root, Latin Name:  Paeonia albifloria or P.  lactiflora: also good for pain and to build blood after loss

Dan shen, Red Root Sage, Latin Name: Salvia miltiorrhiza: good for cysts and fibroids, good for pain

Chuan xiong,     Chinese parsley root, Latin Name:  Ligusticum wallachii: good for pelvic congestion

Gui pi, Cinnamon, Latin Name: Cinnamonium cassia, C. quizhi (use cinn twigs), C. rouqui(use thin young bark): Chinese cinnamon not Ceylon also good for cysts, chills or feeling cold

Dang Qui, Tangkuei, Dong Quai, Latin Name:  Angelica sinesis: stagnant conditioins such as fibroids and cysts of uterus, nourishes blood

Shi di huang, Chinese Foxglove, Processed Rehmannia, Latin Name:  Rehmannia glutinosa good for bleeding fibroids

Mu dan pi, "cinnabar skin", Tree Peony, Latin Name: Paeonia suffruticosa used for profuse bleeding stops bleeding but moves stuck blood

Black Cohosh, Latin Name:    Cimicifuga racemosa: good for uterine pain and pain associated with fibroids

Saw palmetto    , Latin Name:  Serona repens: its not just a man's herb good for uterine fibroids and cysts

Angelica, Latin Name:  Angelica archangelica, A atropurpurea: stagnant conditioins such as fibroids and cysts of uterus

Chaste Tree, Latin Name:  Vitex agnus-castus: Does not contain phytoestrogens  works via the pituitary balancing FSH (folicle stimulating hormone) and LH (lutenizing hormone).  Use for elevated estrogen and normal to low progesterone OR normal estrogen and low progesterone.  Elevated estrogen due to exogenous estrogens (in meat, dairy, plastics, pollutants) which lead to PMS-anxiety (use with motherwort and blue vervain), Menstrual irregularities, polymennoraghia, fibroids, ovarian cysts especially functional cysts, menstrual headaches, swelling painful breasts (with red clover and maybe a diuretic), part of a protocol for endometriosis. 

Raspberry Leaves, Latin Name:  Rubus idaeus: great for tonification of the uterus, good for excessive bleeding.

Lady's Mantle, Latin Name  Alchemillia vulgaris,  A. Mollis good for week atonic uterus, increased bleeding or spotting

My wife recently had her last ovary removed, due to endomitriosis.  she was on estratest also.  the doctor has told her to stop the Estratest, and given her a depoprevera shot to help burn away any small remains of the endo.  She is having major hot flashes and night sweats.  is there anything herbal that she can take, without possibly agrivating the endo. 

ANSWER:  These are the herbs normally given for Hot Flashes and other post menopause issues, such as night sweats, vaginal dryness, palpitations etc.

Dang Qui, Latin Named:  Angelica sinensis combines well with Chaste Tree & Black Cohosh for hot flashes

Black Cohosh, Latin Named:    Cimicifuga racemosa

Chaste Tree, Latin Named:  Vitex agnus-castus works well with sage and ox-eyed daisy for night sweats.  It would also be an herb used in an endometriosis formula.

I would probably start out with the Chaste Tree berry, this herb works better with long-term use, so wait 4-6 weeks before evaluating its effect.

QUESTION:   I would like to have some info on herbs for menopause and irritability

ANSWER:   I would suggest

1. Black Cohosh, Latin Named Cimicifuga racemosa, is great for Menopause and Depression, good as freshly dry tea/tincture or best as fresh tincture.

2. Motherwort, Latin Named Leonurus cardiaca is  great for Menopause and stress/irritability/anxiety/female sensitivities associated with hormonal changes/disturbed Shen/physical or emotional problems with the heart.  Best as fresh tincture the tea is less effective.

We carry both in our store if you cannot find them locally, please give a call we mail order everyday.

  I have an ovarian cyst which is getting quit large and my dr. wants to have it removed.  This option doesn't excite me to much so I'm looking to herbs to possibly help.  I read black cohosh and false unicorn root are good for this.  The cyst seems to be giving me irratal bowl syndrome as well.  I have just begun taking black cohosh in 1000 mg capsules, I am 120lbs and 26.  Is this a good amount to take and approx how long would I have to take for minimal results if any. Any suggestions and advice is greatly appreciated.

ANSWER:   Here are some herbs which have traditionally been used for ovarian cysts.

Chuan xiong, Chinese parsley root, Latin Named:  Ligusticum wallachii 
It is part of a great Chinese formula called Female 4 herb tea or Womens 4 herb tea, the other ingredients are Rhuemania, Dong Quai, White Peony. 

Gui pi, Cinnamon (Chinese cinnamon not Ceylon),
Latin Named: Cinnamonium cassia     

Dan shen, Red Root Sage, Latin Named: Salvia miltiorrhiza

Dang Qui, Tangkuei,  Dong Quai, Latin Named:  Angelica sinesis

Mu dan pi, Cinnabar skin,  Tree Peony, Latin Named: Paeonia suffruticosa

Frankincense, Ru Xiang, Pharmecuetical Named: Gummi Olibanum,
Latin Named:  Boswellia carterii

Figwort, Latin Named:   Sacrophularia nodosa / S. marylandica

Saw palmetto, Latin Named:  Serona repens - not just a man's herb

Chaste Tree, Latin Named:  Vitex agnus-castus

Red Clover, Latin Named:  Trifolium pratense

Thuja, Flat cedar, Latin Named: Thuja occidentalis

Is there an herb or combination of herbs that can shrink uterine fibroids?
Someone recommended trying Red Root (Ceanothus Americanus) since it worked
for her.  Is it safe or is there another herb or combination?

ANSWER: Red Root, Latin Named: Ceanothus Americanus is normally used for Cysts and
Lymphatic Congestion not Fibroids, do you have fibroids or cysts on your



ANSWER: Raspberry leaf is normally astringing to the uterus, to stop over bleeding and spotting or tone uterus during and after pregnancy. Is there any other ingredients in this tincture, are you sure it is Red Raspberry leaf? What are the Latin names on the ingredients list?


Can you suggest herbs for dealing with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome?

ANSWER: For Cystic conditions try the following herbs:
Dan shen, Red Root Sage, Latin Name: Salvia miltiorrhiza
Chuan xiong, Chinese parsley root, Latin Name: Ligusticum wallachii or L. chuanxiong
Gui pi, Cinnamon (Chinese cinnamon not Ceylon), Latin Name: Cinnamonium cassia 
Dang Qui, Tangkuei, Dong Quai, Latin Name: Angelica sinensis
Mu dan pi, cinnabar skin, Tree Peony, Latin Name: Paeonia suffruticosa
Xuan shen, purple majestic figwort, Latin Name: Scrophularia ningpoensis, S. murilandic, S. oldama
Xiang fu , Nut sedge, Chufa grass, Latin Name: Cyperus spp
Xia ku cao, Self Heal, All Heal, Heal -all, Latin Name: Prunella vulgarus 
Frankincense, Latin Name: Boswellia carterii 
Blue Cohosh, Latin Name: Caulophyllum thalictroides 
Figwort, Carpenter square, Latin Name: Sacrophularia nodosa, S. marylandica 
Saw palmetto, Latin Name: Serona repens
Chaparrel, Latin Name: Larrea divaricata, L. Mexicana, L. tridentata
Red Root, New Jersey Tea, Latin Name: Ceanothus americanus
Angelica, Latin Name: Angelica archangelica, A atropurpurea
Chaste Tree, Monks pepper, Latin Name: Vitex agnus-castus
Red Clover, Latin Name: Trifolium pratense
Violet, Latin Name: Viola odorata, V. papillonacea, V. xeodensis
Thuja, Flat cedar, Latin Name: Thuja occidentalis

See my other answer on cysts for more information.

I am a 19 year old female who has a flat chest and I don't want to go through surgery for bigger breast. So.....I started using an herbal breast enhancer system. That system includes pure Wild Yam, Saw Palmetto, Fennel, and Fenugreek in powder form. I take about 18 of these capsules a day and drink about 1 ounce of Fenugreek and Fennel in tea form a day, I also massage my chest with Fenugreek and Fennel powder mixed with lotion everyday. I've been on this system for 2 months now and have not seen any results........Do these herbs actually increase bust size or not and if so what can i do to speed up the results?????

Why do you need larger breasts? I would suggest you do not!

As to the methods you have employed so far to increase your breast size, my thought would be you are wasting your time.

Why do women in today's society feel the need to increase the size of their breasts, is it the commercials which show large breasted women as successful, beautiful and lavishly given riches? Is it the men in your lives, who cannot except you for who you are?

Why would you want to change yourself, you are unique in every way. Artificial or natural approaches to increase breast size are simply there to sucker in people who are injured by today's society and the images we project as perfect. These methods are simply out to take your money, waste your time and let you down.

I would suggest that you take that money and talk to a counselor about self image, keep the person you are on the inside and increase the beauty within you. Exterior beauty is fleeting, a man should love you for who you are inside, personality, mind, spirit. If he does not get rid of him, there is someone out there who is good and will accept you for who you are and he is meant for you.

Question yourself, is there a rational reason to think you need larger breasts, will the size of your breasts matter in 5, 10 or 20 years. Plastic surgery to increase breast size is a ridiculous thought. Read the following:

Thank you so much for making this available -- i have a client who recently had breast surgery -- she had implants -- she has developed severe scar tissue or keloids, in her right breast -- not the left -- this is her second breast surgery - she developed severe scar tissue around both implants after the first surgery -- her second surgery was necessary for the purposes of removing the scare tissue -- this causes her a great deal of discomfort -- her breast is very hard -- what can she do to prevent having surgery a third time -- she is extremely open to alternative treatments -- 

ANSWER: I am not sure I can help, any surgery is dangerous, using implant surgery to cosmetically enhance one's body by enlarging the breast is not safe and poor judgment. I would have advised against it from the beginning. I think the damage is done and may be non-reversable. Many women bow to the pressures from our society to look perfect, this surgery or any other non necessary cosmetic surgery should be avoided. Here are some things to think about, I can only offer the following.

In Tradition Chinese Medicine
--Violet, Latin Named: Viola odorata, V. papillonacea, V. xeodensis this herb was used to resolve hardness, it has an affinity for lymph and breast tissue. It is a great Alterative, you may want to employ other Alteratives or lymph drainage herbs such as cleavers, poke, red root, red clover and others. The violet leaves need to be fresh juiced or fresh herb leaf tincture.
--Xuan shen, Purple Majestic Figwort, Latin Name: Scrophularia ningpoensis, S. murilandic, S. oldama this herb was again used to soften hardness, lymph congestion, heat problems, cysts. Combines well with Prunella vulgarus
--Xia ku cao, Self Heal, All Heal, Heal-all, Latin Name: Prunella vulgarus softens hardness such as cysts, can be used internally and topically.

Sorry I could not help more!

A friend has heavy menstrual bleeding and I recommended Shepard's Purse - is there any precautions she should know? She also has Migraines during her period and feels there must be something lacking or excessive in her diet and would like to correct this or take something to trigger her body to balance itself. Any suggestions?

ANSWER: For your friend I would need more information to really help completely, has she had children, is she anemic any other issues going on?

The simple answer to your question is Shepherd's Purse, Latin Named Capsella burse-pastoris is appropriately used for menorrhagia, which is excessive bleeding during menses, The cautions would be not to use if pregnant or if the person has high blood pressure because it is a vasoconstrictor. To be effective you need a fresh tincture of the plant.

Other herbs which stop bleeding are Tienchi Ginseng and Yarrow on a scale from strongest to less strong

The number one blood stopper is Tienchi Ginseng, Latin Named: Panax Psuedoginseng

The number two blood stopper is Shepherd's Purse, Latin Named: Capsella

The number three blood stopper is Yarrow, Latin Named: Achillea millefolium

I would also suggest herbs to build blood for a short term, get Cherry,
Blackberry, Parsley, Beets, Watercress (find as fresh organic clean source) in her diet, use the Chinese herb Dang Qui, Tangkuei, Dong Quai, Latin Name: Angelica sinensis root in a soups.

Use the Chinese herb, Bai shao yao \BaZhow\, White Peony root, Latin Named:
Paeonia albifloria or P. lactiflora as a tincture or tea.

If atonic uterus is the cause, use 

Raspberry leaf, Latin Named: Rubus Idaeus

Partridgeberry (squaw vine) Latin Named: Michella repens

Lady's Mantle, Latin Named: Alchemillia vulgaris or A. Mollis

What is a safe amount of Black cohesh to take to help relieve menapausal systoms?

ANSWER: Black Cohosh, Latin Name: Cimicifuga racemosa
suggested preparation and dose of this herb are 10 - 30 drops, 3 to 4 times a day of a fresh or dry alcohol extract or you can try a making a tea daily of 1/2 to 1 teaspoons of recently ground dried herb to 12 ounces of water, boil herb in water for 15 - 30 minutes keep lid on pot, let herbs in water and cool for at least 1 hour, drink 4 ounces of tea 3 or 4 times a day.

I would suggest the tincture more convenient.

Dosage and preparation methods differ among herbalists, the standard joke among is us if you have 12 herbalists in a room, you will get 13 opinions.

You will be able to fine tune the dose for yourself increase a few drops at a time until you see results. Give it a couple weeks to see effects. Most suggested doses are low to begin with and can be increased most of the time, but guidance of a local herbalist would help.

The caution with Black Cohosh is not to take while pregnant except under the guidance of a qualified herbalist or healthcare provider and it should be taken with food, because it can cause GI mucousal irritation.

There is a Herbalpedia available from the webmaster of Herbworld and Herbnet email Herbworld@aol.com for details. Herbalpedia(TM) is a monthly monograph series of herbs through which you'll receive 5 in depth profiles of various botanicals. They are more extensive than the monographs in our monthly online magazine. We try to pick a selection of medicinal herbs, culinary herbs and spices. But often these lines are foggy and you'll get plants that cross all the borders. We try to find the most up-to-date research as well as the folklore. And we want to give you as man6y ways to use the plants as possible, so of course, there's always lots of recipes. Our aim is to increase your knowledge and awareness of our green relations as well as increase your culinary and healing skills. If ordered hardcopy they come double-sided with 3 punch holes so they're easily included in a binder. They range from 2-8 pages in length. Back issues can be ordered separately. 

Could black cohosh cause a spontaneous abortion?

ANSWER: Here is the short answer for your question. The uses and contraindications for Black Cohosh, Latin Named Cimicifuga racemosa are the following:

Use: It is useful for spasms, pain in muscles, muscular arthritis, FM and uterus, menopause issues such as hot flashes, anxiety and depression.

Contraindications: 1.) Do not take if pregnant except in the last 2 weeks, helps to bring on delivery and ease labor by stimulating the uterus. 2.) This herb has been known to increase or decrease blood pressure depending on the person, 3.) this herb is very strong and is not for kids or weak people such as elderly or sick. 4.) This herb should be taken with food because it could cause irritation of the gastric mucousal of your digestive tract.

To answer your question yes, it is possible for Black Cohosh to cause abortion, but if someone were pregnant and aborted; I would not jump to the conclusion that this herb was the cause. In today's society 25% of all pregnancy end in the first trimester, there could be many causes, Black Cohosh would only be one possible causitive factor.

My question for you is why are you asking about Black Cohosh and pregnancy? I would avoid its use during pregnancy except at the guidance of a qualified healthcare provider such as midwife or herbalist. I would not use it as an herbal abortifacient for intentional planned abortion, this is not its primary or inherit medicinal use and would be dishonoring to the plant.


Have had hysterectomy take estrogen would like to know if there is
substitute for it .
If this were happening to my sister this is what I would tell her.
         Once and organ is removed it is tough to use an herb to bring back or replace structure or function. There are no herbs, I don't care what anyone has written or says that contain Estrogen. Some herbs have chemicals which have a similar structure or effect as estrogen. The herbal constituents are called phytoestrogens. Here is a list of herbs which have a phytoestrogen constituent or effect.  
Beans, Soybeans, or any other legume, make soups get as many in to your daily diet as possible.
Plant Name: Gan Cao or Licorice Root Latin Name: Glycorrhiza uralensis, Licorice is a Phytoestrogen and Harmonize reproductive problems, menopausal hotflashes & vaginal dryness in comb w/ other things.
Plant Name: Ge gen /googun/ or Kudzu Latin Name: Pueraria pseudo-hirsuta, P. pseudo-harsisa, P. thunbergii, Kudzu is a really good source of diadzin an isoflavone - phytoestrogen. Reduces menopausal symptoms.
Plant Name: Alfalfa or "King of Herbs" Latin Name: Medicago sativa, Alfalfa is nutrative herb- it is used as the nucleus of bone formula along w/ Horsetail, nettles to help strengthens integrity & density. It is good for osteoporosis, degeneration of jaw, vertebrae, hips, weak teeth, broken bones & hard to heal fractures, osteoarthritis w/ osseous changes. This herb is rich in caritonoids, B Complex, Vit D,E,K , flavanoids, K+(potassium), CA+ (Calcium), Phosphorus, Mg+(magnesium) , & trace elements, Fe+ (Iron) and folic acid. It also contains a substantial amts of phytosterols, phytoestrogens or Isofavones. It is somewhat amphoteric to FRS- i.e. it regulates estrogen levels/effects (in estrogen deficiency it mimics estrogen/ In excess it takes up receptor sites). 
Plant Name: Anise Seed Latin Name: Pimpinella anisium, Anise is a mild, good tasting herb which can be used as a flavoring agent in formulas. It is carminative (cramps, tummy aches, gas) so it would be good to alleviate the gas from the beans along use along with fennel, coriander, caraway and cumin. It contains a mild phytoestrogens.
Plant Name: Fennel Latin Name: Foeniculum vulgarus, Fennel does contain some mild phytoestrogens- how it works and the role that it plays in its use is undetermined. 
Plant Name:Solomon's Seal Latin Name: Polygonatum biflorium, P. odoratum (Uuzhu), P. commutatum (Wang jing), P. siberium, Solomon Seal is primarily used externally, but it can be used internally as a women's tonic - it contains diostenin a phytoestrogen, use for menopause discomfort, vaginal dryness and PMS. 
Plant Name: Nu Zhen zi, Shiny Privet or Ligustrum fruit Latin Name: Ligustrum lucidum, LIgustrum helps with problems of FRS - menopause symptoms, symptoms due to deficient Estrogen. such as weak libido, perimenopausal symptoms it is also an immune tonic it strengthens and stimulates WBC count. It is good for the eyes and works through the liver, also has a lot of EFAs & carotinoids. Cataracts, retinitis, mac. degen, poor night vision, dry, irritated, red eyes
Plant Name: Aletris , Unicorn Root, Star Grass Latin Name: Aletris farinosa, Aletris has some phytoestrogen activity and also helps for nausea. 
Plant Name: Chaste Tree, Monks pepper Latin Name: Vitex agnus-castus, Chaste Tree does not contain phytoestrogens it works via the pituitary balancing FSH (folicle stimulating hormone) and LH (lutenizing hormone). Good for vaginal dryness with oats and shatavari. The herb to use for menopause: regulation of hot flashes especially night sweats with sage and ox-eye daisy. menopausal anxiety, irritation skin crawling (formacation). Works best long term.




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