If you are a woman like me in this day and age, you must be well aware of the everyday health problems we face. It may be PCOD, PCOS, PMS, Thyroid, Hot flashes, Difficulty in conceiving to heavy, painful or irregular menstruation, the root of all these problems is a hormonal imbalance due to the times we live in and our lifestyle choices. Believe it or not, in the time when alternate healing systems like Ayurveda were in practice, there were hardly any cases of such health issues occurring but still Ayurveda has a deep understanding of a woman’s body and an in-depth knowledge about how to bring her internal system in equilibrium.
Today I will be sharing a list of ancient Ayurvedic herbs, that are extremely effective in treating the problems related to female hormones.
1. Ayurvedic Herbs To Balance Female Hormones: Ashoka – Saraca Indica
Ashoka Tree is considered a boon for gynaecological health. It tops the list of herbs for balancing female hormones as there is no other herb which has more beneficial medicinal properties, especially for women. There is a story in Ramayana which depicts the importance of Ashoka tree for female reproductive health. It is said that when Ravana who was great scholar abducted Sita, he felt her pulse (as done in the Ayurvedic method of pulse reading) and deciphered that she was suffering from gynaecological problems. He brought her to a place called ‘Ashoka Vatika’ which was filled with Ashoka trees. During her stay in Ashoka Vatika, Sita drank the water from leaves of Ashoka tree and she was healed of all her health problems, hence this tree is also called Sita Ashoka. The Ashoka tree is considered sacred throughout the Indian sub-continent.
Ashoka tree contains many essential nutrients like calcium, glycoside, haematoxylin, tannins, catechin, ferrous compounds (iron) and carbonic compounds of carbon. The bark of the tree contains ketosterol. The nutrients tannins and catechin help regulate the blood flow in heavy and excess menstruation. Ashoka herb relaxes the uterine muscles and endometrium providing relief from abdominal spasms during mensuration. Nutrient Haematoxylin found in Ashoka bark regulates the irregular menstrual cycle and treats disorders like cysts, fibroid, amenorrhea and leucorrhea (white discharge).
Apart from women health-related problems, it is also used as a brain tonic and help improves intellect and concentration. It is also used in the treatment of diabetes, internal bleeding, acne, kidney stones, stomach inflammation and mouth ulcers.
Ashokarishtha is a very famous medicine made out of Ashoka bark that is given for all sorts of menstruation-related issues. You can get it here.
2. Shatavari – Racemosus
Shatavari or Racemosus is a variety of asparagus used as a herb in Nepal, Indian Subcontinent and Sri Lanka. It has many health benefits but it is known the most for its ability to treat diseases related to the female reproductive system.
- It balances female hormones and supports the already balanced hormones.
- It is especially helpful in curing PCOS (Polycystic ovary syndrome) and reducing menopausal symptoms like night sweats and hot flashes.
- It is also excellent for treating PMS and controlling pain and excessive blood loss during menstruation.
- It also cures problems like leucorrhea, amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea and other pelvic inflammatory diseases.
- It balances the pH of the vaginal area.
- It also helps improves the amount of milk production in lactating women.
Apart from the benefits for women health, it is also beneficial for the male reproductive system, lowering fevers and inflammations, improving fertility, reducing stomach ulcers, combating stress, improving immunity energy and strength of body. The antioxidants in Shatavari keeps the body young and energetic. It improves digestion and regular consumption can help gain weight.
Shatavari Side Effects:
- It must be avoided by people who have kidney disorders and heart disease.
- Shatavari can cause skin and pulmonary allergies and reactions in some people.
- It can have a diuretic effect which can affect the way body absorbs sodium. People consuming Shatavari have a higher risk of dehydration.
- Shatavari can lower blood sugar levels so should not be consumed with diabetes medication.
3. Ayurvedic Herbs To Balance Female Hormones: Lodhra – Symplocos Racemosa
Lodhra or Symplocos Racemosa is an amazing herb found in many parts of Asia as well as America. It is an extremely beneficial herb for the treatment of female gynaecological disorders.
- Lodhra is especially useful in treating frequent abortions. It normalises and regularises the hormones FSH and LH which regulates the development of reproductive processes of the body. The water content in Lodhra stimulates the female reproductive cycle.
- Lodhra has anti-androgenic properties which prevent ovarian cell dysfunction in PCOS and improves fertility. It reduces the testosterone levels which are found on the higher side in PCOS patients.
- It regulates hormones and restores oestrogen, progesterone and cholesterol levels.
- It works as an excellent uterine tonic. It relaxes the uterine tissue.
- It is very useful in treating Leucorrhea (white discharge).
- It controls Menorrhagia which is excessive bleeding during menstruation.
- It helps the recovery of body health and strength after delivery.
Apart from women health related issues, Lodhra is useful in skin diseases like acne, leprosy. It helps heal wounds quickly due to its pH balancing properties. Medicated ghee made with Lodhra bark powder is used for treating eye diseases. It is also used in the treatment of ulcers, haemorrhage and dental problems.
4. Nirgundi – Vitex Negundo
Nirgundi or Vitex Negundo (Five-Leaved Chaste) is a herb which is mostly known for its extraordinary pain relieving properties. The whole of the plant including leaves, bark, root is useful for all sorts of pain the body. Nirgundi leaves are an excellent remedy for women gynaecological health. It is beneficial for treating
- Pre Menstrual Syndrome PMS
- Menstrual Irregularities
- Extreme Menstrual Pains
- Luteal Phase Defect (LPD)
- Breast Pain
- Menopausal Symptoms
- Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder(PMD)
It regulates the female reproductive hormone oestrogen and regularises the Menstrual cycle. It also improves the fertility levels and helps in conceiving without any problems.
Nirgundi is available easily in powdered form, juice as well as capsules. It is always a better idea to grow this plant in your garden as it can be very much useful in daily life due to its pain management properties for arthritis, sciatica, muscle pains due to injuries.
5. Manjistha – Rubia Cordifolia
Manjishtha also known as Indian Madder(Rubia Cordifolia) is a herb grown in India, Africa and some southeast Asian regions. It is primarily best known for its blood purification properties. It is useful in all pitta related disorders as it is Pittahara. It balances both pitta and kapha doshas. It is also highly beneficial in treating joint pain due to uric acid.
For women health, it has many beneficial properties like
- It has antispasmodic properties hence is very useful in relieving uterine cramps during menstruation.
- It regulates female hormones and regulates the menstruation cycle. It promotes the normal female cycle.
- It cleanses the uterus which results in improved blood flow.
– It is anti-inflammatory and helps remove uterine swelling and inflammation.
Honourable mentions: Sariva, Mulethi, Ashwagandha