General Considerations

When properly used, herbs have a natural and balancing action on the body rather than a definite physiological effect and, as such, should be used with care and respect. Individual sensitivity can also vary significantly, so, if you are generally sensitive, start with a low dose and build up slowly once you have determined your level of tolerance. Most people have a fairly high tolerance for herbs such as Chamomile, and can quite happily drink 2-3 cups of the infusion per day over extended periods, however other herbs have a stronger effect on the system and must be used well within the recommended levels. If you are in any doubt seek professional advice.

Herbs should be used only when appropriate, for instance a stimulant herb might be ideal in the morning but not before bed; a herb which stimulates the uterus might be ideal for delayed menstruation but must be avoided during pregnancy. It is not recommended to use single herbs or herbal combination in therapeutic doses for more than 12 weeks, unless professionally advised. This is because the body can become habituated to a herb's action and even dependent, plus cumulative exposure to certain plant chemicals may have an irritant effect on certain body systems. Seek professional advice if there is little or no improvement after 12 weeks (maximum).

If you are taking any prescribed medication you should consult a qualified herbalist before taking herbal remedies.

Warning: In rare cases, Black cohosh may cause liver problems. Consult your doctor if you already have liver disease or become unwell whilst using this product.

Herbs to Avoid During Pregnancy 

Herbs that stimulate the uterus muscles (including abortifacients, emmenagogues and strong laxatives) must be avoided during all stages of pregnancy, indeed all herbs should be checked specifically for safety if pregnant. The following herbs should all be avoided during pregnancy;

Common Name

Latin Name

Common Name

Latin Name

Agnus Castus/Chaste Berry

Vitex agnus castus

Juniper berries

Juniperus communis

Aloe Vera

Aloe barbadensis

Kola

Cola nitida

Angelica Root

Angelica archangelica

Lemon Grass*

Cymbopogon

Aniseed*

Pimpinella anisum

Liquorice Root

Glycyrrhiza glabra

Ashwaghanda

Withania somnifera

Marigold

Calendula officinalis

Avens

Geum urbanum

Marjoram

Origanum majorana

Barberry

Berberis vulgaris

Motherwort

Leonurus cardian

Basil*

Ocimum basilicum

Mugwort

Artemesia vulgaris

Bayberry

Myrica cerifera

Myrrh

Commiphora molmol

Beth Root

Trillium erectum

Oregano*

Origanum vulgare

Black Cohosh

Cimicfuga racemosa

Oregon Grape Root

Berberis aquifolia

Bladderwrack

Fucus vesiculosus

Parsley*

Petroselinum crispum

Blue Cohosh

Caulophyllum thalictroides

Pasque flower/Pulsatilla

Anemone pulsatilla

Blue Flag Root

Iris versicolor

Pau Darco Herb

Tabebuia impetiginosa

Boldo Leaf

Peumus boldus

Pilewort

Ranunculus ficaria

Borage

Borago officinalis

Poke Root

Phytolacca decandra

Buchu

Barosma betulina

Prickly Ash

Zanthoxylum americanum

Bugleweed

Lycopus europaeus

Quassia Chips

Picrasma excels

Calamus root

Acorus calamus

Red Clover

Trifolium pratense

California Poppy

Eschscholzia californica

Rhubarb Root

Rheum palmatum

Cascara Sagrada

Rhamnus purshiana

Rosemary*

Rosmarinus officinalis

Catnip/Catmint

Nepeta catarina

Sage/Red Sage

Salvia spp

Celery Seed

Apium graveolens

Schisandra Berry

Schisandra chinesis

Chinese Angelica (Dang Gui)

Angelica sinesis

Senna

Cassia angustifolia

Cinnamon*

Cinnamomum zeylancium

Sheperd’s Purse

Capsella bursa-pastoris

Coltsfoot

Tussilago farfara

Southernwood

Artemesia abrotanum

Comfrey

Symphytum officinale

St John’s Wort

Hypericum perforatum

Cramp Bark

Viburnum opulus

Tansy

Tanacetum vulgare

Damiana

Turnera diffusa

Thuja

Thuja occidentalis

Elecampane

Inula helenium

Thyme*

Thymus vulgaris

Fenugreek*

Trigonella foenum-graecum

Turmeric*

Curcuma longa

Feverfew

Tanacetum parthenium

Uva Ursi/Bearberry

Arctostaphylos uva ursi

Ginseng

Panax notoginseng

Vervain

Verbena officinalis

Golden Seal

Hydrastis Canadensis

White Willow

Bark Salix alba

Gotu Kola

Centella asiatica

Wild Lettuce

Lactuca virosa

Ground Ivy

Glechoma hederacea

Wormwood

Artemisia absinthium

Gravel Root

Eupatorium purpureum

Yarrow

Achillea millefolium

Holy Thistle

Cnicus benedictus

Yellow Dock Root

Rumex crispus

Horehound (white)

Marrubium vulgare

 

 

Horse Chestnut

Aesculus hippocastanum

 

 

Hyssop

Hyssopus officinalis

 

 

Jamaican Dogwood

Piscidia erythrina

 

 

*Food doses of these culinary herbs and spices is acceptable; avoid in larger therapeutic doses.

 Contraindications During Lactation

The following herbs should not be used by breastfeeding mothers.

Common Name

Latin Name

Common Name

Latin Name

Aloe Vera

Aloe barbadensis

Golden Seal

Hydrastis Canadensis

Angelica Root

Angelica archangelica

Gravel Root

Eupatorium purpurea

Basil

Ocimum basilicum

Holy Thistle

Cnicus Benedictus

Bayberry

Myrica cerifera

Horse Chestnut

Aseculus hippocastanum

Beth Root

Trillium erectum

Juniper Berry

Juniperus communis

Black Cohosh

Cimicfuga racemosa

Jamaica Dogwood

Piscidia erythrina

Bladderwrack

Fucus vesiculosis

Liquorice*

Glycyrrhiza glabra

Blue Cohosh

Caulophyllum thalictroides

Myrrh

Commiphora molmol

Boldo Leaf

Pemus boldus

Oregon Grape Root

Berberis aquifolia

Borage

Borago officinalis

Poke Root

Phytolacca decandra

Buchu

Barosma betulina

Sage/Red Sage

Salvia spp

Bugleweed

Lycopus europaeus

Senna

Cassia angustifolia

Calamus root

Acorus calamus

St John’s Wort

Hypericum perfor

California Poppy

Eschscholzia californica

Tansy

Tanacetum vulgare

Cascara Sagrada

Rhamnus purshiana

Thuja

Thuja occidentalis

Catnip/Catmint

Nepeta cataria

Uva ursi / Bearberry

Arctostaphylos uva ursi

Cinnamon

Cinnamomum zeylancium

White Willow Bark

Salix alba

Coltsfoot

Tussilago farfara

Wild lettuce

Lactuca virosa

Comfrey

Symphytum officinale

Wormwood

Artemisia absinthium

Elecampane

Inula helenium

Yarrow

Achillea millefolium

Garlic*

Allium satvium

Yellow Dock Root

Rumex crispus