Habitat & Cultivation : Black cohosh originates from Canada and the eastern regions of the United States, extending to Florida in the south. Thriving in shaded environments like woods and hedgerows, the herb is currently cultivated in Europe and can be discovered in the wild, having self-propagated from cultivated plants. The propagation process involves the use of seeds, and the root is typically harvested during the autumn season.
- Triterpene glycosides(actein, cimicifugoside)
- Isoflavones (formononetin)
- Isoferulic acid
- Menopause : Numerous clinical trials, totaling at least ten, have provided evidence supporting the efficacy of black cohosh in alleviating menopausal symptoms. In a 1995 study conducted in Germany, a combination of black cohosh and St. John’s wort demonstrated a 78% effectiveness rate in addressing these symptoms.
- Oestrogenic properties : Black cohosh appears to lack estrogen content but exhibits estrogenic effects within the body through specific hormonal actions in the brain. This characteristic raises suggestions that black cohosh might have a role in impeding or averting the onset of osteoporosis, and it holds promise in managing polycystic ovary disease.
- Safety concerns : Studies strongly indicate that black cohosh is a safe and beneficial medicinal herb. Although there have been apprehensions about potential liver damage or its appropriateness for women at risk of breast cancer, clinical trials showed no adverse effects on liver function. There is even speculation that it possesses preventive properties against breast cancer.
Traditional & Current Uses
- Gynecological uses : Native Americans have a historical tradition of using black cohosh, colloquially known as “squaw root,” to address women’s health issues. In contemporary times, it continues to be employed for alleviating period pain, managing menstrual problems linked to low estrogen levels, and mitigating menopausal symptoms, notably hot flushes.
- Inflammation : Black cohosh is beneficial in managing inflammatory arthritis, particularly in cases associated with menopause. Additionally, it serves as a remedy for rheumatic conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis.
• Sedative properties : The sedative properties of black cohosh render it beneficial in addressing various conditions, such as high blood pressure, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), whooping cough, and asthma.