Vitex, Patented Chocolate May Benefit PMS Sufferers

February 1, 2001

1 Min Read
Vitex, Patented Chocolate May Benefit PMS Sufferers<

Vitex, Patented Chocolate May Benefit PMS Sufferers
HUTTENBERG, Germany--The number of alternative treatments forpremenstrual syndrome (PMS) sufferers is continuing to grow. In a studypublished in the Jan. 20 British Medical Journal (322: 134-7, 2001),researchers found that fruit extract from the chaste tree (known as Vitex) mayalleviate such premenstrual symptoms as irritability, mood alteration, anger,headaches and breast fullness.
During a three-month, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 178women received either 20 mg/d of Vitex agnus castus or placebo. All womenwere over the age of 18 and had been diagnosed with premenstrual syndrome basedon the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Efficacy ofthe extract was determined through the women's self-assessments of irritability,mood alteration, anger, headaches, breast fullness and water retention.
In the group treated with the extract, 52 percent of the participants reported amarked improvement in their symptoms. In the placebo group, 24 percentexperienced the same results. However, bloating remained unaffected by eithertreatment.
The study reported that Vitex contains a mixture of flavonoids that may supportthis extract's mechanism of action. The researchers, led by Rued Schellenbergfrom the Institute for Health Care and Science based here, also believe that theextract may decrease stress by inducing the secretion of prolactic (a pituitaryhormone).
In related news, a company has patented a chocolate to treat PMS (US#6,174,542). Deborah Hinton and Jeri Greene, both from PMS Mood Food Inc.,created a chocolate that includes kava, St. John's wort, ginseng and vitaminsand minerals that include vitamin B6. According to the researchers, this productcan be used in beverages, snacks and ice cream, as well as in such supplementforms as powders, liquids, gels, pastes, tablets and capsules.
For additional information about agnus castus, visit learn more about the patented chocolate, go to

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