The expert: Martine Blaize-de Perreti, herbalist
Red or white pimples, cysts, papules … In adolescence as well as in adulthood, acne can quickly become a problem for people who suffer from it. This skin disease can follow a hormonal imbalance, food, certain medications, tobacco, stress … The sebaceous glands can therefore produce excess sebum based on fluctuations in the male sex hormones (androgens) to which they are particularly sensitive. These sebaceous glands are found particularly on the face at the level of the T zone (forehead, nose, chin), back and décolleté. Faced with this excess of sebum, the pores become clogged and give blackheads. The bacterium Cutibacterium acnes (formerly called Propionibacterium acnes) can then thrive there and lead to inflammatory acne with pimples.
In addition to drugs, there are various of them natural remedies to treat acne. Some plants, such as Agnocasto, are indicated if acne is linked to a hormonal cause.
What is chaste tree (Vitex agnus-castus)?
Chasteberry is a shrub with blue flowers. It belongs to the same family as the verbena and is native to Asia. They are also found today in the Mediterranean basin. Its Latin name is Vitex agnus-castus which means “chaste lamb”. “The beaver had the fame in the Middle Ages of calming the ardor of these gentlemen by reducing the production of male hormones. It is anaphrodisiac and should make man like a chaste lamb “explains Martine Blaize-de Perreti, herbalist and author of “Healing with plants” (edited by Eyrolles). This shrub gives many seeds similar to peppercornswho gave the nickname to the chaste of “pepper of the monks”, because it was the monks who brought them back from their travels. These seeds have a slightly peppery flavor. They are used in herbal medicine to make decoctionsfrom the herbal teas… You can also use them dry in a mill, like pepper.
What are the benefits of chasteberry?
Agnocasto has various active ingredients that can cover various health problems.
Chaste tree, effective against premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and menopause
“At the beginning of the 20th century, chestnut was noted to relieve women suffering from what was later called PMS and presenting with irritability, mood swings, breast tenderness, abdominal bloating… We started using it in that environment “, says Martine Blaize-de Perreti. Agnocasto acts on hormonal regulation linked to disorders of the female menstrual cycle, for example to relieve premenstrual syndrome. It is also used to regulate related ailments menopauselike hot flashes.
Chaste tree a possible help against endometriosis and fibroids
Agnocasto stimulates the ovaries and encourages them to produce more progesterone, which helps ensure a balance with estrogen levels. But it is precisely the excess of estrogen that favors the increase of the endometrium, and therefore of endometriosis.
Likewise, with this one balance between estrogen and progesterone, Agnocasto helps fight fibroids. These are often linked to too high estrogen levels.
Agnocasto and its action on fertility
Agnocasto is also studied for its action on fertility. Helps to adjust periods in women and increases the secretion of progesterone by the ovaries through the corpus luteum. However, low progesterone secretion can be one of the causes of female infertility.
Chaste tree slows down milk production
Agnocasto has an action on the pituitary gland. Slow down the production of prolactin, the substance secreted during breastfeeding. This is why it should not be used by breastfeeding women who have acne.
Chaste tree, ally against hormonal acne
Agnocasto is recommended in the fight against acne, although this indication is not recognized by the European Medicines Agency. “In women with acne, there is too much testosterone and estrogen. The chestnut has a action similar to progesterone : slows down the production of estrogen and increases the production of progesterone, which avoids excess sebum and therefore acne “adds the pharmacist herbalist.
Agnocasto will therefore act more in girls than in boys due to their hormonal fluctuations induced by their menstrual cycles. But chaste tree alone won’t be enough to cure acne.
All types of acne are more or less related to a hormonal cause. But traditionally we talk about hormonal acne for adult women where the hormone fluctuate more, due to her menstrual cycles, pregnancy or menopause.
Hormonal acne appears on the face at the level of the playfrom neck and around the stuck. It turns out like any type of acne from microcysts, white pimples, red and purulent pimples.
In women sensitive to hormonal fluctuations, the week before menstruation is a good time for acne pimples to appear. The chaste tree he has a regulatory act on hormones, a cure may be wise to avoid these pimples.
From the moment you want to follow a treatment with Agnocasto, the herbalist recommends starting at least three cycles, or three months for a boy, to see the effectiveness of the plant. self-medication it is contraindicated and it is better to consult a specialist before undertaking this type of treatment.
Agnocasto can be used in various forms: dry cereals, powder capsules, EPS (standardized plant extract) …
Chaste tree berries
We take 1 teaspoon of chaste tree berries which we dip for 2 minutes in boiling water. Then leave to infuse covered for 10 minutes. The pharmacist recommends drinking it 2 cups a day from the 10th to the 25th day of the menstrual cycle, when there is a peak of estrogen.
chaste tree capsules
Chaste tree capsules can also be taken from the 10th to the 25th day, at the rate of uone capsule per day.
The chaste tree EPS
EPS is a standardized fresh plant extract. It is a maceration of chaste tree in a vegetable glycerin, which does not contain alcohol. We take it 1 Teaspoon diluted in a glass of water, twice a day. Again, it can be done from day 10 to day 25 of the cycle.
“Agnocasto will only act to the extent that acne is really linked to a hormonal imbalance. We can associate it burdock root, which has a sebum-regulating effect and which will enhance the action of chaste tree. Burdock can be taken in the form of ampoules or tablets continuously for three months at the rate of 3 tablets per day “Martine Blaize-de Perreti recommends.
What are the side effects of chasteberry?
Chasteberry usually shows no negative side effects when used in the conditions mentioned above. However, it can happen, in rare cases, that it causes headache, from the dizzinessfrom the digestive disorders, acne and allergic reactions (itching, pimples, swelling). A medical consultation is therefore necessary.
Chaste tree: contraindications?
Chasteberry is contraindicated in pregnant or breastfeeding women. It is not suitable for people with pituitary disorders, unless otherwise advised by a healthcare professional. It is also contraindicated in women following a protocol of in vitro fertilization. In case of a history of breast cancer or family predisposition to hormone-dependent tumors, the use of Agnocasto is also not recommended. The taking of a hormone treatment and contraception should be reported to the doctor to avoid any interaction.