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Chasteberry

Chasteberry is a fruit that grows on flowering shrubs near riverbanks in parts of Asia and the Mediterranean. The fruit is dried and put into:

  • Liquids
  • Capsules
  • Tablets

Chasteberry is also sometimes called Monk's pepper.

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Why do people take chasteberry?

Can you get chasteberry naturally from foods?

Chasteberry supplements are made from the dried fruit of the chasteberry bush. It is manufactured in pill or liquid form.

What are the risks of taking chasteberry?

No serious side effects of chasteberry have been reported.

The side effects of chasteberry may include:

  • Acne
  • Headache
  • Menstrual bleeding
  • Rash
  • Stomach upset
  • Weight gain
  • Dizziness

Research sponsored by the FDA Office of Women's Health shows that high doses of chasteberry may damage the liver.

Chasteberry can affect levels of hormones that play a key role in pregnancy, breastfeeding, menstruation, and even some breast cancers. You should not take chasteberry if you:

  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Have breast cancer
  • Take birth control pills or hormone replacement

Chasteberry may interfere with medicines that affect levels of a brain substance called dopamine. Do not take chasteberry if you take:

  • Certain antipsychotic drugs
  • Parkinson's disease drugs

Always tell your doctor about any supplements you are taking, including natural ones and those bought without a prescription. That way, your doctor can check on any potential side effects or interactions with any medications.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does regulate dietary supplements; however, it treats them like foods rather than medications. Unlike drug manufacturers, the makers of supplements don’t have to show their products are safe or effective before selling them on the market.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by David T. Derrer, MD on December 08, 2014

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