A flower related to the buttercup, black cohosh is sometimes known as actaea racemosa. In the U.S., it grows primarily in states along the eastern coast. The roots and underground stems of this plant are often harvested and then ground in order to produce black cohosh extract. This is an herbal supplement often used to treat a variety of women's conditions, as well as arthritis and fever.
This plant is usually characterized by white, puffy flowers that grow along a long, thick stem. It may have leaves that are dark green in color. There may be several white buds that appear just before the blossoms open.
Black cohosh extract comes in a variety of forms, including pills, teas, or liquid extracts. It is often combined with other supplements, like those made of soy or cranberry. When used in this way, it is typically produced in pill form.
One of the many uses for black cohosh extract is in treating the symptoms associated with menopause. A few of these include night sweats, hot flashes, and mood swings. Most menopausal women find that taking the extract, on a daily basis, to be more effective in controlling these conditions.
This supplement might also be useful in regulating menstruation. Women who suffer from delayed periods due to high levels of stress might find this herb to be especially beneficial. This can be because black cohosh extract is thought to be a uterine stimulant.
The fact that this herb is believed to stimulate the uterus may also contribute to its use in inducing labor. It is often paired with blue cohosh, a woodland herb that is also native to the eastern United States, for this purpose. Women who are pregnant should avoid taking black cohosh extract unless advised to do so by a midwife or physician during delivery.
Native Americans are believed to have been the first to use black cohosh to treat such female problems. For this reason, it is sometimes called squawroot. They also may have used this plant for treating snakebites. The roots of this flower are sometimes referred to as rattleroot or black snake root due to this.
Although it is primarily used in treating women's ailments, men with painful or swollen joints might also find this supplement useful. The correct dosage of black cohosh extract can depend on the gender, age, and intended use. For this reason, it is best to consult an herbalist or doctor before using this substance.