With a name like that, you have to wonder if I’m kidding. However…

The vitex tree, (Agnus castus) is also known as chaste tree, monk’s pepper, or chasteberry. It’s a large shrubby tree that produces lovely bunches of tiny purple flowers. The little berries that come from the flowers were historically used to reduce the sex drive in priests, nuns and monks; hence the plant’s common names. However, there is little evidence to show that it has any effectiveness toward that end! It may, but it appears to require having simply too much of it in order to kill off libido, and it would also appear to have that effect primarily in men.

It actually seems to be a hormonal tonic for women specifically, commonly used in Europe to treat PMS, fibroid tumors, infertility, and some of the unpleasant side effects of menopause. It does this by stimulating the pituitary gland to produce progesterone in women and regulate estrogen. It is important to use the correct dosage, however – 3 to 6 grams a day – or it will simply depress the libido.

VitexAs a hormone balancer, vitex is also useful to new mothers, and to teenagers of both genders who have acne. The herb is also a very mild stimulant.

Homeopathic medicine makes successful use of vitex to treat depression and reproductive system problems. Most relevant to aphrodisia is its positive effect against frigidity, impotence and general lack of libido.

In spite of most of its common names, it would appear to be something like an aphrodisiac, restoring normal levels of sexual interest if they have been depressed.

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Stranger, here you will do well to tarry; here our highest good is pleasure.