Herbs - Alternative Medicine
Although drugs for the relief of menopause symptoms have been shown to be effective, many women choose to replace their declining oestrogen levels with herbs and alternative therapies.
Complementary Therapies include
- Herbs-Black Cohosh Kava Kava Dong Quai Ginseng Wild Yam cream St.John’s Wort Agnus Castus
- Phytoestrogens-Soy milk Soyabeans Chickpeas Redclover Legumes (beans and peas)
- Progesterone transdermal creams
What must be remembered is that alternative medicines are very weak, tend to work extremely slowly and may take months before any effect is noticed. Some preparations can be expensive.
Many women, however, use them in the belief that they are safer and “more natural”, especially with the concerns about the safety of oestrogen-based HRT. This can be confusing. A major concern with herbal treatments is the interaction with other medications especially if they are bought as an over-the-counter-supplement with little knowledge regarding their safety. Some herbal preparations-for example, ginseng- have oestrogenic compounds, and this is a concern for women with hormone dependent diseases, such as breast cancer.
Unlike prescription drugs, alternative treatments have not been widely studied so questions about their safety continue.