The Truth About Wild Yam
Wild yam is a great herb and can benefit your body while you're trying to conceive and to help prevent miscarriage. The claim that your body can make progesterone from wild yam has been proven false, however. A laboratory can make this conversion – your body just cannot.
The wild yam is not related to the yams or sweet potatoes that you eat. It's a vining plant that grows natively in North America and Asia. The root and stems of the plant both have medicinal values.
How Does it Benefit Fertility?
Wild yam does have benefits that can effect your fertility. It's a great relaxant for your muscles. This can help with normal issues such as PMS and cramping around your period. It's also useful if you're having problems with endometriosis.
Males and females can benefit from the herbs virility-enhancing effects. It can help stimulate and increase desire, which can be very helpful to both sexes when it comes time to try to conceive.
Author Susan Weed recommends wild yam to prevent miscarriage in her book Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year. Though it doesn't allow the body to produce progesterone as was previously thought, there's no doubt that it can help stop a threatened miscarriage. This is most likely because of the relaxing properties of the herb.
The formula for Weed's miscarriage brew is:
- 1 tablespoon dried Black Haw root bark or Cramp Bark
- 3 tablespoons dried Raspberry leaves
- 10 drops Wild Yam root tincture
- 10 drops False Unicorn root tincture
- 60 drops Lobelia herb tincture
Put the dried herbs into a quart jar (or four cup teapot) and fill to the top with boiling water. Steep until this is cool enough to drink. Add the Wild Yam and False Unicorn tinctures to one cupful and drink. If the contractions continue for more than thirty minutes, you should add sixty drops of Lobelia tincture to a second cup of tea. Drink a cup of tea every three hours, adding tinctures as needed, until miscarriage no longer threatens.
If you decide to use Weed's recipe be prepared to kick back and take it very easy – the herbs all have a deeply relaxing effect on the body and muscles (and you should be taking it easy if you're worried about miscarriage!)
In the past it has been thought that Wild Yam may be able to be used as a contraceptive. The strength of contraception from the herb is not on the same level as modern day pharmaceutical contraceptives, and it requires taking regular doses multiple times a day. It has traditionally been able to enhance fertility when taken at lesser doses – or for the specific application of preventing miscarriage.
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