Memory loss is perhaps the most hidden and subtle of menopause symptoms. Because it can be difficult for women with memory loss to recall what has taken place, it can also be difficult to recognize the problem. Women who are confronting this symptom, then, are understandably concerned with finding relief.
Black cohosh is an herbal remedy that has long been used to fight the symptoms of menopause, but little is known about its actual composition or how it works. That being said, many women find it effective in treating a range of menopausal symptoms, including memory loss. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits, side effects, and potential risks of black cohosh for menopause.
Understanding Black Cohosh
So, what is black cohosh? Native to North America, the herb was used by eastern Native American tribes in the treatment of a range of maladies, but it was especially known for its usefulness in treating women's health issues. Only recently has it grown in popularity throughout the world. Today, it can be found in most health food stores and is used primarily in the treatment of menopausal symptoms.
How Does it Work?
A good question. Nobody knows exactly how black cohosh works, because few scientific studies have been conducted to determine its effects. That being said, many women report positive impacts on their menopause symptoms, including memory loss, when taking black cohosh. While anecdotal accounts can't necessarily be taken as clinical trials, they also should not be discounted.
Some have speculated that the effectiveness of black cohosh derives from its phytoestrogens. These plant compounds have molecular structures remarkably similar to human estrogen. So similar, in fact, that some research has suggested that the body recognizes them as its own. For women going through menopause, this is good news, because estrogen declines are the root cause of most menopause symptoms. Balancing these declining levels with outside sources is thought to relieve these symptoms.
While black cohosh is hailed by some as an effective treatment for menopause, it also comes with risks and side effects. Pregnant women should not take the herb, as it has been traditionally used to induce labor. The plant has also been associated with an increased likelihood of breast cancer, though there have been no authoritative studies verifying this claim. Women should talk to a doctor before starting a black cohosh regimen.
Want more information? Click on the following link to learn more about other treatments for memory loss.
- Dr. Devi, Gayatri. "Memory Loss, Estrogen, Menopause & Alzheimer's Disease". The New York Memory Services. www.nymemory.org.
- Dr. Devi, Gayatri; Hahn, Katherine; Massimi Stephen; Zhivotovskaya, Emiliya. "Prevalence of memory loss complaints and other symptoms associated with the menopause transition". Gender Medicine, 2005, vol. 2.
- Myers, Catherine E.(n.d). "Categories of Memory Systems". Memory Loss & the Brain. www.memorylossonline.com.
- News-Medical.Net.(n.d)."Memory loss and menopause". Retrieved from. www.news-medical.net.