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Blue Cohosh Dosage

Daily Dose of Blue Cohosh: 0.5 to 3 g/day

Supplementing with Black Cohosh

Blue cohosh has been used to treat female reproductive problems. Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cornellfungi/

Blue Cohosh, or Caulophyllum thalictroides, not to be confused with black cohosh, is a flower and its root has been used by Native Americans to treat women’s health issues. It has been considered one of the best natural remedies to encourage menstruation and to induce labor in natural childbirth. It is taken as a tea on the last couple of weeks of pregnancy for a faster and less painful delivery. It works because of a chemical called phytochemical calulopsponin, which triggers uterine contractions and promotes blood flow. Many midwives use Blue cohosh along with black cohosh to induce uterine contractions for labor. Many prefer to use this herb rather than the pharmaceutical substance for labor induction, Pitocin. Blue cohosh has an antispasmodic action that helps relieve menstrual cramps. Many women can benefit from it by taking a tincture or tea on the first or second day of their menstrual cycles, when they feel the most pain. The root is also a diuretic which can ease abdominal pain and the breast tenderness that is caused by fluid retention. Other uses of blue cohosh include treating constipation, rheumatism, hiccups, and seizures, but evidence for these uses are insufficient.

Blue cohosh should be avoided in early pregnancy because the uterine contraction may trigger a miscarriage. High doses may cause headaches, nausea, slow heart rate, poor vision, vomiting, weight gain, tremors, and joint pain. It may affect blood pressure, which may be unsafe for a laboring mother. Blue cohosh can be taken as a tea or a tincture, in doses of 0.5-3g/day or 5-10 drops. It should not be taken without professional supervision because it is potentially toxic to humans and fetuses.



  • Rader JI1, Pawar RS. Primary constituents of blue cohosh: quantification in dietary supplements and potential for toxicity. Anal Bioanal Chem. 2013 May;405(13):4409-17. PMID: 23420136.
  • Dante G1, Bellei G, Neri I, Facchinetti F. Herbal therapies in pregnancy: what works? Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Apr;26(2):83-91. PMID: 24535321.
  • Hall HG1, McKenna LG, Griffiths DL. Complementary and alternative medicine for induction of labour. Women Birth. 2012 Sep;25(3):142-8. PMID: 21524953.

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