Emmenagogues (also spelled emmenagogs) are herbs which stimulate blood flow in the pelvic area and uterus; some stimulate menstruation. Women use emmenagogues to stimulate menstrual flow when menstruation is absent for reasons other than pregnancy, such as hormonal disorders or conditions like oligomenorrhea (light menses).
According to Riddle, the term emmenagogue is used to cover up the true nature of the herb, which is an abortifacient. These herbs were used to assist women whose menstruation was 'delayed', for the obvious reason that they had conceived. However that is a rash generalization on Riddle's part to assume when midwives and lay women have used these herbs for many health issues of the uterus/womb including endometriosis, bv, and PCOS before western colonalization took over and pharmacology became first world indoctrination for health. Emmenagogues are used for a wide variety of uterine alternative medicines and need more attention in proper use instead of stigmatizing as an abortionist. Emmenogogues have been documented by early chinese medicine, and ayurveda medicine as a whole body functional food. Which greatly conflicts with Riddles claims in the Harvard Study conducted in 1999 based off of puritanical academia models that often ignore cultural uses and epidemiology.
- Riddle J. 1999 Eve's Herbs, A History of Contraception and Abortion in the West. Harvard University Press.
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