By Tammy Sons
Blue Cohosh is a plant that produces blueberry-like fruits. Its scientific name if Caulophyllum Thalictroides. This plant is found in forests of the eastern United States and Canada. It is often referred to squaw or papoose root. It was used by many Native American tribes as a contraceptive and in some cases used for abortive medical practices. Even early physicians and midwives used it for the same purposes. It was also used in some cases and still is today for inducing labor, as a laxative, inflammation and joint pain and even for treating hiccups. The seeds of the blue cohosh plant can even be used as a substitute for coffee. It is widely accepted that this plant may have effects that are very similar to the hormone estrogen. However, it can have adverse effects on some people, but constricting the blood vessels and allowing less oxygen to the heart. Many medical professionals and researchers warn of many adverse side effects of using blue cohosh. These can include chest pain, severe diarrhea, elevated blood pressure and blood sugars as well as breast cancer, uterine cancer, and ovarian cancer. An important piece of advice when using any herbal supplements is to be educated on the side effects and know which ones are safe to use and which ones are unreliable and unpredictable. There are no published studies on the usefulness of blue cohosh and the side effects. Therefore, using blue cohosh is something that you should probably discuss with a medical professional before doing.