Black Cohosh with a Rhodiola Boost for Menopause Symptoms
Black cohosh has long been considered the “go to” herb for reducing menopause symptoms like hot flashes, irritability, night sweats, and insomnia. There’s good reason for that – it generally works quite well. However, an herbal boost from Rhodiola rosea can help it work even better.
Rhodiola is an herbal adaptogen with an excellent record of helping people remain more resilient in the face of stress, remain focused during long hours on the job, and feel physically robust for demanding tasks. This study found that it reinforces the restorative power of black cohosh for menopause as well.
This combination was compared to two other black cohosh extracts (one at 6.25 mg, two caps per day for total of 13 mg, one high dose 500 mg at two capsules daily for total of 1000 mg) and placebo, also two capsules daily, for 12 weeks of use.
There are two established ways of measuring effective menopause relief, the Kupperman Menopausal Index (KMI) and the Menopause Rating Scale (MRS). Both report physical and psychological aspects of menopause symptoms – if your score goes down, your symptoms are better; if it goes up, they are worse.
The combination of black cohosh and rhodiola easily surpassed the single-herb dosages. It reduced the KMI scores by over 71 percent and the MRS score by over 67 percent. That is an incredible difference, without using hormone replacement therapy, or soy-based supplements.
In many ways, these results are not surprising. The quality-of-life rating was higher with the combination because it could so effectively address a wider spectrum of mind and body aspects of menopause. This study demonstrates that while individual herbs can be extremely effective, the synergistic qualities of two herbs in the right dosage proportions can bring better results than any one botanical on its own.
Pkhaladze L, Davidova N, Khomasuridze A, Shengelia R, Panossian AG. Actaea racemosa L. Is More Effective in Combination with Rhodiola rosea L. for Relief of Menopausal Symptoms: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2020;13(5):E102.
Background: The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy and safety of a new herbal preparation (Menopause Relief EP®), the hybrid combination of Actaea racemosa L. (black cohosh, BC) and Rhodiola rosea L. (RR) root extracts, compared with the most effective dose of BC extract in women with menopausal complaints. Methods: A total of 220 women were randomly assigned to receive two capsules either BC (6.5 mg), BC500 (500 mg), Menopause Relief EP® (206,5), or placebo once per day for 12 weeks. The efficacy endpoints were relief of menopausal symptoms, measured using the Kupperman Menopausal Index (KMI), Menopause Relief Score (MRS), and menopause Utian Quality of Life (UQOL) index. Results: The menopause symptom relief effects of RR-BC were significantly superior in all tests to the effects of BC and placebo after their repeated administration for 6 and 12 weeks. There was no statistically significant difference between the effects of BC and BC500 over time. RR-BC significantly improved the QOL index in patients, compared to BC, BC500, and placebo, mainly due to the beneficial effects on the emotional and health domains. Conclusions: BC is more effective in combination with RR in relief of menopausal symptoms, particularly psychological symptoms.
Here is the link to the complete study: Actaea racemosa L. Is More Effective in Combination with Rhodiola rosea L. for Relief of Menopausal Symptoms: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study