Post by contributing writer, Michele.
Jars of Evening Primrose Oil capsules have been a staple on my natural remedies shelf for years. I have found it to be beneficial during various “feminine” seasons of life. Rich in essential fatty acids, it can assist in addressing a wide range of concerns:
Trying to Conceive
In conjunction with charting your cycle, and drinking lots of water, taking Evening Primrose Oil during the days before ovulation may help increase your “fertile” conditions, as well as providing essential fatty acids needed during pregnancy. (Do not take after ovulation, since it can cause contractions.)
Always start with the lowest dosage, and gradually increase the amount as needed.
PMS/Monthly Cycle Concerns
Even if you don’t get pregnant, those two weeks (approximately) of taking the supplement each month may also help alleviate some of the hormonal challenges of PMS, and even help address irregular cycles.
Evening Primrose Oil is also commonly recommended for relief of painful Fibrocystic Breast Disease, which can be an additional concern of a monthly cycle. (After taking this for several months at the recommendation of my physician a few years ago, the results were very helpful for me!)
Pregnancy & Preparing for Labor
Many midwives will suggest dosages of Evening Primrose Oil to help prepare the cervix for labor. I tend toward the cautious side, preferring to begin the supplement around 38-40 weeks of pregnancy, but some women gradually begin (with small doses) a bit earlier, around 36-38 weeks.
Dosages usually begin with one or two 500 mg capsules orally, increasing up to a total of 2,500 mg per day. (The total is usually divided up, to be taken 2-3 times per day.) Other pregnant women use part of the total dosage as a suppository placed near the cervix, as well.
Use Evening Primrose Oil with caution during pregnancy, as it can induce labor in some women. Do not take if expecting surgery, as it may act as a blood thinner. Check with your midwife or care provider to see what is appropriate for your situation, before using.
Some women have found that massaging some Evening Primrose Oil a couple times a day on the perineum has helped with their postpartum healing (such as painful scar tissue remaining weeks after an episiotomy has “healed”). Source: Midwifery Today
Taking this supplement orally during those last weeks of pregnancy as well as into postpartum may also have the benefit of decreasing the hormonal “blues” of postpartum.
(Best results are usually seen after taking it for a month or two; check with your provider. Please note, this is not a substitute for necessary treatment in the event of full postpartum depression!)
Evening Primrose Oil is usually considered safe for breastfeeding mamas, and can be helpful for addressing soreness during ovulation, Raynaud’s Syndrome, and plugged milk ducts. (I experienced all three of those over the past couple years, and have found relief from all of them, following the recommendations of my midwives & lactation consultant!) Source: KellyMom.com
Depending on the symptoms you experience, you may find Evening Primrose Oil beneficial, using a daily schedule of dosages (such as this one).
Over the years, I’ve found Evening Primrose Oil to be a frugal & simple solution for many health concerns, and a natural alternative to expensive and chemical-based products from the pharmacy.
Has Evening Primrose Oil worked for you?