Herbs That Can Cause Infertility

There are herbs that can help you conceive, but there are also herbs that can reduce your chances of conception. It's important to know which ones are safe to take when you're trying to have a baby and which ones you should avoid. Here's a look at some the herbs you should avoid because they can cause infertility.

Wild Cotton (Gossypium herbaceum)

This herb affects male fertility more than female fertility. It lowers the man's sperm count as well as the sperm's ability to move. Sperm counts can be lower and the sperm can be immobile sometimes for weeks after the last dose was taken. If you're trying to get pregnant, stay away from cooking with cottonseed oil.

Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris)

This plant, considered a weed in some countries, is often used as an anti-spasmodic supplement. It can be taken to improve an appetite, treat indigestion, eliminate worms and regulate heavy or sporadic menstrual cycles. But it needs to be used in small doses over a specific period of time and only a knowledgeable practitioner can tell you the correct doses. It should not be used when trying to conceive and should definitely not be used by pregnant women because it could cause the uterus to contract. It is sometimes called St. John's Plant.


This herb is meant to help boost the immune system and can be found in many different types of cold medications. It's also sometimes called snakeroot, scurvy root, comb flower, American cone flower or hedgehog. It's said to stimulate the immune system but also affects the hormonal balance of the body which can cause infertility.

Black Cohosh

Also called baneberry, black snake root, rattleroot, buwort, and richweed, this herb is used by women of child-bearing age as a natural way to manage the pain of menstrual cramps. It's also sometimes used to treat high cholesterol. If you're trying to conceive, find alternative methods of managing menstrual cramps.

Ginkgo Biloba

Extract from this plant is used an as antioxidant and to reduce inflammation. You may find it in some of the over-the-counter prescriptions for pain and inflammation. Avoid using these herbs or medicines containing this herb if you injure yourself and wish to conceive soon. It can impact hormone concentration which can reduce sperm production and disrupt ovulation.

Wild Yams

These are a fairly common natural treatment for period cramps. It is also sometimes used to treat rheumatic conditions. Wild yams also go by the name China root, Mexican yam, Yuma, Dioscorea villosa or rheumatism root. Often taken as a supplement, wild yams can affect the body's hormonal balances which can affect fertility in both men and women.