Contraception: Does Nature Know Best?

Despite the success of a variety of artificial contraceptives, including "the pills," some medical investigators cling wistfully to the idea that somewhere in the animal or vegetable kingdom there must be an antifertility agent that would be "more natural." Their belief has rested on weak reeds: on every continent, among people of all races, there are numerous old wives' tales to the effect that a particular plant, if its leaves are chewed at the full of the moon or some other arbitrary time, can be counted on to prevent conception.

Both drug...

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