Also known as
Originally native to Europe, North Africa, and Western Asia, St. John's wort is a perennial plant with bright yellow star-shaped flowers are now readily found throughout North America, growing wild in neglected fields and along roadsides. St. John's wort rose from virtual obscurity in the U.S. to become the fifth best selling dietary supplement in mainstream retail stores. Its rise to fame came after the national media reported clinical research showing that it was safe and effective for treating mild to moderate depression, and the Greek physician Hippocrates (ca. 460-377 B.C.E.) was one of the first to speak of the health benefits of St. Johns Wort, and it as been used to treat anxiety, neurosis, and depression since the time of Paracelsus (ca. 1493-1541 C.E.), when it was declared to be "arnica for the nerves." In addition to its value as a psychiatric treatment, some of the original folklore uses of this versatile plant were in treating bedwetting, rheumatism, and gout. A St. John's wort oil made with the blossoms and olive, sunflower, or, preferably, wheat germ oil has been used for centuries for treating wounds and burns.
Hypericin and related compounds, rutin, and tannins.
Origin: Croatia, Chile
Traditionally used as a tea, St. Johns Wort is commonly found in an extracted form in capsules. The extracts of SJW tend to be focused on a high content of Hypercin & related compounds that have SSRI activity. The whole herb possesses a more comprehensive array of compounds that provide a more holistic synergistic effect, some would argue even stronger than an extract.
A world renown herb that excels in its ability to pacify the mind & body, St. Johns Wort is the perfect herb for those who suffer from anxiety & depression. There are numerous scientific studies pinpointing the action of this herb, which include but are not limited to Serotonin, Dopamine, & Norepinephrine reuptake inhibition, a reduction in the amount of Dopamine that is metabolized into Adrenaline, & mild MAO-I activity. The net effect of these actions provides us with the ideal herb for those suffering the ills of our modern day & age, and offers us an example of the beautiful synergistic pharmacology that medicinal herbs are capable of providing us.
St. John's Wort interacts with a number of medicines, including antidepressants and certain birth control drugs. If you are taking any medications, please speak to your doctor before use. St. John's Wort is a photo-sensitizing agent, meaning that it increases the skin's sensitivity to light. It is recommended to avoid heavy sun & tanning bed exposure when taking this herb.
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