ST. JOHN'S WORT: Benefits, Side Effects, Uses, Dosage, Warnings?
St. John's Wort ( Hypericum perforatum )
St. John's Wort to improve mood and fight against depressive tendency.
Many people have problems with mood disorders , along with periods of insomnia, of anxiety , of worry , of irritability , of depressed mood of pessimism, of melancholy , feelings of inadequacy, of guilt and worthlessness. These people can sink so low in this attitude they have lost the will to live. Usually in conventional medicine, it is suggested antidepressants to combat this situation. But it is not clear whether the best medication in the circumstances. The use of plants can be just as useful and efficient without generating untoward side effects.
St. John's Wort can help correct, depressive tendency and allow the individual to function normally by finding good humor and by eliminating symptoms related to depression.
Known since at least 2000 years plant
St. John's Wort has been used for a long time. This plant with yellow flowers is appreciated since at least 2000 years. The people of ancient Greece used it to ward off evil spirits. As a natural remedy against depression, it is used in Europe for at least fifteen years.
External use the used oil wort in the treatment of dry skin that flake, but also in the treatment of muscle pain and as a healing remedy.
In Germany, St. John's Wort is the product most recommended against depression . Doctors prescribed three million times a year. It is 25 times more often than Prozac.
With many writings, the popularity of St. John's wort, is continually increasing. It overflows Europe and reached America. Rob McCaleb of " Herb Research Foundation , "St. John's Wort is the first recommended in the treatment of moderate depression plant.
How can we justify this reputation wort? It is due in part to the " Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neurology . " In 1994, this serious publication devoted an entire issue to the virtues of St. John's wort. In this issue, 17 studies have been published. St. John's wort was presented as a new antidepressant.
One of these studies evaluated the effects of this plant in 3250 patients who were experiencing mild to moderate depression. This is in a proportion of 80% that these patients saw their condition improve or totally correct . They took St. John's wort for only four weeks.
In August 1996, the " British Medical Journal "published a retrospective of 23 controlled studies involving a total of 1,757 patients with depression. This retrospective was made by American and German researchers. It showed that St. John's wort produces three times more successful than placebo.
According to Dr. Cynthia Mulrow, University of Texas, St. John's Wort is definitely an alternative treatment that can reasonably be considered.
A plant growing popular
Some psychiatrists now include St. John's wort in drugs they recommend. This is the case of Dr. Harold h. Bloomfield, graduated from Yale University and author of a book entitled "Hypericum & Depression". We know the botanical name of St. John's wort is "Hypericum perforatum." Dr. Bloomfield has seen St. John's Wort as he documented in 1994 for another book he wrote with the following heading " How to Deal with Depression . "
It is German literature that put Dr. Bloomfield on the track. He then started to give St. John's wort to his patients and achieved excellent results.
Following the publication of his latest book "Hypericum & Depression," Dr. Bloomfield has been inundated with inquiries about this plant. Psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers wanted to recommend it as a dietary supplement. This made many people now consume St. John's wort in the United States and draw a lot of profit.
Depending on the amount of wort typically used in research. It is estimated that a daily intake of 900 mg of this herb, standardized to 0.3% hypericin, the active ingredient. This amount of wort must be distributed throughout the day in three doses 300milligrammes.
It usually takes three weeks for the results to start to show.
Other properties of hypericum
St. John's wort does not just correct the depressive tendency. Is also recognized properties astringent , analgesics , anti-inflammatory and sedative . In addition, it is estimated that this is a tonic restaurateur nervous system.
How to use:
The best form is tablets or capsules of 300 mg standardized to 0.3% hypericin . 3 times per day.
Is also available in tincture, but we recommend the use of standardized tablets.
Cons-indications, side effects and toxicity
St. John's wort has no known contraindications against, even though we use it for a long time.
However , this is the plant to have caused the most controversy and reviews caution due to interaction.
Indeed, it seems that this plant has numerous interactions with certain medications .
. If you consume no drugs, no problem Do not eat wort if you are taking medication type : antidepressants, immunosuppressants, protease inhibitors, anticoagulants, theophylline, digoxin.
With regard to pregnancy and lactation, no studies have been done to determine the action of St. John's wort in these circumstances. Therefore, according to current medical practice, it is recommended that pregnant women and breast-feeding women to refrain from consuming wort, except on medical advice.
St. John's wort, when taken at recommended the active ingredient is the dose hypericin , has no adverse side effects. As for photosensiblilisation, it would take doses 35 times higher for this problem exists. At the recommended dosage, this problem arises at it.
Regarding toxicity wort, it is nonexistent.
Our recommendation is to never consume St. John's wort, without advice from a health professional if you are taking medication. When eaten alone, St. John's wort is safe. This is the remedy most used in Germany, and have been for many, many years for the treatment of mild depression.
Is there an alternative to St John's wort for mild depression?
St. John's wort has gained a great reputation in the world of herbalism, for its efficacy in treating mild depression. This plant has quickly become one of the best seller of natural products, which led fairly quickly as its share of detractors, especially in the scientific community. In fact we could not demonstrate the ineffectiveness of the plant, but it was quickly criticized the wort to present several potentially dangerous interactions with certain medications. personally I do not advise anyone to follow simultaneously conventional treatment (meds) and follow a natural treatment, especially in cases of depression.
There are some alternatives to the wort. As for supplements that are not herbal note particularly the omega-3 and an amino acid GABA .
Dr. Jean Michel Lecerf, a nutritionist at the Pasteur Institute, points out that depression is associated in particular a change in neuronal cell membranes. This modification requires the fatty acids that make up these membranes. This phenomenon is accompanied by a lack of specific fatty acids, including precious fatty acids omega-3. Several studies have found a link between a deficiency in Omega-3 and some depressions.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), is an amino acid which acts as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It is essential for brain function. It acts as a natural tranquilizer (much like Valium, but without the harmful side effects).
DR Daniel G. Amen MD. Recommends a supplement of 500 mg per day. Gradually increase to 1,500 mg per day if necessary (3 doses). It is particularly suitable if you have trouble sleeping well at night.
Of medicinal plants for the safe use
IMPORTANT NOTE : Do not use herbal supplements or when one is prescription of antidepressants, unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Generally I advise to always avoid eating medicinal plants when there is also medication use. Pregnant women should never consume medicinal plants.
In the 1800s, it is prescribed in the same way that today tranquilizers are prescribed. The arrival of barbiturates in the 1950s made her go out of fashion. However, many herbalists and homeopaths continued to prescribe it, and today it has again become popular, especially in Europe, where it is preferred to valium.
Recent research tends to show that these are flavonoids that are the components of the plant responsible for its relaxing and anti-depressive. European Pharmacopoeia generally recommends products containing passionflower at least 0.8% flavonoids. It is recommended, always in Europe, anti-depressive treatment.
Cannabis and Hops:
It is especially effective in cases of insomnia and used as a sedative. It was customary, and is still practiced today, filling of hop cones, pillows, to promote sleep.
This herb known for calming people down depression has been the focus of considerable controversy. The Food and Drug Administration confirmed a report published in 1943, that this plant showed no medicinal value. It should be noted however that this study, very old, had been carried out on the virtues of skullcap in the treatment against rabies ......! More seriously and more recently, European and Russian researchers confirmed the therapeutic value of this plant as a tranquilizer. Moreover, we find skullcap in many commercial sleeping pills.
Reminder: While these plants are a lot safer than St. John's wort use, it is recommended not to use these plants together with a conventional anti-depressants or sleeping pills and barbiturates treatment. Similarly, pregnant and lactating women should never consume medicinal plants.
Finally do not forget that mild depression is often the result of a body and an overwhelmed and exhausted by the pressures of mental stress of everyday life. The action of the plants may alleviate the effects experienced during the depression, but a more direct effect on the body is required. Practicing relaxation techniques is a direct very safe way to interact with the body and mind. I could never stop recommending the practice of these techniques.
Still about St. John's wort
The reputation of milleperuis came to us from Germany, a country where the use of plants is still widespread and enjoying a large and serious studies that support the use of simple in search of health. This reputation was certainly well deserved, and St. John's wort quickly earned its pedigree in North America, to the point of becoming almost a "mode". This phenomenal success probably came his disgrace; Not that St. John's wort is suddenly become ineffective in treating depression, but the medical and pharmaceutical highlighted that this is a plant with multiple drug interactions that have practically relegated to poisonous plant!
Seriously! St. John's wort remains one of the best herbs for treating mild to moderate depression, and it is true that there are interactions with many drugs that may limit its use. These interactions demonstrate the power of this plant. One of the first interactions accused St. John's wort is to increase the effect of conventional antidepressants and barbiturates. interactions also exist with many drugs for the cardiovascular system (antihypertensives, anticoagulants, etc.). Here I want to clarify that I do not advise anyone to follow simultaneously conventional treatment (meds) and follow a natural treatment; particularly in the case of depression. Choose one or the other alternative, particularly omega-3 and relaxation. However in some cases a few natural remedies can be an effective complement to conventional therapy. It's your health specialist to determine.
There are other drug interactions attributed to St. John's Wort, including contraceptive products, as some people seek an alternative to the plant, and not having the inconvenience of such important interactions.