The natural constituents in St. Johns
wort support the natural brain function and mood by helping the brain maintain healthy
levels of certain amino acids that act as neurotransmitters within the brain and cause you
to have better feeling of well-being.
St. Johns wort also helps support levels of seratonin, a brain chemical involved in brain
function which helps maintain a "happy feeling."
St. Johns wort is one of the most frequently recommended substances in all of Europe to
help people cope with daily life
While St. John's wort may not be well known in the United
States, a recent article in the HotWired Internet magazine by Harvard-educated Dr. Andrew
Weil, MD, said that it is very popular in Europe. "Doctors write millions of
prescriptions for the pills every year, and as many bottles of over-the-counter products
are sold" Dr. Weil said.
St. John's wort is a bushy perennial with numerous yellow flowers speckled with tiny black
dots that, when rubbed, release a red pigment containing the active ingredient hypericum.
It grows in dry gravely soil and is native to many parts of the world, including Europe
and the United States. It is especially abundant in northern California, southern Oregon
and Colorado. St. John's wort has already been called the most well-researched herb in the
world and has a 2,400 year history of safe and effective use in many folk and herbal
Currently St. John's wort is the most extensively
researched and used antidepressant known. In Germany, more than 50% of depression,
anxiety, and sleep disorders are treated with this herb, compared to only 2% with Prozac.
St. John's wort is anxiolytic (it reduces anxiety) and has been used to support women
during their monthly cycle.
Because it is classified as a food product (dietary supplement) St. John's wort is
available without a prescription at a much lower price than prescription drugs. In a
recent study involving 3,250 depressed patients, only 2.4% experienced side effects. Those
included restlessness, gastrointestinal irritations and mild allergic reactions; compared
to prescription antidepressants which have produced insomnia, weight loss and sexual
More and more therapists are recommending the St. John's wort herb to treat mild
depression. The recommended dose for mild to moderate depression is 200-300mg of St.
John's wort (Hypericin), taken 3 times a day. St. John's wort appears to be
effective if taken at least 4-6 weeks. Do not mix with other anti-depressants without
consulting your doctor. Do not use if you are pregnant or lactating.