Constituents: Hypericum perforatum contains numerous compounds with documented biological activity. Constituents that have stimulated the most interest include the naphthodianthrones hypericin and pseudohypericin, a broad range of flavonoids, and the phloroglucinols hyperforin and adhyperforin. According to the actual state of scientific knowledge the total extract has to be considered as the active substance. Although there are some open questions, the bulk of data suggests that several groups of active compounds are contributing to the antidepressant efficacy of the plant extract.
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St John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum) is used to relieve inflammatory pain, anxiety and mild depression (especially in men), and to speed wound healing when used as a topical application. It may also improve capillary circulation, increase cardiac circulation, and ease gastrointestinal distress.
Known Dosage (for Adults) Anti-inflammatory : ½ to 1 tsp. in warm water, twice daily for three days. Longer term use for inflammation caused by sports injuries may be necessary but not recommended into summer months when UV levels are high. Hypericum is safer than aspirin for the stomach lining and is not reported to cause internal bleeding.
Antidepressant : ½ to 1 tsp. in warm water twice daily for at least 6 weeks St John's Wort works as an SSRI (Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitor) to enhance mood for depression. It must be taken 6 weeks to begin to be effective.
As with many anti-inflammatory pharmaceuticals, St. John’s Wort taken internally will cause photo-sensitivity and photo-dermatitis in people with fair or sensitive skin. Sunlight activates the hypericin in St. John's Wort which can cause skin blistering and peeling if you are exposed to direct sunlight for a prolonged amount of time while taking this plant tincture. References to the plant as "toxic" are based on the reports that livestock, when overgrazing where St. John’s Wort is abundant, eventually suffer from edema of the eyes, ears, and face as a result.
Do not use this plant tincture if you are taking any prescribed anti-depressant medication, pregnant or lactating.
Drug Interactions: St. John's Wort may lower the blood levels of indinavir (used to treat HIV infection), cyclosporine (used to prevent organ transplant rejection), digoxin (a heart medication) and theophylline (an asthma medication). St John's Wort interacts with antidepressants. Taking both together can provoke serotonin syndrome which can be fatal.
Butterweck V, Schmidt M. St. John's wort: role of active compounds for its mechanism of action and efficacy. Wien Med Wochenschr. 2007;157(13-14):356-61. doi: 10.1007/s10354-007-0440-8. PMID: 17704987.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, "Anti-Inflammatory Actions of St. John's Wort: Inhibition of Human Inducible Nitric-Oxide Synthase Expression by Down-Regulating Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription-1α (STAT-1α) Activation" Elisa Tedeschi, Marta Menegazzi, Daniela Margotto, Hisanori Suzuki, Ulrich Förstermann and Hartmut Kleinert [endtab]
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information provided here is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare provider and should not be construed to indicate that the use of this herbal product is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare provider before taking this herbal product.