St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

st johns wortSt. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum) is a perennial herb with lovely yellow blossoms, indigenous to Europe, the Middle East, Russia, China, India and North America. It has been known and used for more than two millenia for a variety of St John’s Wort benefits and therapeutic properties. The plant received its name after St. John the Baptist as it is believed to blossom in the late June, on the birthday of the saint. In Ancient Greece, the blossoms of the plant were used to ward off evil spirits, etc.

Usually St John’s Wart is used in the form of tea or extracts, and it has such properties as astringent, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, sedative, etc. A lot is written and published about St John’s Wort side effects, especially when interacting with prescription medicines, herbal remedies and supplements. Therefore, before starting any treatment involving this medicinal plant, talk to your health care specialist or a herbalist, in order to avoid unwanted St John’s Wort side effects. As to its benefits, they include the following:

  • The most known and the most important property of this herb is treating harmful effects of depression, including nervous tension, sadness, loss of interest in life, a lack of appetite, mood swings and so on.
  • St. John's wort benefitsAnother notable St John’s Wort benefit is improving sleep quality and acting as an effective natural solution for insomnia.
  • Relaxing properties of St John’s Wort can be used to treat premenstrual syndrome, obsessive-compulsive disorder, seasonal affective disorders and other related aliments.
  • Anti-inflammatory properties of St. John’s Wort make it an effective treatment for malaria and other infectious diseases.
  • St. John’s Wort infusion can be used externally to treat skin infections, burns, wounds, insect bites and other problems.
  • This herb can be used as a natural remedy for atopic dermatitis.
  • It is reported to be helpful when treating alcohol dependence.
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