St. Johns wort

I always heard this about St. John’s wort (SJW): “In Europe, they know it works for depression.” Yes, but:


A pretty St. John’s wort flower

  • Studies in Europe have found SJW works as well as prescription antidepressants like SSRIs and tricyclics. Unfortunately, US studies don’t show the same results. Maybe the studies are designed differently, or use different versions of SJW.
  • SJW mixes badly with many medications. Drug interactions include antidepressants, HIV drugs, digoxin, and hormonal contraceptives.
  • The herb lacks regulation in terms of quality, strength, or effectiveness.
  • Medical experts in the US recommend against using SJW for depression.The herb may cost much more to buy than generic antidepressants.