St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum) is a flowering shrub indigenous to Europe. It gets its title from the reality that it usually blooms on the birthday of the biblical John the Baptist.

The bouquets and leaves of St. John’s wort have energetic substances these as hyperforin. St. John’s wort is available as a supplement in teas, tablets, liquids and topical preparations.

Persons use St. John’s wort to handle melancholy and menopausal signs.


Investigation on St. John’s wort use for certain circumstances demonstrates:

  • Melancholy. Quite a few scientific studies help the therapeutic reward of St. John’s wort in dealing with moderate to average despair. In point, some research has demonstrated the complement to be as productive as several prescription antidepressants. It is really unclear no matter whether it can be advantageous in the treatment method of serious despair. For the reason that St. John’s wort interacts with numerous remedies, it may possibly not be an suitable preference, particularly if you choose any prescription medicine.
  • Menopausal signs and symptoms. Some proof implies that using St. John’s wort by yourself or in mixture with black cohosh or other herbs may possibly lessen menopausal indications this sort of as hot flashes.
  • Somatic symptom condition. Some scientific studies show that St. John’s wort may well be beneficial for the therapy of this affliction that brings about critical anxiety about physical signs these types of as pain, weakness or shortness of breath.

Our take

Yellow light: Caution


St. John’s wort can be efficient for managing mild to moderate despair. Nevertheless, the dietary supplement interacts with a lot of remedies and can lead to severe side outcomes. Talk to with your medical doctor just before having St. John’s wort if you consider any other remedies.

Security and side consequences

When taken orally for up to 12 months in suitable doses, St. John’s wort is generally deemed safe. Nonetheless, it could induce:

  • Agitation and stress
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea, constipation and tummy irritation
  • Dry mouth

Other facet outcomes may involve:

  • Tiredness and insomnia
  • Headache
  • Improved sensitivity to daylight (photosensitivity)

There isn’t really plenty of details about the basic safety of utilizing St. John’s wort topically.

Do not use St. John’s wort all through being pregnant or whilst breastfeeding.


The listing beneath involves some acknowledged interactions. Nevertheless, other medicines may perhaps also interact with St. John’s wort. Check with your health practitioner before using St. John’s wort in mix with any other drugs, in particular prescription medications.

  • Alprazolam (Xanax). Having St. John’s wort with this drug used to minimize indications of stress could possibly decrease the drug’s influence.
  • Antidepressants. Getting St. John’s wort with antidepressants might boost the risk of the accumulation of large stages of serotonin in your human body. Much too a lot serotonin can induce delicate to critical facet effects. Taking this supplement and an antidepressant involves a doctor’s supervision.
  • Barbiturates. Getting St. John’s wort with a drug that functions as a central anxious technique depressant (barbiturate) may well minimize barbiturate-induced snooze time.
  • Bupropion (Wellbutrin SR, Forfivo XL). Having St. John’s wort with this antidepressant could lower the drug’s influence.
  • Particular chemotherapy medications. Getting St. John’s wort with irinotecan (Camptosar, Onivyde), docetaxel (Taxotere) or imatinib (Gleevec) may decrease the chemotherapy drug’s effects.
  • Specific immunosuppressive medications. Having St. John’s wort with tacrolimus (Prograf, Astagraf XL, others) or cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune, other individuals) could possibly lower the drug’s result.
  • Specified statins. Having St. John’s wort with simvastatin (Zocor, Flolipid) could decrease the drug’s success.
  • Contraceptive medicine. Use of St. John’s wort with contraceptive medication may possibly result in breakthrough bleeding, irregular bleeding or unplanned being pregnant. An extra or option variety of beginning management may well be wanted.
  • Cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2), Cytochrome P450 2B6 (CYP2B6), Cytochrome P450 2C19 (CYP2C19) and cytochrome P450 2C9 (CYP2C9) and cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) substrates. Do not take St. John’s wort if you happen to be getting a drug afflicted by these enzymes.
  • Dextromethorphan. Getting St. John’s wort with this cough suppressant may enhance the chance of the accumulation of significant levels of serotonin in your entire body.
  • Digoxin (Lanoxin). Getting St. John’s wort with this heart medicine can decrease the drug’s influence.
  • Fexofenadine (Allegra Allergy). Using St. John’s wort with this antihistamine could possibly lead to much too a great deal of the drug to make up in your physique, worsening standard aspect results.
  • Ketamine (Ketalar). Getting St. John’s wort with ketamine may reduce the drug’s anesthetic influence.
  • Narcotics. Don’t just take St. John’s wort with methadone (Methadose). Having St. John’s wort with sure narcotics may well decrease the drug’s effectiveness. Combining the dietary supplement with narcotics may well also improve narcotic-induced sleep time and painkilling outcomes.
  • Non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors. Using St. John’s wort with a single of these anti-HIV medicines could reduce the drug’s impact.
  • Omeprazole (Prilosec). Don’t get St. John’s wort with this drug used to deal with persistent heartburn. The supplement can cut down the drug’s effectiveness.
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek). Having St. John’s wort with this anticonvulsant might result in reduction of seizure management.
  • Photosensitizing prescription drugs. Having St. John’s wort with a drug that improves sensitivity to sunlight might maximize the possibility of a reaction.
  • Protease inhibitors. Getting St. John’s wort with this sort of antiviral drug can cut down the drug’s usefulness.
  • Triptans. You should not get St. John’s wort with these drugs utilized to deal with migraines. The nutritional supplement could possibly raise the threat of the accumulation of substantial degrees of serotonin in your entire body. As well a lot serotonin can result in gentle to intense aspect outcomes.
  • Voriconazole. Using St. John’s wort with this antifungal drug may lower the drug’s performance.
  • Warfarin (Jantoven). Taking St. John’s wort with this drug taken to decrease blood clotting may possibly lessen the drug’s impact.