Using benzodiazepines increases physical and mental health problems over time. They have sedative and hypnotic properties. In 2009, scientists found that long-term use of benzodiazepines is linked with increased risk of dementia. This made researchers recomment that a “long-term use of BZDs should be avoided among the elderly, who may be at a higher risk for developing dementia, in addition to other health problems.”
In a group of adults over 65, individuals who used benzodiazepines had 50 percent greater chances to develop dementia withing 15 years. These drugs accumulate in the body over time, and increase the risk of an accidental overdose.
St. John’s wort works better. St. James’ University Hospital in Leeds, England, conducted a study that confirmed how St. John’s wort is the only herbal supplement that can help in the treatment of anxiety and depression, in contrast to cat’s claw, ginseng, gingko biloba, liquid tonic and royal jelly.
People have used St. John’s wort for thousands of years, mostly because of its ability to relieve anxiety. German physicians prescribe concentrated St. John’s wort instead of regular anxiety drugs.
Many people have recognized its power. Its name contributes to the fact that its bloom season is around June 24, the day when people celebrate John the Baptist’s birthday.
This plant provides great healing properties. It regulates metabolism and has a strong diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties, and an astringent and purifying effect. St. John’s wort stimulates heart contractions and helps in the restoration of nervous tissue. Scientists have discovered new and unique healing properties.
Take a St. John’s wort leaf and rub it in your fingers. It will become reddish. Hypericin, a substance contained in the black dots of the plant, gives this color. It serves as a distinctive feature of the plant.
Hypericin is effective in the treatment of depression and disorders of the nervous system. What is even better, it does not have any side-effects. St. John’s wort is also a great anti-inflammatory, hemostatic and tonic remedy.
St. John’s wort contains:
- Essential oils
These are aromatic volatile substances. They provide antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and other potent properties.
- Vitamins, ascorbic acid, rutin (strengthens the blood vessels), carotene (vitamin A is produced in the body).
Vitamin A protects against damage and aging of skin, nails and hair. Vitamin PP, or nicotinic acid, is essential in the exchange of protein and carbohydrates.
- Tanning substances (tannins)
These are anazotic aromatic compounds with a distinctive taste. Thet have potent astringent and antimicrobial properties.
Saponins are biologically active substances.
- Alkaloids (traces)
- Resinuous substances
Solid or sometimes semi-liquid compounds with distinctive smell. They have similar chemical composition with essential oils.
They are volatile substances with strong antimicrobial properties.
Use of St. John’s wort in folk medicine
In folk medicine this plant is used in the treatment of gastriris, or stomach inflammation, stomach and duodenal ulcers, colitis (inflammation of the large intestine), diarrhea, liver disease, bile passage diseases, heart failure, kidney and urinary diseases.
- Use St. John’s wort as a sedative for headaches and insomnia.
- St. John’s wort contains imanin. This substance stops the growth of bacteria. It gives St. John’s wort its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.
- It contains bioflavonoids that work great in the treatment of swollen veins.
- St. John’s wort extract can be used in the treatment of conditions that affect joints. It can reduce inflammation and swelling, and soothe pain, thanks to its pain-killing effect.
- St. John’s wort external infusions and decoctions are used in cases of wounds, burns, and mastitis.
- St. John’s wort can be used in the treatment of conditions that affect throat and mucous membranes in the oral cavity. It can be used in the treatment of menopausal and PMS symptoms.
- St. John’s wort tea relaxes and improves the secretion of glands, appetite, stimulates tissue regeneratio, relieves PMS and menopause symptoms.
Use St. John’s wort ( Nature’s Way St. John’s Wort, 180 Capsules) as tea, tincture, and extract. As a skin care agent, St. John’s wort is used to purify oily skin, acne, unclog pores, moisturize and nourish skin.
Included references linked in Living Traditionally’s article:
Journal of Clinical Epidemiology Volume 55, Issue 3, March 2002, Pages 314–318
Psychological Medicine / Volume 35 / Issue 03 / April 2005, pp 307-315
Am J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2009 Jul;17(7):614-20