One of the most common mental ailments in the United States is depression. It's estimated that about one out of every 20 Americans will get depressed in any given year. While many turn to therapy, some of these cases will go undiagnosed. Antidepressants are commonly given out to help people cope with the crushing depression that they may feel. However, before going on a new prescription, it might be worth giving Saint John's Wort tea a try instead. This has been shown in some studies to be just as effective in the treatment of symptoms of clinical depression, and has far fewer side effects, making it a safer option.
Although it is relatively new in the USA, researchers have been studying Saint John's Wort tea in Europe for quite some time now. Doctors have been prescribing it in Germany for decades, and as the word gets out about just how effective it can be, it is growing in popularity in other parts of the world. It is available as a tea, oil, capsule, or tincture. In clinical trials, it has been shown to elevate the mood of patients who were suffering from sleep disorders, lack of appetite, a lack of self esteem, and other symptoms of clinical depression. This seems to be due to the fact that it inhibits a chemical called monoamine oxidase, which is associated with depression.
When brewing the Saint John's Wort tea, it's recommended to use one or two cups of flowers for every cup of boiling water, and then drink this three times daily for the best results. It may be more satisfactory to purchase it in a teabag form, so that you don't have to measure out the dried leaves or purchase them in bulk. This can then be sweetened with milk and sugar or honey, although some people simply like the taste of the herb on its own.
There are a few side effects that have been reported in those who take Saint John's Wort tea to help cope with their depression. Those with fair skin may find that they are more sensitive to sunlight, and should take care to wear extra sunscreen when outdoors. It's also best to avoid alcohol or other medications without first acting your doctor about any possible negative interactions that could occur. Taking this herb along with antidepressants is also advised against, because it can lead to unpredictable side effects.