Best St. John’s Wort Herbal Supplements For Depression (2019 Update)

By Kenny Lee | Depression

Feb 28

There are days where you feel depressed and can’t seem to get anything done at all. If there are any natural herbal supplements that could lift that depression, it could be St. John’s Wort. But before you start taking any, read this article thoroughly as it is a potent herb that can be a double-edged sword.

What Is St. John’s Wort?

Best St. John's Wort Herbal Supplements

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St John’s Wort is a herbal plant that is cherished for its medicinal properties. It is identified by yellow blooming flowers and is native to Europe. Also known as Hypericum perforatum,  tales were told that the plant often blooms on the birthday of John The Baptist.

The use of St. John Wort can be traced to the ancient Greeks about 2,000 years ago. The herb has proved to be popular throughout the centuries for treating ailments like anxiety, depression, insomnia, and menopausal symptoms.

How St. John’s Wort Can Help With Depression

There are claims of St. John’s Wort’s effectiveness in helping to deal with depression. And some would go as far as equalling the herb’s anti-depressive effect with prescription drugs. To understand the science behind this, you’ll want to investigate the natural compounds of the plant.

St. John’s Wort owes its medicinal properties to hypericin and hyperforin, both active ingredients on the plant. These compounds are believed to be responsible for the list of medical benefits associated with St. John’s Wort.

When you’re feeling depressed, your brain is short on hormones and neurotransmitters that are involved in building positive emotions. St. John’s Wort has the ability to increase dopamine and dopamine, body chemicals that make you feel good. This is demonstrated in an animal model study published in 2004.

The efficacy of St. John’s Wort on depression was further evaluated on participants suffering from the disorder. A review of 35 studies involving 6,993 patients suggested that the herb is indeed a good natural remedy for depression.

Other Benefits Of St. John’s Wort

Even if you’re not going through an episode of depression, you may benefit from other healing properties of St. John’s Wort.

1. Reduces Menopausal Symptoms

At a certain age, women go through menopause and it could be a bumpy ride. There are suggestions that taking St. John’s Wort with black cohosh has the potential to reduce symptoms of mood swing and hot flashes. Researchers in Berlin tested St. John’s Wort on 111 participating women and found significant improvement in their psychological well-being in a 12 weeks trial.

2. Promote Wound Healing

Ointment or extract made from St. John’s Wort is known for its anti-microbial properties. One of the active ingredients, the hyperforin, helps to keep the wound free from infection as it wards off certain viruses and microorganisms. A study conducted with the animal model has shown clear evidence of its wound-healing properties.

3. May Help With Neurodegenerative Diseases

Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are linked to oxidative stress. Researchers have found that the components in St. John’s Wort exhibit neuroprotective activity and can reduce oxidative stress. This means that the herb can be a good natural remedy to treat such neurogenerative diseases.

How To Take St. John’s Wort Supplement

Unless recommended otherwise by a health practitioner, the standard dose of St. John’s Wort with 0.3% hypericin is 900 mg daily. This is usually taken in capsules of lower dosage 2-3 times per day. You could take 300 mg in the morning and 300 mg in the evening and adjust the dosage as recommended.

How Long Does It Take For St. John’s Wort To Work

You’ll want to have the right expectation when taking St. John’s Wort supplements. As effective as it is, it doesn’t alleviate all your symptoms overnight. With the recommended dosage, it will take between 4 to 8 weeks for it to cause positive changes to your symptoms.

Precautions and Side Effects Of St. John’s Wort

St. John Wort is an effective natural anti-depressant but it could cause complications in certain conditions. Always take St. John’s Wort according to the recommended doses and pay attention to these known side effects, according to WebMD

  • diarrhea
  • insomnia
  • vivid dreams
  • restlessness
  • irritability
  • nervousness
  •  stomach upset
  • tiredness,
  • dry mouth,
  • dizziness, headache
  • skin ras
  • skin tingling.

Avoid taking St. John’s Wort if you’re a pregnant or breastfeeding woman, as little is known about the safety of doing so. Children between 6 -17 years old are suggested to seek the consultation of doctors before taking the herb.

You’ll also want to be extremely cautious and avoid taking St. John’s Wort if you’re on certain medications. The herb is notoriously known to for its major interaction with these drugs:

  • Xanax
  • Aminolevulinic acid
  • Amitriptyline
  • Birth control pills
  • Cyclosporine
  • Digoxin
  • Fenfluramine
  • Imatinib
  • Irinotecan
  • Medications for HIV/Aids: nevirapine (Viramune), delavirdine (Rescriptor), and efavirenz (Sustiva)
  • Medications for Pain: meperidine (Demerol), hydrocodone, morphine, OxyContin, etc.
  • Medications that are changed by the liver: lovastatin (Mevacor), ketoconazole (Nizoral), itraconazole (Sporanox), fexofenadine (Allegra), triazolam (Halcion), etc.
  • Antidepressant Drugs: fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), amitriptyline (Elavil), clomipramine (Anafranil), imipramine (Tofranil), etc.
  • Medications moved by pumps in cells: etoposide, paclitaxel, vinblastine, vincristine, vindesine, ketoconazole, itraconazole, etc.
  • Photosensitizing drugs
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Nefazodone (Serzone)
  • Nortriptyline (Pamelor)
  • Paroxetine (Paxil)
  • Pentazocine (Talwin)
  • Phenobarbital (Luminal)
  • Phenprocoumon
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin)
  • Reserpine
  • Sedative medications (Barbiturates)
  • Sertraline (Zoloft)
  • Tacrolimus (Prograf, Protopic)
  • Tramadol (Ultram)
  • Warfarin (Coumadin)

If you’re unsure if there’s any potential interaction of St. John’s Wort with the medication that you’re on, talk to your doctor before taking any.

How To Choose The Right St. John’s Wort Supplement

Not all St. John’s Wort supplements are created, or manufactured to be of equal quality. Some consumers are known to have bought supplements that contain little to none of the active compounds. And you wouldn’t want to waste hard-earned money for that.

Always check for these points before choosing any St. John’s Wort Supplement

  • Active Ingredient – Ensure that the hypericin in the supplement is standardized to at least 0.3% to enjoy the potential medicinal benefits from the plant. Check out the ingredient label for detailed information.
  • Packaging – Don’t buy St. John’s Wort capsules that are stored in a clear bottle. The extract is sensitive to light and the medicinal properties may be damaged.
  • Strict Manufacturing Quality – Manufacturing quality or the lack off could affect the potency and safety of the product. It’s wise to choose St. John’s Wort supplements from manufacturers with GMP seals.
  • Manufacturer Reputation – Don’t rush for bargain sales offered by unknown brands. Instead, look for supplements offered by companies with a proven track record in the nutritional industry.

Where To Buy St. John’s Wort Supplement

St. John’s Wort is sold as a nutritional supplement and not a controlled medicine. You can get the supplement in local health stores or pharmacies. Or if you want to save the hassle of commuting, you could get it from online retailers, such as Amazon.

Best St. John’s Wort Supplements 2019

You’re bound to be overwhelmed by the choice of St. John’s Wort supplements available as it is a highly popular herb. To save you the trouble of sorting through the numbers, I’ve handpicked some of the most trusted brands that are favored by users.

1. NusaPure St. John’s Wort Capsules

  • Serving Size: 1000 mg (2 capsules)
  • Qty: 180 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

NusaPure is a relatively new health nutritional company that was founded in 2015. It started with the founder’s journey to seek natural remedies after struggling with cancer. The company practices strict policies from sourcing the purest ingredients to complying with industrial manufacturing standards.

If you’ve been feeling the blues for a while, taking the St. John’s Work capsules by NusaPure will uplift your mood. Each capsule contains at least 0.3% of hypericin, the active ingredient of the herb that helps to alleviate depression.

The capsules are produced in a GMP certified facility and the USA and tested by third-party laboratories to ensure its potency and safety. To start calming your mind, you could take the recommended dosage of two capsules daily, preferably one in the morning and evening.

Pros

  • Effective in calming the mind when depressed.
  • Manufactured in a GMP-certified facility.
  • Strong dose of hypericin of 900 mcg per serving.

Cons

  • May not be effective for some people.
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2. Healths Harmony St. John’s Wort Supplement

  • Serving Size: 500 mg (2 capsules)
  • Qty: 120 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

Established in 2014, Health Harmony took pride in the high quality of its product range. It prioritizes its customers above all else and the company’s policies are the best testimony. Strict testing is conducted on each stage of the manufacturing process, including raw material, in-process and the finished products.

Sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint on the causes of your depression. But it doesn’t matter if taking supplements like the St. John’s Wort could pull you out of it. The herbal capsules by Healths Harmony is a great example as the hypericin and hyperforin of the plant will boost the dopamine in your brain.

Expect pure St. John’s Wort capsules that are made of both extract and powder of the flower head. The capsules are non-GMO and manufactured in a GMP-approved facility. To boost your mood, you can start taking a single capsule 1-3 times a day and you may feel better before you knew it.

Pros

  • Helps with depression.
  • Produced in a GMP approved factory.
  • Non-GMO natural sources.

Cons

  • May produce side effects for some people.
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3. Solaray One Daily St. John’s Wort Supplement

  • Serving Size: 900 mg (1 tablet)
  • Qty: 60 tablets

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

Solaray is established bran under Nutraceutical, a nutritional giant that has been in business since 1932. The company has been producing a broad range of health products for families for decades. It pays close attention to how the ingredients are sourced, manufactured and tested to ensure uncompromised products.

Pessimism is the word when you’re depressed. That’s when you’ll want to increase the serotonin level as it’s been on an all-time low. Solaray One Daily St. John’s Wort tablets are formulated to increase serotonin, a neurotransmitter that is important for mental health.

It is recommended that you kick off with a single tablet daily to eventually benefit from the medicinal properties of the herb. You’ll eventually feel that the dark depressive thoughts gradually give way to calming ones. The team at Solaray ensures that the tablets are rigorously tested for such potency.

Pros

  • Great for mood swing and depression.
  • Highly reputable brand.
  • Potent St. John’s Wort tablets.

Cons

  • May cause side effects like insomnia.
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4. VitaSrength St. John’s Wort Capsules

  • Serving Size: 500 mg (1 capsule)
  • Qty: 100 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

VitaStrength was founded as the founder embark on a quest to seek effective remedies for family members who are struggling with neurological problems. It is committed to delivering natural and effective products to the market for people requiring a boost in brain support.

There’s no warning when you’ll be hit by depression. Taking St. John’s Wort capsules by VitaStrength can be what you need to continue to function in daily activities as you’re going through a tough time. The extract helps to balance your brain chemicals and regulate emotion.

Extracted from natural St. John’s Wort plant, the capsules are made in an FDA-approved facility that complies to strict GMP practices. It’s free from any form of additives or harmful chemicals. The potency of the herb, indicated by the standardized amount of hypericin means you’ll regain control of your mind soon.

Pros

  • Effective herb for depression.
  • Manufactured in a GMP facility.
  • non-GMO ingredients.

Cons

  • May cause side effects like skin rash.
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5. Herb Pharm St. John’s Wort Liquid Extract

  • Serving Size: 0.7 ml
  • Qty: 4 oz.

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

Herb Pharm takes its business in the nutritional supplement sector seriously. It pays close attention to the ingredients that are harvested from its farm or from growers around the world. It relies on a strict testing procedure to ensure that the healing of nature is delivered effectively to the people.

It is believed that liquid extract has a higher absorption rate than its capsules counterpart. The St. John’s Wort liquid extract produced by Herb Pharm is ideal for people who are not fans of capsules and tablets but wouldn’t mind the strong herbal taste of the plant.

The liquid extract is derived from wild St. John’s Wort that is blooming in glory. Only fresh flowers are used in making the supplement. You can start your battle against depression by taking a full squeeze of St. John’s Wort liquid extract up to 5  times a day. Mix it with your favorite juice if the taste is overwhelming.

Pros

  • Very effective for stabilizing mood.
  • Liquid extract for higher absorption rate.
  • Vegan, non-GMO and gluten-free.

Cons

  • The taste can be unpleasant for some people.
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6. Nature’s Way St. John’s Wort Capsules

  • Serving Size: 700 mg (2 capsules)
  • Qty: 180 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

With an unwavering belief in empowering health with natural remedies, Nature’s Way was established in 1969 where it first launches 8 wellness product. It is celebrating its 50 years anniversary and with a devoted commitment to quality, offers more than 1,000 different products today.

Nature’s Way ST. John’s Wort capsules are an ideal natural remedy in overcoming depression. It contains a highly concentrated extract that is derived from the leaves and flowers of the plant. The capsules are tested and guaranteed to contain active components of St. John’s Wort that is beneficial for your mental health.

As a company that is steep in tradition, you can expect nothing but highly potent supplement that is non-GMO and vegetarian-friendly. A single capsule formulated with 350 mg of St. John’s Wort extract and that made a good dosage for someone who’s trying out St. John’s Wort for the first time.

Pros

  • Helps to fight depression.
  • Non-GMO and vegan-friendly.
  • Manufactured by a reputable brand.

Cons

  • May cause side effects for some individuals.
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7. LES Labs St. John’s Wort Extract

  • Serving Size: 500 mg (1 capsule)
  • Qty: 100 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

At LES Labs, it’s all about delivering nutritional supplement that does what it claims to do. Established in 2009, the company has placed a focus on extensive research to create formulas that are effective not only on paper but on how its customers feel.

Eventually, you’ll want to fight back at depression and this St. John’s Wort extract by LES Labs is one of your best arsenals. At, 500 mg of St. John’s Wort extract per capsule, it is a rather potent supplement that will increase dopamine and serotonin in your brain.

Quality is the top priority and the capsules are non-GMO, gluten-free and contain no artificial fillers. Depending on how depressed you are, you can take up to 3 capsules on a daily basis to alleviate the symptoms. As it’s a pure herbal extract, you will soon be feeling upbeat again.

Pros

  • Very potent remedy for depression.
  • Non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan-friendly.
  • Contains at least 0.3% of Hypericin

Cons

  • Some people experience side effects like nervousness.
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8. Herbal Secrets St. John’s Wort Supplement

  • Serving Size: 700 mg (2 capsules)
  • Qty: 180 Capsules

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

Herbal Secrets is a family-owned business that started out in India but has since made its presence felt in the United States. It now offers over 100 different types of wellness products and ensures that quality is upheld at all time. The company goes to great length to source the finest ingredients from all over the world.

You can reclaim your inner peace with these St. John’s Wort capsules by Herbal Secrets. By taking the recommended dosage consistently, you’ll find that negative thoughts stop overwhelming you and you see light at the end of the tunnel again.

The capsules are made of the finest St. John’s Wort extract and processed in a GMP-certified facility. There are no traces of artificial fillers in the supplement and third-party testing has been carried out on each batch to assure that.

Pros

  • Promote tranquility and help with depression.
  • Manufactured in a GMP-certified facility
  • Tested by numerous 3rd parties for potency.

Cons

  • Some users received defective capsules.
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9. Bulk Supplements St. John’s Wort Powder

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

  • Serving Size: 600 mg (2 capsules)
  • Qty: 250 grams

Based in Nevada, Bulk Supplements has established itself as a reputable supplier of pure nutritional ingredients. It offers more than 400 products and has been selling to hundreds of thousands of consumers and manufacturers alike.

Capsules and tablets aren’t really the favorites of every individual. Bulk Supplements St. John’s Wort delivered in powder form is a great option if you’re looking to benefit from the medicinal properties of this ancient herb.

The powder is supplied in factory sealed zip foil pouch that allows easy storage when you’re using it. To kickstart your battle with anxiety, you’ll need to take 600 mg of the herbal powder 1-2 times daily or as recommended by your doctor.

Pros

  • Helps to regulate mood effectively.
  • Produced in a GMP-compliant factory.
  • Packed in a zip-pouch.

Cons

  • Has a stronger taste than capsules that may be unpleasant for some people.
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10. Gaia Herbs St. John’s Wort Liquid Capsule

  • Serving Size: 1350 mg (3 capsules)
  • Qty: 60 grams

Best St. John's Wort Supplements

Gaia Herbs recognizes that nothing is more important than purity, integrity, and potency in delivering top-notch wellness supplements to its customers. Quality starts from the very root of the supply chain and the company practices responsible sourcing on top of stringent testing for quality assurance.

You may find the answer to reclaiming your life from depression with this St. John’s Wort supplement by Gaia Herbs. The recommended serving of 1,350 mg serving is assured to deliver 0.3% of hypericin, an important compound of the herb that helps with promoting positive mood.

The capsules are specially formulated to be vegan-friendly in Gaia Herb’s Organic Farm located in North Carolina. Only non-GMO ingredients are used in producing the liquid capsules. They are also free from gluten, soy, dairy, yeast, sesame, shellfish, meat, peanuts or eggs.

Pros

  • Helps to overcome overwhelming emotion.
  • non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan-friendly.
  • Effective in dealing with depression.

Cons

  • May not be effective for some people.
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Depression is not the best place to be in, and that’s me speaking from experience. I hope you’ll find some of these St. John’s Wort supplement helpful in your battle with depression.

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About the Author

I struggled with social anxiety for at least 15 years, without really knowing what I was going through. Eventually, I defeated my social phobia and conquered the fear of public speaking.

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