Posted by bleauberry on August 9, 2008, at 18:24:24
In reply to Best brand of st. johns wort, posted by kieran2585 on August 9, 2008, at 14:25:35
I spent weeks browsing through the archives at sjwinfo.org, which is a forum like this one except specifically for SJW users. And I have been on SJW several times myself. So I think I may be able to help with a few things.
There are two top brands, due to the fact they were both used in all of the clinical studies. One is Kira, found at Rite-Aid, online, and other places. It is formula LI-160 used in studies in Germany. The other one is Perika, by Nature's Way.
Of the two, Perika is generally more activating while Kira is softer. Keep in mind mileage varies from person to person.
Some people do poorly on these brands though and find an el cheapo house brand works great. While hypericin is the measured active ingredient, a primary component is hyperforin. The clinical brands above have decent levels of hyperforin, while maybe some of the el cheapo brands don't. That could be why people react differently. In any case, brands of SJW vary in how they feel almost as much as differing SSRI antidepressants do. Whatever you do, be sure the brand is standardized. Do not take the raw herb or tinctures. You just don't know what you're getting in each dose or each batch.
While the recommended dose is 900mg per day, in 3 doses, it is amazing to see what actually works for people. Ssome people find a single 900mg night dose works while anything else doesn't. Others, 900mg daytime. Others, split doses. Overall I would say the actual dosage that works for most people is 600mg. Some people do fine at 300mg, and a couple people found their best dose was 150mg. So, it takes experimentation in terms of how to dose it and what size dose.
SJW worked rather good on anhedonia for me. The reason I quit taking it was because I was also on an antipsychotic at the time, and after a couple months it was obvious these two did not mix well...SJW had increased my blood levels of the antipsychotic 300%. I was never able to regain the goodness again. More retrials and SJW just never was the same again. I messed up.
The first time I tried it I felt it working in days. Second time took about 3 weeks. Some people say it took 8 to 12 weeks and to give it that much time.
The only real side effect for me was poor sleep within the first week, but no prob after that. SJW was excellent on anxiety, but worsened anxiety at first.
My favorite brand was Kira. My second favorite was the Whole Foods Market house brand. I tried Perika and found that while it is generally more activating, it just knocked me down and out. Too much hyperforin is my hunch.
Not sure how sensitive to meds you are. Me, very sensitive. I started at 75mg by splitting tabs, worked up to 2 X 75mg, then 3 X 75mg, and kept going. My favorite dose was 600mg.
Here is a weird one for ya...what to do if it works but later poops out? I know this doesn't make sense, but there are many people at the forum who will confirm it...do not increase the dose but instead reduce the dose.