St. Johns Wort Muscle Growth

Hello,

I am thinking of supplementing with St. Johns Wart for mood enhancement.

Has anyone ever taken St. Johns Wart for an extended peiod of time?

How did it affect you bodybuilding results(fat loss and muscle gain)?

Does it affect any anabolic hormone levels?

thanks for your help T_NATION!

any responses are appreciated.

I took St. John’s Wart for a while.

IMHO (just mine is not a medical one) it is a very over rated suppliment. It does little or nothing it claimed to for me at least.

Also I think (you would have to check) that it is known to cause interactions with other medicines.

Never heard of it having any anabolic effects.

I’d ditch it. Not really worth anything. Powerdrive would be better.

St. Johns Wort is an effective alternative to many antidepressants based on the literature that I have reviewed. But, you’ll find in North America at least, the powers that be are trying to shape the view of this herb to be less efficacious than it really is. It’s in the best interest of drug companies after all to promote their products and discredit other viable alternatives.

In Germany believe it or not, it is the highest prescribed “medication” in the treatment of depression. It is prescribed just over 50% of the time as opposed to prozac which sits around 2%.

It is important to pick a brand that is of reputible quality. Perika is currently the most raved about brand at the moment. I’ve heard good things as well regarding Kira. If you can’t find those make sure you find something that is rich in Hyperforins. That is one of the main ingredients known to have antidepressant properties. Don’t skimp on price.

Regarding dose, the usual for mild to moderate depression is 900mg per day. There’s been studies using 1800mg per day for more severe depression and it faired quite well.

In terms of it’s effects on bodybuilding efforts I can’t say too much. SJW is known to NOT cause sexual disfunction or weight gain as is the case with many SSRI’s. Some people have found it sedating while others energizing. In my case I haven’t found any difference in terms of energy.

I know this is basically a case study and doesn’t warrant much generalization but for me I’m currently the most muscular I’ve ever been in my life while on SJW. I’m currently 222 lbs, 8% bf, at 6’3, so it definitely hasn’t hampered my workouts or effected my muscle gain or body fat in a negative way.

As always, it’s important to talk with a doctor first regarding any mental health problems you may have.

Good luck!

I used St. JW’s for three months a while back, as I suffer S.A.D. I get depressed and feel anxiety at the same time, around winter, when there is less sunlight.

It had no bad effects on my T levels or muscle to fat ratio. It really didn’t do that much for me at all.

I tried three different brands hoping that one batch would have the right potency. In the end the St. JW did not deliver for me.

Even though it did not work for me, it is still an option for you, it is pretty inexpensive and may work for you. Good luck to you Fedorov 91.
“Sancho”

I think it might have to do with lack of vit D as we make our own Vit D in the skin in the sun. It gets really bad up north as majority of population barely get any sun during the winter. Try Carlson’s cod liver oil during the winter if you don’t think you’re getting enough of Vit D.

[quote]Sancho wrote:
I used St. JW’s for three months a while back, as I suffer S.A.D. I get depressed and feel anxiety at the same time, around winter, when there is less sunlight.

It had no bad effects on my T levels or muscle to fat ratio. It really didn’t do that much for me at all.

I tried three different brands hoping that one batch would have the right potency. In the end the St. JW did not deliver for me.

Even though it did not work for me, it is still an option for you, it is pretty inexpensive and may work for you. Good luck to you Fedorov 91.
“Sancho”[/quote]

Thanks for the tip Tungsten!! Winter is just around the corner. I’ll try anything that’s natural over any prescription. I was prescribed Xanax last winter and felt “fuzzy” all the time. I’ll definately give it a try.
“Sancho”

Actually you’re probably not suffering from a lack of vitamin D so much that your body is producing too much melatonin. Your eyes register the lack of sunlight(blue wavelength) to the pineal gland which creates more melatonin. This in term makes you more tired, makes you want to eat, and lowers serotonin which can lead to a depression. Therefore vitamin D will not affect this mechanism.

Your best bet is to buy a lightbox, either full spectrum or just blue light to lower your melatonin levels artificially to their correct balance. They are costly, around 200 to 400 bucks but well worth it. And make sure it’s a light box intended for SAD sufferers. They are approximately 100 times lighter than your household lights and have the UV spectrum filtered to protect your eyes. You don’t want to play around with lights that are not strong enough or one’s that will damage your eyes.

And again, Tungsten’s advice of supplementing vitamin D via cod liver oil is a good idea for the winter in northern climates, it’s just not directly implicated in seasonal depression.

Does lack of Sunlight cause depression?

How much sunlight do you need?

[quote]fedorov91 wrote:
Does lack of Sunlight cause depression?

How much sunlight do you need?[/quote]

Yes, it does. It’s very common in the northern hemisphere during the winter. I thought it might be related to lack of Vit D but I guess not. I will have to do a bit of researching for that.

I found this from mercola’s website… That’s probably why I thought it had something to do with low vitamin D.

SAD and Vitamin D

Dietary sufficiency of vitamin D also needs consideration here. “Seasonal affective disorder” (SAD) has been treated successfully with vitamin D. In a recent study covering 30 days of treatment comparing vitamin D supplementation with two-hour daily use of light boxes, depression completely resolved in the D group but not in the light box group."[i] Most Americans? diets are very low in vitamin D; one good supplementary source is cod liver oil in moderation, either out of a spoon or as Carlson?s cod liver oil capsules.

Reference

[i] Gloth FM III, Alam W, Hollis B. Vitamin D vs. broad spectrum phototherapy in the treatment of seasonal affective disorder. J Nutr Health Aging 1999;3:5-7. In Sullivan K. The miracle of vitamin D. Price Pottenger Nutrition Foundation. Wide Traditions 2000;Fall: 11-20.

Thanks to you also Bri!! I looked into those light boxes, you weren’t kidding about them being pricey.

Sorry fedorov 91, I didn’t mean to hijack your thread. But this information may also help you out too. And if you need a change of climate move down here to Southern Cali.(3 months of winter) I’ll have you talkin like a valley guy like in no time;)
“Sancho”

Sounds good Sancho!

I live in Chilly Michigan and spend too much time on the computer.

If I got out in the Sun more I wouldn’t feel so bad.