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St. John's wort (Hypericum)

   St. John's wort (Hypericum), fam. Hypericaceae.
   Occurs in dry places of the forest, sometimes quite abundantly.
   The plant has wide complex of beneficial properties. Its water decoctions have been used for ages to treat the heart diseases, rheumatism, common colds and flu, headache, hemorrhoids, liver, stomach, bladder and female sex organs diseases. It also acts positively on the nervous system as an antidepressant.
   However, a serious side effect of St. John's wort is photosensibilization, i.e. ability to enhance skin sensitivity to sunburn. Apparently, this explains its name. It has been noticed that when cattle browsed on the fields rich in St. John's wort, the animals commonly showed skin injury, and particularly those with white and short wool. That is why it is better to avoid St. John's wort in summer season, and postpone until autumn and winter. Moreover, its immunostimulating properties are more needed then. Anyway, some nervous disorders can result from overdose, too.

St. John's wort (Hypericum) St. John's wort (Hypericum) St. John's wort (Hypericum) St. John's wort (Hypericum)