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Saw Palmetto

Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens), native to the Southeastern section of the United States, is a small palm tree with large red-black berries. Native Americans used this herb as a food source, eating the berries and palm hearts, and harvesting honey that bees produced from its flowers. They also drew upon it as a remedy for a number of ailments, particularly those connected with the prostate and the urinary system. Recent studies have found Saw Palmetto to be quite effective in reducing the swelling and discomfort of the prostate; thus it is often considered to be a men's herb. However, it is also useful as a remedy for urinary conditions in both men and women, and is sometimes used as an expectorant to treat bronchitis, asthma and colds. Because of its anti-hormonal effects, Saw Palmetto should not be used by people taking oral contraceptives or who are involved in hormone therapy. It is not recommended for women who are pregnant or lactating.

St. John's Wort

St. John's wort is an amazing herb that assists in the amelioration of anxiety and depression. It is reported that more than half of depression, anxiety and sleep disorders in Germany and other parts of Europe are treated effectively by it. Extensive research has established the fact that it is a highly effective antidepressant. St. John's wort can be purchased without a prescription because it is classified as a food product (dietary supplement), and is therefore available at a much lower price than a prescription drug. An added bonus is that St John's wort very rarely produces side effects, (only 2.4 percent of 3,250 depressed patients in a recent study of the herb reported restlessness, gastrointestinal irritations or mild allergic reactions) in comparison to prescription antidepressants which are frequently known to produce insomnia, weight loss and/or sexual dysfunction. The usual dosage of St. John's wort is 300 mg. of the extract three times a day. It should not be mixed with other anti-depressants, nor should it be used if you are pregnant or lactating.

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Copyright 2010 - Lyn Hopkins