It can be quite depressing when you look at the serious side-effects of drugs used to treat depression. What is a person to do when faced with such a debilitating state like depression?
Hope may be found in a flower. Or rather in the leaves.
Passionflower, Passiflora incarnata, is an American native flowering vine with a fleshy fruit encapsulated in a pod slightly larger than a golf ball. The flowers are one of the most beautiful flowers in nature, consisting of a ring of flat violet-colored petals beneath an inner ring of darker tendril-like petals.
Its unique name of Passionflower came from Spanish explorers who saw the pattern created by the tendrils as a reflection of the crown of thorns worn by Jesus Christ. Also known as “maypop”, the Incarnata species of Passiflora has long been attributed with calming properties useful for helping people suffering from anxiety or depression. In fact, all parts except the roots have been found to be useful for medicinal purposes.
Utilize this wild flower and fruit to help you sleep better, improve your mood, and relieve depression and anxiety! It may be taken in drops as an extract* or made into a tea* using the leaves. You may use this simple Passionflower tea recipe to prepare your own at home.
The news that a wild growing plant can effectively improve the lives of those suffering from depression can be a huge benefit when you look at the alternative of taking dangerous medications.
Prescription depression medications come with black box warnings and often serious debilitating side-effects that can cause worsening health issues.
The flavonoids present in Passiflora Incarnata may have the same GABA-increasing action as prescription benzodiazepines, resulting in a mild sedative effect. A short-term trial using Passionflower extract indicated that it has similar anxiety-relieving benefits but with fewer negative side-effects as compared to the prescription medication oxazepam.
Precautionary reminder: For legal purposes, it is always recommended that a person only change their healthcare behaviors with the direct assistance of a trained professional. Because passionflower has potential sedative effects, one may need to adjust/reduce other medication dosages as they incorporate this wild remedy. It seems to be generally accepted, but research is very hard to find, that passionflower may be a uterine stimulant so it may induce contractions during pregnancy and caution should be taken if one chooses to use this remedy while pregnant; however, the only animal study I could find on passionflower use during pregnancy had positive findings. The risks of prescription antidepressant medications have been well established. Avoid before surgery as sedatives are often administered during a surgical procedure.
Now I must state that even though this may be a wonderful solution for many to avoid dangerous drugs to combat depression or anxiety, one must always focus on the foundations of health and seek to correct the underlying causes these conditions. This Wild Remedy is still only helping to alleviate the symptoms and should be used while the cause of the condition is corrected and after full measure has been taken to restore one’s health. If there is a situation causing the depression, one should seek to improve that situation. (If it is a relationship that needs to be mended, then focus on that, etc.) Full healing only comes when we correct the cause.
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Systematic Review: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD004518.pub2/abstract