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RE: DISCUSSION CIRCLE #1: Anyone can join in - and win HIVE!

I'll add my experience, mostly because it highlighted a side effect rarely mentioned, which I feel should be.

I was at a really low point and started taking it to try and help level me out. I'd say it started to work. I had it in a capsule form and was nearing the end of the bottle and trying to decide whether to get another. I actually wrote about it on here and thankfully Ligayagardener, who was still on at the time, saw it and warned me that it could be an issue with my complection, being a redhead and pale skinned, he meant.

I'd actually been having tender skin and the slightest scratch was painful, almost like sunburn, except I wasn't sunburnt and the pain was lasting longer. When I looked into it, it turned out that it makes you sensitive to sunlight and at this point I realised that it was just the areas exposed to sun that were experiencing this, namely the backs of my hands, my arms and the tops of my feet exposed by my sandals.

So a warning there for fair skinned people. It took a couple of weeks after stopping taking it for my skin to return to normal. I surprised it's not mentioned more often in the cautions on it. Usually it's just the drug interactions that are highlighted.

My alternative is rosemary. It's not as efficient, but no side effects for me.

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That's awesome, awesome information that really does add a lot of value to this conversation! I knew that STJ is rumoured to make you photosensitive, but hadn't heard anyone say that it had happened to them. Listening to that podcast the other day (the one above) she talked about this. She said it's really super rare or doesn't happen - it does with animals, like cows, as they eat tons of it - exactly why it's a noxious weed here in Australia and they try to eradicate it. I've been thinking about that ever since - why do people say it's a risk, but others don't? Is it only because they haven't heard experiences like yours? Really good to have these kinda contraindications noted as anecdotes and for sure they should be part of the warnings on the bottles! But then that's the supplement/vitamin industry for you. Another reason why we should do research/consult herbalists I guess.

That's interesting to hear from someone that it's rare, because what I actually read or heard (might have been Malcolm that said it as well) was that it increases photo-sensitivity in everyone, it's just not enough to be a problem to most, unless the are very fair skinned.

It's likely still not completely been investigated. After all, who's going to spend money that way to learn more about it. It could also be dependant on dosage, so perhaps a milder herb is just the thing for me. Again, something that likely needs more investigation...