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Phytomedicine. 2018 Jan 15;39:85-92. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2017.12.005. Epub 2017 Dec 12.

Effects of a fixed herbal drug combination (Ze 185) to an experimental acute stress setting in healthy men - An explorative randomized placebo-controlled double-blind study.

Author information

1
Division of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Faculty of Psychology, University of Basel, Missionsstrasse 62, 4055 Basel, Switzerland. Electronic address: sibylle.meier@unibas.ch.
2
Division of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, University Hospital Basel, Hebelstrasse 2, 4031 Basel, Switzerland.
3
Max Zeller Söhne AG, Seeblickstrasse 4, 8590 Romanshorn, Switzerland.
4
Division of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Faculty of Psychology, University of Basel, Missionsstrasse 62, 4055 Basel, Switzerland.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Considering the negative effects of stress on health, there is a growing interest in stress-reducing interventions. The present study examines the effects of a fixed combination of valerian, passion flower, lemon balm, and butterbur extracts (Ze 185) on biological and affective responses to a standardized psychosocial stress paradigm.

PURPOSE:

The aim of the present study was to investigate the efficacy of Ze 185 on cortisol and anxiety stress responses to acute psychosocial stress in healthy subjects.

STUDY DESIGN:

This study was a randomized, placebo-controlled, double blind study with 3 parallel groups.

METHODS:

72 healthy male participants were randomized to 3 groups (Ze 185, placebo or no treatment) during 4 days prior to a standardized psychosocial stress paradigm. Principle outcomes were salivary cortisol and self-reported anxiety responses to stress assessed at the fourth day.

RESULTS:

The stress paradigm induced significant and large cortisol and self-reported anxiety responses. Groups did not differ significantly in their salivary cortisol response to stress, but participants in the Ze 185 condition showed significantly attenuated responses in self-reported anxiety in comparison to placebo (F(3, 41) = 3.33, p = 0.03) and no treatment (F(3, 43) = 2.77, p = 0.05).

CONCLUSION:

The results show that Ze 185 significantly attenuated the subjective emotional stress response during an acute stress situation, without affecting biological stress responses. Given that a circumscribed biological stress response is to be considered as an adaptive mechanism, Ze 185 reduces self-reported anxiety response to stress without affecting assumingly adaptive biological stress responses.

KEYWORDS:

Anxiety; Cortisol; Melissa officinalis; Passiflora incarnata; Petasites hybridus; Valeriana officinalis

PMID:
29433687
DOI:
10.1016/j.phymed.2017.12.005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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