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Some Herbal Remedies Should Not be Taken
Because They Can Trigger Serious Side Effects,
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--August 31,
1998--Chaparral, lobelia, and yohimbe are among herbal remedies that can
trigger serious side effects or toxic reactions "and should not be
taken," advises the current (September) issue of New Choices: Living
Even Better After 50.
However, most herbal remedies are safe and tend to have fewer side
effects than their pharmaceutical counterparts, the magazine adds.
Here are the five herbs that, according to New Choices, should
not be used:
Chaparral (Larrea tridentata). Also
known as the creosote bush, chapparal is marketed as a tea, tablet, or
According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), chaparral has
been associated with acute nonviral hepatitis (rapidly developing liver
damage), sometimes irreversible.
Comfrey (Symphytum officinale).
Available as a tea, tablet, capsule, or tincture, this leafy plant has
been linked to obstruction of blood flow from the liver, with potential
liver scarring (cirrhosis).
Germander (Teucrium genus). Germander
is a common name for a group of plants contained in medicinal teas,
elixirs, capsules, or tablets. It is mixed with other herbs in products
to treat obesity. In France, at least 27 cases of acute nonviral
hepatitis have been associated with germander products.
Lobelia (Lobelia inflata). Also known
as Indian tobacco, lobelia has been associated with depression of
nervous-system function. Doses as low as 50 milligrams (mg) of the dried
herb or one milliliter of the tincture can result in respiratory
depression, rapid heart rate, and even coma.
Yohimbe (Pausinystalia yohimbe). A
number of body-building products contain this tree bark. New Choices
reports that the FDA has linked it to kidney failure, seizures, and