Excessive amounts of some herbal products can have harmful side effects: Study

herbal products

A study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal states that excessive amounts of some herbal products can have harmful side effects. It was incorporated after a man in Canada landed up in a hospital for high-blood pressure emergency after over-consuming homemade tea made from licorice root.


“Excessive amounts of some herbal products can have harmful side effects,” said Jean-Pierre Falet from McGill University in Canada.

Elaborating it further, Falet said, “Products containing licorice root extract can raise blood pressure, cause water retention and decrease potassium levels if consumed in excess.”

According to the researchers, the high blood pressure in the 84-year-old resident of Canada was found to be induced by homemade tea made from licorice root, which led to his blood pressure reaching high levels. He was also suffering from a headache, light sensitivity, chest pain, fatigue and fluid retention in the calves, said the study.


With a history of high blood pressure, the patient told the physicians he had been daily drinking 1-2 glasses of homemade licorice root extract called “erk sous” for the past two weeks.

Also read: Ozone Ayurvedics launches herbal solution for dry eyes

Licorice tea is popular in the Middle East and parts of Europe, and “erk sous” are especially popular in Egypt during Ramadan.

The findings suggest that physicians should consider screening for licorice root intake in patients with difficult-to-control hypertension.

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