Ginkgo Biloba Side Effects

Though there are obvious benefits from taking the supplement, ginkgo biloba side effects can occur and make its consumption a mildly irritable to dangerous experience. To minimize the risks of side effects from occurring, the National Institute of Health recommends starting at a dosage of 120 milligrams divided in small doses throughout the day. If you find the side effects are unbearable or don’t go away, stop taking the supplement or lessen the dosage. Before taking any supplement, however, consult a health care practitioner before experimenting with your health.

  1. May increase the risk of seizures. This side effect is due to chemicals inside the leaves. Obviously, those prone to seizures, such as people with epilepsy, may want to avoid consumption at all costs.
  2. May cause heart palpitations. The herb is renowned for increasing circulation, but too much of a good thing may cause your heart to flutter too quickly, intensely and unnecessarily.
  3. May reduce the effectiveness or increase the risks associated with prescription and over-the-counter medications. It isn’t recommended that you take the herb with ibuprofen, coumadin or other anticoagulant drugs, as these in themselves reduce blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding when taken with ginkgo biloba.
  4. May cause diarrhea. This powerful supplement may cause gastrointestinal distress, resulting in diarrhea as well as gas and upset stomach. Limit or avoid intake if any of these conditions don’t go away.
  5. May increase or decrease insulin and blood sugar. Those with Type 2 diabetes may want to avoid taking ginkgo biloba or monitor their blood sugar closely, since diabetic medications lower blood sugar already and may be less effective for those who take ginkgo biloba.
  6. May cause severe allergic reactions. ginkgo biloba contains ginkgolic acid, a toxin that cause hazardous reactions and may even be carcinogenic. To avoid this possibility, purchase your supplement from a tested, pharmaceutical grade brand.
  7. May interact with other herbs and supplements. Angelica, clove, danshen, garlic, ginger, ginkgo, ginseng are some herbs that may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with ginkgo biloba.
  8. Can cause gastrointestinal bleeding. Keep an eye out for black or bright red stools or are vomiting blood, as this may be a sign of the condition. Halt consumption immediately and call a doctor right away if this occurs.
  9. Can increase the risk of bleeding. The supplement is an anti-coagulant, but unless you’re at risk for stroke or blood clots, should be used carefully to reduce of bleeding and bruise formation. 
  10. May induce or increase anxious feelings. Though a benefit of the herb is mental stimulation, it may be too much for those prone to anxiety, hyperactivity and/or impulsiveness. Limit or avoid intake if you have any of these conditions.
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