Proceed with caution
Any herbal supplement or remedy could potentially cause liver or kidney failure or have dangerous interactions with other medications you may be taking. That’s why California-based physician Ehsan Ali, MD (a.k.a. the Beverly Hills Concierge Doctor), recommends you ask your doctor before popping any herbal pill or natural cure. “All patients of all ages should check with their doctor first about what home remedy they want to try,” says Dr. Ali. “Better to be safe than sorry!” He warns all of his patients that most herbal supplements haven’t been tested by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and may have many potential risks and side effects.
St. John’s Wort
This herb is touted as a treatment for depression, but comprehensive studies are lacking. Dangers can arise when patients are already taking other medications. There have been incidents of St. John’s Wort interfering with birth control pills, leading to unintended pregnancies. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health warns that St. John’s Wort can disrupt the action of many medications, including warfarin, antidepressants, and anti-rejection drugs following organ transplants. Here are 17 everyday medication mistakes that could make you sick.