Categories: Side effects

Serious side effects of cascara sagrada

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Discover the serious side effects of cascara sagrada.

The use of cascara sagrada is becoming more and more common but, yes, many people do not know its contraindications or its negative effects.

The side effects of cascara sagrada are diverse and, therefore, we want to warn you about how you should take it and, above all, who should never do it.

The first thing you should know is that it does not influence the burning of body fat as many people believe, but that it works only as a laxative, and only then can it help you lose weight.

If you are thinking of starting to take it, keep reading this article in which we tell you about the side effects of this plant and, above all, we recommend that you consult with your doctor before starting to use it.Serious side effects of cascara sagrada


What is cascara sagrada for?

Cascara sagrada is obtained from the bark of the branches and the trunk of a tree called Rhamnus prusiana, characteristic of North America.

It has been so named because it was said to be the material that Noah used for the construction of his ark.

It can be taken both in powder and in tablets or capsules of cascara sagrada that we can find in herbalists and pharmacies.


Its function is clear, to stimulate the nervous system and especially to stimulate the intestines thanks to the direct action it has on the walls of the colon.

Its effect is so powerful that just 6 hours after taking it, its effect begins to be noticed.

Because its effect is very powerful, its use should not be taken lightly and we cannot treat ourselves with this plant on our own, but it is necessary for a doctor to control the doses and how often we take it, whether we want to use cascara sagrada to lose weight as if we want to use cascara sagrada for constipation.

For example, if we have indigestion or want to treat mild constipation, it is not recommended that we take this plant on our own to treat the problem.

Side effects of Cascara sagrada

Although it is not considered a dangerous remedy, it must be taken into account that, like everything else, cascara sagrada in excess has negative effects and, therefore, its consumption without medical supervision is not advisable.

If you are going to use it, do it for a few days, since if you exceed it, the following side effects may arise :

Colon dependence: as it is such an effective laxative, the colon can become relaxed and lose its toning until it can cause a loss of its motility and evacuation function.

Problems in the intestine: as we have already mentioned, it intervenes in the nervous system related to the intestine, therefore, if you use it very often you can have stomach pain, cramps, or diarrhea.


Lack of absorption of nutrients: the acceleration that the intestine has if this plant is taken in excess means that the nutrients are not absorbed in the best possible way since there is no time for the complete process to be carried out.

Potassium imbalance: due to lack of absorption, it is one of the nutrients that, by not retaining it, can lead to certain abnormalities such as muscle cramps, constipation, arrhythmias, or muscle problems.


Low absorption of fat: due to its laxative properties, it can lead to fat not being absorbed correctly either and this fact can be noticed through smelly or greasy stools.

In addition, we advise you not to use cascara sagrada to lose weight if you intend to burn fat and if you do not do it under the control of a doctor or nutritionist.

The only proven way that this plant helps you lose weight is that it acts as a powerful laxative and that, by exceeding us, it prevents the absorption of fats.

But the latter, as we have commented, happens with nutrients in general as they affect the mucosa of the intestines and, therefore, their uncontrolled use is not advisable.

Recommended daily dose of cascara sagrada

The dose of cascara sagrada can never exceed 1,000 mg a day it is advisable to take between 350 and 1,000 mg daily but not more.

It is recommended to take 1 to 4 capsules at night. Of course, without using it for more than 10 days and increasing the amount little by little. Start with one and keep increasing the dose until you get the result.


If you want to make it in the form of tea, 1 tablespoon divided into 2 cups of tea in boiling water will suffice. Drink it before going to sleep when it is at room temperature.

Contraindications of Cascara sagrada

In addition to knowing what it is for and what are the side effects of cascara sagrada, it is necessary to know who should not consume or use this plant in any way.

Thus, among the contraindications of cascara sagrada we find the following:

Pregnant women: this plant has abortifacient effects, so its use during pregnancy is discouraged.

Infants and children under 6 years of age: due to its powerful effects on the digestive system, it is not recommended for women who are breastfeeding or babies as well as children under six years of age to take it.

People with chronic constipation: its prolonged use or in high doses is not recommended for people with chronic constipation problems, since the abuse of consumption of this plant affects the colon, reducing its movement and functionality and, therefore, aggravating constipation.

If we want to treat this problem, it is best to use this plant very sporadically and under medical instructions.

People with irritable bowel: as it has a strong laxative effect, it is discouraged for people suffering from irritable bowel.


People who take laxatives: if you suffer from constipation problems and are already taking laxative medications, you should not consume cascara sagrada since enhancing the laxative effects can be dangerous to our health.

Cardiovascular problems and during menstruation: as it greatly activates blood circulation, and therefore has abortive effects, its consumption is contraindicated in cases of cardiovascular diseases and during menstruation.

As you can see, the function of cascara sagrada as a laxative is 100% effective but, despite this, its side effects must be taken into account and, above all, those who suffer from any of the different situations described above should be monitored.

This article is merely informative, at HBO we do not have the power to prescribe any medical treatment or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.


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