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Thread: Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

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    Moderator Julieanne's Avatar
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    Default Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

    Shubhra Krishan
    June 28 2014


    Before you begin reading further, let me clarify: green tea as a beverage is not the subject here. In fact, drinking green tea every day is a good health habit that provides antioxidants and immunity-boosting benefits.
    But you might be surprised to know that health experts caution against taking supplements that contain green tea extracts, pointing out their potential to hurt the liver.
    I was surprised to hear that haloed green tea could ever be associated with anything mildly unpleasant, let alone pose a risk to the health of the liver. But the truth is, several weight-loss supplements and energy drinks contain green tea extract, and a number of case studies have established that even minimal use of these unregulated dietary supplements can lead to liver failure, requiring liver transplant.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

    Thank you for the article Julianne — I had just heard something in passing about this and am glad to have an article to back it up. Most people taking weight loss supplements also take Tylenol/acetaminophen or other liver-toxic medications which added to green tea could make it worse.

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    Veteran Member mellowsong's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

    I am not saying this isn't true because catechins have been linked to liver injury but I'd really like to read the full study. There is no magic pill for weight loss but the average consumer is going to always be on the quest for one. Here are a few questions to think about.
    1. How much were they taking? People desperate to lose weight do desperate things including taking 10X or more the "recommended" dose. Megadoses of anything, including water, are harmful.
    2. How long were they taking it?
    3. Were the implicated supplements checked in a lab for contaminants, illegal weight loss drugs or steroids?
    4. What else were these people taking? Were they taking acetaminophen, on statins or any of a myriad of other drugs linked to risk of liver injury?
    5. Possibly remove this from the market or plaster it with warnings but, I'm afraid that it will simply be used as another excuse to take supplements away from us.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

    Excellent points Mellow! Usually problems with contamination/added unlisted ingredients in supplements seem to occur most often in weight loss and virility supplements.

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    Moderator Julieanne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can Green Tea Ever Be Bad for Your Liver?

    mellow, I thought of a couple of those, though I can't put it as concisely as you! I wondered how much they actually took. The article says: 'even minimal use of these unregulated dietary supplements can lead to liver failure'.

    I also worried that this kind of report puts more pressure to over-regulate supplements in general, something we definitely don't need.


    Last edited by Julieanne; 06-30-14 at 05:14 AM.

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