15 Supplements You Should Stop Taking Now

15 Supplements You Should Stop Taking Now


Vitamin A

Photo Modified: Flickr / mrdonduck / CC BY 4.0

Vitamin A is a critical vitamin for your health, but too much of it can be toxic. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “chronic intakes of excess vitamin A lead to increased intracranial pressure (pseudotumor cerebri), dizziness, nausea, headaches, skin irritation, pain in joints and bones, coma, and even death [2,4,5].”

Bitter Orange

Photo Modified: Flickr / nathanmac / CC BY 4.0

Bitter Orange is a supplement commonly used for weight loss and allergies. It contains synephrine, a compound that has similar effects of the dangerous chemical ephedrine. It has been known to cause heart attack, stroke, and in some cases, death.


Lobelia is a toxic herb commonly used for bronchitis, asthma, breathing problems, and cough. It can also be applied to the skin for muscle pain, insect bites, and sprains. It has serious side effects including fast heartbeat, nausea, tremors, convulsions, mental confusion, and even death.

Vitamin E

        Photo Modified: Flickr / Lindsey Turner / CC BY 4.0

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble nutrient that can be found in food and supplement form. The NIH explains, “it acts as an antioxidant, helping to protect cells from the damage caused by free radicals.” However, exceeding the recommended intake of vitamin E in supplement form can be dangerous to your health. Vitamin E supplements can be harmful for individuals suffering from cancer and can also increase the risk of bleeding in people taking antiplatelet medication. Also, “a large study last year, of 35,533 men, looked at vitamin E and the risk of prostate cancer. The authors found that the risk of cancer increased for men taking vitamin E (Forbes).”

Black Widow

Black Widow is a supplement used to boost energy and burn fat. According to Ephedra Sinica, “the manufacturers of this product added a lot of stimulants to bring about the resultant energy boost. The effects of this product on dieters is an increased energy that is soon followed by increased blood pressure as well as elevated heart rate.” They also explain, it can cause nausea, vomiting, sleeplessness, and even death.

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 is said to be safe when taken by mouth in recommended amounts, but it is also said to have dangerous side effects. According to the Mayo Clinic, “vitamin B6 may cause abnormal heart rhythms, acne, allergic reactions, breast enlargement or soreness, changes in folic acid levels, decreased muscle tone, drowsiness or sedation, feeling of a lump in the throat, feeling of tingling on the skin, headache, heartburn, loss of appetite, nausea, rash, recurrence of ulcerative colitis (an inflammatory bowel disorder), stomach discomfort or pain, sun sensitivity, vomiting, and worsened asthma.”


Coltsfoot is a remedy used for sore throat, bronchitis and asthma. However, consuming Coltsfoot in large doses has proven to be toxic. It has been linked to cancer and liver damage.


Photo Modified: Flickr / Damian Gadal / CC BY 4.0

Aconite can be purchased over the counter and is mainly used for inflammation, colds, fevers and joint pain. However, Aconite poisoning is a major concern. It can cause stomach pains, nausea, low blood pressure, irregular heart beat and has been linked to death.

Country Mallow

Country Mallow has been used for allergies, asthma and nasal congestion. It has been shown to cause heart attack and stoke that may result in death. Country Mallow contains the dangerous stimulant ephedrine. Dr. Weil explains, “in 2004, the FDA banned the sale of country mallow as well as ephedra (herb) and all products containing ephedrine. In announcing the ban, FDA said that studies showed little evidence of effectiveness, except for short-term weight loss. Risks include increased blood pressure and stress on the heart.”


Germanium is used for pain, arthritis, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. It has been said Germanium supplements can cause kidney damage, nerve problems, anemia, muscle weakness, and even death. According to nutrientsreview.com, “pregnant and breast-feeding women should not take germanium, since it may be toxic for the fetus."

Colloidal Silver

Photo Modified: Flickr / Taki Steve / CC BY 4.0

Colloidal Silver supplements are made of small silver particles, the same metal used in dental fillings and jewelry. It has been claimed to treat cancer, Lyme disease, food poisoning and rosacea. Excessive amounts of Colloidal Silver can turn your skin a bluish color, cause kidney damage, and bring on neurological problems.


Comfrey can be used in tea form or applied to the skin. It is said to help upset stomach, chest pain, gum disease, joint inflammation, and back pain. Research has shown it can cause allergic reactions, abdominal pain, nausea and damage to the liver.

Greater Celandine

Greater Celandine is used to treat upset stomach, irritable bowel syndrome, menstrual cramps, eye irritation and liver disorders. Dr. Weil states, “Celandine has been reported to cause hepatitis and may be to blame for unexplained cases of the disease. It also can cause rashes, itching, and serious allergic reactions in some people.” Unfortunately, it also has the potential to cause liver damage, anemia, nausea, and decreased bone mineral density.


Yohimbe is an herbal remedy used to treat chest pain, depression and sexual problems. According to WebMD, “some yohimbe supplements list yohimbine hydrochloride as an active ingredient. Yohimbe products containing man-made yohimbine hydrochloride as an ingredient are not legal to sell as a dietary supplement in the US.” This supplement has been linked to high blood pressure, rapid heart rate, insomnia, nausea, anxiety, and dizziness.


Photo Modified: Flickr / Health Gauge / CC BY 4.0

Chaparral is a plant leaf used to make medicine. It is used to reduce pain, help with digestion problems, arthritis, and skin irritation. “Chaparral has been listed in the FDA's poisonous plant database since 1997 because of the risk of severe — and in some cases, irreversible — liver damage (WebMD).”