Neem Contraindications: When to Avoid Using It

 In Rumors We Hear

This is the first of what will be a continuing series of posts from the booklet entitled “Neem: A Hands-On Guide to One of the World’s Most Versatile Herbs.” Originally written in 2010 by a group of neem enthusiasts, most of the contributors have retired or moved on to other endeavors. To keep the project alive, they’ve agreed that Neem Tree Farms can repost (and update) the booklet on this site.

None of the information you see here (or read on other internet sites) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It’s a billion -dollar – yes, that’s with a b! — process to prove that an herb that has been used for nearly 5,000 years is safe and effective. It will probably never happen, unless someone synthesizes a compound from the tree, because it grows so easily in tropical locations that no one would ever make that much return on their investment.

The first — and most important — section on neem (or any other powerful herb) should be a clear description of when it should NOT be used. We’ve seen amazing results in people, pups and plants, but it’s not a panacea for every person.

  • Neem oil, pressed from the seed, should only be used topically and never taken internally. Neem leaf and bark — in capsules, extracts or teas — can be used either externally or internally.
  • Because one of neem’s most widely reported effects is boosting the immune system, people with autoimmune diseases — including lupus and multiple sclerosis — should use neem only under close supervision of a healthcare professional to avoid the risk of worsening their disease. People who are taking immunosuppressive drugs (e.g., transplant patients or patients on the new biologic anti-inflammatory drugs) cannot take neem because it would counteract those essential drugs.
  • Neem is used to treat diabetes in Ayurvedic medicine * so insulin-dependent diabetics must monitor their blood sugar levels carefully when using neem. For the same reason, anyone diagnosed with hypoglycemia must be extremely cautious and use neem only for brief periods.
  • Because neem can have contraceptive effects, couples — both women and men — trying to conceive a child should not use it internally Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should also avoid using neem internally.
  • Neem contains aspirin-like compounds that may increase the risk of Reyes Syndrome. Do not give it internally to children who weigh less than 100 pounds if they are running a temperature or have been exposed to a fever-causing illness. External use is safe at all ages, so lotions, creams and salves are appropriate even for very young children.

#neemsafety #neemcontraindications #neemchildren #neemimmunesystem

* These statements have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Neem Tree Farms does not sell products that are intended to diagnose, treat, control or cure any disease.

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