Guarana is a very popular substance that is used as a natural remedy for its different health benefits. Among these benefits we can find that guarana, thanks to its nutrients, is a good natural remedy for its energizing properties that help those who need to be concentrated, also reduces stress levels and can even help people who are dieting to lose more weight.
However, while it can be very beneficial for many people, it is also totally discouraged for others because of its various effects. Keep reading this article and find out what the contraindications and side effects of guarana are.
Composition and properties of guarana
Guarana, also known as Brazilian cacao, is a climbing liana that breeds in the Amazon rainforest but is also currently grown in many other areas of South America. Among its active ingredients, it can be seen that the seed has a high content of caffeine, even more than coffee, also in tannins, flavonol and saponins, in addition to other nutrients such as proteins, fiber and fatty acids.
Thanks to the composition of guarana, this plant has been used for hundreds of years for its various benefits for our health. Among them, we can find the following properties:
- Thanks to its composition in tannins, the effect of caffeine or guaranine is less abrupt and more durable than that contained in coffee.
- It has excellent stimulating properties that improve concentration, decrease tiredness and increase motivation.
- It also has antioxidant properties that prevent cellular aging and protect from free radicals.
- Guarana is also used as a supplement in diets to lose weight as it has satiating and anorectic properties that help decrease appetite.
- Its tannin content also makes it a good remedy for digestive disorders such as diarrhea or leukorrhea.
Side effects of the guarana plant
Although we have already seen that guarana has various properties that are very beneficial for health, it can also cause multiple side effects if we consume in high doses this food supplement since it contains, among all its compounds, a high content of caffeine. Among the various side effects caused by guarana, we find the following:
- The most common effect if high doses are consumed is insomnia. In addition, this lack of sleep can bring other consequences such as irritation, anxiety, nervousness and bad mood.
- Another effect caused by caffeine is the acidity in the stomach that can bring with it vomiting and a feeling of discomfort. In addition, heartburn can also cause other digestive disorders such as constipation or diarrhea.
- Headaches can also appear if large doses of this product are consumed.
- It can also cause heart irregularities although it is not very common. However, if you're having palpitations, shortness of breath, or chest pain, you should see your doctor as soon as possible.
- Caffeine is a substance that causes addiction, so if you stop consuming this product for a period of time, you may have withdrawal syndrome.
Contraindications of guarana
As we have indicated, it is a plant that has a high content of caffeine and other substances such as tannins, theobromine and theophylline. Therefore, the consumption of guarana is contraindicated in the following cases:
- Pregnant and/or breastfeeding women, as caffeine can reach the baby and increase his heart rate.
- It is not recommended either in people who are taking medications such as anxiolytics, antidepressants, decongestants and antihypertensive among others.
- It is also not recommended in people who have heart diseases such as hypertension or arrhythmias.
- If you suffer from anxiety, insomnia or any other nervous disorder you should not consume the product of this plant either.
- Caffeine may increase symptoms for people with migraines.
- This product should not be given to children under the age of 12 or who are hyperactive.
Recommended daily dose of guarana
Most of the side effects of guarana are due to a very high daily dose of this food supplement. To enjoy its benefits, you should take guarana in a daily dose ranging between 250 and 1200mg (which will contain between 20 and 200mg of caffeine) in the event that you consume it in the form of syrup. In the case of consuming, it in the form of capsules or pills, you should take 2 guarana pills a day. In either case you should not consume more than 300mg of caffeine a day.