Ayurvedic medicine has been considered as the prime healing method since the ancient era. It has its origins in the sacred ground of India and is blessed with fewer side effects as compared to allopathy. Giloy, also known as Tinospora Cordifolia, is one such herb that is popular among naturopaths for its numerous benefits. It is also known as ‘Indian Tinospora’ as it is mostly found naturally in India and Sri Lanka. It is now gaining popularity in Ayurvedic science for its role in treating and preventing common infections. Let us have a look at the benefits and side effects of Giloy, the Indian Tinospora herb.
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Side effects of Giloy
After many trials, Giloy is however labeled to be ‘Possibly Safe’. No doubt it can and is being used for the afore-mentioned cases. However, it’s important to note that like any herb or supplement, Giloy may have side effects for some individuals. Here are some potential unknown side effects of Giloy:
Pregnancy & breastfeeding
Much care is taken with the drugs and treatment taken during this crucial phase. It’s not that Tinospora is known to cause any serious side effects in pregnancy or breastfeeding but that little is known about its effect. It still has to be researched about its long-term effects and hence it is always better to avoid it and stay on the safe side.
Affect blood sugar levels
It has been found in a few cases that Giloy lowers blood sugar levels. In that case, your diabetic medications will need to be adjusted accordingly to prevent the side effects of hypoglycemia in a diabetic patient.
Some studies suggest that excessive use of Giloy may have adverse effects on the liver. Individuals with existing liver conditions or those taking medications that affect the liver should be cautious.
Some individuals may be allergic to Giloy, leading to allergic reactions such as skin rashes, itching, or swelling. If you notice any allergic symptoms, it’s important to discontinue use and seek medical advice.
In some cases, Giloy may cause digestive issues such as nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. Individuals with sensitive stomachs may be more prone to these effects.
In some cases, it was observed that Giloy causes constipation and stomach irritation. This side effect is the most noted one and should be looked after once treatment with it in any form is started. Giloy is available as both tablets and as juice. Both forms have constipation as a common side effect.
Giloy being used with other drugs has its own effects. It is known to interact more with antidiabetic and immunosuppressant medications than any other drugs. When used in a diabetic patient, it might cause their blood glucose levels to drop too low. Using it with immunosuppressants that are known to lower immunity, Giloy might decrease the effectiveness of these drugs due to their immunomodulatory properties. Hence, it’s essential to inform your healthcare provider about any supplements or herbs you are taking to avoid potential interactions.
Giloy should be stopped around 2 weeks before your scheduled surgery date because it is known to cause sugar level alterations in the blood. It could interfere with the sugar level control during and after surgery.
As already mentioned above, Giloy boosts the immune system. In cases of autoimmune diseases, it may over-stimulate the immune system. Hence, it is best to not use Giloy if you suffer from any autoimmune conditions like lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus or SLE), or rheumatoid arthritis among others.
In order to avoid such potential side effects of Giloy, it is crucial to consume it the right way, within the daily recommended dosage.
Recommended dosage of Giloy (Tinospora cordifolia)
The recommended dosage of Giloy (Tinospora cordifolia) can vary based on factors such as the form of the supplement (powder, capsule, juice), individual health conditions, and the specific product. It’s important to follow the guidelines provided on the product label or consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice.
As a general guideline, here are some typical dosage recommendations for different forms of Giloy:
The typical dosage of Giloy powder may range from 1 to 3 grams per day. It can be mixed with honey or warm water before consumption.
Capsules usually come in standardized doses. Commonly, one or two capsules, taken once or twice daily, are recommended. However, it’s crucial to follow the dosage instructions on the product label.
If you are using Giloy juice, the recommended dosage may vary. Typically, 10-20 ml of Giloy juice mixed with water can be taken once or twice a day. Again, follow the product-specific guidelines.
It’s essential to note that individual responses to herbal supplements can vary, and it’s advisable to start with a lower dose and gradually increase if needed. Additionally, pregnant or lactating women, individuals with existing health conditions, and those taking medications should consult with a healthcare professional before using Giloy to determine the appropriate dosage and ensure safety.
Always choose high-quality products from reputable sources, and avoid exceeding the recommended dosage unless advised by a healthcare provider. If you experience any adverse reactions or discomfort, discontinue use and seek medical advice.
Role of Giloy in medicine
- It has an antipyretic and anti-inflammatory action which makes it useful in various allergies (hay fever) where the patient suffers from repeated sneezing, nasal itching and discharge, stuffy nose, etc. It is somewhat proven to decrease sneezing episodes and provide symptomatic results after about two months of treatment.
- It is also used in treating chronic fever and diseases.
- It has an antioxidant action.
- It has an immunomodulatory action which helps to boost the immune system.
- It is also known to have some benefit in killing cancer cells and hence used in cancer conditions like lymphoma.
- Also used in hepatitis and certain liver conditions.
- Used in cases of- stomach upset, gout, diabetes, high cholesterol, peptic ulcer disease (PUD), and many more.
Recommended Read: Use of Giloy in treating Dengue and Chikungunya
‘Giloy’ is referred to as ‘Amrita’ in Sanskrit meaning ‘the root of immortality’ perhaps owing to its medicinal properties. It is available in capsules of strength 500mg made from the herbal extract of the plant, Tinospora Corfifolia. Its treatment duration ranges from 4-6 months for apt results.
Ayurvedic medicines are known for greater health benefits with fewer side effects. It might not be the case with all the medicines. Hence, it is always advisable to be fully aware of the benefits and side effects of any drug, Giloy in this case, before starting its consumption. After all, awareness today is the key to a better health tomorrow.
Do share your experience with this herb and if you have faced any issues or side effects of Giloy in the comment section.