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Are there any side effects to rhodiola rosea?

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Quick Answer

No known or suspected side effects of rhodiola rosea exist, according to WebMD and the NYU Langone Medical Center. Rhodiola rosea is a plant found in the arctic regions of Europe, Asia and Alaska, and its root has a long history of medicinal use.

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Full Answer

However, both WebMD and the NYU Langone Medical Center stress that comprehensive studies have not been conducted to evaluate the safety of rhodiola use for young children, pregnant or nursing women, or those who have severe kidney or liver disease. WebMD also cites that sufficient safety evidence is lacking regarding the long term use of rhodiola.

Despite lack of sufficient evidence, rhodiola has been used to treat a wide variety of aliments and enhance a variety of body functions, as reported by WebMD. Some of these proposed benefits include increasing energy and stamina, reducing recovery times from periods of extended physical activity, and immunity boosting properties to aid the body in resisting chemical, physical and environmental stress factors. Rhodiola has also been used to treat cancer, diabetes and tuberculosis, and its usage includes preventing aging and liver damage. WebMD explains that rhodiola works to prevent cell damage, increase the potential for memory and learning, and regulate heartbeat, but these effects have not been studied in humans as of 2014.

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