Important Nattokinase Side Effects

Before you or your loved one start taking nattokinase, make sure that you are aware of its nature as well as possible nattokinase side effects. There is no substitute for sufficient information.

            Nattokinase is an enzyme that is produced by a soybean called natto, which looks like blue cheese and is a popular breakfast food in Japan. Nattokinase is extracted from fermented natto. It has been used as for many years and has been thought to be effective in addressing blood clots and preventing strokes and heart attacks, which result from abnormal blood clots. Nattokinase is believed to do this by dissolving the fibers that make up blood clots.

            Aspirin and Coumadin, which also work on blood clots, work differently. While nattokinase is said to dissolve fibers in the blood clot, aspirin works on blood clots by reducing the viscosity of the blood. Coumadin, on the other hand, prevents blood clots from forming. For many years, nattokinase has been thought of as a suitable substitute for aspirin.

            In recent years, however, some very serious nattokinase side effects have come to the surface. These are the following:

  • ·         Internal bleeding – Nattokinase, when used with other anti-stroke drugs like aspirin and Coumadin, may cause internal bleeding. There have been recorded cases of patients who suffered from brain hemorrhage after they took a combined dose of nattokinase with aspirin for a week. These cases have even appeared on medical journals.

Similarly, combining nattokinase with other herbs whose purpose is to prevent blood clots has also been shown to cause bleeding. Herbs with blood-thinning properties include ginger, gingko biloba, garlic, anise, bogbean, angelica, danshen, turmeric, horse chestnut, white willow and red clover.

  • ·         Hypotension – Another side effect that may be caused by nattokinase is extremely low blood pressure. Typically, a patient with hypertension takes prescription drugs for it. These drugs, when combined with nattokinase, produce abnormally low blood pressure in the person. Hypotension is just as dangerous as hypertension, in that it may also lead to a stroke.

Theoretically, when nattokinase is taken with herbs that lower blood pressure such as black cohosh, raises the risk of hypotension.

  • ·         Bruising – Nattokinase, theoretically, may also cause bruising because of its anticoagulant properties.

            Some doctors are wary of nattokinase for the reason that it might have effects on the body that are yet unknown. According to them, nattokinase has not undergone enough testing, for the results to be conclusive.

            If you’re thinking of taking nattokinase for your blood pressure, or to prevent stroke or heart attack, do not do this without first consulting your doctor. The reason for this is that some drugs are not meant to be combined with each other and may have very harmful effects. The same goes for herbal supplements. Just because something is herbal doesn’t mean that it will always be harmless.

            Now that you are aware of the potential nattokinase side effects, you can look out for your health better, and make better choices for yourself and the ones you love.

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