Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to avocado. An association between allergy to latex, chestnut, banana and/or avocado has been reported. Symptoms of allergy may include anaphylaxis, hives, vomiting, intestinal spasms, or bronchial asthma.
Side Effects and Warnings
In general, it appears that avocado is well tolerated and is likely safe when consumed in amounts commonly found in foods. Caution should be taken when used in people with hypersensitivity to latex.
Most skin adverse effects are due to allergy, and symptoms may include reddening of the skin, itching, hives, or eczema.
Adverse effects due to ASU (avocado/soybean unsaponifiables) include flu-like symptoms, paralysis, gastrointestinal disorders, nausea, gastralgia (stomach pain), vomiting, inflammation of the intestine, migraine headache with fever, headache, drowsiness, bronchial asthma, or vomiting.
Certain types of avocado oil may cause liver damage. Caution is advised when taking Mexican avocado due to the constituents, estragole and anethole, which may be liver damaging and cancer causing. Caution is advised in patients with compromised liver function.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Taking avocado in medicinal amounts is not recommended during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
Some varieties of avocado may be unsafe during breastfeeding. The Guatemalan variety of avocado may cause mammary gland damage and reduce milk production.
Adults (18 years and older)
The avocado fruit is typically used for medicinal purposes, although the oil has also been studied. To reduce high cholesterol, ½ -1 ½ avocado, or 300 grams, consumed daily for two to four weeks has been used. Avocado-enriched diets, with 75% of the fat coming from the avocado, have also been studied for two to four weeks.
Children (younger than 18 years)
Safety, efficacy, and dosing have not been systematically studied. Use in children should be supervised by a qualified healthcare professional.
Interactions with Drugs
Avocado may decrease the effect of "blood thinning" or anti-inflammatory medications. Some examples include aspirin, anticoagulants ("blood thinners") such as warfarin (Coumadin®) or heparin, anti-platelet drugs such as clopidogel (Plavix®), and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®) or naproxen (Naprosyn®, Aleve®). Avocado may also interact with other types of anti-inflammatories.
Avocado may add to the effects of cholesterol-lowering medications. Patients taking these medications should consult with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist.
Avocado contains moderate amounts of tyramine and may increase the risk of high blood pressure when taken with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). Examples of MAOI drugs include isocarboxazid (Marplan®), phenelzine (Nardil®), and tranylcypromine (Parnate®). Caution is advised.
Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements
Avocado may reduce the "blood thinning" effect of certain herbs and supplements, such as garlic or Ginkgo biloba. It may also interact with herbs and supplements that have anti-inflammatory effects. Caution is advised.
Avocado may add to the effects of cholesterol-lowering agents such as fish oil, garlic, guggul, red yeast and niacin.
Avocado contains moderate amounts of tyramine and may increase the risk of high blood pressure when taken with herbs and supplements that have monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) activity. Caution is advised.
Avocado is rich in beta-sitosterol. Consuming avocado concurrently with other supplements, including beta-sitosterol, could potentially lead to increased side effects.