HORSERADISH

OTHER NAME(S):

Amoraciae Rusticanae Radix, Armoracia lopathifolia, Armoracia rusticana, Cochlearia armoracia, Cran de Bretagne, Cranson, Grand Raifort, Great Raifort, Meerrettich, Mountain Radish, Moutarde des Allemands, Moutarde des Capucins, Moutardelle, Nasturtium armoracia, Pepperrot, Rábano Picante, Rábano Rústico, Radis de Cheval, Raifort, Raifort Sauvage, Red Cole, Rorippa armoracia.

Overview

Overview Information

Horseradish is a plant. The roots are often prepared as a condiment. The roots are also used as medicine.

Some people take horseradish by mouth for urinary tract infections, kidney stones, fluid retention, infections of the respiratory tract, cough, achy joints (rheumatism), gallbladder disorders, sciatic nerve pain, gout, colic, and intestinal worms in children.

Some people apply horseradish directly to the skin for painful and swollen joints or tissues and for minor muscle aches.

In foods, horseradish is used as a flavoring agent.

How does it work?

Horseradish might help fight bacteria and stop spasms.

Uses

Uses & Effectiveness?

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Infection of the airways. Early research shows that taking a specific product containing horseradish root and nasturtium might make infections of the airway happen less often.
  • Infections of the kidney, bladder, or urethra (urinary tract infections or UTIs). Early research shows that taking a specific product containing horseradish root and nasturtium might help to prevent recurring UTIs.
  • Fluid retention (edema).
  • Cough.
  • Achy joints and muscles.
  • Gout.
  • Gallbladder disorders.
  • Sciatic nerve pain.
  • Colic.
  • Intestinal worms.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of horseradish for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Horseradish root is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth in food amounts. It is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in medicinal amounts. However, it contains mustard oil, which is extremely irritating to the lining of the mouth, throat, nose, digestive system, and urinary tract. Horseradish can cause side effects including stomach upset, bloody vomiting, and diarrhea. It may also slow down the activity of the thyroid gland.

When used on the skin, horseradish is POSSIBLY SAFE when preparations containing 2% mustard oil or less are used, but it can cause skin irritation and allergic reactions.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Children less than 4 years old: Horseradish is LIKELY UNSAFE in young children when taken by mouth because it can cause digestive tract problems.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It's LIKELY UNSAFE to take horseradish by mouth in large amounts if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Horseradish contains mustard oil, which can be toxic and irritating. Horseradish tincture is also LIKELY UNSAFE when used regularly or in large amounts because it might cause a miscarriage.

Stomach or intestinal ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease, infections or other digestive tract conditions: Horseradish can irritate the digestive tract. Don't use horseradish if you have any of these conditions.

Underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism): There is concern that using horseradish might make this condition worse. Talk to your doctor if you have hypothyroidism before taking horseradish.

Kidney problems: There is concern that horseradish might increase urine flow. This could be a problem for people with kidney disorders. Avoid using horseradish if you have kidney problems.

Interactions

Interactions?

Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

!
  • Levothyroxine interacts with HORSERADISH

    Levothyroxine is used for low thyroid function. Horseradish seems to decrease the thyroid. Taking horseradish along with levothyroxine might decrease the effects of levothyroxine.
    Some brands that contain levothyroxine include Armour Thyroid, Eltroxin, Estre, Euthyrox, Levo-T, Levothroid, Levoxyl, Synthroid, Unithroid, and others.

Dosing

Dosing

The appropriate dose of horseradish depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for horseradish. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References

REFERENCES:

  • Goos, K. H., Albrecht, U., and Schneider, B. [Efficacy and safety profile of a herbal drug containing nasturtium herb and horseradish root in acute sinusitis, acute bronchitis and acute urinary tract infection in comparison with other treatments in the daily practice/results of a prospective cohort study]. Arzneimittelforschung 2006;56(3):249-257. View abstract.
  • HALBEISEN, T. [Antibiotic substance obtained from Cochlearia armoracia L.]. Arzneimittelforschung 1957;7(5):321-324. View abstract.
  • KIENHOLZ, M. [Studies of antibacterial substances from horseradish (Cochlearia armoracia), nasturtium (Tropaeolum maius) and garden peppergrass (Lepidium sativum).]. Arch Hyg Bakteriol. 1957;141(3):182-197. View abstract.
  • Luczaj, L. and Szymanski, W. M. Wild vascular plants gathered for consumption in the Polish countryside: a review. J.Ethnobiol.Ethnomed. 2007;3:17. View abstract.
  • Panter, K. E. and James, L. F. Natural plant toxicants in milk: a review. J Anim Sci 1990;68(3):892-904. View abstract.
  • SCHINDLER, E., ZIPP, H., and MARTH, I. [Comparative clinical studies on non-specific urinary tract infections with an enzyme-glycoside mixture obtained from horseradish roots (Cochlearia armoracia L.)]. Arzneimittelforschung 1960;10:919-921. View abstract.
  • WECHSELBERG, K. [In vitro studies on the effect of oily plant extracts from Tropaeolum maius, Cochlearia armoracia and Allium sativum on growth of tubercle bacteria.]. Z Hyg Infektionskr 1958;145(4):380-394. View abstract.
  • Albrecht U, Goos KH, Schneider B. A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of a herbal medicinal product containing Tropaeoli majoris herba (Nasturtium) and Armoraciae rusticanae radix (Horseradish) for the prophylactic treatment of patients with chronically recurrent lower urinary tract infections. Curr Med Res Opin 2007;23(10):2415-22. View abstract.
  • Conaway, C. C., Yang, Y. M., and Chung, F. L. Isothiocyanates as cancer chemopreventive agents: their biological activities and metabolism in rodents and humans. Curr Drug Metab 2002;3(3):233-255. View abstract.
  • Electronic Code of Federal Regulations. Title 21. Part 182 -- Substances Generally Recognized As Safe. Available at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?CFRPart=182
  • Fetrow CW, Avila JR. Professional's Handbook of Complementary & Alternative Medicines. 1st ed. Springhouse, PA: Springhouse Corp., 1999.
  • Fintelmann V, Albrecht U, Schmitz G, Schnitker J. Efficacy and safety of a combination herbal medicinal product containing Tropaeoli majoris herba and Armoraciae rusticanae radix for the prophylactic treatment of patients with respiratory tract diseases: a randomised, prospective, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase III trial. Curr Med Res Opin 2012;28(11):1799-807. View abstract

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
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