Bitter Orange

Drug Levels and Effects:




Summary of Use during Lactation:


Bitter orange (Citrus aurantiu) fruit contains several adrenergic agonists, primarily p-synephrine, but also octopamine and tyramine, as well as numerous flavinoids. Bitter orange has no specific lactation-related uses, but high dosages are often used in weight-loss agents. No data exist on the excretion of any components of bitter orange into breastmilk or on the safety and efficacy of bitter orange in nursing mothers or infants. Bitter orange is "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) as a food and flavoring by the US Food and Drug Administration. High dosages of bitter orange are often combined with caffeine and other stimulants in weight loss products, and the combinations may cause cardiac stimulation. Because of the lack of information on high dosages used in supplements and because animal data indicate that the adrenergic agents in bitter orange might decrease milk production, it should probably be avoided by nursing mothers, especially while nursing a newborn or preterm infant.

Dietary supplements do not require extensive pre-marketing approval from the US Food and Drug Administration. Manufacturers are responsible to ensure the safety, but do not need to prove the safety and effectiveness of dietary supplements before they are marketed. Dietary supplements may contain multiple ingredients, and differences are often found between labeled and actual ingredients or their amounts. A manufacturer may contract with an independent organization to verify the quality of a product or its ingredients, but that does not certify the safety or effectiveness of a product. Because of the above issues, clinical testing results on one product may not be applicable to other products. More detailed informationabout dietary supplementsis available elsewhere on the LactMed Web site.


Drug Levels:


Maternal Levels.

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Infant Levels.

Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.


Effects in Breastfed Infants:


Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.


Possible Effects on Lactation:


Relevant published information in humans was not found as of the revision date. However, animal data indicate that octopamine[1] decreases prolactin and might decrease milk production. Pseudoephedrine, a pharmacologically similar vasoconstrictor, decreases milk production in nursing mothers after oral use.[2]


References:


1. Becu-Villalobos D, Thyssen SM, Rey EB et al. Octopamine and phenylethylamine inhibit prolactin secretion both in vivo and in vitro. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 1992;199:230-5. PMID:1741415
2. Aljazaf K, Hale TW, Ilett KF et al. Pseudoephedrine: effects on milk production in women and estimation of infant exposure via breastmilk. Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2003;56:18-24. PMID:12848771



Substance Identification:




Substance Name:

Bitter Orange

Scientific Name:

Citrus aurantiu

Drug Class:


  • Complementary Therapies

  • Food

  • Phytotherapy

  • Plants, Medicinal


  • Administrative Information:




    LactMed Record Number:


    972


    Last Revision Date:


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