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Teenage girl's green tea consumption caused her to develop hepatitis

Meagan Morris is an entertainment and lifestyle journalist living in New York City. In addition to SheKnows, Morris contributes to many publications including The New York Times, Yahoo! News, PopEater, NBC New York and Spinner. Follow he...

One girl's attempt to lose weight with green tea severely harmed her health

Green tea is often touted as a great drink for those looking to lose weight.

And while, yes, it has plenty of health benefits, the scary experiences of a young girl in the United Kingdom proves that too much of a good thing can be dangerous.

According to a case study published in the journal BMJ Case Reports, the teen girl purchased green tea over the Internet in an effort to lose weight. Though the ingredients were in Chinese, she drank three cups a day for three months before she started experiencing dizziness, nausea, stomach and joint pains. Her doctor wrote it off as a urinary tract infection, but soon after she developed jaundice.

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That's when doctors at Birmingham University Hospital diagnosed her with developing hepatitis, an illness that can be caused by a virus or toxic substances in the liver. The unnamed teen denied taking drugs or drinking alcohol, so doctors deduced that the sudden onset of hepatitis was caused by the excessive green tea drinking.

"After ceasing green tea consumption, there was a rapid and sustained recovery of her hepatitis," the report’s authors wrote of what happened after she was ordered to stop. They added that developing health issues from drinking abnormally large quantities of tea is a "rare but recurring theme," but they don't necessarily think the green tea actually caused it.

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"There is potential for pesticide-induced hepatitis to exist, especially from less regulated products ordered from developing countries over the internet," the doctors said in the report.

So don't throw away your green tea, because it has been proven beneficial for health, but practice moderation, just like with everything in life.

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"We acknowledge that green tea is predominantly a very safe and healthy drink, with antioxidant properties," the doctors added.

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