Bay leaf and bay leaf oil are likely safe for most people in food amounts. Taking the whole, intact leaf by mouth is likely unsafe. The leaf can’t be digested, so it remains intact while passing through the digestive system. This means it can become clogged in the throat or pierce the lining of the intestines.
Bay leaf might interfere with blood sugar control. Hence monitoring blood sugar closely is needed if one has diabetes and is using the bay leaf as a medicine.
Bay leaf might slow down the central nervous system (CNS). There is a concern that it might slow down the CNS too much when combined with anesthesia and other medications used during and after surgery. Using the bay leaf as a medicine should be stopped at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Bay Leaf Side Effects
Possible Issues During Pregnancy And Breastfeeding
There is limited information available on the safety of bay leaf intake during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Please consult your doctor before including it in your diet.
May Interact With Blood Sugar Control
Bay leaf can play a beneficial role in glucose metabolism. This beneficial property may also make it interact with blood sugar medications. Hence, if you are on medications for high blood sugar, consult your doctor before taking bay leaf. Since there is a lack of concrete research in this area, it is better to take precautions.
Possible Issues During Surgery
Anecdotal evidence suggests that bay leaf may cause issues during surgery. It may slow down the central nervous system. Hence, stop using the bay leaf at least two weeks before a scheduled surgery.