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Observations placeholder

Bitter orange, hallucinations and toxic effects



Type of Spiritual Experience


Number of hallucinations: 1


Two papers.  The first described a bitter orange supplement which caused psychosis and hallucinations.  The second has no spiritual experience but is an important background paper to add to the other observations.

Ischemic colitis (ischaemic colitis in British English) is a medical condition in which inflammation and injury of the large intestine result from inadequate blood supply.

A description of the experience

"Ephedra-free" diet pill-induced psychosis.   Retamero C, Rivera T, Murphy K.   Psychosomatics. 2011 Nov-Dec;52(6):579-82. doi: 10.1016/j.psym.2011.06.003. PMID:  22054631


Mayo Clin Proc. 2006 Dec;81(12):1630-1. Ischemic colitis associated with use of a bitter orange-containing dietary weight-loss supplement. Sultan S, Spector J, Mitchell RM. Department of Medicine, University of Florida Medical Center and Malcolm Randall Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Gainesville, Fla 32605, USA. sultas@medicine.ufl.edu

Since the US Food and Drug Administration banned the use of dietary supplements containing ephedra in February 2004, numerous "ephedra-free" weight-loss products have appeared on the market.

Many of these supplements contain compounds such as bitter orange that are similar in structure and action to ephedra.

We describe a patient in whom ischemic colitis developed 1 week after initiation of a bitter orange-containing weight-loss supplement. The patient had no other predisposing factors, and discontinuation of the supplement led to immediate improvement and ultimate resolution of her symptoms.

Both consumers and health care professionals should be aware of the potential harm that bitter orange-containing dietary supplements can cause and report such adverse events to the US Food and Drug Administration.

PMID: 17165643

The source of the experience


Concepts, symbols and science items



Science Items

Activities and commonsteps