María Elizabeth Montilla, a pediatrician at the Antímano Children’s Nutrition Care Center (Cania), warns that the use of guarapos in children can cause seizures, drowsiness, affect the renal system and liver disorders.
Since time immemorial, the magic recipe of some mothers and grandmothers in the presence of any type of discomfort is a medicinal drink made with plants that have healing properties, better known as guarapo or infusion. And, although for adults it can be an incentive, Guarapo as a medicine is not recommended for children.
María Elizabeth Montilla, pediatrician and dietetic medical care coordinator at the Antímano Child Nutrition Care Center (Cania), explains that the consumption of these drinks can be toxic for children.
“There is toxicity from the neurological point of view that can cause seizures, drowsiness, affectations of the renal system and alterations at the liver level,” he explains.
The human organism has the renal and hepatic systems to metabolize food, “if the liver does not do it, the kidney takes care of it”, but if some type of food is ingested for which both systems are not ready to process, can lead to serious consequences. This is what happens with many plants that are used to make guarapos.
The specialist comments that “it is a constant struggle” for mothers to understand how harmful it can be to expose children to these drinks. “There are those who use the pine nut as an antiparasitic, without knowing that the pine nut can cause injuries that can lead to intensive care or even death,” she warns.
He warns that these drinks also affect the interruption of calcium absorption in the bones: “Imagine the effects that can have for a growing child,” he says.
Montilla advises that “perhaps in adolescence” when the body reaches renal and hepatic capacity, infusions can be ingested, but the state of health must always be considered.
“What would happen if the adolescent has an unknown lesion at the kidney or liver level? It would be terrible, ”she warns.
Regarding the use of honey, one of the best-known practices to sweeten children’s drinks “because it is believed to be healthier than sugar”, the pediatrician warns that honey can cause infant botulism, a serious gastrointestinal condition, due to Therefore, it is advisable to reduce the consumption of sweeteners in general to children.
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