A growing diet craze might be coming with a rather inconvenient side effect: unwanted pregnancy.
Thousands of women have reportedly resorted to a weight loss regimen known as "teatox" to clean out their digestive systems.
Among the most popular of these herbal treatments in Britain is Bootea. But, several women began the regimen without the knowledge it can inhibit the effectiveness of certain methods of oral contraception.
Naomi Salt, 26, was on birth control but became pregnant shortly after starting the treatment about six months ago, Daily Mail reports.
Of her pregnancy, she said,
I am over the moon now, but I was shocked and worried at first to say the least. I am regimental about taking my pill and my first reaction was, 'How has this happened?'
Another woman wrote online she had been on the pill for over a year but became pregnant after just 28 days of following the Bootea plan.
Salt discovered why her pill stopped working when a friend directed her to the "Frequently Asked Questions" section on Bootea's official website.
It is here where the Cheshire-based company warns users to use condoms because Bootea may interfere with birth control if the pill is flushed out too quickly.
The tea empties one's digestive system so fast, it prevents birth control from being absorbed by the blood.
However, this warning is nowhere to be found on the tea's package.
It is irresponsible, they've got a duty of care to young women like myself. Bootea assumes people check the website but not everyone will.
Numerous online forums are now laden with warnings from Bootea drinkers about its impact on birth control.
But health columnist Dr. Ellie Cannon and Dr. Sarah Hardman, deputy director of the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare in London, reportedly said Bootea shouldn't assume responsibility for the unwanted pregnancies.
Dr. Cannon told Daily Mail,
This is a failure of the counseling those women have had when they have been given the [pill] rather than the failure of this tea.
Dr. Hardman said once a woman begins a treatment that isn't prescribed and doesn't do research beforehand, she has to "take responsibility" for all unwanted side effects.