Carob is a tree. Don't confuse carob with Jacaranda caroba, which is also known as carob tree. People use the carob fruit (pods and seeds) for medicine and in foods.

Carob is used for diarrhea, diabetes, prediabetes, persistent heartburn, obesity, athletic performance, and high cholesterol, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

In foods and beverages, carob is used as a flavoring agent and as a chocolate substitute. Carob flour and extracts are also used as ingredients in food products.
When taken by mouth: Carob is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken in food amounts or as a medicine. Some people are allergic to carob.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Children: Carob gum is POSSIBLY SAFE when used as a thickener for regular healthy term infants who have problems with vomiting after feeding. It is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to use carob-based milk thickening agents in preterm infants. There have been two deaths thought to be related to the use of this thickener.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if carob is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid amounts greater than those found in foods.


NatMed Pro rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
  • Diarrhea. Some research suggests that drinking juice extracted from raw carob bean or taking carob pod powder before taking standard oral rehydration solution (ORS) reduces the duration of symptoms in children and infants with acute diarrhea.
  • High cholesterol. Most research suggests that taking carob pulp or specific carob products (Caromax, Nutrinova; Exxenterol, Puleva Biotech SA) by mouth daily for up to 6 weeks reduces total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol in people with moderately high cholesterol.
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions
  • Athletic performance . Early research in trained athletes suggests that taking carob pod powder by mouth for 6 weeks improves elements of athletic performance.
  • Conditions in a man that prevent him from getting a woman pregnant within a year of trying to conceive (male infertility). Early research suggests that taking syrup made of ground carob pods can improve sperm function in men with infertility. But it may not increase the number of babies born.
  • Inherited tendency towards high cholesterol (familial hypercholesterolemia). Early research suggests that taking carob gum by mouth for 4-8 weeks reduces total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol levels in children and adults with familial hypercholesterolemia.
  • Obesity. Early research shows that carob might lower cholesterol levels in overweight adults.
  • Prediabetes. Some research suggests that taking carob by mouth in a beverage helps to improve blood sugar in people at risk of diabetes.
  • Celiac disease.
  • Sprue.
  • Heartburn.
  • Vomiting during pregnancy.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of carob for these uses.

Dosing & administration

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:


  • High cholesterol: 4 grams twice daily of a carob fiber containing 80% polyphenols (Exxenterol, Puleva Biotech SA) for 4 weeks. 15 grams daily of a specific carob product (Caromax, Nutrinova) for 6 weeks. 15 grams daily of carob pulp in prepared food products.

  • Diarrhea: In children, 20 mL/kg of juice extracted from raw carob bean, followed by standard oral rehydration solution (ORS) over 4-6 hours. In infants, 1.5 grams/kg of carob pod powder, up to a maximum dose of 15 grams each day, along with ORS for up to 6 days..

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Medications taken by mouth (Oral drugs)

Interaction Rating=Minor Be watchful with this combination.

Carob is a type of fiber. Fiber can change how much medicine the body absorbs. Taking carob along with medicine you take by mouth can change the effectiveness of the medicine. To prevent this interaction take carob 30-60 minutes after medications you take by mouth.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Calcium: Carob seems to reduce the amount of calcium that the body absorbs.
Iron: Carob seems to reduce the amount of iron that the body absorbs.
Zinc: Carob seems to reduce the amount of zinc that the body absorbs

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.


Carob contains chemicals and fiber. These compounds might cause weight loss, reduce blood sugar and insulin levels, and lower cholesterol levels.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 23/11/2022 18:07:41 and last updated on 19/09/2020 01:00:15. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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