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Mobicosa Side Effects: Is This Type of Green-lipped Mussel Powder Safe?

Updated on September 14, 2012

The New Zealand green-lipped mussel has recently become a popular anti-inflammatory supplement used to support healthy nutrition and treat a variety of conditions. This natural supplement is not always side effect free, however. Popular brands of green-lipped mussel powder, such as Mobicosa, can have significant side effects depending on the user's health history, the ways in which the supplement has been processed or handled, and other factors. Here's a look at some possible Mobicosa side effects.

Allergic Reactions

While green-lipped mussel powder products are safe for most people to use, they are inappropriate for people who have a past history of allergic reactions to fish and shellfish. Symptoms of this kind of side effect include skin problems such as eczema or hives, swelling of the face, lips, throat and tongue, and difficulty breathing.

Some people suffer from congestion, wheezing or tingling inside the mouth. Digestive problems and light-headedness are also common. Anyone who has a pre-existing allergy should not risk taking this or any other green-lipped mussel supplement, since an allergic reaction could potentially be fatal.

Gastrointestinal Problems

The sudden introduction of green-lipped mussel supplements into the diet has been known to cause a range of gastrointestinal side effects. People in studies dedicated to the effectiveness of this supplement experienced gas, abdominal pain, nausea and diarrhea. Green-lipped mussel products that claim to have no known side effects usually still produce this kind of discomfort in people who are not accustomed to consuming the shellfish.

Dietary Restriction Problems

One of the less obvious Mobicosa side effects may be violation of religious dietary restrictions. Muslims who consume shellfish may not be aware that the powdered mussels are packaged in a gelatin capsule. Unless otherwise stated, these capsules are usually composed of gelatin obtained from mixed animal sources, which can be in violation of deeply-held religious beliefs. Practitioners who are concerned about this possibility should choose only green-lipped mussel products that contain halal certified gelatin from bovine sources, or vegetarian gelatin substitutes.

Joint Pain Increase

According to the Australian Rheumatism Association, consuming green-lipped mussel powders and extracts can actually make arthritis pain worse in the short term. This is because the supplement induces gout, also known as metabolic arthritis. This extremely painful condition is usually short-lived, but can be an unpleasant surprise for those who have been taken in by overly-positive advertising campaigns. If the condition doesn't disappear after a few weeks, users should consider switching to a different supplement and get the advice of a doctor or other health care professional.


This side effect of green-lipped mussel products is extremely uncommon, but it can be dangerous. In some rare cases, consuming mussel oils or powders can cause hepatitis, resulting in impaired liver function, reduced appetite, pain in the abdomen, or jaundice. Discontinuing the supplement is usually the only option.

Supplement Processing Concerns

Poor handling and processing of green-lipped mussel powder can result in food poisoning or other bacterial infections. These vary and are not associated with any one product, but consumers can avoid them more effectively by choosing a product that clearly states what ingredients it uses, where they come from, and how those ingredients are processed. A lack of concrete information could indicate that the supplement manufacturer cuts corners. In general, products that process still-living mussels into powder within a short period pose the least risk of contamination.

The majority of these side effects are either rare or very short-term. They can even be reduced by using green-lipped mussel powder or extracts in smaller amounts when you begin supplementation, and by doing your research instead of simply choosing the most popular or most widely-advertised option. Selecting a supplement with care can help you get the greatest benefits out of green-lipped mussel products without a significant risk of side effects.


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