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Don’t eat holly, mistletoe or poinsettia, Illinois Poison Center warns

(HOI) – The Illinois Poison Center is putting out a warning regarding three common holiday plants and why you shouldn’t eat them.

Mistletoe, poinsettia and holly – while they may not be scarily toxic, ingesting will still cause nausea and vomiting, according to the poison center.

The amount that causes symptoms varies between them, but includes swallowing too many leaves or berries from mistletoe or a mouthful of poinsettia.

They offer the following tips to keep families safe from gastrointestinal illness:

  • Keep all live plants and plant material high and out of reach of small children
  • Consider using netting to catch falling leaves and berries
  • Be vigilant about cleaning the floors and furniture if parts of the plant do fall
  • Consider using the faux versions of these plants to keep children and pets safe—all the care needed is a once a week dusting and you can just pack them along with your Santa wrapping paper and use them again next year
  • And if all fails and someone does swallow any of these plants, call the IPC at 800-222-1222 any time of the day or night

Jason Howell

Producer at 25 News and Heart of Illinois ABC

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