Rhubarb Leaves



Rhubarb  Leaves (Rheum rhabarbarum): A perennial plant with large heart-shaped leaves. The red stalks are used for pies and other desserts.


Is it toxic? The leaves contain oxalates and can cause poisoning if ingested. Once absorbed oxalates can cause injury to the kidneys and lower calcium levels in the body.

Health Effects:

Ingestion: Potential nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and irritation to the mouth. Ingestion of large amounts may decrease calcium levels and cause kidney damage.


What to do?

Ingestion: Rinse out mouth and drink a glass of milk. Contact the Poison Control Centre


How can I prevent exposure?  Only eat the stalks of the rhubarb plant. Discard the leaves.


Need more information: Call the Poison Control Centre.


© 2012 BC Drug and Poison Information Centre