Drugs Effects and Precautions
Cephalosporins, penicillin Take on an empty stomach to speed absorption of the drugs.
Erythromycin Don't take with fruit juice or wine, which decrease the drug's effectiveness.
Sulfa drugs Increase the risk of Vitamin B-12 deficiency
Tetracycline Dairy products reduce the drug's effectiveness. Lowers Vitamin C absorption
Dilantin, phenobarbital Increase the risk of anemia and nerve problems due to deficiency of folalte and other B vitamins.
Fluoxetine Reduce appetite and can lead to excessive weight loss
Lithium A low-salt diet increases the risk of lithium toxicity; excessive salt reduces the drug's efficacy
MAO Inhibitors Foods high in tyramine (aged cheeses, processed meats, legumes, wine, beer, among others) can bring on a hypertensive crisis.
Tricyclics Many foods, especially legumes, meat, fish, and foods high in Vitamin C, reduce absorption of the drugs.
Antihypertensives, Heart Medications:
ACE inhibitors Take on an empty stomach to improve the absorption of the drugs.
Alpha blockers Take with liquid or food to avoid excessive drop in blood pressure.
Antiarrhythmic drugs Avoid caffeine, which increases the risk of irregular heartbeat.
Beta blockers Take on an empty stomach; food, especially meat, increases the drug's effects and can cause dizziness and low blood pressure.
Digitalis Avoid taking with milk and high fiber foods, which reduce absorption, increases potassium loss.
Diuretics Increase the risk of potassium deficiency.
Potassium sparing diuretics Unless a doctor advises otherwise, don't take diuretics with potassium supplements or salt substitutes, which can cause potassium overload.
Thiazide diuretics Increase the reaction to MSG.
Pseudoephedrine Avoid caffeine, which increase feelings of anxiety and nervousness.
Theophylline Charbroiled foods and high protein diet reduce absorption. Caffeine increases the risk of drug toxicity.
Cholesterol Lowering Drugs:
Cholestyramine Increases the excretion of folate and vitamins A, D, E, and K.
Gemfibrozil Avoid fatty foods, which decrease the drug's efficacy in lowering cholesterol.
Heartburn and Ulcer Medications:
Antacids Interfere with the absorption of many minerals; for maximum benefit, take medication 1 hour after eating.
Cimetidine, Fanotidine, Sucralfate Avoid high protein foods, caffeine, and other items that increase stomach acidity.
Oral contraceptives Salty foods increase fluid retention. Drugs reduce the absorption of folate, vitamin B-6, and other nutrients; increase intake of foods high in these nutrients to avoid deficiencies.
Steroids Salty foods increase fluid retention. Increase intake of foods high in calcium, vitamin K, potassium, and protein to avoid deficiencies.
Thyroid drugs Iodine-rich foods lower the drug's efficacy.
Mineral Oils Overuse can cause a deficiency of vitamins A, D, E, and K.
Aspirin and stronger non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs Always take with food to lower the risk of gastrointestinal irritation; avoid taking with alcohol, which increases the risk of bleeding. Frequent use of these drugs lowers the absorption of folate and vitamin C.
Codeine Increase fiber and water intake to avoid constipation.
Sleeping Pills, Tranquilizers:
Benzodiazepines Never take with alcohol. Caffeine increases anxiety and reduce drug's effectiveness.