SEP 19, 2017 4:34 AM PDT

5 Food-drug Pairs That Shouldn't Be Mixed

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

Many prescription medications advise that you take the pills with food. However, there are some drugs that shouldn't be mixed with certain foods. These food-drug interactions can prevent the medicine from working as it was intended, worsen a side-effect of the medication, or create an unknown side-effect.

One of the more well-described food-drug interaction involves grapefruit juice. As it turns out, grapefruit juice contains an organic chemical known as furanocoumarin. This chemical can interfere with the activity of enzymes and transporters in the small intestine that metabolize your medications. Washing down pills with grapefruit juice can cause your body to absorb too much or too little of certain medicines, potentially causing serious problems.

The FDA currently lists more than 50 prescription and over-the-counter drugs that have negative interactions with grapefruit. Common drugs on this list include medicines for high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and anxiety. So check the labels on your pill bottles for grapefruit contraindications. When in doubt, water, though not so tasty, is a safer option.

Watch the video to learn about five pairs of foods and medicines that you should avoid mixing.
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
DEC 15, 2019
Plants & Animals
DEC 15, 2019
Eagle vs. Octopus
The animal food chain is somewhat straightforward, with larger animals often hunting smaller animals in an attempt to ensure their own survival. Unfortunat...
DEC 22, 2019
Plants & Animals
DEC 22, 2019
Ever Wonder What Happens Inside a Clam's Shell?
Most people think of clams as a gooey blob inside of a two-piece shell, but there’s actually a lot more going on inside that shell that you might com...
JAN 06, 2020
Plants & Animals
JAN 06, 2020
Every River Leap a Proboscis Monkey Makes Could be its Last
Leaves are one of the most essential components of a proboscis monkey’s diet, and in some cases, getting to the tastiest leaves means taking an enorm...
JAN 16, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
JAN 16, 2020
High-speed 3D Printer to Revolutionize Manufacturing
Two significant hurdles in front of the fast expansion of three-dimensional (3D) printers are speed and scale.  In a recently published study, a team...
JAN 16, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
JAN 16, 2020
Self-healable Sweat Sensor Fears No Wear and Tear
Sweat can provide a lot of information about a person's health. One of the current trends in wearable technology is to incorporate sweat sensing mechan...
FEB 20, 2020
Cardiology
FEB 20, 2020
Most Commonly Birth Defects Affect The Heart
Birth defects are not uncommon. For every 33 babies born in the United States each year, one is born with a defect. That adds up to about 120,000 babies ea...
Loading Comments...