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10 Foods You Should NEVER Mix with Medicine

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When we’re feeling sick, paying extra attention to everything around us is crucial, especially what we’re putting into our bodies. Certain foods should be avoided while on medication. These foods can potentially decrease the effectiveness of the drugs or even cause side effects. Let’s discuss foods to avoid when taking certain medications and the possible side effects if consumed together.

Cold Medicine and Coffee & Chocolate

Colds are common illnesses. When taking cold medicine, avoiding foods like coffee and chocolate is best. Cold medicines often contain caffeine, and consuming them with foods high in caffeine can lead to an excessive caffeine intake. Consuming these two together can cause symptoms like insomnia and heart palpitations, all of which are side effects of caffeine.

Cold Medicine and Cheese, Seaweed, Bread

Bread is also a food to avoid. Pain relievers used to alleviate cold symptoms can interact strongly with the carbohydrates in bread, preventing the proper absorption of the medicine. Cheese can also cause a chemical reaction with the ingredients that soothe coughs and reduce nasal discharge, potentially causing a sharp rise in blood pressure. Seaweed, rich in vitamin A, can raise blood pressure and pressure the brain nerves when it interacts with antibiotics, potentially causing headaches.

Laxatives and Milk

Many people consider milk a cure-all. However, milk is a food that should not be consumed with laxatives. Milk is alkaline and can neutralize stomach acid, potentially damaging the medicine’s protective coating. Consuming laxatives with milk can cause the medicine to dissolve in the stomach before reaching the colon, making it difficult to achieve the desired effect and potentially causing stomach discomfort. It’s best to take medicine with water instead of any manufactured beverages.

Sleeping Pills and Alcohol

It’s a common scene in Hollywood movies where a worn-out middle-aged person pops a sleeping pill with alcohol. This is a method of medication intake that should be avoided at all costs. Consuming sleeping pills with alcohol can suppress the central nervous system, potentially leading to respiratory paralysis in severe cases. It can also cause mild memory loss and induce sleepiness during the day. The liver prioritizes the expulsion of alcohol over sleeping pills, causing the sleeping pills to remain in the body for longer than usual.

Vitamins and Coffee

If you consume coffee with vitamins, the vitamins won’t be able to perform their function. The caffeine in coffee promotes diuresis, causing frequent trips to the bathroom. The vitamins consumed with coffee get excreted from the body without being absorbed. It can also cause gastrointestinal disorders, and the tannins in the coffee can interfere with the absorption of minerals from the vitamins. Coffee also blocks the absorption receptors for vitamin D, which are secreted in the small intestine.

Antacids and Orange Juice

Antacids or acid suppressants are often administered to alleviate symptoms when the stomach is irritated. Antacids are alkaline drugs that neutralize the acidity of stomach acid, reducing its irritability. However, the aluminum ions in antacids can pose a risk to our bodies when they interact with acidic beverages like orange juice. These aluminum ions can enter the brain and potentially cause dementia.

Painkillers and Cola

Cola and other carbonated drinks have a pH of 2.5 or higher, making them acidic. Therefore, carbonated beverages can acidify the stomach environment where the medicine resides. If you consume medicine with a carbonated drink, the effectiveness of certain drugs like fever reducers and painkillers can decrease. Additionally, carbonated beverages containing caffeine can cause side effects in the body due to the caffeine. You may experience anxiety, insomnia, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, sickness, and a stimulating effect.

Antidepressants and Grapefruit Juice

For those taking medication for mental disorders such as panic disorder, depression, and bipolar disorder, it’s essential to be cautious with grapefruit juice. Grapefruit juice can increase the blood concentration of medication by inhibiting its metabolism. Grapefruit juice doesn’t directly interact with the medication, but it changes specific metabolic processes in the liver, indirectly increasing the blood concentration of the drug. Therefore, it’s best to avoid grapefruit juice altogether when taking medication. Cheese, which can potentially cause headaches, allergies, and acute hypertension, should also be avoided when taking antidepressants.

Antibiotics and Yogurt

Antibiotics, which are widely used to treat bacterial infections, don’t mix well with dairy products. Some antibiotics can reduce the drug’s absorption when taken and can also suddenly cause a dangerous increase in blood pressure. There are various types of antibiotics, and each one has different points to be cautious of when consuming dairy products. Therefore, it’s recommended to avoid all dairy products, not just milk and yogurt, when taking antibiotics.

Arteriosclerosis Medicine and Onions

Onions contain ingredients that promote blood circulation, and if they interact with arteriosclerosis medication, they can cause the blood to circulate abnormally well. This can make the digestive organs and brain more susceptible to bleeding and make it harder to stop any bleeding that does occur. On the other hand, broccoli contains vitamin K, which solidifies the blood and can make the blood clotting factors in the body work more actively, reducing the effect of the arteriosclerosis medication.

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