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5509 The-DrugFood-Interaction

The Drug-Food Interaction

The Drug-Food Interaction

A drug-food interaction happens when the food you eat affects the ingredients in a medicine you are taking, so the medicine cannot work the way it should. It happens with both prescription and over-the-counter medicines.

Not all but many medicines can be affected by what you eat and when you eat your food, such as taking some medicines at the same time that you eat may interfere with the way your stomach and intestines absorb the medicine. Food may delay or lower the absorption of the drug, which is why some medicines should be taken 1 hour before eating or 2 hours after eating.

Some medicines are easy to digest when taken with food. However, it is always advisable to ask your doctor whether it's fine to take medicine with a snack or a meal or if it should be taken on an empty stomach.

Here a few pointers that could prove helpful:

  • Read the prescription label before leaving the pharmacy. If you don’t understand ask the pharmacist or your doctor. 
  • Read all directions, warnings, predicted interactions, and precautions printed on the medicine label and package.
  • Take the medicine with a glass of water, unless your doctor guides you differently.
  • Don't stir medicine into your food or take capsules apart because this may interfere the way the drug works.
  • Don't mix medicine into hot drinks because the heat may prevent the drug from working.

Never take medicines with alcohol.