Table of Contents:
• Coffee can limit the effectiveness of many medications.
• Researchers urge people to space out coffee and prescription drugs.
• Only drink water with medicine.
Washing down your medication with coffee may speed up your morning routine, but it slows down how quickly you get better.
According to a study published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, downing a coffee with your medication can limit the effectiveness of many drugs, whether it’s Advil to tackle a lingering headache or prescription pills for a chronic condition.
It’s a reminder that it’s a good idea to allow time to pass between drinking coffee and taking some drugs, in order to avoid adverse interactions between the two.
While drinking up to 400 milligrams of caffeine a day has been deemed safe by several health organizations, coffee could also significantly affect the “absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of many drugs.” What that means is that experts suggest people space out taking drugs and drinking coffee, because mixing both could lead to several different outcomes, including enhanced therapeutic response, therapeutic failure, or toxic reactions.
Wondering how a cold brew is making your medicine less effective? Here are a few examples and how coffee will affect each. (Drug absorption is the movement of a drug into the bloodstream after taking it. It affects bioavailability, or how quickly and how the drug reaches the intended area it’s supposed to go.)
The simple answer is a glass of water.
While there may be a coffee or soda by your side or a fresh glass of orange juice during your breakfast, a study published in the Saudi Pharmaceutical Journal tested several beverages and found that certain drinks can increase the drugs’ disintegration times, which can change the purpose of the medication and how it interacts with your body.
Orange juice affected the timed release of drugs similar to Tylenol, while hot beverages, like coffee, can also change a medication’s disintegration time.