On Antibiotics? Be Careful What You Eat

If a doctor has prescribed antibiotics, you want to make sure that they are as effective as possible to help your medical condition, by taking the right dosage and at the right time. However, we sometimes overlook the fact that what we eat while on antibiotics can also impact their effectiveness.

Different antibiotics work differently of course, but in some cases, it is possible for certain foods to block the absorption of antibiotics by either blocking the digestion of the antibiotics by the body or blocking how the medication is actually metabolized.

Acidic Foods

Even though we do not often think about it, acidic foods can make it difficult for our body to absorb certain types of medication, including antibiotics. Examples of these acidic fruits include tomato-based products (such as ketchup), chocolate, citrus juices, and carbonated beverages. Grapefruit products (including grapefruit juice) can prevent absorption. In fact, grapefruit juice prevents the function of a number of different medications as well. This is why you want to be cautious before you decide to munch on this citric fruit whilst on medication.

High-Fiber Foods

Even though these types of foods are healthy and filling, they are certainly not the best option when taking antibiotics. The reason for this is that these heart-healthy foods are going to slow down the absorption of your medication. Even though slowing down is great when you want to lose weight, it is not great when you want a functioning medication.

Dairy (Except For Yoghurt)

According to a number of different studies, both iron and calcium make it difficult for the body to absorb antibiotics. If you have to take calcium or iron supplements or you eat foods that are rich in these minerals, it is best to wait at least three hours before taking your antibiotics.

Yoghurt, on the other hand, is the one dairy product that is actually good for your gut lining when taking antibiotics, this is because of the helpful strains of probiotics that you can find inside of yoghurt. Especially for seniors, it is important to take in enough of the helpful probiotics, because the use of antibiotics can otherwise lead to diarrhoea because of the disruption of the healthy gut flora, and lead to exhaustion or dehydration.

Final Tips

If your doctor prescribes antibiotics, ask them to tell you more about what foods to take or avoid and whether before or after your dosage of antibiotics. Whilst we know that certain foods do affect the efficacy of antibiotics because everybody’s situation is different it is still vital to get professional advice from your medical practitioner.

Australian Over 50s Living & Lifestyle Guide

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