How Coffee Can Affect Your Medication

Have you ever been going about your day and then suddenly, it hits you — that thunderbolt of realization that you forgot to take your medication? If so, don't be too hard on yourself. It happens. Though unfortunately, there are a lot of meds out there that can't be swallowed without some careful planning and consideration first. Many prescription medicines on the market today come with specific instructions on not only when to take them, but what to take them with. Even if you are a regimented type who has an alarm on your phone, plus a backup, reminding you to take your medicine, there may be other parts of your daily routine that sneakily get in the way of the medicine you are taking.

According to Meds News, 63% of Americans drink coffee on the daily. And 40% of Americans also take prescription medications. This means there are a great many of us who could be consuming both coffee and meds at the same time. It's painful to say anything negative about our believed morning cup of joe, but according to science, coffee and medication just don't mix.

Coffee may cause some unwanted side effects

According to a study published in BioMed Research International, coffee can get in the way of your medication's absorption process by changing its dissolution profile. In addition, your brew could also affect the time it takes for your meds to empty from your gastrointestinal tract. Meds News shares that many prescribed pills are encapsulated with a chemical coating that allows for the gradual release of the pill's substance. And the acidity of coffee can throw off that gradual release time and interfere with the over all effectiveness of your meds. And unfortunately, coffee may not just harm your medicine's efficacy. Meds News reports that combining coffee with some drugs can create uncomfortable side effects such as swelling, nausea, and high blood pressure.

We don't want you to give up the tradition of coffee in your daily life. Coffee may be one of the best liquids on the planet! But that doesn't mean it's the perfect pairing to your prescribed medication. If you have started taking a new medication, read the instructions and small print on the back very carefully. It may also be wise to consult with your physician to make sure your morning brew won't interfere with your health.