The Best Time Of Day To Take Aspirin, According To Science

Aspirin is the most commonly used drug in the world, and it has a long history for treating pain and reducing fever and inflammation. The Egyptians and Sumerians used a precursor of aspirin thousands of years ago, taking it in the form of willow bark. Bayer chemist Felix Hoffmann created the modern version of aspirin we recognize today in 1897 (via Vascular Pharmacology).

Aspirin has other benefits, too. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that doctors prescribe low doses of aspirin to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer among patients in their 50s. In addition, some doctors prescribe low doses of daily aspirin to reduce patients' risk of cardiovascular events, namely heart attacks. The idea is that it thins your blood thereby keeping blood clots from forming. People who might use it for preventative medicine might have heart disease, high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, poor blood flow to the brain, or diabetes, according to Medical News Today

When you take it matters

When it comes to preventing cardiovascular events, timing is important. Research shows that the risk for such an event increases by 40% in the morning, per the American Journal of Hypertension. In addition, platelet reactivity is higher in the morning, according to a study published in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. This combination leads experts to conclude that platelet reactivity contributes to cardiovascular events. A study conducted by the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands found that taking aspirin at bedtime reduced platelet reactivity, suggesting that aspirin may be able to reduce the risk of morning cardiovascular events, although more research is needed.

While aspirin might be helpful in some circumstances, it is not for everyone. It may reduce risks for heart attacks and strokes for people who have already had them, but it can also cause stomach bleeding and other intestinal problems, so for people who aren't at high risk of cardiovascular problems, the drawbacks of daily aspirin may outweigh the benefits. For this reason, you should discuss using aspirin as a preventative medicine with your doctor (via Food and Drug Administration).