Medications That Could Have Negative Interactions With Coffee

Many benefits have been linked to coffee, according to WebMD. Research indicates, for example, that people who drink coffee may be less likely to develop type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and dementia. They also appear to have fewer cases of arrhythmia, stroke, and cancer.

However, there are some downsides to coffee drinking, according to the Mayo Clinic. The caffeine in coffee can raise blood pressure, and it also might also cause cholesterol levels to rise.

Another problem that some people will have with coffee is that it can interact with their medications. According to AARP, drug interactions generally come down to the fact that coffee can either block the absorption of certain drugs or it can increase their effects. Sometimes, this is due to the caffeine in coffee. Other times, it's other compounds found in that coffee that can cause problems. lists 57 drugs that can potentially interact with caffeine alone, so it's important to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about your specific medications.

Common drug interactions with coffee

MDLinx details eight common drugs that might interact with coffee: ephedrine, antidiabetic drugs, theophylline, phenothiazines, anticoagulants, tricyclic antidepressants, asthma medications, and contraceptive drugs.

Ephedrine is a stimulant, and it can compound the effects of caffeine. The Mayo Clinic states that mixing them can cause high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, or seizures.

Antidiabetic drugs, like glimepiride, glyburide, insulin, piolitzone, rosiglitazone, also interact with coffee. Coffee can cause blood sugar to spike, which makes these drugs less effective at controlling diabetes, explains RxList.

Theophylline relaxes muscles and opens the airways. Combining it with coffee might increase its effects, says the Mayo Clinic.

A 2020 report published in BioMed Research International noted that phenothiazines, like fluphenazine, chlorpromazine, haloperidol, and prochlorperazine, can interact with the tannins in coffee. This may prevent these drugs from being properly absorbed. Tricyclic antidepressants might also interact with the tannins found in coffee, limiting how well they are absorbed, says RxList.

Anticoagulant drugs like aspirin, clopidogrel, ibuprofen, naproxen, and enoxaparin can slow blood clotting. Coffee can also cause this, meaning mixing them can lead to bruising or excessive bleeding, per RxList.

MDLinx notes that certain asthma medications that are beta-adrenergic agonists — like albuterol, metaproterenol, and isoproterenol — may interact with coffee, causing greater risk for anxiety, heart palpitations, tremor, or increased heart rate.

Finally, birth control pills may interact with the caffeine in coffee — they may break down more slowly. This can cause headaches, rapid heartbeat, and jitteriness, according to MDLinx.