Juices and drug interference

I already knew that under certain circumstances it is not a good idea to swallow pills with grapefruit juice, but I didn’t know that orange and apple juice have recently joined the no-no list. New research shows that they, too, may limit the body’s absorption of drugs, compromising their effectiveness. I found this quote and more information in a HealthDay News report published on August 19th: http://tinyurl.com/5rrc9e.


So all three juices may lower the body’s absorption of some medications. Lower? Hmm, this is not good news at all. The HealthDay News story provides a list of medications that are affected by the three juices, by the way.


I used to swallow my curcumin capsules with grapefruit juice (or even a whole grapefruit) whenever possible because I thought, or hoped!, based on my readings, that the latter might increase the bioavailability of the former. I knew, though, that it isn’t a good idea for certain drugs (chemotherapy, e.g.) to be lingering in your bloodstream. But with curcumin we have the opposite problem…oh well, no more juice around pill-taking time from now on.


In sum, to be on the safe side, the best way to swallow any sort of pill seems to be with water…full glasses of water, not just a few sips. At the end of the HealthDay News report, I learned that it’s also best to drink cool water, not hot, because your stomach empties cool water faster, sending the medication on its way to the small intestine and finally the blood stream. Ok, I didn’t know that. So tea is out, too, I guess. So much still to be learned…


  1. What about oils, Margaret? Help or hindrance?
    I don’t have butter or margarine, but I love Olive Oil,
    pumpkin seed oil,flaxseed oil, and hempseed oil.
    I’m not on curcumin [yet] but I have turmeric most days
    with one or the other of them.
    Old Bill.

  2. Dear Old Bill, my guess (!) is that those oils would be fine. And, by the way, I didn’t mean “don’t drink juices ever again,” just not with pills and supplements.
    🙂 Margaret

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