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Which foods make your drugs more effective

Dangerous food and drug interactions? If so, you may be wondering what foods you should eat with certain medications.

Should never take an antacid, ibuprofen, or acetaminophen without eating first. If you fail to do so, you are likely to suffer from nausea and other stomach problems. Worse, the drug may not be absorbed into the blood properly. This means it will not be as effective had it been taken with food. Metformin, a drug used to treat type 2 diabetes, and birth control, should also be taken with food.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, like aspirin, may seem harmless because they are found in large quantities in most American households. Must be taken with food to prevent bleeding in the stomach and intestines.

Opioids, such as codeine, oxycodone, and morphine, are narcotics that should be taken only in the exact quantities prescribed by a licensed physician. These drugs are addictive and have been linked to an epidemic in the U.S., in which 78 people die from opioid overdose daily, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. If you do need to take an opioid, importance of taking the drug with foods high in fiber to prevent side effects of nausea, vomiting, and constipation.

Prednisone is often prescribed to people suffering from inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis and multiple sclerosis. Medication with milk to prevent stomach ulcers. If you take prednisone in liquid form, it is advised to mix it with fruit juice or apple sauce.

The National Health Service reports a study by the University of Chicago Department of Medicine that found taking cancer drug lapatinib with high-fat food increased absorption of the drug by 325 percent. If you are taking lapatinib or other cancer drugs, ask you doctor about this study and specific recommendations for diet while taking cancer drugs.

It is equally important to know which drugs should be taken on an empty stomach. Thyroid replacement medications, like levothyroxine, and those used to treat bone loss, such as alendronate, are best absorbed on an empty stomach. Prilosec, Prevacid, Protonix, and Nexium should also be taken without food.

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