Research Tips

January 18, 2009
Grapefruit is a great vitamin C source. Check with your pharmacist to make sure the grapefruit doesn't conflict with you heart medications.
Ann Nutr Metab. 2008;52 Suppl 1:29-32


June 17, 2009
Most drugs taken to treat heartburn can greatly reduce the ability to absorb vitamin B-12 from foods. Consequently, people taking these medications also should take a supplemental source of vitamin B-12.
Ann Pharmacother. 2002 May;36(5):812-6.


June 20, 2009
For most people, moderate use of green tea may provide health benefits. But, those who rely on drugs to treat medical conditions should be aware that green tea and its extracts can clash with many common prescription and nonprescription drugs.
Green Tea, MedlinePlus.


July 26, 2009
Green tea contains a plethora of antioxidants, but also can raise blood pressure in high doses and should not be used by individuals with kidney inflammation, ulcers, insomnia or some heart problems.
Nutrition. 1999 Nov-Dec;15(11-12):946-9.


August 20, 2009
Taking medications that lower stomach acid can interfere with the absorption of important nutrients. If you are taking antacids regularly, be sure to consume a diet that provides adequate calcium.
Nutr Rev. 2008 Feb;66(2):103-8.


September 11, 2009
Garlic can help to lower blood cholesterol. But too much garlic may increase blood-clotting time, a side effect that could prove problematic before surgery or for those taking blood thinners.
Curr Drug Metab. 2008 Dec;9(10):1063-120.


November 3, 2009
Moderate use of green tea may provide health benefits for many people. However, the caffeine and flavonoids in green tea can interfere with common prescription and nonprescription drugs. Check with your pharmacist.
Green Tea, MedlinePlus.


November 4, 2009
The development of an infant in the womb is amazingly complex and can be negatively affected by prescription and non-prescription medications, herbal products, and essential oils. Check with your physician or pharmacist before using any of these.
Birth Defects Res B Dev Reprod Toxicol. 2003 Dec;68(6):505-10.


December 3, 2009
Excessive alcohol consumption greatly increases the body's need for thiamin (vitamin B-1). Increased need for B-1 along with a poor-quality diet explains the erratic eye movements, staggering gait and deranged mental functions commonly seen in serious alcoholism.
Am J Clin Nutr. 1980 Dec;33(12):2750-61.


December 23, 2009
To better handle those holiday drinks, avoid drinking on an empty stomach. Eating some food before drinking alcoholic beverages helps to moderate the rise in blood alcohol.
J Clin Pharmacol. 2001 Dec;41(12):1345-50.


December 31, 2009
Time is the main thing required to recover from con­suming too much alcohol. Eating a meal, however, has been shown to increase the rate at which your body eliminates alcohol.
J Clin Pharmacol. 2001 Dec;41(12):1345-50.


January 14, 2010
Although green tea may provide health benefits, it's important to check with your pharmacist to see if the components in green tea interfere with any pain or blood-thinning medications you take.
Green Tea, MedlinePlus.


February 17, 2010
"Heartburn" or GERD medications generally reduce stomach acid. This can reduce the ability to absorb calcium and contribute to bone loss over time – especially if calcium is low in the diet.
Nutr Rev. 2008 Feb;66(2):103-8.


June 15, 2010
Caffeine is the most commonly consumed drug in the world. Fortunately, a number of studies have reported potential health benefits of caffeine such as reducing the risk of developing diabetes.
Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2008 Dec;33(6):1290-300.


September 11, 2010
Some medications can decrease the ability to absorb a nutrient. For example, drugs that decrease stomach acid can reduce the ability to absorb vitamin B-12 from foods and a supplemental source of vitamin B-12 is needed.
Ann Pharmacother. 2002 May;36(5):812-6.


October 6, 2010
Studies on coffee and caffeine have identified some encouraging links to specific health benefits. Although these types of studies can't prove cause and effect, they do indicate that coffee drinkers have a decreased risk for conditions like type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, liver disease, Alzheimer's disease and colorectal cancer.
Nutrition. 2010 Oct;26(10):932-8.


October 27, 2010
Caffeine is considered to be the most commonly consumed drug in the world. Among other bits of good news from research on coffee, moderate consumption appears to reduce the risk of developing liver and gallstone diseases.
Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2006;46(2):101-23.


January 5, 2011
The sense of taste can be altered by illness, medical treatments, or medications. Usually these changes are temporary and will improve with time. Adding spices and other flavorings to foods can help to maintain a normal diet despite disturbances in taste sensitivity.
J Clin Oncol. 2009 Apr 10;27(11):1899-905.


June 18, 2011
Although alcohol is the most commonly consumed drug in the world, we are only beginning to understand the chemical details of how it affects the brain. Like most other mind altering drugs, alcohol appears to bind to specific proteins in the brain. Knowledge of these molecular details may lead to new treatments for alcoholism.
Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 2011; DOI: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01502.x


February 3, 2012
Metformin is a common drug that helps to normalize blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetes. Recent research indicates that metformin can increase the need for vitamin B12. A modest supplement of the vitamin should be more than enough to meet the increased need.
Diabetes Care. 2012 Feb;35(2):327-33.


February 17, 2012
Moderate alcohol consumption has been linked with various health benefits. However, the study of a mouse model for alcoholism found that genetic differences in brain chemistry made some mice more susceptible to brain-damaging effects of alcohol.
Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2011 Oct 21. [Epub ahead of print]


February 21, 2012
The prevalence of asthma has increased in the U.S. over the past few decades. There may be many reasons for this. One possible factor that is gaining scientific support is the increased use of acetaminophen causing reduced levels of glutathione (an antioxidant the body produces) in the lungs.
Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2011 Jan 15;183(2):171-8.


August 13, 2012
Daily aspirin use is associated with reduced risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. If your doctor has recommended daily aspirin, remember to always take it with food. Even low-dose aspirin can cause serious gastrointestinal bleeding and stomach ulcers when taken regularly on an empty stomach.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute, August 10, 2012 DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djs318


February 8, 2013
If you like alcoholic drinks that are mixed with sodas, like "Rum and Coke," take note that blood alcohol levels are likely to be higher when diet soda is used. This is likely due to the fact that the sugars in the regular soda slow down the rate of stomach emptying into the intestine where most of the alcohol is absorbed.
Alcohol Clin Exp Res. Dec 6, 2012. [Epub ahead of print]


August 6, 2013
The Recommended Dietary Allowances, or RDAs, are set to meet the needs of healthy individuals free of medical problems. If you take a medication (even a nonprescription type) to manage a chronic health problem, the RDA value for one or more nutrients may be an underestimate of your needs.
J Clin Pharm Ther. 2013 Aug;38(4):269-71.


January 15, 2014
Green tea and green tea extracts are known to conflict with a wide variety of prescription and non-prescription drugs. A recent study found that daily consumption of green tea significantly reduced the absorption of a common beta-blocker drug used for treatment of high blood pressure.
Clin Pharm & Therap. 2014 13 January. [Epub ahead of print]


May 28, 2014
Smoking tobacco during pregnancy adversely affects fetal lung development and increases the risk of developing asthma. Vitamin C supplementation (500 mg/day) of pregnant women who were unable or unwilling to stop smoking, helped to decrease the effects of smoking on respiratory health of the infants.
JAMA. 2014 May 18. [Epub ahead of print]


August 12, 2014
Research continues to find beneficial aspects to coffee and tea. However, over-consumption of these beverages can cause problems. For example, both coffee and tea components can interfere with a wide variety of drugs. Check with your pharmacist to see if drugs you take can be affected by too much coffee or tea.
Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2013 Nov;16(6):688-97.


November 11, 2014
Alcohol Craving: An appetite-stimulating hormone called ghrelin is released from the stomach when it is empty. Ghrelin also stimulates the craving for alcohol in alcohol-dependent individuals. It is commonly recommended to consume a meal prior to alcohol consumption to help slow alcohol absorption and moderate blood alcohol levels. It appears that this also may help to reduce the "alcohol appetite."
Biol Psych. 2014;76(9):734-741.


January 31, 2015
Alcohol and Heart Failure: Heavy alcohol consumption is known to be toxic to the heart and other tissues in the body. However, consuming moderate amounts of alcohol (about a drink a day) is associated with a significantly reduced risk of heart failure.
Eur Heart J. 2015 Jan 19. [Epub ahead of print]


October 4, 2015
GERD and B12:Medications that decrease stomach acid also increase the risk of vitamin B-12 deficiency. People taking medications for GERD or "heartburn" should also take a supplemental source of vitamin B-12.
Ann Pharmacother. 2002 May;36(5):812-6.


November 7, 2015
Green Tea and Medications: Moderate use of green tea may provide health benefits for many people. However, the caffeine and flavonoids in green tea can interfere with common prescription and nonprescription drugs. Check with your pharmacist.
Green Tea, MedlinePlus.


January 17, 2016
Green Tea and Blood Thinning Medications: Although green tea may provide health benefits, it's important to check with your pharmacist to see if the components in green tea interfere with any pain or blood-thinning medications you take.
Green Tea, MedlinePlus.


December 1, 2016
Drug-Induced Liver Injury: Almost half of the cases of acute liver failure in the United States are associated with acetaminophen use. Since acetaminophen is a common ingredient in many over-the-counter and prescription pain medications, excessive dosage is far too common. Many other drugs and herbal dietary supplements also have the potential to induce liver injury.
AACN Adv Crit Care. 2016;27(4):430-440.