Drug Interactions

For reasons abound, drugs are prescribed to us to help get over an ailment or a health problem. However prescribed drugs may interfere with regular bodily activities such as digestion, metabolism or excretion. In the same way, a nutritional diet can affect the performance of the drugs under certain circumstances.

Effects of drugs on Appetite:

Drugs may decrease appetite or sometimes the side effects arising from them may reduce the appetite. Located in the brain stem is a place called the emetic center that is easily stimulated (generally) by many drugs that act on it in one way or the other.

Many drugs alter gastrointestinal function causing nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and constipation. Any drug that causes nausea (even alcohol) decreases appetite. Narcotics and analgesics are also commonly associated with vomiting and nausea. Chemotherapeutic drugs, which are used by cancer patients, have a very strong anorectic effect. This can cause gastroenterological toxicity.

Apart from this, drugs can also alter nutritional status, which may result in anorexia and weight loss.

Drug Information and Drug Interaction – Antacids

Antacids are drugs that are used for relief from simple heartburns, sour stomachs and indigestion. However, these over the counter drugs that are gulped down to give relief can be harmful if they are used too often. When taken with other prescribed drugs these antacids have a tendency to make the bodily absorption of other medicines. The result can be an over dose or a slow dose of a medicine making it ineffective.

Therefore it has become necessary to add a warning note on antacids about their usage with other prescription drugs.

Dietary effect on Drug Metabolism

Dietary factors have varied effect on the metabolism created by drug usage. Depending on many factors, diet can delay, decrease or enhance the performance of the drugs. The reason is that diet alters the drugs’ availability (and thus solubility) or the time spent in stomach or intestine.

Therefore instructions to take prescribed drugs with or between meals should be made carefully by medical practitioners. Patients need to make it a point to strictly adhere to their doctor’s instructions. Certain drugs interfere with specific nutrients or non-nutrient components to cause reactions. Hence doctors need to warn their patients about foods that might cause such reactions.

Chemical Dependency – Treatment and recovery:

Consumers today are becoming more knowledgeable about the over the counter drugs. Sometimes they do not get a proper treatment for common illnesses, which in the end may lead to potential mortal inflictions.

Drug abuse accelerates nutrition needs that go beyond normal because of which a well-balanced diet may also become inadequate. The inadequacies of diet are the found in more drugs are making drug user become dependent on chemicals. Chemical dependence is a bio-psychosocial disease that needs lot of care and effort from those around people with such a disease.

Though chemical dependence has been cured and is easy to cure, many drug abusers have limited immunities. Lesser immunity makes one easily susceptible to major diseases. Herefore planning your diet and drug intake is highly recommended.