FDA warns against supplement use while taking prescription drugs

Health
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DENVER — Health supplements can boost your immune system  and help you lose weight, but if you`re  taking prescription drugs you may need to take a break from them.

The Food and Drug Administration is warning against mixing supplements with prescription and over the counter drugs. Medical experts say supplements can make some prescription drugs stronger or keep them from working at all.

Dr. Eric Groce of Swedish Family Medicine explains, “Too much vitamin C, vitamin A or too much probiotic (can be) a little bit more than your system is designed to handle.”

The FDA warning applies to all types of supplements from herbal remedies to fortified meal replacement mixes.

Probiotics, now available in mega-doses over the counter, can help patients battling intestinal disorders and studies show live strains can even boost the immune system, but doctors say you should avoid probiotics if you’re on antibiotics.

Dr. Groce says, “The job of antibiotics is to kill bacteria so if you’re taking antibiotics and probiotics at the same time you just killed your probiotics and wasted your money.”

The key to keeping your family safe and healthy is simple. Just discuss the supplements you’re taking with your doctor before you begin taking any prescription drug.

Doctors also emphasize that you can bolster your family’s nutrition without turning to a bottle, well balanced meals with plenty of fresh vegetables, fruit and low fat protein sources can deliver everything your body needs.

For more information about ways to keep your family healthy visit Swedish Family Medicine (Dr. Eric Groce) or call 303-788-3100.

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