Why Drug and Nutrient Interactions?

Have you ever stopped to think about…?

  • How do prescription medications work?
  • Whether diet impact effectiveness of prescription medications?
  • We know some prescription medications indicate “Take with food”, but why does this matter? And, why does it matter whether meds are taken in the morning versus at nighttime?

Drug and Nutrient Interactions is an online course and eBook developed to pursue questions at the intersection nutritional sciences and pharmacology. A 2013 Mayo Clinic survey estimates that 7 out of 10 Americans are on at least one prescription drug, and more than half take two. Despite prominent use of prescription medications, issues related to nutrition because of prescription use – and vice versa – how nutrition can affect drug action – are not typically explored.

Section I introduces readers to pharmacology terms and concepts related to drug and nutrient interactions. Mechanisms underlying drug and nutrient interactions with drug administration, absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion are also described.

Section II describes the impact of drugs on nutrient status and conversely, the effect of nutrient status/nutrition on pharmacotherapy.

Section III considers the role of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on foods versus drugs, and the regulatory framework underlying pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements, foods and food products.

Review Questions

Use review questions to confirm your comprehension. Practice answering review questions with a friend, family member or classmate for an extra challenge. Explaining terms, concepts and connections to another person helps to solidify your understanding.


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Drug and Nutrient Interactions Copyright © 2023 by Sara Police and Jesse Hoffman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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