What causes a medication "side effect?" Sometimes it is caused by the toxicity of the medication. However, there is a much more common reason.
Often, uncomfortable and distressing results from medications are nothing more than signs of nutrient deficiencies. You see, drugs need nutrients in order to work. When they run out of nutrients they will not work as effectively and begin to create side effects. Nutrient depletion then creates its own set of symptoms and the downward spiral continues.
Common drug interactions
- Statins - A really good example of the way a medication for one symptom may create a problem in another region of your body is medications that reduce cholesterol. Among the most famous cholesterol-reducing drugs are statins. These drugs exhaust the cells of the enzyme that makes the cells work: CoEnzyme Q-10. When CoQ-10 is gone, cells die. CoQ-10 is most abundant in muscle cells and brain cells. That may be one reason why people taking statin medications complain of fatigue, muscle aches and pains, plus mental fogginess and inability to think clearly.
- Acid reducers, gout and diabetes medications – Another good example includes medications that reduce stomach acid. These drugs fit into classes called Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPI) and Histamine (H-2) Blockers. Both medications reduce the uncomfortable symptom of excess acid. Also, both classes of medication inhibit Vitamin B-12, leaving you with a foggy head, no energy and a poor mood. PPIs and H-2 Blockers also deplete folic acid, leaving people at risk for anemia, neural-tube birth defects and poor detoxification. They deplete calcium and beta-carotene, leaving you prone to osteoporosis and loss of night vision.
Other medications that deplete Vitamin B-12 include colchicine for gout and practically all of the medications for type 2 diabetes. Further, medications for type 2 diabetes deplete magnesium and CoQ-10.
- NSAIDs – The most common nutrient deficiency in the industrialized world is Vitamin C. The most common medical diagnosis in the industrialized world is arthritis, commonly treated with NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as aspirin. All NSAIDs deplete Vitamin C.
- Oral contraceptives – Oral contraceptives (birth control pills) also deplete Vitamin C. And, they deplete magnesium and riboflavin: two nutrients associated with relief from migraines.
- Bisphosphonates – Bisphosphonate medications for osteoporosis immediately deplete calcium from your bloodstream. In a short time your reserves of Vitamin D, phosphate, magnesium and potassium may also be depleted. Symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency include chronic bone pain, and signs of mineral deficiency include muscle weakness and cramps. These side effects are also commonly associated with taking bisphosphonate medications.
- Antidepressants – Lastly, many people in this stressed-out world are now taking antidepressants. Some of these medications deplete Essential Fatty Acid reserves, so supplementation with Omega EFAs is very important.. EFA deficiency is associated with attention deficit disorder, depression and bipolar disorder. You can see how an EFA deficiency may lead to depression and medications for depression may lead to a more severe EFA deficiency.. Antidepressants also deplete CoQ-10, Vitamin B-6 and Vitamin E, three nutrients long associated with autism and Alzheimer’s disease, and relief from depression.
What to do
This is only a brief look at nutrient depletion from medications. If you are on any prescription medication, take time to learn about the potential nutrient deficiencies that may be created by it. Most of these deficiencies are addressed in our Healthy Foundation package; others will need to be added depending on your prescription.
Nutrients make medications work better with fewer side effects. Nutrients and nurturing make YOU work better with the best outcome: energy and enthusiasm to live a life of purpose!Take Control of Your Health
- Use Foundation nutrients daily:
- Sublingual B-12, B-6 and folic acid
- Vital C Tablets and Crystals
- OmegaPrime essential fatty acids
- A multi-nutrient complex, such as Wellavoh or VitaDaily AM/PM
- Add CoQ-10 if you take
- Statin medications
- Drugs for type 2 diabetes
- Remember, nothing you take is as powerful as what you do. Learn and Live the 10 Essentials for Health and Wellness:
- Breathe Deeply
- Drink Pure Water
- Sleep Peacefully
- Eat Nutritiously
- Enjoy Activity
- Give and Receive Love
- Be Forgiving
- Practice Gratitude
- Develop Acceptance
- Develop a Relationship with God