Eliquis, generic name apixaban, is a widely-used prescription medication, that plays a crucial role in preventing and treating deep vein thrombosis (blood clots) in patients with specific medical conditions.
As with any medication, it is vital for individuals taking Eliquis to be aware of the potential interactions between their diet and the effectiveness of the treatment.
In particular, you should know what foods to avoid while on Eliquis.
A small deviation here since we are talking about apixaban – many of my patients ask me if they can split their Eliquis pills – click on the link to read my article.
OK, back to our main point…
This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of what foods to avoid while on Eliquis, as well as the benefits of adopting a heart-healthy diet that can promote overall health and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.
To understand the potential impact of dietary choices on the efficacy of Eliquis, it is essential to examine the role of caffeine, high-fat foods, and certain herbs and supplements in the context of anticoagulant therapy.
Additionally, it is important to recognize the signs of gastrointestinal bleeding, a potential negative effect of Eliquis that certain foods or supplements may worsen.
The article will also guide adopting a heart-healthy diet, emphasizing the importance of consuming fruits, vegetables, nuts, and soluble fiber to lower blood cholesterol levels and promote cardiovascular health.
For those of you who want the quick answer, here you go:
What foods to avoid while on Eliquis
- Foods or drinks containing caffeine.
- High-fat and sugary foods.
- Limiting alcohol to moderate amounts.
There is no direct interaction between these foods and Eliquis, but caffeine and increased fat intake can increase your risk of cardiovascular accidents.
Read on to learn more…
Eliquis Dietary Guidelines
In the context of dietary recommendations for individuals taking the anticoagulant medication apixaban, it is essential to consider specific guidelines to minimize potential adverse effects and ensure optimal drug effectiveness.
While there are no specific foods to avoid while on Eliquis, you should be mindful of your overall diet and limit your consumption of caffeine and foods high in fat, as these can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Unlike warfarin, another anticoagulant, Eliquis is not affected by foods high in vitamin K, which means that leafy green vegetables and other sources of vitamin K can be consumed without interfering with the medication’s effectiveness.
Eliquis dietary guidelines emphasize the importance of a heart-healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and nuts, as these can help decrease blood cholesterol levels and lower the risk of atherosclerosis.
By adhering to these dietary guidelines, individuals taking Eliquis can maintain a balanced and safe diet while minimizing potential risks associated with the medication.
Caffeine and High-Fat Foods
Caffeine and high-fat food consumption should be carefully regulated for individuals taking Eliquis, as these dietary components can potentially worsen underlying health conditions or interfere with the medication’s effectiveness.
Excess caffeine can increase heart rate and blood pressure, which could negatively impact you if you are already at risk for blood clots and strokes.
Additionally, a diet high in saturated fats and fast foods can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke, which may necessitate the need for blood thinners like Eliquis in the first place.
So, by continuing to eat these unhealthy foods, you are canceling out the positive benefits of apixaban.
Soluble fiber, found in foods like oats, beans, and certain fruits, has been shown to decrease blood cholesterol levels, thereby reducing the risk of atherosclerosis, the inflammatory process responsible for strokes and heart attacks.
Herbs and Supplements Interactions
Herbs and supplements can significantly interact with Eliquis, potentially impacting its efficacy and increasing the risk of adverse effects, necessitating caution and consultation with healthcare professionals before their use.
Some examples of herbs and supplements that may interact with Eliquis and increase the risk of bleeding include ginger, ginkgo biloba, turmeric, and certain Chinese herbs.
On the other hand, St. John’s wort may decrease the effectiveness of apixaban, potentially undermining its therapeutic benefits.
Additionally, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and aspirin can increase the risk of bleeding when combined with Eliquis, underscoring the importance of discussing all medications and supplements with one’s healthcare provider.
Risk of bleeding while taking Eliquis
Eliquis may cause gastrointestinal bleeding, manifesting as red or black stools.
It is an important clinical sign to recognize if you are taking Eliquis, as it could indicate a dangerous interaction with other substances or an adverse effect of the medication itself.
This bleeding risk can be exacerbated by the factors I have already mentioned – ingesting other medications, supplements, or herbs that also affect blood clotting or the integrity of the gastrointestinal tract.
If you see black, tarry, sticky stools, then you may have a bleed higher up in your GI tract.
If you notice bright red stools, then it could indicate that you may have a bleed in your lower GI tract.
If you notice any of these signs, call your doctor immediately!
This may require discontinuation or adjustment of the medication or other substances contributing to the bleeding risk.
Here’s a great 5-minute video on how Eliquis works and its adverse effects:
Heart-Healthy Diet Tips
Incorporating a heart-healthy diet is crucial for patients taking Eliquis, as it can significantly contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular complications and support overall health.
While no specific foods need to be avoided due to food interactions with Eliquis, you must maintain a diet that promotes heart health and helps prevent blood clots.
Some heart-healthy diet tips you can adopt include:
- Consuming a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.
- Incorporating nuts and seeds in moderation.
- Avoid foods high in saturated and trans fats found in processed and fried foods (they WILL increase inflammation, which in turn leads to strokes and cardiovascular accidents).
- Limiting intake of added sugars and refined carbohydrates.
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I know you have heard this a million times before, but I will say it again – Check with your doctor or pharmacist before starting any new supplements or medications while taking Eliquis!
It’s that important – doing so could prevent you from ending up in the hospital with life-threatening bleeding!
Lastly, maintaining a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity, stress management, and avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption can further support cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of blood clots.