How COPD Medications Interact With Foods and Nutrients
Many individuals with COPD maintain near-normal breathing and an excellent quality of life. They do this by using bronchodilator medicines that relax smooth muscles and open airways. They use anti-inflammatories to reduce the inflammatory response. And they take diuretics that prevent fluid build up.
These medicines are quite effective in improving the symptoms of COPD. However, all of these drugs can increase or decrease your nutritional needs. In addition, the foods you consume can interact with the activity of these medicines and change a drug''s effectiveness.
Some drugs that affect appetite or cause nausea can seriously affect the overall nutritional intake of someone whose food intake may already be compromised. So it is important for you to read the package information. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice. This is particularly important if you are taking any medicines on a long-term basis.
• Beta-adrenergic: albuterol (Proventil, Ventolin), salmeterol (Serevent): Albuterol and salmetrol can increase potassium losses from the body. This can cause low blood potassium levels. Usually this lasts a short time and may not require supplements. However, including potassium in your diet is a good idea.
Methylxanthines: theophylline (many brands), aminophylline (Phyllocontin), or oxtriphylline (Choledyl): The effects of foods on theophylline and its "chemical relatives" can vary widely. High-fat meals may increase theophylline levels in the body. High-carbohydrate meals may decrease it. The form of the drug (regular or sustained-release) affects the interaction with food as well. To stabilize the effectiveness of the drug, keep your diet constant during the period of time when you are taking it.
Foods that naturally contain caffeine, theophylline or theobromine can emphasize the effects of methylxanthine medicines. Irritability, nervousness and sleeplessness are the most common side effects. Individuals should avoid eating or drinking large amounts of products containing caffeine, and/or theobromine. These include chocolate, soft drinks, coffee or tea. Alcohol consumption also should be limited. This is particularly important if nausea, vomiting, headache and irritability occur.
|Sources of caffeine ||milligrams|
|Coffee, drip,7 ounce serving ||115-175*|
|Coffee, espresso, 2 ounce serving||100|
|Coffee, brewed, 7 ounce serving||80-135*|
|Jolt soft-drink, 12 ounce can ||71|
|Tea, iced, 12 ounce serving ||70|
|Instant coffee, 7 ounce serving||65-100*|
|Mountain Dew (regular and diet), Mellow Yellow, Surge, Pepsi One; 12 ounce can||51-59|
|Nestea Earl Grey, 12 ounce serving||50|
|Tea, brewed, 7 ounce serving||40-60*|
|Tab, Shasta Cola, Mr. Pibb, Dr. Pepper, Sunkist Orange; 12 ounce canCanada Dry Cola, Diet Rite, RC Cola, Pepsi-Cola (regular and diet),||40-47|
|Coca-Cola; 12 ounce can ||30-37|
|Snapple Lemon Tea, 12 ounce bottle ||35|
|Tea, instant, 7 ounce serving ||30|
|Nestea, 12 ounce serving||26|
|Coffee, decaffeinated, brewed, 7 ounce serving||3-4|
|7 Up, Sprite, and many others (check ingredient list)||0|
*The amount of caffeine in coffee and tea varies widely, even if prepared by the same person using the same equipment and ingredients day after day.
|Sources of Theobromine ||milligrams|
|Chocolate chips, 1/4 cup||207|
|Dark chocolate, 1.5 ounce bar||195|
|Cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon||138|
|Milk chocolate, 1.5 ounce bar||86|
|Chocolate-flavored syrup, 2 tablespoons||69|