Could your medications be depleting your nutrients?

You may have never even considered the fact that your Birth control pills, allergy medicine, or over the counter antacids could be depleting your nutrients, but they could be. Here’s the scoop on just a few drugs and their nutritional effects.

Birth control pills deplete vitamin B2 (ribofl avin), vitamin B12 (cobalamin), folic acid, vitamin C, and zinc. Estrogen supplementation can lower serum magnesium levels. Acid blockers (Protein Pump Inhibitors and H2 blockers)  are commonly used either in prescription or over the counter medications by people who have heartburn and indigestion. The acid in our stomach is important for absorption of minerals, digestion of protein, and protection from food poisoning. Studies show that acid blockers increase risk of defi ciencies of : vitamin B12, folic acid, iron, and zinc. Animal studies also show lowered calcium levels and altered the way we use vitamin D.

Statin drugs are used commonly to lower cholesterol. It’s been known since 1985 that statin medications can deplete CoEnzyme Q10 levels. Research suggests that some of the muscle aches and weakness and liver toxicity of these medications is caused by CoQ10 depletion. If you are taking a statin medication, take 60-200 mg of CoQ10 daily to insure that you have adequate amounts. (Higher dosages would be for people who have heart disease.)

Dr. Lipski is the Director of Academic Development for the Nutrition and Integrative Health programs at Maryland University of Integrative Health. She has been working in the fields of nutrition, holistic health, herbology, and lifestyle management for more than 30 years. Prior to joining MUIH, she served as Director of Doctoral Studies and Educational Director at Hawthorne University. She has been extensively published in many academic journals and is the author of four books, including Digestive Wellness and The Digestive Connection. Dr. Lipski speaks nationally and internationally, is on faculty at the Institute for Functional Medicine, and serves on advisory boards for the Ceres Foundation and the Autism Help Alliance. She received her doctorate in clinical nutrition from the Union Institute with a specialization in functional medicine, is board certified in clinical nutrition (CCN) and holistic nutrition (CHN), and is a certified nutrition specialist (CNS).