Isaac Newton’s Third Law says, “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”.  This is never more true than in the world of medications.  While we are blessed to have incredible drugs that save many lives, the nutrient depletions can be hazardous to long-term health.  It is essential to know what side effects they have and proactively address those. It’s important for everyone!  It is especially important to know prescription nutrient depletions before pregnancy.

Nutrient-rich foods containing vitamins and minerals are necessary for repair, enzyme function, and healthy immunity in the body.  Here are a few common medication classes and the nutrients that they deplete:

  • NSAIDS:  These commonly used, and often over-the-counter medications include aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), celecoxib (Celebrex), and diclofenac (Voltaren).  They can deplete Vitamin C, Iron, and Folic Acid.  
  • Estrogen-containing drugs:  Oral Contraceptives, Premarin, and Prempro are examples.  These hormones can deplete Vitamins B6, B12, Vitamin D, Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, and Folic Acid.
  • Antibiotics:  Commonly prescribed, antibiotics disrupt healthy intestinal bacteria and can deplete Biotin, Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, Calcium, Potassium, Vitamin K, Magnesium, Zinc and Folic Acid.
  • Diuretics:  These are medications commonly used for high blood pressure, including Loop Diuretics, Potassium-sparing Diuretics, and Thiazide Diuretics.  Depending on the specific drug, depletions include Calcium, Vitamin C, Magnesium, Zinc, Potassium, Phosphorous, Coenzyme Q10, and Vitamins B1, and B6.
  • Anti-Inflammatories:  Steroids are in this group with brand names like Cortef, Celestone, Rayos, and Sterapred.  Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Calcium, Magnesium, Beta Carotene, and Vitamin B6 are potentially depleted by these medications.  
  • Laxatives containing Bisacodyl:  Known by the common names like Dulcolax, Correctol, Feen-a-Mint, and Carter’s Little Pills, these often-used medications deplete Calcium and Potassium.
  • Beta-2 Adrenergic Receptor Agonists:  Lots of people use Albuterol, Advair, Tornalate and Xopenex; they can deplete essential nutrients especially Potassium, Calcium, and Magnesium.   

Note that many of these inhibit Folate, also known as Vitamin B9.  Folate is necessary for growth of the baby’s spinal cord and brain.  Severe birth defects can occur because of folate deficiency.  Folate-rich foods can also help prevent heart disease, cancer, anemia and cognitive decline.  Eat five or more servings of whole foods like asparagus, spinach, black-eyed peas, avocado, broccoli, brussel sprouts, or oranges, to name a few great sources.  Experts recommend increasing your Folic Acid intake at least three months before trying to have a baby.  

It’s also important to take a pharmaceutical-grade multi-vitamin to replace the vital nutrients.  Pharmaceutical-grade supplements must meet the high standards set by the United States Pharmacopeia.  This USP certification provides assurance that the capsules are pure and contain at least 99 percent or more of the ingredients stated on the label.  

Whether you take a short-term pharmaceutical drug like an antibiotic or rely on long-term use such as a medication for high cholesterol, your specific nutrient needs increase.  This includes many over-the-counter medications. The majority of medications cause a dry mouth which can increase the incidence of dental decay.  

For anyone who wants to avoid or minimize illness, what I love to term as “LIVE YOUNGER”, knowing what you are putting in and on your body matters.  It’s especially crucial to know prescription nutrient depletions before pregnancy because a developing baby is extremely susceptible to nutrient deficiencies.  Avoid illness and feel your best by giving your body what it needs.  You can do it – just START SOMEWHERE!

Know Prescription Nutrient Depletions Before Pregnancy

Know Prescription Nutrient Depletions
Before Pregnancy