Anastrozole is a medication that is commonly prescribed to women with breast cancer. It belongs to a class of drugs known as aromatase inhibitors, which work by blocking the production of estrogen in the body. While anastrozole is generally safe and effective, there are certain foods that can interfere with its effectiveness or cause side effects.
Foods To Avoid When Taking Anastrozole
Here are some foods to avoid when taking anastrozole:
Alcohol can interact with anastrozole and increase the risk of side effects, such as dizziness, drowsiness, and nausea. It’s best to avoid alcohol altogether while taking anastrozole, or at least limit your intake to small amounts.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice contain compounds that can interfere with the way anastrozole is metabolized in the body. This can increase the levels of the medication in the blood and increase the risk of side effects. It’s best to avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice while taking anastrozole.
Consuming high-fat foods while taking anastrozole can cause the medication to be less effective. This is because fat slows down the absorption of anastrozole in the body, which can prevent it from working as well. Avoid eating high-fat foods like fried foods, fatty meats, and full-fat dairy products while taking anastrozole.
Certain herbs and supplements
Some herbs and supplements, such as St. John’s wort, can interfere with the way anastrozole is metabolized in the body. This can reduce the effectiveness of the medication and increase the risk of side effects. It’s important to talk to your doctor before taking any herbs or supplements while taking anastrozole.
Caffeine can interact with anastrozole and increase the risk of side effects, such as dizziness, drowsiness, and nausea. It’s best to avoid or limit caffeine-containing foods and beverages, such as coffee, tea, and energy drinks, while taking anastrozole.
Overall, while taking anastrozole it’s important to follow a healthy and balanced diet and avoid foods that can interfere with the medication’s effectiveness or cause side effects. Talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian for personalized advice on what foods to avoid while taking anastrozole.
Anastrozole Side Effects
Here are some of the most common side effects of anastrozole:
Hot flashes are a common side effect of anastrozole and other aromatase inhibitors. They are a sudden feeling of warmth in the upper body, which can cause sweating and flushing. Hot flashes can be uncomfortable, but they usually go away on their own within a few weeks.
Some people may experience joint pain while taking anastrozole. This can range from mild discomfort to severe pain, and it can affect any joint in the body. Joint pain may be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers, or your doctor may prescribe a stronger medication.
Nausea and vomiting
Anastrozole can cause nausea and vomiting in some people. This can be a side effect of the medication itself, or it can be caused by the underlying cancer. Nausea and vomiting can be managed with over-the-counter medications or prescription anti-nausea drugs.
Fatigue is a common side effect of anastrozole and other cancer treatments. It is a feeling of extreme tiredness or weakness that can make it difficult to do everyday activities. Fatigue may be managed with rest, a healthy diet, and regular exercise.
Some people may experience headaches while taking anastrozole. These can range from mild to severe, and they may be accompanied by other symptoms such as dizziness or nausea. Headaches may be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers, or your doctor may prescribe a stronger medication.
It’s important to remember that not everyone will experience these side effects while taking anastrozole. Some people may not have any side effects at all, while others may only experience a few. If you do experience side effects while taking anastrozole, it’s important to talk to your doctor about managing them. They can help you find the best ways to cope with any side effects you may be experiencing.