Maintaining Medication Efficacy: Foods to Exclude While on Eliquis

Category: Prescription Related Questions


Posted on February 1, 2024

Scott is passionate about health and wellness, and enjoys writing on various topic surrounding these fields. Scott lives in Seattle and spends his free time restoring old furniture and playing pickleball with his friends.

what foods to avoid while on eliquis

Shockingly, up to a third of patients don't take their medication as directed by their doctor. This failure to follow prescription directions can limit how well the medication works. For those on blood thinners like Eliquis, stocking to dietary guidelines is key to ensuring effective results.

This is because certain foods and beverages interfere with the absorption rates and efficacy of the drug. In some cases, there's even an increased risk of side effects of Eliquis like excessive bleeding. That makes knowing what foods to avoid while on Eliquis vital.

Keep reading to discover key foods to avoid when using Eliquis.

What Is Eliquis? How Does It Work?

Also known as Apixaban, Eliquis is a medicine that helps prevent blood clots. It works by blocking a key enzyme in the blood clotting process called Factor Xa. This helps reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people with conditions like atrial fibrillation.

Eliquis is also used to treat and prevent serious clotting conditions like deep vein thrombosis.

But, the main advantage of this drug over traditional blood thinners is that it has a fixed dose. It also doesn't require regular monitoring. However, it's important to take your prescription medication exactly as directed and be aware of the potential for serious bleeding.

What Foods to Avoid While on Eliquis

To maintain the efficacy of Eliquis, it is important to be mindful of the foods you consume. Certain foods can interact with the medication, affecting its effectiveness and may even cause side effects. Here are a few you should consider avoiding or limiting:


Many people rely on good-old caffeine to get going in the morning or power through the afternoons. But if taking Eliquis, it's wise to limit caffeine consumption. The reason comes down to how caffeine affects the performance of the drug in the body.

Caffeine can accelerate how fast the body absorbs and processes Eliquis after swallowing a dose. Rather than maintaining steady, even blood levels, you end up with spikes and drops in Eliquis concentrations. Caffeine also hinders the proper breakdown of the drug by the liver.

These reduce Eliquis' reliability in controlling blood clotting and cutting stroke risks. Consider limiting your caffeine intake to approximately 200mg daily while taking Eliquis. Taking more than that can increase the risk of complications like excessive bleeding.

Also, monitor total caffeine levels from "hidden" sources like tea, chocolate, and even medications. Leave 1-2 hours between having caffeine and taking your Eliquis pill to give the medicine time to work best.

High-Fat Foods

A diet high in fatty, greasy foods can spell trouble for those on Eliquis. Foods like red meat, fast food, and those loaded with saturated fats promote fatty buildup in the blood vessels. This plaque heightens risks of heart disease and stroke - the very things Eliquis works to prevent.

High-fat diets also lead to obesity, diabetes, and other conditions tied to blood clotting and vascular injury. They cause turbulence in the bloodstream, making it harder for the medication to do its job. Conversely, low-fat, plant-based diets reduce these risks and the chances of developing cancer.

High fat intake also dramatically slows the absorption of Eliquis after a dose. Rather than steady maintenance of blood levels, you experience spikes and subsequent crashes. This irregularity reduces Eliquis' effectiveness and control.

Grapefruits and Grapefruit Juice

Grapefruits are packed with vitamins and antioxidants. However, they aren't a great choice of fruit for those using Eliquis. They hinder the activity of certain liver enzymes needed to break down Eliquis.

This increases the blood levels of Eliquis instead of lowering between doses as they should. Basically, the Eliquis builds up to levels that are too high. This amplifies the effects of blood thinning effects, increasing the risk of bleeding.

Even small amounts of grapefruit can cause such interactions in those using Eliquis. There appears to be heightened sensitivity due to the grapefruit's organic compounds that readily deactivate critical liver enzymes.

Therefore, entirely avoiding grapefruits and any products containing them is crucial with Eliquis. This prevents accidental accumulation of Eliquis in your body due to repeated enzyme blocks. Check with your doctor before eating other citrus fruits that may interact with certain medications too.

Herbal Medications

Taking some herbal remedies like St. John's wort with Eliquis can prove risky. This popular supplement may reduce how well Eliquis works to prevent blood clots and stroke. Always check with your physician before starting herbs, as data on interactions is limited.

Additionally, herbal products are not regulated by the FDA as strictly as prescription drugs. This means quality control and screening for safety issues lag. As such, it's best to avoid taking any herbal supplements unless cleared by your doctor.

Other herbs that might cause problems when taken with Eliquis include turmeric, ginger, and ginkgo biloba. Even some preliminary data flags certain Chinese herbs. These might increase the risk of bleeding, but more research is needed to know for sure.

Vitamin Supplements

Supplements containing Vitamin K can negatively interact with Eliquis within the body. This stems from Vitamin K's ability to thicken blood. This counteracts the blood-thinning effects of Eliquin.

As such, it's best to limit supplements and foods rich in Vitamin K when taking Eliquis. This includes green tea, cranberry juice, spinach, kale, and brussels sprouts. Consulting your physician can clarify safe intake levels of Vitamin K items given your medical history.

That said, experts emphasize the importance of adhering to a balanced diet. Focus on diverse fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, plant proteins, and fish. A healthy diet helps reduce cholesterol levels and prevent issues that necessitate Eliquis in the first place.

Refill Your Prescription Easily With PricePro Pharmacy

While a safe and effective medication, Eliquis can interact with certain foods and increase the risk of side effects. This includes vitamin E and K supplements, herbal remedies, grapefruits, and more. The good news is that knowing what foods to avoid while on Eliquis can go a long way toward optimizing your health.

That said, if you need a refill of your blood thinner medications, look no further than PricePro Pharmacy. We make it easy to get the high-quality medications you need at affordable prices.

Reach out today to order, refill, or make inquiries about your medications.


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