Whenever you start a new medication, you should always talk to your doctor or pharmacist about foods that may interact with it. Eating certain foods can increase or decrease a medication's effectiveness, or increase side effects. Grapefruit and its juice interact with a number of medications; however, Augmentin is not one of those medications. Unless your doctor directs you to do otherwise, you can continue to drink grapefruit juice.
Augmentin is a type of penicillin antibiotic. It consists of a combination of amoxicillin and clavulanic acid. Both components are antibiotics that fight infection. However, clavulanic acid fights bacteria that are resistant to penicillin. Augmentin is prescribed to treat a number of bacterial infections, including pneumonia, sinusitis, ear infections, bronchitis, urinary tract infections and skin infections. You should not take Augmentin if you are allergic to penicillin or clavulanic acid. You should also talk to your doctor before taking Augmentin if you have a history of liver disease.
Grapefruit is rich in vitamin C, potassium and fiber, and has even earned the American Heart Association's "heart check" mark. However, a substance in grapefruit juice binds with the enzyme in your gut that helps prevent the absorption of certain medications. By blocking this enzyme, the grapefruit juice allows more of the medication to enter your bloodstream, causing higher than normal blood levels of the medication, which can be dangerous in some situations. Grapefruit interacts with high blood pressure medications, cholesterol-lowering medications and psychiatric medications. However, it does not interact with any antibiotics or Augmentin.
Augmentin and Stomach Upset
When it comes to diet and Augmentin, it is recommended that you take it with a full glass of water before a meal to prevent stomach upset. No specific foods are known to interact with the medication. However, when taking any antibiotics it is recommended that you avoid foods high in acid, such as tomato sauce or vinegars, at the time you take your medication because they can increase the likelihood of stomach upset. If your stomach is especially sensitive and you suspect that grapefruit juice is contributing to stomach upset while taking Augmentin, you might choose to stop drinking it.
Antibiotics kill not only the bad bacteria that make you sick, but they can also kill the good bacteria that help to keep you healthy. If you experience diarrhea as a side effect of Augmentin, ask your doctor whether you should include probiotics in your diet plan. Probiotics are friendly bacteria found in certain foods, such as yogurt, sauerkraut and kimchee.