Perhaps the greatest alcohol-cholesterol drug interaction danger occurs when taking a statin, the most commonly prescribed cholesterol medication. Moderation depends on your gender. A standard glass of wine (175ml) is 2 units. Over-the-counter allergy remedies like Benadryl and Zyrtec contain antihistamines, a class of drug that can cause excessive drowsiness and may put you at risk if you’re driving a car or operating machinery—even more so when you’ve also had a drink or two. But be warned: Do not drink while taking these drugs. may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Like sleeping pills, antidepressants can cause drowsiness and dizziness that can be made worse with alcohol; this can raise your risk for falls and car accidents. Leaf Group Ltd. If you experience chest pains, your doctor may prescribe a drug to prevent attacks. “But if you take pain meds every day, say for arthritis, and you also drink to excess on several occasions, that could really cause problems.”. Statins are used to help protect the heart and vascular system and lower the risk of heart attack or stroke. Blood pressure and cholesterol medications People who take drugs for a cardiovascular condition should be cautious about drinking alcohol, says Rech. ; February 2010, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism; Alcohol-Medication Interactions; January 1995, American Heart Association: Alcoholic Beverages and Cardiovascular Disease, PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM And then there’s acetaminophen (Tylenol), which has a direct effect on the liver—an organ that’s even more at risk from excessive drinking. Terms of Use Credit: ​RELATED: How to get Birth Control Without a Doctor's Appointment. (Unless you’re on MAIOs, she adds; then you should avoid alcohol completely. The more calories you consume, the greater your risk of developing diabetes and of becoming obese, a risk factor of high cholesterol. Bottom line: “If your depression is well managed, then it’s probably okay to have an occasional alcoholic beverage while you’re on medication,” says Rech. The symptoms of anxiety can be hard to detect. Copyright Policy To reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 infections, it is best to call your doctor before leaving the house if you are experiencing a high fever, shortness of breath or another, more serious symptom. Your doctor prescribes drugs such as statins and bile acid sequestrants to reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke.; Statins: Are These Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs Right For You? People who take drugs for a cardiovascular condition should be cautious about drinking alcohol, says Rech. You should also be sure your medications are bringing your blood pressure and cholesterol down to the levels your doctor has set as a goal. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. In general, though, it’s smart to assume that even a tiny bit of booze can affect a drug’s safety and effectiveness. Consider this even if you do not take cholesterol medications. "I'm petrified," the actress said when she shared the news that her breast cancer came back. Clean out expired products and clutter to make way for a healthier you. Alcohol makes the effects of sleeping pills—both over-the-counter and prescription varieties—stronger. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse Try not to drink more than 14 units of alcohol a week. We're loving their inspirational, body-positive messages. When the alcohol breaks down first, which usually happens, the medication remains in your system longer, increasing the side effects of the drug, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Alcohol works against this process; it relies on your liver to break it down and to eliminate it from your body. Alcohol itself can cause this, but statins can increase your liver enzymes, resulting in permanent damage. eMedTV; Effects of Alcohol and High Cholesterol; Arthur Schoenstadt, M.D. Rice Myers received her master's degree in nursing from Upstate Medical University in 2001. “So it has the potential to interact with a whole host of drugs, including things you might not think are related at all.”. And that’s not a good thing: Even one drink can cause drowsiness, dizziness, and slowed breathing when taken with another sedative. And for those people who enjoy an occasional (or frequent) alcoholic drink, the side effects and risks may be different. Even antihistamines that are advertised as non-drowsy (such as Claritin and Allegra) can have this effect in some people, says Rech, especially when paired with alcohol. | For the most part, moderate alcohol consumption is safe for people while taking blood thinners as long as you have no major medical problems and are in … Alcohol can make some of the unpleasant side effects of these drugs, like upset stomach and dizziness, worse than normal. Bottom line: Talk to your doctor about what risks drinking could pose based on the specific drugs you’re taking. All rights reserved. Here’s Rech’s advice on drinking when you’re taking any of these common meds. If you do choose to drink a moderate amount, do so in a safe setting, in which you don’t have to drive or otherwise put yourself at risk. and Related: Cholesterol Testing: What Do Your Results Mean? Based in Jamestown, Pa., Hannah Rice Myers has more than 10 years of experience as a freelance writer, specializing in the health industry. , Yes, you can drink alcohol while taking atorvastatin. “Alcohol is metabolized in the liver, and a lot of drugs are metabolized via the same pathways,” Rech says. Is Your Doctor Gaslighting You? Dr. Arthur Schoenstadt of explains that if you drink alcohol in moderation, you may be less likely to experience heart disease and stroke by 25 to 40 percent. any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. You should avoid drinking alcohol if you are taking allergy medications or any multi-symptom cold and flu formulation. Men can enjoy two drinks per day, while women should limit themselves to one. Here's why a stage 4 breast cancer diagnosis can be so frightening. Some cold-and-flu formulas also contain acetaminophen, as well—all the more reason not to mix them with beer, wine, or liquor. So … RELATED: 13 Drugs That Can Make You Gain Weight. Many of her articles have appeared in newspapers, as well as "Curing Epilepsy: Hope Through Research."