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Taking too much medication can cause an overdose. Taking too little can keep it from doing its job. Always take the exact amount prescribed. Use a Medication Organizer! Be sure to drink an adequate amount of water when taking oral medications.
Follow Nutrition Guidelines on Medication
Some medication needs to be taken with food and some on an empty stomach. Understand what your healthcare provider means when they say take with food or take before or after a meal.
- 50–100 calories – carbohydrate or protein source
- 4–6 saltine crackers
- 2–4 graham crackers
- 1 slice of bread
- 1/3 can of Ensure or similar supplement
- 250–300 calories (50% carbohydrates, 20% protein, 30% fat)
- equivalent to a frozen or TV dinner
- sandwich and beverage
- 1 can of Ensure or equivalent supplement
Food / Drug Precautions
Certain foods can affect the action of certain drugs.
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Certain drugs can affect the way the body absorbs nutrients. Your healthcare provider has given you information about food and drug interactions. Be sure you understand these instructions. If not, ask questions, be informed.
- Do not mix medications with alcohol.
- Keep all medications away from children – this means out of sight and out of reach.
- Throw away all old medications, including those that have expired, lost their label, and changed in odor or appearance.
- To dispose of a medication, flush it down a toilet and throw away the container.
- Call your health care provider immediately if you have any unpleasant or unusual reactions to a medication.
Minimize Side Effects
- Ask your healthcare provider about possible side effects.
- Read and understand all labels.
- Report any reactions or allergies to your healthcare provider.
Taking Several Medications
- Learn about each medication and know why you are taking it.
- Follow all instructions for using each medication safely.
- Ask your pharmacist if your over-the-counter medications are safe to use with your prescription medications.
- Organizer System – use a medication chart to track what medication you are taking and the times of day you are to take them.