Replenish Nutrients That Medications Deplete!

By jigsaw Latest Reply 2014-08-10 18:21:57 -0500
Started 2014-06-20 06:57:48 -0500

Whether it's medications, vitamins, or any supplement that you are taking, you should always speak with a doctor or a pharmacist.

Here is a brief article to keep you on the alert!

Weil Vitamin Advisor
Just Right For You
Replenish Nutrients That Medications Deplete. Nearly 70 percent of Americans take at least one prescription drug. More than half take at least two prescriptions.

Without realizing it, they may be increasing their risk of high blood pressure, bone fracture or other problems.

"Many people - including some physicians - don't realize that some of the most widely taken pharmaceuticals deplete the body of vital nutrients, and that loss can impact health," said Tieraona Low Dog, M.D.

Here are two common drugs and the nutrients they deplete.
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs): Known by trade names including Nexium and Prilosec, these popular meds tame heartburn and serious reflux by reducing stomach acid production. Unfortunately, they also deplete magnesium levels in the blood and impair absorption of calcium and vitamin D. This boosts the risk of bone fracture, irregular heartbeat and high blood pressure.
Metformin: Sold as Glucophage, this diabetes drug depletes vitamin B12, a nutrient that's vital for brain and nervous system health.
This list is actually much longer. The point is that no one should take a prescription medication without talking with a physician or pharmacist about possible nutrient depletions.

29 replies

4mouseketeers 2014-06-23 18:37:01 -0500 Report

I think I will check into getting some B12. My brain doesn't need any more strains on it's health! Hope it comes in pill form.

Trudie Ann
Trudie Ann 2014-06-24 00:03:01 -0500 Report

Hi 4mouseketeers; I take a B-12 supplement. I get it in tablet form at the drug store,( but I think it also comes in a liquid form and I think it's called sublingual B12). My doctor that I was going to when I was diagnosed as type2 suggested I add a B12 supplement. I have been taking it and does seem to help me but if you are eating a balanced diet, or taking a multi vitamin with B12 in it you might not need more.

4mouseketeers 2014-06-24 11:14:16 -0500 Report

I used to take something called a Super B-Complex but as my finances went down & living prices went up I quit taking it. I guess maybe I should go on & start it again.

jigsaw 2014-06-24 11:41:53 -0500 Report

I had a PCP, that I thought was excellent, and he recommended Super B Complex. Unfortunately, he moved away last year. That's when I found my current PCP, that also has diabetes.

jigsaw 2014-06-23 19:19:30 -0500 Report

Check with your doctor! It's a simple blood test that can determine if you're lacking B12. If you are, then you would probably feel exausted most of the time. My wife had Epstein Barr years ago, and consequently she felt exausted. A symptom of this condition is low B12. Her doctor gave her B12 shots, since the effect of of feeling awake is almost instantaneous. It does come in an over the counter supplement form, and it is a water soluble vitamin. Simply means that excess amounts leave the body via the urine.

dtutt 2014-06-22 18:06:14 -0500 Report


I have been diabetic (type 1) for 34 years and have had control issues for at least 20 of them. Seems that my body needs vitamin E to deal with Insulin injections. I have discovered this only in the past year by trial and error going through all manner of health food shop supplements to see if anything worked. Only the RDA of around 10mg but without it I have found that my insulin on some days does nothing. Indeed I have double injected sometimes for 3 -5 days without my sugar level dropping below 16 mmol/L and its not as though I sit around all day as I am always active usually around 18 hours a day. However, with the RDA supplement I get excellent control. Something I haven't had for a very long time. Has anyone else experienced such a drastic effect from a simple supplement? I can only get the RDA by taking a generic multi vitamin as I first found that E worked for me by taking 100iu (68mg) daily capsules which although they worked a treat (rather like a switch) they had far too many other effects to be a long term solution. Side effects were weight gain, water retention, swollen gums, itching where you don't want to scratch etc!!!! Not nice!

jigsaw 2014-06-23 14:51:05 -0500 Report

I use to take vitamin E supplements years ago. Now I take a multi vitamin that includes vitamin E. I never heard of vitamin E having any effect on blood sugar. I never had any side effects from vitamin E either. Sorry I can't offer more info, but I will check further to see the effects of vitamin E on blood glucose.

Here is a link I found that on the subject.

And this link refers to vitamin E and diabetes in general.

dtutt 2014-06-23 16:04:44 -0500 Report

Many thanks. I don't think what works for me would work for anyone else but its just another variable that might provide an insight for someone having control difficulties. I have a large part of my thyroid missing since the days of my diagnosis so it may be that the vit E is actually working in some mysterious way in conjunction with my thyroid not directly with my Insulin. Since I don't take or need anything for thyroid issues then I guess I would have to wait for the medical profession to come up with a explanation. Thanks for the links. I have been through most of the web content about it and not found anything that provides any definitive help or advice so its back to square one on that front.

jigsaw 2014-06-23 16:56:06 -0500 Report

I would guess that a "mysterious way" is a likely possibility. The effects that you are experiencing are certainly not that common. I had an unusual side effect with medication. Quite a few doctors believed it was various possibilities, but not the medication. Turned out it was the medication. So, anything is possible.

There are quite a few people on this site, so maybe someone with a similar experience will show up! You could also try the Ask The Expert section on this site. There are numerous experts from the Joslin Diabetes Center that just may be helpful!

dtutt 2014-08-10 18:21:57 -0500 Report

Hi folks
I have continued my search for a solution to my control difficulties and really do think I have found a very helpful supplement that at least works for me. From my other posts you will see I was trying to find a vitamin E supplement that was just the RDA without any luck. Then after an email request to one of the UK's health food chains they put me onto Vitabiotics Diabetone which, apart from the vitamin E also contains chromium, selenium and iodine as well as lots of other minerals. The iodine was specifically of interest to me as the cause of my diabetes was a large growth on my thyroid which was partially removed.
So this is a one a day tablet which is actually still rather too much but if taken around 2-3 times a week gives me much better control. The control issue is so different for everyone that I doubt there is a definitive answer for everyone, but at least, if my experience can help others not to have drastic highs and lows for 20 years then my typing this has not been wasted!

mich2014 2014-06-21 10:09:24 -0500 Report

Thanks jigsaw.I have to keep that in mind because I take 8 different medications.

jigsaw 2014-06-22 05:13:12 -0500 Report

Amazing that those very same pills that help us, can also can be harming us over time. It's imperative to stay informed and do a little research!

haoleboy 2014-06-20 20:20:42 -0500 Report

my understanding is that diabetes medication (sulfonylureas and biguanides) can deplete Coenzyme Q10, B12 and Folic Acid


jigsaw 2014-06-21 06:16:49 -0500 Report

I was not aware that these specific meds could deplete Co Q10. A good heads up for the many that take these meds.

It seems to me that Doctors that prescribe these meds, should inform us about these consequences. To help a patient with one problem and cause another, is to do half the job, if that.

Trudie Ann
Trudie Ann 2014-06-21 09:13:29 -0500 Report

Jigsaw; I agree that doctors should suggest an additional supplement if they know the meds they prescribe can deplete them. They should know about this before they prescribe and at the least keep a check on any problems that they may or may not cause their patients. My first doctor, the one that discovered I was diabetic suggested a B-12, which I take every day now.

Trudie Ann
Trudie Ann 2014-06-20 14:13:01 -0500 Report

Thanks Jigsaw, I finally found a good post. I waded through enough SPAM!!!! to drown and I reported 2 pages full of SPAM, but I finally found your post on middle of page 3. I did read the article and found it very interesting. Keep posting I love your posts. Gabby and Lynn; thanks you also. I agree with all three of you. Your Pharmacy keeps records of all your prescriptions so you can ask if the OTC you are looking at will cause any problems.

jigsaw 2014-06-20 18:42:26 -0500 Report

You bring up some very good points! A pharmacy can really be utilized in many advantageous ways.

neverlowbg 2014-06-20 11:08:47 -0500 Report

Thank jigsaw never thought medicine would deplete the body of nutrients good read as now I know why at every blood test with lab I'm low on potassium gonna talk with doc on that one

jigsaw 2014-06-20 18:40:18 -0500 Report

I'm pleased that you found it helpful. One really has to be careful and informed!

neverlowbg 2014-06-20 18:59:21 -0500 Report

Yes they do and I learn allot here on dc I thank you guys for these posts of knowledge good or bad it's all about learning with the big d and I don't mean Dallas lol

GabbyPA 2014-06-20 10:25:31 -0500 Report

I would talk to the pharmacist, they are much more aware of what goes on with the drugs than the doctors. Funny how metformin could be the contributing factor to our neuropathy...maybe even more than our out of control sugar?? Something to think about.

jigsaw 2014-06-20 18:38:40 -0500 Report

You bet! Many of these meds can be extremely harmful, and in surprising ways. In some cases, a doctor weighs the pros and the cons of a given medication, and then decides. I have in a few situations, refused and disagreed with my doctor, about the risks involved. That of course was after doing research, and talking with other doctors.

Glucerna 2014-06-20 09:17:20 -0500 Report

Thanks for this excellent reminder, and especially to check with your physician/pharmacist before taking supplements. It's also a heads-up that our everyday food choices are crucial not only for blood sugar management, but also for overall good health. ~Lynn @Glucerna