What does fact checked mean?
At Healthfully, we strive to deliver objective content that is accurate and up-to-date. Our team periodically reviews articles in order to ensure content quality. The sources cited below consist of evidence from peer-reviewed journals, prominent medical organizations, academic associations, and government data.
The information contained on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be used as a substitute for the advice of a professional health care provider. Please check with the appropriate physician regarding health questions and concerns. Although we strive to deliver accurate and up-to-date information, no guarantee to that effect is made.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice are metabolized by the same enzymes in the liver that break down many drug compounds. Eating grapefruit leaves less enzymes available to break down the medication, and the amount of drug remaining in the blood remains high 2. With more drug remaining in the body and for a longer period of time, there is the potential for dangerous side effects to occur.
Blood Pressure Medications
According to physicians at the Harvard Medical School, grapefruit and grapefruit juice interact with a number of calcium channel blocker medications 2. These are typically prescribed to treat high blood pressure and angina. Common calcium channel blockers that interact with grapefruit include felodipine and nifedipine. The related drugs verapamil, diltiazem and amlodipine are not affected by grapefruit 1.
Grapefruit Drug Interaction List
According to Harvard Medical School doctors, the effects of just one glass of grapefruit juice on the availability of liver enzymes persist for many hours 2. Some individuals will need to stop drinking grapefruit juice completely in order to avoid a dangerous drug interaction. Check with a health care provider to determine whether you should stop consuming grapefruit, reduce your consumption or change the timing of your medication to avoid consuming both simultaneously 2. Orange juice is a good alternative for those who enjoy citrus juice.
Grapefruit interacts with a variety of other types of medication 2. Of the statin medications that are commonly used to treat high cholesterol, atorvastatin, simvastatin and lovastatin levels are increased by grapefruit. Benzodiazepines, a class of medications used to treat anxiety and insomnia, interact with grapefruit. Certain neurological and psychiatric medications are also processed by the same liver enzymes as grapefruit. Check the instructions provided by your pharmacist or consult your doctor to learn more about the specific cautions that apply to your medication.
- Grapefruit interacts with a variety of other types of medication 2.
- Of the statin medications that are commonly used to treat high cholesterol, atorvastatin, simvastatin and lovastatin levels are increased by grapefruit.
Grapefruit Drug Interaction List
Can You Eat a Grapefruit With Hydrochlorothiazide?
Medications to Avoid When Eating Grapefruit
The Effects of Grapefruit on Synthroid
Can I Drink Grapefruit Juice With Wellbutrin?
Does Grapefruit Juice Affect Ramipril?
Can I Take Benicar & Eat Grapefruit?
The Side Effects of Lexapro & Grapefruit
Blood Oranges & Lipitor
Can You Eat Grapefruit While Taking Crestor?
- FDA: Grapefruit and Medicine May Not Mix
- Harvard Medical School: Grapefruit and Medication
- Grapefruit, raw, pink and red, all areas. USDA FoodData Central. Updated April 2019.
- Vitamin C - Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. National Institutes of Health (NIH). Office Of Dietary Supplements. Updated July 2019
- Chow O, Barbul A. Immunonutrition: Role in wound healing and tissue regeneration. Adv Wound Care (New Rochelle). 2014;3(1):46–53. doi:10.1089/wound.2012.0415
- Vitamin A Fact Sheet for Professionals. National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. February 14, 2020
- Rasmussen HM, Johnson EJ. Nutrients for the aging eye. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:741–748. doi:10.2147/CIA.S45399
- Chen P, Zhang W, Wang X, Zhao K, Negi D, Zhou L, et al. Lycopene and risk of prostate cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine (Baltimore). 2015;94(33):e1260. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000001260
- Vissers MCM, Das AB. Potential mechanisms of action for vitamin C in cancer: Reviewing the evidence. Front Physiol. 2018;9:809. doi:10.3389/fphys.2018.00809
- Dow CA, Going SB, Chow H-HS, Patil BS, Thomson CA. The effects of daily consumption of grapefruit on body weight, lipids, and blood pressure in healthy, overweight adults. Metabolism. 2012;61(7):1026-1035. doi:10.1016/j.metabol.2011.12.004
- Zhao CN, Meng X, Li Y, et al. Fruits for prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Nutrients. 2017;9(6):598. doi:10.3390/nu9060598
- Panche AN, Diwan AD, Chandra SR. Flavonoids: An overview. J Nutr Sci. 2016;5:e47. doi:10.1017/jns.2016.41
- Bourrier T, Pereira C. Allergy to citrus juice. Clin Transl Allergy. 2013;3(Suppl 3):P153. Published 2013 Jul 25. doi:10.1186/2045-7022-3-S3-P153
- Grapefruit Juice and Some Drugs Don't Mix. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. FDA Consumer Updates. Updated July 2017.
- Grapefruit juice and statins. Harvard Medical School - Healthbeat. Harvard Health Publishing. Updated September 2019.
- Bailey DG, Dresser G, Arnold JM. Grapefruit-medication interactions: Forbidden fruit or avoidable consequences?. CMAJ. 2013;185(4):309-16. doi:10.1503/cmaj.120951
- Kanellis A, Manganaris G. Fruit Ripening. (Nath P, Bouzayen M, Mattoo A, Pech J, eds.). Oxfordshire: CABI; 2014:110.
- Wanlapa S, Wachirasiri K, Sithisam-ang D, Suwannatup T. Potential of selected tropical fruit peels as dietary fiber in functional foods. International Journal of Food Properties. 2015;18(6):1306-1316. doi:10.1080/10942912.2010.535187
- Murphy MM, Barraj LM, Rampersaud GC. Consumption of grapefruit is associated with higher nutrient intakes and diet quality among adults, and more favorable anthropometrics in women, NHANES 2003-2008. Food Nutr Res. 2014;58:10.3402/fnr.v58.22179. doi:10.3402/fnr.v58.22179
Amy Liddell has been writing on health and medicine since 2004. She is also a biomedical scientist and studies human cancer. Her articles have appeared in scientific journals, medical textbooks and on health-related consumer websites. Liddell holds a Doctor of Philosophy in biological and biomedical sciences from Harvard University.