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Is Your Prescription Drug Causing Nutritional Deficiencies?

Today’s modern living is full of constant stress, unhealthy food choices, and a toxic environment. Eating healthy, working out, and making safer choices for your home can certainly keep you healthier, but there is always a chance of getting sick.

For illnesses that need outside help, such as diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease, prescription medicine can help treat or ease symptoms. Unfortunately, many of these medications can also cause nutritional deficiencies that need to be addressed.

When it comes to medicine, Michael Smith, MD, believes there are five main culprits that deplete vital nutrients.


The main purpose of diuretics is to help the kidneys get rid of fluid, consequently bringing down blood pressure. The problem here is that getting rid of more fluid means more frequent urination, and when you increase urine output, you lose important minerals like magnesium, zinc, potassium, and sodium.

According to one study, around 20 percent of patients taking diuretic medicine had a magnesium deficiency. This is interesting, because a deficiency could lead to high blood pressure. In essence, the medicine meant to reduce high blood pressure could inadvertently increase it.

Beta Blockers

In the body, there is a type of receptor called a beta-receptor. When activated, the cells next to it become metabolically active. The beta-receptor helps run the sympathetic nervous system, and medications called beta-blockers help to calm it down, regulating heart activity. While it can certainly help calm the heart, taking beta-blockers can also deplete the body of CoQ10, which is critical to cell energy production. If CoQ10 levels are low, many side effects can result, including high blood pressure, heart failure, and chest pains.

Acid Blockers

Heartburn, reflex disease, and GERD are all too common today, marked by the number of medications and antacids available to treat these conditions. But, antacids can change your stomach’s pH levels to such a significant degree that side effects are rampant.

To help prevent this, try to take supplements or eat some food either a couple of hours before or after you take the antacid. Other deficiencies that have been found include zinc, iron, calcium, and vitamin D.


Sugar issues are a very big problem in America today, and there are several diabetic drugs, each with their own absorption issues. One very common drug is Metformin. Although Metformin can be a great medicine with few side effects, it can still cause you to be deficient in vitamin B12, as well as folic acid and CoQ10.


Cholesterol-lowering drugs, like beta-blockers, can really drain your body of CoQ10. One drug in particular, Lipitor, has been shown to drastically decrease your CoQ10 levels.

If you are taking any of these medications, Dr. Smith strongly recommends you add some type of supplement to provide the missing nutrients. Multivitamins, magnesium, and perhaps a B-complex vitamin, along with Ubiquinol for CoQ10 can help replenish what your body lacks from taking these drugs.

In the accompanying audio segment, Dr. Mike shares the nutritional deficiencies that you might be suffering from due to your prescription drug medication(s).

Alonso is a long-time health and wellness advocate who loves to write about it. His writing spans the scope of blogs, educational magazines, and books, both on and offline.