An enzyme in grapefruit juice has been shown to increase the absorption of certain drugs into the bloodstream.

Beverly Hills, California (August 2012) – Though grapefruit juice has incredible health benefits such as high levels of vitamin C and lycopene, it may be an unhealthy choice for people on certain types of medication. Recently, studies have shown that an enzyme found in grapefruit can negatively interact with some prescriptions and possibly lead to liver damage and even kidney failure.

Top Los Angeles Periodontist Dr. Alex Farnoosh comments, “Grapefruit is very popular and an essential element to many people’s everyday diets. Because many Americans are now on at least one type of prescription medication, this finding is incredibly important. Medical professionals like myself can better treat our patients by ensuring their health and safety and keeping them well informed of any possible dangers.” Grapefruit is not the only fruit containing this enzyme, it is also found in Seville oranges and tangelos.

By increasing the absorption of medication in the bloodstream, the enzyme in grapefruit juice causes a higher concentration of the drug. As an example, drugs like Lipitor to lower cholesterol are on the list of affected medications. If too much of this drug stays in the body, it can cause muscle breakdown and liver damage and can even lead to kidney failure. Even drinking grapefruit juice several hours before and after taking medication can be harmful and patients are advised to eliminate grapefruit juice from their diet.

Though specific amounts of juice that can determined as safe are not yet entirely known, the FDA is taking an active role in keeping people informed by requiring a drug interaction label on some prescription medications. Drugs that interact with grapefruit juice include statin drugs prescribed to lower cholesterol such as Zocor, Lipitor, and Pravachol; drugs to lower blood pressure such as Nifediac and Afeditab; organ transplant rejection drugs such as Sandimmune and Neoral; anti-arrhythmia drugs such as Cordarone and Nexterone; the antihistamine Allegra and BuSpar to combat anxiety.

As a leader in the dental field for over 25 years, Dr. Alex Farnoosh makes it his priority to provide the best care possible for patients seeking cosmetic and advanced periodontal procedures. Because these procedures often include medication therapy to better provide healing and comfort, these findings are incredibly important in ensuring a patient’s safety. Dr. Alex Farnoosh states, “While the medication I may prescribe for select dental processes may not be included in the FDA list of affected drugs, it is evident that grapefruit juice has unique properties when it comes to some medication and it can only help me to better serve my patients and treat them in the best way possible.”

The FDA recommends that patients fully read all the information provided with their prescriptions and that they ask their pharmacist or medical professional if it is safe for them to consume grapefruit juice while on specific medications. Many other fruit drinks also include small amounts of grapefruit juice so individuals are advised to check the nutritional label to avoid any possible problems.

The Total Smile was founded by Beverly Hills Periodontist Dr. Alex Farnoosh. Serving patients from around the globe at his Beverly Hills office for over 25 years, Dr. Farnoosh has proven expertise in the field of dentistry and offers many unique cosmetic and surgical services. Dr. Farnoosh specializes in dental implants, laser periodontal surgery, gum and bone grafting, and his novel gum bleaching approach for the treatment of dark and discolored gums and his lip-lowering treatment for a gummy smile. Dr. Farnoosh has been recognized by the Consumers’ Research Council of America (CRC) as one of America’s top dentists in its annual report since 2008. To learn more about Dr. Farnoosh and how to achieve The Total Smile, visit

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