Why paracetamol should never be taken before lunchtime

sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more

Chronotherapy ¿ how the body clock impacts drug efficiency ¿ is said to be the key to ensuring we get the best out of our pills, from heartburn medication, to chemotherapy, and even aspirin

Chronotherapy – how the body clock impacts drug efficiency – is said to be the key to ensuring we get the best out of our pills, from heartburn medication, to chemotherapy, and even aspirin

More than 30 million of us take medication every day. For some it’s a single pill, but for others it’s several – some taken with food, some without. 

A fifth of Britons over 70 take a staggering seven pills daily.

And with instruction lists as long as your arm, precisely what time of day you should take each one can be confusing. But now an intriguing area of scientific research may provide the answer.

Chronotherapy – how the body clock impacts drug efficiency – is said to be the key to ensuring we get the best out of our pills, from heartburn medication, to chemotherapy, and even aspirin.

A new Dutch study found that taking blood thinners such as aspirin at night, rather than the morning, could slash your chance of heart disease and stroke by half.

‘We have clocks in our bodies that control most physiological processes,’ says Dr Robert Dallmann, assistant professor in molecular clocks at Warwick University Medical School. ‘They determine when we are active, when we rest, and how we metabolise drugs. As a result, some drugs are best given at night and others during the day.’

So when’s the right time to take your pills?

HAVE BLOOD PRESSURE PILLS AT NIGHT TIME

The tablet: Blood pressure medicines called ACE inhibitors, such as enalapril and lisinopril and others called beta blockers such as atenolol and bisoprolol.

How they work: Both types of drug reduce the pressure of the flow of blood through the circulatory system by relaxing and widening blood vessels.

Time of day to take them: Patients who take blood pressure tablets before bedtime see a more pronounced drop, compared to those who take them in the morning, according to studies. Dr Dallman says: ‘Blood pressure peaks first thing in the morning, to prepare the body for wakefulness. But if you take the drugs just before bed, they release into the blood stream overnight and prevent a morning spike.’

The most common treatments for heartburn, or acid reflux, work by limiting the amount of acid produced by the stomach. Stomach acid is naturally higher between roughly 7pm and midnight, so taking the pills in the evening stops levels peaking to the point that they travel back towards the food pipe ¿ causing the uncomfortable burning feeling.(File photo)

The most common treatments for heartburn, or acid reflux, work by limiting the amount of acid produced by the stomach. Stomach acid is naturally higher between roughly 7pm and midnight, so taking the pills in the evening stops levels peaking to the point that they travel back towards the food pipe – causing the uncomfortable burning feeling.(File photo)

HEARTBURN DRUGS ARE BEST AT 6PM

The tablet: Acid indigestion medications, called proton pump inhibitors, such as omeprazole, and H2 inhibitors, such as Zantac.

How they work: The most common treatments for heartburn, or acid reflux, work by limiting the amount of acid produced by the stomach.

Time of day to take them: Stomach acid is naturally higher between roughly 7pm and midnight, so taking the pills in the evening stops levels peaking to the point that they travel back towards the food pipe – causing the uncomfortable burning feeling.

A recent study found three quarters of patients taking PPIs felt long-lasting relief after taking them around 6pm, compared to under half taking it before midday. A report by scientists at Berkeley University in California found a similar affect with the H2 blocker, cimetidine. And don’t wait until after dinner. As the problem is often worse while eating, the scientists found patients reported less discomfort if the drug was taken before the evening meal.

NO PARACETAMOL FOR BREAKFAST

The tablet: Paracetamol, also called acetaminophen.

How they work: The drug reduces the production of chemicals that make nerve

read more from dailymail.....

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

NEXT Poor people are 42% less likely to suffer from depression or anxiety if they ...