What Foods to Avoid While You're Taking Enalapril (Vasotec)
Enalapril, commonly known as Vasotec, helps people with high blood pressure, heart failure, and chronic kidney disease lessen their risk of dangerous cardiac events and improve their quality of life.
In other words, it’s a necessary medication for many. If you or a loved one is taking Vasotec or generic enalapril, understanding the link between your medication and your lifestyle or diet can help you have the best possible experience with this line of treatment.
Want to avoid the unpleasant side effects sometimes associated with enalapril use?
Want to experience excellent drug efficacy at the lowest beneficial dose for you?
Want to increase your quality of life and possibly even improve your prognosis?
Here’s the information about what foods to avoid while taking enalapril that you need to know.
Building a Foundation: What is Enalapril Used For?
Enalapril is used to treat a wide range of medical conditions. Typically, patients who take enalapril may present with any of the following:
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Heart failure
- Chronic kidney disease
Sometimes, patients with heightened risk factors for heart attacks and stroke may take enalapril as a preventative measure.
Enalapril works to treat or prevent all of those dangerous and unpleasant conditions as an ACE inhibitor. ACE, or “angiotensin-converting enzyme,” is a type of protein that works hard to regulate your body’s blood pressure. When ACE is blocked, your body’s blood vessels relax and get wider, which lowers your overall blood pressure.
How Much Does Enalapril (or Vasotec) Cost?
In America, 30 tablets of brand-name Vasotec can cost well over $700.00. That’s about $23.00 per pill. Since Vasotec is a daily medication, this is a medication that requires a serious, consistent healthcare investment.
Unless, of course, you can find a reliably affordable way to source your medication. Through our online Canadian pharmacy website, you can buy 56 tablets of brand-name Vasotec for about $50.00 – or less than one dollar per tablet (and savings of up to 95%.)
And if you’re interested in purchasing generic enalapril, you can do so here, too: We sell 100 tablets of enalapril for about $25.00, or $0.25 per tablet.
So far, so good. But when does diet really come into the picture?
The Basics: Can Enalapril Be Taken with Food?
Some medications must be taken on an empty stomach.
Enalapril is not one of those medications. Whether you take Vasotec, the brand name version, or the generic medication, you can take enalapril with food. In fact, doing so can help reduce the risk of an upset stomach immediately after medication administration.
Now that we’ve established that you can eat immediately before or after taking enalapril, let’s talk more about what you should or should not eat.
Enalapril and the Potassium Connection
It’s important to avoid eating foods high in potassium while taking enalapril.
Potassium is a mineral that can help your body regulate blood pressure on its own. If you’re taking an ACE inhibitor and eating a lot of potassium, that could lead to too much blood pressure regulation. As a result, you could end up with unpredictably high or low blood pressure.
What’s more, taking an ACE inhibitor, such as enalapril, can increase your body’s potassium levels.
Because of this, your doctor will likely recommend that you cut out or significantly reduce your intake of foods high in potassium.
Common foods that are high in potassium or otherwise not a good idea while taking enalapril include:
- Salt, salt substitutes, and salty foods
- Processed or canned foods
This can feel surprising. Many of these foods, on their own, may seem like healthy foods.
While they may be popularly chosen fruits and vegetables, they may not be healthy for you, specifically. If you foresee challenges cutting any of these or other potassium-rich foods from your diet, talk to your doctor to see if they can help you come up with workable solutions.
What Foods Can You Eat While Taking Enalapril?
After reading such an extensive list of things you can’t eat while taking enalapril, you may wonder what you can safely put on your plate.
Here’s a quick list of foods that may still be on the metaphorical table:
- Select fruits, such as apples, berries, cherries, and grapes
- Select vegetables, such as cabbage, carrots, zucchini, and mushrooms
- Whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa, whole-wheat bread, and oats
- Lean protein, such as chicken, fish, beans, and lentils
- Healthy fats, such as olive oil, nuts, and seeds
Although this is good general information, please talk to your doctor about your dietary choices to ensure that what you eat works as well as possible for your health and happiness.
Medications to Avoid While Taking Enalapril
Foods aren’t the only things you need to consider avoiding while taking this type of drug. When your doctor first recommends that you take enalapril, they should review your current list of medications to see whether you’re taking any of the following:
- Other ACE inhibitors
- Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (also known as ARBs)
- Potassium-sparing diuretics
- NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen or aspirin
These medications have been shown to interact with enalapril and can interfere with its efficacy or increase your risk of unwanted side effects. If you are taking any of these medications, be aware that your doctor may want you to consider other options for your hypertension or heart failure treatment.
Alternatively, if you start taking enalapril and later need to consider a medication on this list, make sure your doctor is aware of your enalapril use. They will be able to review your medication needs to help you find the best solution possible.
Alternatives to Enalapril
Perhaps you or your doctor have decided that Enalapril isn’t for you. That’s okay!
There are other ACE inhibitors out there – and, beyond that, there are other classes of drugs that can provide life-changing relief for people with heart failure, hypertension, and chronic kidney disease.
For example, you may be able to consider the following alternative medications.
Prinivil (or generic lisinopril) is an ACE inhibitor that works in much the same way as enalapril. Side effects of Lisinopril include headaches, dizziness, and dry coughs – but, generally, it’s a well-tolerated option. You can buy 84 pills of generic lisinopril through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $25.00, or around $0.30 per pill.
Capoten (or generic captopril) is one of the oldest ACE inhibitors there is – and, therefore, has quite a legacy of working well for patients through the years. You can buy 112 pills of brand Capoten through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $112.00, or just about $1.00 per pill with the generic costing much less.
Lotensin (or generic benazepril) is an ACE inhibitor that is very similar to both enalapril and lisinopril. You can buy 84 pills of Lotensin through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $150.00, or around $1.80 per pill and get the generic for far less.
Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)
ARBs are a different type of medication than ACE inhibitors but can provide a similar result (just in a different way). ARBs block the action of a hormone called angiotensin II. Since angiotensin II causes blood vessels to tense up (hence the name!), blocking angiotensin II usually results in wider, more relaxed blood vessels and lower blood pressure.
Enalapril: Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most common questions our team receives about this ACE-inhibiting prescription medication.
What Is Enalapril?
Enalapril is a prescription medication that people can use to treat their chronic kidney disease, heart failure, and high blood pressure.
Enalapril is an ACE inhibitor. It blocks your body’s production of a hormone called angiotensin II. By doing that, it promotes relaxation and widening of your blood vessels, which usually results in lower blood pressure.
What are the Side Effects of Enalapril?
Enalapril comes with a long list of potential side effects. The most common side effects that patients on enalapril experience include:
- Dry cough
- Kidney problems
- Muscle cramps
- Low blood pressure
Serious side effects of enalapril are rare. You likely won’t have to worry about them, but being aware of what is possible is a good idea.
The more severe side effects of enalapril can include kidney failure, hyperkalemia (or heightened potassium levels), liver problems, and swelling of the face, tongue, lips, or throat.
Who Shouldn’t Take Enalapril?
People who are allergic to enalapril shouldn’t take it.
That’s simple enough – but it’s not the only situation where somebody should think twice about enalapril use.
If you have any of the following conditions, talk to your doctor about potential other treatments that may work better for you than enalapril:
- Aortic stenosis
- Bilateral renal artery stenosis
- Pregnancy-induced hypertension
How Should I Take Enalapril?
Usually, patients take enalapril once or twice per day. Your doctor will let you know what your optimal dosing schedule is.
The main thing to remember is this: Take your enalapril at about the same time each day, if possible.
This will help ensure that you have stable, consistent levels of the medication in your system at all times and help reduce your risk of unpleasant or unsafe side effects.
What If I Miss a Dose of Enalapril?
If you miss a dose of enalapril, don’t worry. Stress isn’t good for your body.
If it’s still early in the day or close to the time you usually take your medication, take it as soon as possible.
If it’s almost time for your next scheduled dose, just take your next dose. Don’t take two doses of enalapril at once.
If you’ve forgotten several doses of enalapril and are worried about it, or if you’re experiencing side effects that are worrying you, call your doctor. They’ll be able to help you determine the best course of action.
What are the Long-Term Effects of Enalapril?
Enalapril’s longest-term effects should include providing relief from high blood pressure and treating your chronic kidney disease or heart failure.
Side effects should be brief or rare. If you experience side effects that don’t go away after your body initially gets used to the medication, talk to your doctor.
You will need to take enalapril over the long term to maintain its efficacy. Without consistent, long-term administration of enalapril, your blood pressure may go back up.
Making Safe Dietary Choices with Enalapril
Medication and diet go hand in hand. Making informed choices ensures safety and efficacy.
So does being able to access a range of low-cost, high-quality medications so you can find and afford the medication your doctor recommends, whether it’s Enalapril or any of its alternatives. But that may not be possible when buying from your local corner pharmacy.
Here’s the thing: Why restrict yourself to local options when a world of quality and affordability awaits?
Such is the premise of buying online. If you didn’t know that you could buy pharmacy products, including prescription medications, online, you can – and you can even ship medications from Canada to your home in the United States, taking advantage of lower prices and convenient shipping. All you need to know is where to look.
Here, at NorthWestPharmacy.com, we are happy to bridge the gap between you and reputable international pharmacies. By shopping through our safe online Canadian pharmacy website and international drugstore, you can access reliable, steep savings and always-high-quality medications.
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When you’re ready to save time, money, and stress while managing your family’s prescription needs, NorthWestPharmacy.com is ready to help you make that happen. Call 1-866-539-5330 to speak with a member of our friendly customer support team or to chat with one of our on-staff pharmacists. We look forward to supporting you on your healthcare journey.