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Can You Drink Coffee With Atorvastatin? What to Know!

Atorvastatin pills in plastic vial tablets

Atorvastatin is a statin: a type of medicine used to lower cholesterol and prescribed to those diagnosed with high cholesterol levels.1 It can help avoid heart attacks, strokes, and other heart diseases. It is sometimes prescribed for other conditions including diabetes and arthritis. Patients are advised not to drink coffee with atorvastatin as some studies show that it can diminish the protective levels of the statin. Decaffeinated coffee has not been shown to reduce effectiveness, but some patients may choose to avoid this too, just in case.

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What Is Atorvastatin?

Atorvastatin is one of a group of medicines called statins. Statins reduce cholesterol by lowering the amount made by your liver. Cholesterol is still absorbed in food, but by reducing the amount of liver-produced cholesterol, the drug helps to protect against heart conditions including heart attacks and strokes.

Generally, these drugs show considerable results within around 3 weeks of the first dose. While Atorvastatin and other statins are generally safe for healthy adults, possible side effects do include pain in the muscles, a lack of mental alertness, and digestive complaints.

Atorvastatin tablets
Image Credit: Sonis Photography, Shutterstock

Can You Drink Coffee with Atorvastatin?

Generally, people are only advised to avoid grapefruit juice and the consumption of large quantities of alcohol when taking statins, but recent research suggests that coffee, and caffeine in general, can prevent the medicine from working properly. The same research suggests that decaffeinated coffee is safe because it does not block the protection offered by atorvastatin.

What Food and Drinks to Avoid While Taking Atorvastatin

There are several prescription medications and drugs that are known to directly interact with statins, and your doctor will discuss existing medication with you before prescribing the medicine. Some antibiotics, HIV medications, and warfarin can interact with statins, along with immunosuppressants, some hormone medicines, and calcium channel blockers. Always speak to a physician before starting a new medication and let them know of any existing drugs you are taking.

two mugs of alcoholic drink
Image Credit: Engin_Akyurt, Pixabay

Other than these medicines, there are limited types of food and drink that should be avoided:

  • Pineapple JuicePineapple juice can increase the amount of a medication that makes it into your bloodstream, which can prove dangerous. It’s believed that you have to drink a large quantity of pineapple juice, more than a liter a day, for this to affect statins, but your doctor may advise that you avoid it completely or at least limit consumption to a small amount daily.
  • Alcohol – Before prescribing statins, your physician will ask about your alcohol intake, and may avoid prescribing the medication if you regularly consume large volumes of alcohol. You should avoid large amounts of alcohol if taking Atorvastatin, and your physician may advise that you only drink small amounts or look for an alternative solution to cholesterol levels.

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Atorvastatin is a type of medication called statins that is used to lower blood cholesterol levels and to avoid heart disease including heart attacks and strokes. It may also be prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes, and your physician will discuss what other medications, foods, and drinks should be avoided. However, one recent study does seem to show that caffeine can prevent the protection levels offered by the drug, while decaffeinated coffee does not alter its effectiveness.

Featured Image Credit: luchschenF, Shutterstock


Kate MacDonnell

Kate is a lifelong coffee enthusiast and homebrewer who enjoys writing for coffee websites and sampling every kind of coffee known to man. She’s tried unusual coffees from all over the world and owns an unhealthy amount of coffee gear.

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