Does Medication Break a Fast?

Intermittent fasting has raised numerous questions, among which one of the frequently asked is if taking prescription medications disrupts a fasting period.

The short answer to this question is complicated, as many different types of medications exist. This blog post will explore how drugs affect your fasting progress and blood sugar levels.

We will also give out some tips on how to minimize any negative impacts that medications may have.

Will Medication Break an Intermittent Fast?

When beginning an intermittent fasting regimen, one of the first questions people ask is whether or not they can take medication. The answer, unfortunately, is not a simple one.

While most medication can be taken without breaking a fast, there are some exceptions. Medication that is high in sugar or fat can cause an increase in insulin levels, which can, in turn, lead to weight gain.

Similarly, a medication that causes vomiting or diarrhea can also disrupt the fasting process. In general, it is best to speak with a doctor before starting any new fasting regimen, as they will be able to advise on which medication is best to take while fasting.

Does taking pills break a fast?

Additionally, you should avoid taking any medications containing gallstone dissolution agents that can cause dehydration, such as diuretics.

For healthy adults interested in trying intermittent fasting for weight loss, it is generally safe to take most over-the-counter drugs during your eating window.

Taking Medication While Intermittent Fasting

If you are on any medication that needs to be taken with food, then you should obviously continue doing so while fasting.

However, if you are taking medication that can be taken either with or without food, it is generally recommended to take it during your eating window. This way, you can ensure that the drug is properly absorbed into your system.

Flu & Cold Medicine

The last thing you want to do is fast when you are sick. However, many wonder if they can still stay on track with their fasting goals even when they are not feeling well. The answer to this question depends on what kind of fasting you are doing and what kind of medication you are taking.


Ibuprofen is a common pain reliever that is often taken on an empty stomach, but there is debate over whether it breaks a fast.

While ibuprofen itself is not food, it is absorbed into the bloodstream and can have an effect on insulin levels. Some experts believe that this means it can technically break a fast, while others argue that the insulin response is too small to have any significant impact.

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to take ibuprofen while fasting is a personal one. If you are concerned about breaking your fast, you may want to avoid it or speak to your doctor for advice.


Tylenol is a pain medication that can be purchased over the counter. While it is generally considered safe, it may cause some people to break their fast. Tylenol can interact with other medications and may cause stomach pain, nausea, and diarrhea.

If you are taking Tylenol, you may need to adjust your fasting window or make changes to your medication regimen.


Aspirin is another pain medication that is available over-the-counter. It is typically used to relieve pain from headaches, muscle pain, and arthritis.

Aspirin is also used to reduce fever. In some cases, aspirin is used as an anti-inflammatory medication. There are many different forms of aspirin, including tablets, capsules, and chewable tablets. Aspirin is typically taken orally.

However, it can also be taken rectally or intravenously. The recommended dose of aspirin depends on the individual’s age, weight, and health condition. Aspirin can interact with other medications.

If you are fasting, you should talk with your healthcare provider about whether or not you should take aspirin.


Can I take paracetamol while intermittent fasting? Yes, you can take over-the-counter medications like paracetamol while intermittent fasting. 

However, it’s essential to be aware that medication can affect blood sugar levels, so you may need to adjust your eating pattern if you’re taking prescription medications.


Whether or not Excedrin breaks a fast depends on the individual and their digestive system. Generally, Excedrin is broken down and absorbed quickly, so it should not significantly impact a fast.

However, some people may come to the conclusion that the medication affects their digestive system differently, causing them to feel hungry or experience other digestive issues.

If this is the case, adjusting the timing or dose of Excedrin may be necessary. Overall, however, Excedrin is unlikely to break a fast.


Dayquil is a medication that contains ingredients that can stimulate the digestive system. In addition, the body may not be able to process medication as efficiently when fasting, so you may need to adjust the dosage.

For these matters, it is best to avoid taking Dayquil while fasting.

Allergy Medicine

Does allergy medicine break a fast? There is no simple and precise answer to this question as the effects of allergy medicine can vary from one person to another.

However, taking allergy medication while intermittent fasting is generally safe as long as blood sugar levels are monitored closely.


There is no short and precise answer to the question, “does Zyrtec break a fast?” It depends. If you are taking Zyrtec for allergies, it is unlikely to affect your fast. However, taking Zyrtec for another reason, such as to treat a cold, it may break your fast.


Claritin is a medication that is commonly used to treat allergies. It works by blocking the action of histamine, a substance that is released during an allergic reaction. Many people who are fasting worry that taking Claritin will break their fast.

However, Claritin does not contain calories or nutrients, so it will not affect ketosis. Claritin does not stimulate insulin release, so it will not cause your blood sugar levels to rise. Therefore, you can safely take Claritin while fasting.


So what about Allegra? Does this common allergy medication break a fast? The short answer is no. Allegra does not contain any calories, and it is unlikely to affect the body in a way that would invalidate a fast.

Antacids & GERD Medication

While fasting is generally a safe practice, there are some medications that can break a fast. Antacids are one such medication. Antacids are designed to neutralize stomach acid, and they typically contain either calcium or magnesium.

Another type of medication that can break a fast is GERD medication. GERD medications are designed to reduce the amount of acid produced by the stomach.

These medications can include over-the-counter options like ranitidine and omeprazole and prescription options like lansoprazole. While GERD medications are generally safe, they can cause side effects like nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.


Does Gaviscon break a fast? Well, the active ingredients in Gaviscon are sodium alginate and calcium carbonate. These components work by forming a gel that coats the lining of the esophagus and stomach, which helps to prevent acid reflux and can even assist in weight loss.

While Gaviscon is generally safe to take during a fast, it is vital to speak to a doctor first.


Many people ask, do Tums break a fast? Well, the active ingredient in Tums is calcium carbonate, which is a type of antacid. While you ask do Tums break a fast, it’s essential to know that Tums is generally safe to take during a fast; it is essential to speak to a doctor before doing so.


Omeprazole is an over-the-counter medication used to treat heartburn and other digestive conditions. It works by reducing the amount of acid produced by the stomach.

Because omeprazole reduces stomach acid, it can potentially raise blood sugar levels. As a result, people with a bunch of diabetes medications who also take omeprazole should monitor their blood sugar carefully and may need to adjust their medication dosages.

Antidepressants, Anxiety, ADHD Medication

While there is no clear-cut answer, it is generally advisable to err on the side of caution and assume that any medication that affects the body’s metabolism or central nervous system could potentially break a fast.

This includes antidepressants, anxiety medications, and ADHD medications.


So, does Wellbutrin break a fast? In general, Wellbutrin is not considered to be a medication that will break a fast. This is because it is a relatively low-dose medication that is not known to cause major side effects such as hunger or thirst. 


Zoloft is a prescription medication for depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders. It belongs to a class of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which work by increasing levels of serotonin in the brain.

So, does Zoloft break a fast? The answer is yes, it can. Zoloft contains ingredients that can trigger a release of insulin, which can cause blood sugar levels to drop. This can lead to feelings of lightheadedness, weakness, and hunger.

Does taking prescription medication break a fast?

For people who are fasting for religious reasons, this can mean that their fast has been broken, and they will need to start over again. 

However, for people who are fasting for health reasons, such as weight loss or blood sugar control, Zoloft may not have as much of an impact on their fast. Talk to your doctor or healthcare provider if you are concerned about how Zoloft will affect your fast.


It is a stimulant drug that can cause hunger and thirst. Therefore, it is generally not recommended to take Adderall while fasting. So, does Adderall break a fast? Yes, it can.

Thyroid Medication

There is no definitive answer to this question as it depends on the medication and individual. Some people find that their thyroid medication does not break their fast, while others do. If you are unsure, it is best to speak with your doctor or pharmacist.


Levothyroxine does not typically break a fast, as it is not absorbed into the bloodstream. So, does Levothyroxine break a fast? The answer is no.


Synthroid is a common over-the-counter medication used to treat an underactive thyroid gland. Synthroid does not typically break a fast, as it is not absorbed into the bloodstream.

So, does Synthroid break a fast? The answer is no.

Diabetes Medication

Yes, diabetes medication can break a fast. If you are taking insulin or other diabetes medications, you should talk to your doctor about how to fast safely. Some people with diabetes may need to adjust their medication doses when fasting.

If you have diabetes and are planning to fast, be sure to monitor your blood sugar closely. You may need to check your blood sugar more often than usual. If your blood sugar gets too low, you may need to break your fast and eat or drink something.

Can I Fast While Using Ozempic?

Ozempic is a medication used to treat type 2 diabetes. It works by helping the body to lower blood sugar levels. For this reason, it is important to eat a balanced diet and monitor blood sugar levels closely while taking Ozempic.

However, some people may choose to fast while using this medication. While there is no evidence to suggest that fasting while taking Ozempic is unsafe, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider before making any changes to your medication regimen.

Should I Stop Taking Metformin While Fasting?

The short answer is that it depends. If you are healthy and have no other medical conditions, you can stop taking Metformin during fasting periods, such as Ramadan. However, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should not stop taking Metformin without first speaking to your doctor.

Does Metformin Break Intermittent Fasting?

Metformin is one of the most commonly prescribed medications for Type 2 diabetes, and it can effectively manage blood sugar levels. However, some people with diabetes follow an intermittent fasting plan to improve their health.

So, does metformin break intermittent fasting? In short, the answer is no. 


One potential risk is taking antibiotics while intermittent fasting. Antibiotics can interfere with blood sugar levels, and when combined with the fluctuations that occur during fasting, this can lead to dangerous blood sugar swings.

Additionally, some antibiotics may need to be taken with food to be adequately absorbed.


Most of the individuals ask questions regarding different medications and whether these medicines can interfere with their intermittent fasting or not. Let us answer some of them:

Does Alka Seltzer Break a Fast?

The active ingredients in Alka Seltzer are aspirin and citric acid. While Alka Seltzer is generally safe to take during a fast, it is essential to speak to a doctor.

Can I Take BP Meds While Fasting?

Yes, you can take blood pressure medication while fasting. However, it would be best to speak to your doctor before doing so, as they may have specific recommendations for you. Generally, it is best to take blood pressure medication in the morning.

Does Birth Control Break a Fast?

If you are fasting for medical reasons, such as to improve your insulin sensitivity, then birth control is generally considered acceptable. This is because birth control does not typically contain any food or drink and does not interfere with the body’s natural processes.

Does Taking Medicine Break a Fast For Blood Work?

There is no clear-cut answer to this question since it depends on some factors, such as the type and dosage of medication. In general, however, most medications will not break a fast for blood work.

Does Taking Medication Nullify the Benefits of Fasting?

Does alcohol break a fast? Many people wonder if taking medication nullifies the benefits of fasting. While medication does not directly break a fast, it may affect the overall benefits. Medications often contain calories or additives that can disrupt the fasting state. However, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare professional to understand how specific medications may impact fasting and adjust the fasting regimen accordingly.

Bottom Line

Generally speaking, most medications can be taken while fasting. However, talking to a doctor before taking any new medications or supplements is essential, especially if you are on prescription medications. 

Rich Ross

Rich is a divorced father of two. He holds a Master of Public Health degree in Nutrition from the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. A former chemist, Richard has been offering private coaching sessions for more than 7 years. His mission is to help people live happier, healthier lives by showing them that they have power to choose what they eat and how they feel about themselves.