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Question:
I take fluoxetine (Prozac), a SSRI drug to treat depression. Are there supplements I should avoid, or be taking, due to this drug?

Answer:
Fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), paroxetine (Paxil) and other selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) drugs can be affected by taking supplements and can affect your ability to absorb certain vitamins and minerals. Certain herbal supplements, such as St. John's wort and Garcinia cambogia (HCA), may increase the risk of serotonin syndrome associated with SSRIs.  Other supplements, like 5-HTP, and SAMe, may also increase this risk.

On the other hand, folic acid, a B vitamin, may be beneficial for some people taking an SSRI.

These interactions are explained in the SSRIs article, which is part of the extensive Drug Interactions section of our website (where you can look up interaction for other drugs you may be taking).


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Lary16878   June 3, 2018
You might also include in your answer to people with depression the intriguing studies that show a significant decrease in depression symptoms with certain probiotics. These individuals might find it beneficial to begin taking an appropriate probiotic supplement. I have no financial interest in any product. Lary Robinson, M.D.
1. Steenberger L, Sellaro R, van Hemert S, Bosch JA, Colzato LS. A randomized controlled trial to test the effect of multispecies probiotics on cognitive reactivity to sad mood. Brain Behavior and Immunity 2015;48:258-64.
2.Messaoudi M, Lalonde R, Violle N, et al. Assessment of psychotropic-like properties of a probiotic formulation (Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175) in rats and human subjects. Br J Nutrition 2011;105:755-64.
3.Messaoudi M, Violle N, Bisson JF, Desor D, Javelot H, Rougeot C. Beneficial psychological effects of a probiotic formulation (Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175) in healthy human volunteers. Gut Microbes 2011;2:256-61.

ConsumerLab.com   June 4, 2018
Thank you Larry. You can find more information about probiotics for depression and anxiety in the "What It Does" section of the Probiotics Supplements Review: https://www.consumerlab.com/reviews/Probiotic_Supplements_Including_Lactobacillus_acidophilus_Bifidobacterium_and_Others/probiotics/#anxiety

This CL Answer initially posted on 11/29/2013. Last updated 8/8/2017.

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