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Fenofibrate

Drug Information

Fenofibrate is used to lower elevated cholesterol and triglyceride levels when diet, exercise, and weight loss programs are ineffective. It is in a family of medications known as cholesterol-lowering drugs.

Common brand names:

Antara, Tricor

Summary of Interactions with Vitamins, Herbs, & Foods

Types of interactions: Beneficial Adverse Check

Replenish Depleted Nutrients

  • none

Reduce Side Effects

  • Folic Acid

    Increased blood levels of homocysteine are associated with increased risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease. One study revealed that fenofibrate dramatically increases blood homocysteine levels, though blood levels of vitamins were not reduced.1 In one study, supplementation with 10 mg per day of folic acid prevented the increase in homocysteine levels resulting from fenofibrate therapy.2 Further research is needed to determine whether supplemental  vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, which are also capable of lowering homocysteine levels, might lower fenofibrate-induced elevations in homocysteine levels.

  • Vitamin B12

    Increased blood levels of homocysteine are associated with increased risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease. One study revealed that fenofibrate dramatically increases blood homocysteine levels, though blood levels of vitamins were not reduced.3 In one study, supplementation with 10 mg per day of folic acid prevented the increase in homocysteine levels resulting from fenofibrate therapy.4 Further research is needed to determine whether supplemental  vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, which are also capable of lowering homocysteine levels, might lower fenofibrate-induced elevations in homocysteine levels.

  • Vitamin B6

    Increased blood levels of homocysteine are associated with increased risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease. One study revealed that fenofibrate dramatically increases blood homocysteine levels, though blood levels of vitamins were not reduced.5 In one study, supplementation with 10 mg per day of folic acid prevented the increase in homocysteine levels resulting from fenofibrate therapy.6 Further research is needed to determine whether supplemental  vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, which are also capable of lowering homocysteine levels, might lower fenofibrate-induced elevations in homocysteine levels.

  • Vitamin C and Vitamin E

    Several studies have shown that fenofibrate enhances the toxic effect of ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun, which might result in side effects such as skin rashes. One controlled study showed that taking 2 grams of vitamin C and 1,000 IU of vitamin E prior to ultraviolet exposure dramatically blocked UV-fenofibrate damage to red blood cells.7 though further controlled studies are needed, people taking fenofibrate should probably supplement with vitamins C and E until more information is available.

Support Medicine

  • none

Reduces Effectiveness

  • none

Potential Negative Interaction

  • none

Explanation Required 

  • none

The Drug-Nutrient Interactions table may not include every possible interaction. Taking medicines with meals, on an empty stomach, or with alcohol may influence their effects. For details, refer to the manufacturers’ package information as these are not covered in this table. If you take medications, always discuss the potential risks and benefits of adding a new supplement with your doctor or pharmacist.

References

1. Dierkes J, Westphal S, Luley C. Serum homocysteine increases after therapy with fenofibrate or bezafibrate. Lancet 1999;354:219–20.

2. Mayer O Jr, Simon J, Holubec L, et al. Fenofibrate-induced hyperhomocysteinemia may be prevented by folate co-administration. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 2003;59:367–71.

3. Dierkes J, Westphal S, Luley C. Serum homocysteine increases after therapy with fenofibrate or bezafibrate. Lancet 1999;354:219–20.

4. Mayer O Jr, Simon J, Holubec L, et al. Fenofibrate-induced hyperhomocysteinemia may be prevented by folate co-administration. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 2003;59:367–71.

5. Dierkes J, Westphal S, Luley C. Serum homocysteine increases after therapy with fenofibrate or bezafibrate. Lancet 1999;354:219–20.

6. Mayer O Jr, Simon J, Holubec L, et al. Fenofibrate-induced hyperhomocysteinemia may be prevented by folate co-administration. Eur J Clin Pharmacol 2003;59:367–71.

7. Eberlein-Konig B, Placzek M, Przybilla B. Phototoxic lysis of erythrocytes from humans is reduced after oral intake of ascorbic acid and d-alpha-tocopherol. Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed 1997;13:173–7.

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