Health & Wellness

What Foods to Avoid while Taking Enalapril

Looking for what foods to avoid while taking Enalapril? Managing hypertension and cardiovascular health often requires a combination of lifestyle changes and medications. Enalapril is an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor often used to treat high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems. Dietary choices, however, can affect enalapril’s effectiveness.

In this article, we look at the fine line between eating a healthy diet and the potential complications that certain foods may have with enalapril.

Understanding which meals to avoid is essential for maximizing the medication’s benefits and maintaining overall cardiovascular health.

What Foods to Avoid while Taking Enalapril

Here we have listed what Foods to Avoid while Taking Enalapril:

What Foods to Avoid while Taking Enalapril

1. High-Potassium Foods

Analapril is an ACE inhibitor that can help reduce your blood pressure. But did you know it can also increase potassium levels in the body?

ACE inhibitors reduce the production of angiotensin II, a hormone that constricts blood vessels and raises blood pressure.

This decrease in angiotensin II leads to decreased aldosterone production, which means your kidneys may retain more potassium rather than excrete it. Eating high-potassium foods while on enalapril could lead to hyperkalemia, so be sure to keep track of your intake!

2. Salt Substitutes

Salt substitutes are often made with potassium chloride, a potassium source. Enalapril, an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, can increase potassium levels in the body.

Consuming high-potassium foods or supplements while taking enalapril may lead to hyperkalemia, a condition characterized by elevated potassium levels in the blood.

3. Processed Foods

Many processed foods, such as canned soups, snacks, and pre-packaged meals, are high in sodium. Enalapril is often prescribed to help lower blood pressure; excessive sodium intake can counteract the medication’s effects.

High sodium levels can lead to fluid retention, increasing the workload on the heart and potentially reducing the effectiveness of enalapril in managing blood pressure.

4. Grapefruit and Grapefruit Juice

I just wanted to let you know that grapefruit and grapefruit juice can interfere with the metabolism of certain medications, including enalapril.

It’s essential to be aware of this because it could lead to more side effects or a stronger effect from the medication than intended.

Grapefruit contains compounds called furanocoumarins, inhibiting an enzyme called CYP3A4 in the liver. This enzyme is responsible for breaking down many medications, so when it’s inhibited by grapefruit, it can slow down how quickly enalapril is metabolized leading to higher levels in your bloodstream!

5. Alcohol

What can you not take with enalapril is Alcohal. Enalapril and alcohol can both have side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and impaired coordination. Combining them may intensify these side effects, making driving or operating machinery unsafe.

Enalapril is excreted through the kidneys. Excessive alcohol consumption can affect kidney function, and combining alcohol with enalapril may increase the risk of kidney problems.

6. Fatty Foods

I wanted to let you know that while it’s okay to enjoy fatty foods when taking enalapril, there are some considerations regarding the timing of when you take your medication.

Enalapril is absorbed more slowly if taken with a high-fat meal, so if you plan on having a big dinner, take your medication before or after eating. That way, the medicine will reach peak levels in your bloodstream faster!

7. Caffeine Consumption

What foods to avoid with enalapril is Caffeine. It can temporarily raise blood pressure by boosting adrenaline production and inducing vasoconstriction. This could reduce the medication’s intended benefits in people taking enalapril to treat high blood pressure.

Caffeine can also raise heart rate, which may not be well tolerated in some people, particularly those with cardiovascular disease.

8. Licorice

Licorice, mainly black licorice, contains a chemical known as glycyrrhizin. Glycyrrhizin, which can cause pseudohyperaldosteronism.

This condition can increase sodium reabsorption and potassium excretion in the kidneys, resulting in high blood pressure.

As an ACE inhibitor, Enalapril lowers blood pressure by dilating blood arteries and decreasing salt retention. The properties of licorice neutralize these actions.

9. High-Carb Foods

Enalapril is usually given before meals to improve absorption. A high-carbohydrate meal may delay enalapril absorption, reducing its effectiveness in decreasing blood pressure.

High-carbohydrate diets, particularly those containing refined carbs, can contribute to weight gain. Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for blood pressure management, and some medical experts may recommend a balanced diet to support overall cardiovascular health.

10. Tyramine-Rich Foods

Tyramine is a chemical found in various foods and beverages broken down by the enzyme monoamine oxidase (MAO).

As an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, Enalapril can interfere with tyramine metabolism. When ACE inhibitors such as enalapril are combined with tyramine-rich meals, there is a risk of elevated blood pressure.

11. Certain Herbal Supplements

Some herbal supplements may contain large amounts of potassium. Combining these with enalapril, which can also raise potassium levels, may result in hyperkalemia (high blood potassium levels), increasing the risk of heart problems.

Certain herbal supplements contain diuretics, which cause increased urine production. Enalapril may have diuretic properties.[source] . When they are combined, they may cause significant fluid loss and dehydration.

Q. Can you drink alcohol while taking enalapril?

Ans- Drinking alcohol while taking Enapril is not allowed. Alcohol and enalapril can both have side effects such as dizziness and drowsiness. Combining them may intensify these effects, impairing your ability to perform tasks that require alertness.

Q. Can I eat bananas while taking enalapril?

Ans- Bananas are a good source of potassium, so it’s advisable to consume them in moderation. However, excessive consumption of high-potassium foods can lead to elevated potassium levels, a condition known as hyperkalemia.

Q. Can I eat grapefruit while taking enalapril?

It is typically advised to avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice when taking enalapril. Grapefruit and its juice include chemicals that can disrupt the metabolism of certain medications, including enalapril. This interference can result in increased levels of medicine in your system, increasing your chance of adverse effects.


Lastly, understanding the dietary requirements while taking enalapril is essential for improving its effectiveness and overall wellness. As an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, Enalapril is essential in treating hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

Individuals can reduce the risk of potential interactions and side effects by avoiding high-potassium meals such as bananas and oranges, salt substitutes, and excessive alcohol consumption.

  1. Signs of Impending Death After Stroke
  2. Signs You are Consuming Too Much Salt


  1. An overview of the clinical pharmacology of enalapril
  2. Influence of food on the bioavailability of enalapril
  3. Effects of isradipine or enalapril on blood pressure in salt-sensitive hypertensives during low and high dietary salt intake.

Dr Maria

MD. Board Certified physician. Fellowship In Family Medicine UK. 8 years of medical experience in Lifestyle-related health disorders. Graduated from AIIMS – All India Institute Of Medical Science, INDIA

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