Furosemide is a prescription drug that increases urine output and decreases salt and water in the body. It helps treat edema and other health conditions impacted by fluid balance. However, a diet that is high in sodium can interfere with its effectiveness. To maintain a healthy balance of electrolytes while taking this medication, you should avoid high-sodium foods, says Denise Pate, MD, board-certified physician and medical director of the Medical Offices of Manhattan in New York. Also, she recommends consuming potassium-rich foods in moderation.
Foods that are rich in potassium include bananas, orange juice and dark leafy greens, such as kale and spinach. It is important to avoid salty snacks and canned soups and sauces. Other important foods to eat while taking furosemide are those containing calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.
You should also limit or avoid alcohol, which can increase some of the medication's side effects, such as dizziness and lightheadedness. In addition, drinking alcoholic beverages can increase dehydration, which can lead to a low blood pressure called hypotension.
You should also avoid herbal supplements with diuretic properties, such as dandelion, uva ursi, buchu, juniper and parsley. These herbs may cause a low level of potassium in the body, which can be dangerous. Licorice should also be avoided, as it has glycyrrhizic acid, which can exacerbate the drug's effect by further lowering blood potassium levels. It is important to consult with a doctor or a registered dietitian for personalized guidance when eating while taking this medicine.