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Beer and Viracept

Nov 6, 2000

I am told that I should take Viracept with food. Does beer or Johnny Walker Black Label whiskey count as food? I ask because I like to take my medication late at night, and I am generally drinking around this time.

Response from Dr. Cohen

Well, champ. Bad news. Neither beer nor black label count for food it would appear. At least wouldn't count on them. Indeed, none of the liquids on the shelf are considered food. They are considered drink. Food and drink appear to be in different categories. At least in terms of meds. Just in case, smoke is also not food. So neither a cigar nor a few cigarettes count for food. A good cabernet, even if described as meaty and earthy, just isn't food.

Food means something solid. Like some starch. Or protein. Or both. And even while drinking, there might be some food options that still have some appeal. Perhaps a bag of pretzels, chips. Nuts, even. Even beef jerky could do it. Perhaps if instead you do eat earlier that night, you might take the meds then.

Note that I am not even going to ask how much you are drinking. Since, at least for the purpose of this question, even a LOT of whiskey won't be food...

Hope that helps.


Cal Cohen, M.D., M.S.

Starting Sustiva again

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