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Pineapple Juice: Am I Making a Deal with the Devil?

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I have discovered that due to my extreme hypersensitivity that pineapple juice (fresh) helps with my digestion to a degree. It also eliminates anxiety, stress, fear, etc. The reason for this, or so I presume, is the presence of certain enzymes, referred to as bromelain, found in pineapple. This ingredients in the pineapple juice provide relief for a lot of my problems.


Here's the rub.


The reason that they do is that these compunds, bromelain, is known to have a multiplier effect on benzodiazepines such as valium and klonopin -- both of which I take.


Now, a normal person, I am certain, can take valium and drink pineapple juice with no interaction problem. There is not a lot of bromelain in pineapple juice anyway until it is extracted and concentrated into a supplement. But because I am hypersensitive, I can really juice my benzos with a single sip (2 tbsp or 1 oz) of pineapple juice. I can get into a mellow, trance-like, drunk-like state if I drink 8oz of juice.


I feel like this is a very dangerous thing to do, yet it is giving me relief that I want. Right now I have food backed up and my stomach is not digesting properly. I continue to lose weight. I am plagued by intense fear response. And things are going poorly. So I am trying this juice that I know is having, basically, a psychotropic effect when I need stability in my CNS more than anything. I don't see how I can ever give my brain a peaceful environment to heal in when I have such reactions to so many things. I am on an elimination diet, no drugs, no supps (other than zinc), barely eat but everything affects too greatly. Feel like I can't avoid the interactions, so why not take a little pineapple juice and relax. But is this a deal with the devil?


There is a reputable page about bromelain on Univ Maryland website.


This post is sorta "out there" so I don't know if anyone can advise... but please advise cuz I am lost.


I hope everyone is doing ok.



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I don't have a simple answer to this, but have some input that might either help or confuse the issue. Hopefully the former!


I have learned that paxil, which I was taking along with a benzodiazepine, may potentiate the effect of benzodiazepines. I wish I could find the reference I read about that while in acute paxil withdrawal, but haven't been able to; however my doctor feels it's very likely true.


If that's the case, paxil withdrawal may have caused an "effective" benzo withdrawal even though I didn't change my dose of the benzo at all.


If I had known about that possible interaction when I went off paxil (a very fast taper, though I had no idea of that at the time), I would have gone even slower than the very slow taper I now know is advised, because I may well have inadvertently experienced a dual withdrawal (though just partially from the benzo - a "virtual" large drop in effectiveness or blood levels though not in dosage ingested).


I have no idea which components of pineapple may be the potentiators of benzos. I hope others here can give more specific information, but if you continue to drink pineapple juice and it seems to be potentiating the benzos, my suggestion would be to taper even more slowly, especially at the end of your tapers.


But the reason the pineapple juice is helping your digestion, since benzos affect digestion very strongly both while taking them and especially in withdrawal, might be that very potentiating action.


If so, it might just mean that you need to taper even more slowly than you already are (smaller drops in dosage and/or more time between drops) , to reduce the digestive problems. If youdecide to keep drinking the pineapple juice, I would certainly go extra slow at the very end of your taper.


I don't know if papaya enzyme, peppermint tea, etc. might help your digestion. I don't recall any interactions with those, though I don't know how helpful they'd be. Depending on the specifics of your digestive problems, there are other things I could suggest, but sometimes people have digestive symptoms that are diametrically different, so I'm holding off on that right now.



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Interesting discussion.


I got no advice on this one. But Alex, you're so aware and informed and on top of things, I think you'll be okay whatever you decide to do.


And seriously given the digestive problems? if the pineapple juice makes it possible for you to eat and gain some weight and get your body stronger--I think that's pretty important.


Just as long as you know, which you do, that if you go off the pineapple juice it will be like making a cut in your meds, so if you're trying to hold med levels for a year or two as per your doc's instructions, which I think are sound, then you should probably plan to be consistent with the pineapple juice too. Unless you find it's making you sick or something.

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I think you're right to take this question seriously.


Building on what Brandy and Rhi said -- it makes sense to consider that *one* of the ways the pineapple is working is to increase your absorption of your medication. And you should probably consider the pineapple a psychoactive substance, which thus needs to be used consciously.


Here's how I would think about it for me.


I'd keep on trying every other option to aid digestion -- the apple cider vinegar, smaller portions, and any new ideas that come down the pike.


In the meantime, if the only way to digest reasonably well is to use the pineapple, I would use the pineapple.


However, I would not use the pineapple to address the fear, unless the fear became life-threatening.


I would drink the minimum amount of pineapple to do the job on digestion.


The first goal has to be to get to some stability on digestion.

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Hi Alex... I haven't had a chance to read all of your posts..., but I do hope you've been to a doctor to have your indigestion problems checked out. I'd also ask the doctor about the possibility of taking Prilosec for awhile, and see what he/she thinks. I've had several doctors suggest that I take it, and its helped me greatly!


I hope you start feeling better very soon!

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alex -- what happened with taking pineapple juice? Did it keep on helping you to feel better?


I wonder if part of the beneficial effect might not come from vitamin C in the fresh juice, not to mention other nutrients, which went down easier because of the bromelain.

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I cant state any info on PPI's and AD withdrawal but many people on the benzo forums found they upset the nervous system and made withdrawal worse - they do act on the central nervous system


I did a quick medline search and found this---


The addition of

25 ml (5.0% v/v) of pineapple juice resulted in almost

complete inhibition of human CYP2C9 activity, and the

inhibition potency was more than a match for that of

sulfaphenazole, a potent inhibitor of CYP2C9.15)


CYP2C9 is the pathway most psyce drugs are detoxed out of the body with - so if it inhibits it you drug blood levels will go up substantially

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