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It’s important to know exactly how to take levothyroxine in order to improve its effectiveness and reduce the risk of side effects or adverse effects. Talk to your medical provider about any questions you may have about taking your medication, including when to take it and what to do if you miss a dose.

How to Take Levothyroxine

Here are some important steps you should follow that will help you know how to take levothyroxine:

  1. Read your medication instructions carefully. 
  2. Take your prescribed dose in the morning on an empty stomach with one full glass of water.
  3. Do not crush or cut your capsule. Swallow it whole. Tablets may be crushed and suspended in 1 to 2 teaspoons of water if need.
  4. After taking levothyroxine, wait about an hour or at least 30 minutes before eating.
  5. Do not take levothyroxine within 4 hours of calcium- or iron-containing products.

Be sure to talk to your medical provider about the foods, medications, and supplements you should or shouldn’t take while using this medication.

FAQ

How long do you have to wait after eating to take levothyroxine?

You should wait at least 30 to 60 minutes before eating after taking levothyroxine, according to Mayo Clinic.

Can I take levothyroxine with coffee?

You should not take levothyroxine with coffee, as some research suggests coffee can reduce the absorption and effectiveness of the drug. Wait at least 30 to 60 minutes after taking levothyroxine to drink coffee or eat.

What happens if you eat right after taking thyroid medicine?

If you eat right after taking thyroid medicine, you may prevent enough of the medication from getting absorbed by your small intestines. This event can make levothyroxine less effective. This event is especially likely to happen after eating certain kinds of foods including dietary fiber supplements, iron supplements, soy-containing products (including infant formulas), walnuts, and grapefruit juice.

Is it better to take levothyroxine in the morning or at night?

It’s better to take levothyroxine in the morning on an empty stomach. Though levothyroxine may be taken at night 3 to 4 hours after the last meal if taken consistently.

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.


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