Methotrexate and caffeine

Hi All, Last night, browsing through the Mtx leaflet 🙄 I noticed that 'large amounts ' of coffee and black tea should be avoided. Can anyone shed any further light on this- like how much is a 'large amount' and what's the reason for the caution? I ask not because I think I drink a lot (2-3 a day?) but in order to understand what effect drinking any might be having. Many thanks.

9 Replies

  • Here some good news for coffe drinkers on mtx😊

  • More science on the efficacy of mtx when drinking coffe.

  • There's a molecule in your body called adenosine, which plays a part in several bio chemical processes eg sleep. Caffeine can block the way your body takes up this molecule - part of the reason for the stimulating effect of caffeine. No one is quite sure how methotrexate works but it does seem to have a link to adenosine. So the theory is that if caffeine is blocking the take-up of adenosine then it could also block methotrexate from working the way you want it to, ie reducing inflammation.

    The practical studies on this are a bit inconclusive, so it really is no more than a theory. And the study Simba linked about caffeine helping side effects could perhaps tip the balance the other way. Personally I don't worry too much about a couple of cups of normal strength tea/coffee every day.

    (The second study Simba linked gives no details about the time period, so I also view that as inconclusive as could have been a couple of months.)

  • I have 2-3 cups of coffee every day, and don't think it's too many. The only reason I can think of, is because Methotrexate can affect your liver (hence the regular blood tests) which is why we're advised not to drink alcohol. Maybe there's a link, but I've never heard of one.

  • All I can say is 'good luck!' To the person who tries and come between me and my morning coffee!

  • Thanks everyone. It seems the bottom line- as is the case with so many of these things- is the jury's out. In which case I'll continue to enjoy my tea and coffee at will :)

  • My consultant suggested caffeine to help with Methotrexate side effects. I'd been caffeine free for years.

    A cup of normal tea in the mornings did help with brain fog, but too many and my Rheumatoid symptoms seemed a bit worse. It's hard to know if this was the cause. My disease is still not completely stabilised on Methotrexate , so keeping caffeine free just in case.

  • I'm not sure about the quantity but when I started MTX about 5 years ago I found that I was unable to drink Coffee without feeling nauseous and this has persisted to the present day and I loved Coffee! Tea however has no effect so I would have thought a cup or two a day would be fine. I was never advised to avoid it.

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