Dr. Brownstein: Acetaminophen Should be Minimized or Avoided
Acetaminophen is sold over-the-counter in such products such as Tylenol® and more than 100 other over-the-counter products. Nearly every American is familiar with acetaminophen as it is recommended in Big Pharma ads to be used for pain and fever. The ads make it seem like the drug is safe to use. Acetaminophen is not safe. In fact, acetaminophen can be very toxic to the liver, even with low doses. You see, acetaminophen, once in the body is metabolized in the liver to N-acetyl-p-benzoquinone imine (NAPQI). Glutathione, the main detoxifying substance in the liver is utilized to break down NAPQI because NAPQI is toxic to the liver. The more acetaminophen one takes, the more NAPQI is formed, and the more glutathione is needed to detoxify it. The bottom line: Avoid taking acetaminophen. If you have pain and you need to take acetaminophen, use the lowest dose possible for the shortest time period.