Can You Take Turmeric With Hydroxyzine?

In our latest question and answer, our pharmacist discusses the safety of combining turmeric with hydroxyzine.


Can I take turmeric (curcumin) and hydroxyzine?

Asked by Lola On Aug 05, 2023

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By HelloPharmacist Staff

Published Aug 13, 2023
Last updated Sep 27, 2023

Key points

  • There is a theoretical possibility of an interaction between turmeric and hydroxyzine due to turmeric's potential inhibition of the CYP3A4, an enzyme responsible for metabolizing hydroxyzine. However, no specific studies have evaluated this interaction.

Quick Answer

There is a theoretical possibility of an interaction between turmeric and hydroxyzine. Turmeric has been found in some small studies to inhibit the activity of CYP3A4, an enzyme responsible for metabolizing hydroxyzine in the liver. This inhibition could potentially lead to increased levels of hydroxyzine in the body, although there are no specific studies evaluating this interaction.

Detailed Answer

As mentioned, there is a theoretical interaction between turmeric (which contains curcumin) and hydroxyzine based on some small studies, mostly lab and animal studies, that indicate turmeric may inhibit a liver enzyme known as CYP3A4, which is at least partially responsible for breaking down hydroxyzine.

This inhibitory effect of turmeric curcumin on CYP3A4 could potentially impact the metabolism of drugs metabolized by CYP3A4, which includes hydroxyzine. If hydroxyzine is metabolized more slowly due to the inhibition of CYP3A4, its levels in the body may increase, possibly leading to an increased risk of side effects, such as:

  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry eyes
  • Dry mouth
  • Constipation
  • Sedation

However, it's worth noting that while in vitro and animal studies can provide valuable initial data, they cannot precisely predict the actual effects of this interaction in humans. Further research, such as human clinical trials, is necessary to fully understand the significance and clinical relevance of this interaction.

Nevertheless, there is a case report in humans I found that documented a patient who experienced elevated levels of the immunosuppressant drug tacrolimus, which is also metabolized by CYP3A4, after consuming high doses of turmeric powder. However, there certainly may have been other factors at play here too. This specific case study is documented on our interaction detail page.

Overall, it is reasonable to assume that there is the potential for turmeric to interact with hydroxyzine, but whether or not this will be to a clinically significant degree is unknown.

Additionally, individual factors such as dosage, medical history, and other medications being taken can influence the likelihood and severity of any potential interaction, so it is crucial to consult with your doctor before making any changes to your medication regimen. They can evaluate the risks, benefits, and overall impact of the potential interaction for your specific situation.

Final Words

Thanks for contacting us! Feel free to reach out again if you have any further questions.


  • Acute Calcineurin Inhibitor Nephrotoxicity Secondary to Turmeric Intake: A Case Report, PubMed
  • Possible inhibitory mechanism of Curcuma drugs on CYP3A4 in 1alpha,25 dihydroxyvitamin D3 treated Caco-2 cells, PubMed
  • Atarax Prescribing Information, GSK

About the Pharmacist

Dr. Brian Staiger, PharmD

Dr. Brian has been practicing pharmacy for over 13 years and has wide-ranging experiences in many different areas of the profession. From retail, clinical, program development, and administrative responsibilities, he's your knowledgeable and go-to source for all your pharmacy and medication-related questions! Dr. Brian Staiger also has herbalist training and educational certificates in the field of medical ethnobotany. Feel free to send him an email at! You can also connect with Dr. Brian Staiger on LinkedIn.

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