These Foods and Medicines Might Give You a False Positive on a Drug Test

Many women who check into the hospital to have their babies may be surprised to go through standard drug screening. But it does happen. Drug tests are routinely collected from a pregnant woman‘s urine, with her consent, to screen for any drugs that could harm the baby or interfere with the labor process. 

{ MORE: Labor and Delivery: Did You Have a Belly Birth? }

Although a woman might not be upfront with a doctor about drugs in her system, it is important to know if she has anything that might cause an issue. It's best to know. For example, some drugs could interfere with an epidural or cause the baby to have some breathing issues. 

But even though there may be women who test positive for drugs, there are actually could be a different reason for a positive drug screen — food. Believe it or not, there are some foods out there that can lead to a false positive on a drug screen. 

Image via Flickr/ Stephanie

One study found that everything from nasal spray to antibiotics has led to a false positive on drug screens. Here are some of the most common foods that could lead to false positive drug test:

Poppy Seeds. According to WebMD, poppy seeds are one of the most common culprits of a false positive opioid drug test. It takes a very small amount of poppy seed — approximately one teaspoon, to be exact, the same amount that could be found by eating a poppy seed bagel — to trigger a false positive. The poppy seed can stay in your system for up to three days. So, if you happen to chow down a big poppy seed bagel before giving birth and your hospital does drug testing, you might want to let your nurses know. Just a thought. 

{ MORE: The Inside Scoop: What's Labor Like for a Baby? }

Bupropion. This is a medication that is used to treat depression and help people quit smoking, but it's also linked to false positives on drug screens. One study found that it's actually one of the most common sources of false positive for amphetamines on drug tests. 

Quinolones antibiotics. Antibiotics in this group, which include levofloxacin and ciprofloxacin, have been found to cause false positives. One study found that nine of thirteen tested antibiotics led to the result.

Hemp foods. It might seem crazy, but hemp-based foods can lead to a false positive for marijuana on a drug screen. Even if you've never even seen weed before in your entire life. Foods that might have hemp in them include hemp oil (used in cooking), much like olive oil or a salad dressing. According to one study, however, the risk is pretty low for getting a false positive. So if you happen to love hemp, you might be OK. 

Tonic water. Some pregnant women have found that sipping tonic water can help curb morning sickness. But you have to be careful not to drink too much. One study found that the quinine in tonic water can lead to a false positive drug test. 


Will your hospital drug test you during labor? 

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These Foods and Medicines Might Give You a False Positive on a Drug Test

Chaunie Brusie is a writer, mom of four, and founder of The Stay Strong Mom, a community + gift box service for moms after loss. ... More

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