Weight gain from Lithium.
Lithium weight gain is more common then
you might think. You are not alone with this side effect. Not
every person taking Lithium will gain weight but it happens enough
for Lithium to hold a solid reputation as a weight gain drug.
In the weight gain arena, all antidepressants without exception
have the potential to cause weight gain. Many people are not even
aware that weight gain is one of the most common
side effects associated
with Lithium until it is too late. Ironically, this common side
effect of Lithium is counterproductive to depression since
unexpected weight gain can further aggravating mood instability
and low self-esteem.
Weight gain caused by Lithium and other antidepressants is a major
reason for people stopping drug treatment. Even Wellbutrin, which
is touted as the antidepressant lest likely to cause weight gain,
causes weight gain in some people.
All antidepressants slow the metabolism and inhibit specific
enzymes in the liver that allow the metabolism to function
correctly. Many antidepressants also also increase appetite and
carbohydrate cravings. Antidepressants like Lithium are also shown
to cause hormonal changes, which can further add to weight gain.
Studies showed an average weight gain of 15 to 20 pounds with
Zoloft, Prozac and Celexa. Paxil appear to have the most
significant impact on weight gain of all of the SSRIs and causes
weight gains in excess of 20 pounds for the average person taking
this antidepressant. Effexor weight gain is not as severe as the
weight gain reported with Paxil, Prozac, Celexa and Zoloft.
Lexapro appears to have the least weight gain problems of all
With Lithium weight gain, it is not the amount of food eaten, but
the body’s crippled metabolism. If you have already cut your food
intake, have eliminated fatty foods, exercise on a regular basis
and you still are gaining weight, your metabolism is to blame. If
you are taking Lithium, chances are Lithium is contributing to the
sluggish metabolism. The only true solution to Lithium weight gain
is to stop using Lithium.
Most people slowly return to their pre-Lithium weight after
discontinuing Lithium use, but the emphasis is on the word
Antidepressants outside the SSRI family have also been shown to
cause weight gain to varying degrees. The greatest tricyclic
antidepressant weight gain has been observed with Elavil, Tofranil
and Remeron. Wellbutrin causes the least amount of weight gain but
is not shown to be as effective at reducing anxiety as other
antidepressants. Desyrel appears to cause less weight gain than
Elavil but more than Wellbutrin. Again, the only substantial means
of combating weight gain from these types of antidepressants are
to discontinue use.
Lithium weight gain is tricky because people often experience some
weight loss in the beginning. It isn’t until after a few months
that the weight gain appears. It is common for people to report
weight gains of 20, 30 and even 60 pounds several months into
Deprex is a complex of natural
"antidepressants" that supplies the precursors to key
mood-controlling neurotransmitters. Deprex raises circulating
serotonin levels, restores the appropriate production of serotonin
and norepinephrine and regulates cortisol release – without weight
gain side effects or other side effects commonly associated with
Lithium and other antidepressants.
information does not endorse Lithium, diagnose patients or
recommend therapy. The information contained herein is not
intended to cover all possible warnings, uses, precautions, drug
interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse side effects of
Lithium. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking,
check with your health care provider or pharmacist. The
information provided should not be construed to indicate that
Lithium is safe, effective or appropriate.
Do not stop taking Lithium without first talking to your doctor.
Your doctor may need to gradually reduce the dose before stopping
Lithium completely. Suddenly stopping Lithium may cause unpleasant
and potentially serious side effects.