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Zoloft and weight loss? Anyone have any experience with this?

Discussion in 'Fat Loss/Cutting' started by Klownpoet, Dec 21, 2004.

  1. Klownpoet

    Klownpoet Well-Known Member

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    I was recently placed on Zoloft by my doctor, but I have heard some negative things about people gaining weight on this drug. I am hoping it is just a result of people not being healthy, but I would hate to have all of my hard work go down the drain because of some stupid anti depressant. Anyone know anything about this?
     
  2. brezman

    brezman Well-Known Member

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    No personal experience with that junk but I've definitely heard stories of people gaining some serious weight on anti-despressants. So yes, its definitely something to consider. You should voice your concern to your psychiatrist for sure (please tell me you're getting this from a psych and not a general doctor).
     
  3. slush_puppy

    slush_puppy Well-Known Member

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    Careful what you call junk, it's helped a lot of people, including my wife. If you don't have any personal experience with it, then don't go around telling people who may need it that it's junk.

    Klownpoet, if you're sedentary, it will may add some extra weight, but if you're active then it shouldn't be a problem. My wife has not had this problem with Zoloft.
     
  4. kootch

    kootch Well-Known Member

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    I had a spell a few years back where I went through some wicked anxiety and depression - I ended up taking Zoloft and then Paxil and eventually Prozac. All three helped the depression/anxiety greatly - it's NOT junk - but the first two had some other side effects. I didn't gain weight at all, but I had an issue with, umm, 'other' effects. To put it mildly I could lay pipe all night, but I could never strike oil, if you get my drift. The Prozac was fine for side effects and I felt better using it until I could get a handle on things myself.

    Now that I've exercising and eating better, there's less and less of a need for medication despite a current layoff notice from work or Christmas Eve!
     
  5. _Christopher_

    _Christopher_ Well-Known Member

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    I'm losing weight through diet and exercise and I take Zoloft.

    PS

    Not junk, probably saved my life at one point.
     
  6. 1FastGTX

    1FastGTX Elite Member
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    Agreed. Good post Slush.
     
  7. canard

    canard Well-Known Member

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    I am on Zoloft and I'm having a hell of a time losing weight. I feel like I'm getting "tighter," I'm starting to see my abs again, my cardio endurance is definately better, but I haven't dropped any weight. My crappy diet might have something to do with it also, but with the amount that I work out, I should have lost something.

    I've heard that taking fish oil suppliments may help people on Zoloft lose weight, but I haven't tried it in the doses that they recommend. It could have just been someone trying to sell a product. I don't know.

    I'd rather be as big as a house than feel like I did before I started on Zoloft.
     
    #7 canard, Dec 23, 2004
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2004
  8. Jono

    Jono Well-Known Member

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    medications, especially anti-depressents either increase your hunger. or decrease your hunger.

    brezman.. that comment is juvenile. why cant a general doctor perscribe medication for someone who is depressed or have anxiety disorder? psychiatrist are mearly a specialists for more seirous mental conditions such as severe depression, bi polar, psychosis, etc.

    zoloft is an SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor). it plays a role in acting with the serotonin levels in your brain which are belived to be a cause of depression and anxiety.

    scientifically, controlling these levels will have no real affect if your body stores more fat or not, etc.. you may just get hungrier, or may lose your apetite.

    if your not losing weight and you are "dieting" and using zoloft.. more than likely your diet is the problem.

    SSRI's have no direct affect on metabolic pathways, so it will not affect things like gaining fat if you train and have a proper diet
     
  9. U2rocks

    U2rocks Well-Known Member

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    i'm currently taking zoloft and haven't noticed any weight gain. when i first started taking it, i was extremely hungry and sleepy . but then i noticed those side effects started to wear off.
     
  10. 1FastGTX

    1FastGTX Elite Member
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    Do you want to lose weight, or do you want to lose fat? There is a big difference. You say your abs are showing and you're feeling tighter, that's a much better sign than what the scale reads.

    Working out more doesn't necessarily mean you're going to see more results. Work out hard, not long. :)

    The essential fats in fish are good for you. I take Udo's Choice EFAs, so does my dog! :)

    I agree. Depression sucks. I'm very happy for you that you have gotten through that, I wouldn't wish it on anyone!
     
  11. canard

    canard Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the good post, 1FastGTX.

    Here is a web site describing weight loss and Omega 3s while on Zoloft:

    http://www.prozactruth.com/weight3.htm

    Also, when I said how much I've been working out, I should have pointed out that I haven't done too much the last few years. I used to be a runner, but started to get more and more injuries, so I could only do so much. About 4 months ago I got a rowing machine that is allowing me to work out consistantly and with some intensity, probably more than I did way back when I was road racing. My diet hasn't changed in years, but I've been rowing quite a bit in the last 4 months, either 40-60 minutes continuous, or HIIT. I am also lifting weights again.

    Of course fat loss is more important than weight loss. I just expected that a few pounds would have come off by this time.
     
  12. bisous

    bisous Well-Known Member

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    Zoloft and all SSRIs tend to cause a moderate weight gain of around 5 pounds. Paxil is an exception - its weight gain tends to be more like 15-20 pounds. No one really knows why, but all the SSRIs, in addition to effects on serotonin signalling, also have other neurological effects. They are anticholinergic and antihistaminergic (like benadryl) - and it is thought these neurological effects cause the weight gain. Paxil is more anticholiergic and antihistaminergic than the other SSRIs, and old school tricyclic antidepressants such as elavil also have more antihistamine effect, and cause more weight gain than the current SSRIs.

    On the other hand, in a study published last year in JAMA, young female binge eaters tended to lose weight on SSRIs - the thought being the emotional eating was being tempered by the antidepressant effect.
     
  13. bisous

    bisous Well-Known Member

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    OH, and there have been many interesting studies about mood and omega-3s. A few months ago in the Archives of General Psychiatry (I believe), a study came out showing that an improved omega-3/omega-6 and saturated fat diet ratio actually changed the signal transduction velocity in the brain. This makes sense, because the brain is 60% fat. Given the average western diet contains mostly saturated fat, the brain cells will have more saturated membranes - little butter globs instead of little oil globs. This is all newish research, so a lot is conjecture, but it is very exciting (to me, anyway).
     
  14. Hanzgroove

    Hanzgroove Well-Known Member

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    Just some advice...

    I was prescribed Zoloft about 3 years ago and then I moved to a drug called Lexapro. When I first started taking it I felt great. I didn't have as much anxiety or depression. However, friends and family who didn't know I was taking the drug said that I seemed detached and zombie like. Which is true. Looking back while I was on the drug it made me numb. It definitely helped calm anxiety but also seemed to inhibit the caring/compassionate side of my personality. Aside from that as someone else in this post put it, I "couldn't stike oil" either.

    I'm sure that these types of drugs have helped many people with severe anxiety/depression but I'd advise you to try it for a while, see how it makes you feel and if you don't like the artificial feeling it gives you, get off of it and try to seek out the underlying issues causing your anxiety. Its always something. For me, I was in a crappy relationship and the uncertainty of losing my job was eating away at me. Once I got rid of both and surrounded myself with good friends, I felt 1000 times better than the drug ever made me feel. Just some advice... Good luck... :tu:
     
  15. canaranti

    canaranti Well-Known Member

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    I gained weight in the first week of taking Zoloft, so I quit taking it. The weird thing is, it decreased my appetite, yet I still gained weight... =\
     
  16. jas9609

    jas9609 Well-Known Member

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    My wife was on Zoloft for a while, its a great drug for helping deal with depression and she didn't gain any weight on it. I'm sure people that do gain weight on it are not as active and just blame it all on the drug. That's just my 2 cents.

    Jason
     
  17. PeteBDawg

    PeteBDawg Well-Known Member

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    I was never on an antidepressant, but I was on Zyprexa (Olanzapine) for hypomania at one point (I wasn't diagnosed as depressed, just as having unstable, depressive mood swings, which need different drugs), and I gained a lot of weight (15-20 lbs).

    Anyway, I saw a psychiatrist shortly after I was prescribed the drug who told me the drug was totally wrong for me, but they have to take you very slowly off that stuff, so I ended up taking it for a few months. It made me ravenously hungry and very sleepy.

    Since then, exercise, sleep, and stress management have kept me clear of all that stuff (I got lucky - it was largely situational), but I would caution anybody taking it to try to do something to keep weight gain in check. Zyprexa definitely causes weight gain. I had other options that could have caused liver failure, though, so I still thought it was the right one to pick at the time.

    And if your doctor tells you to take a medication, take it! Don't be proud. If it really doesn't work right, they can take you off of it. It's a lot better to try something, anything than to keep banging your head up against that mental health wall.
     
  18. slush_puppy

    slush_puppy Well-Known Member

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    That's all very true. One thing I'd like to add to what you said is that although you should listen to your doctor if they say medication is needed, you should always do your own thorough research into that medication before taking it.

    I'll give two examples... at one point my wife was put on Effexor to treat her depression. It worked well for a while, but then became more and more ineffective. She needed to switch medications, but the psyc didn't tell her about the meathooks that drug puts into you once you start taking it. It took her over 4 months to ween herself off of it. The problems it caused if she took too little were horriffic.

    Also, my wife recently had herniated one of her lower disks. She was prescribed a steroidal medication. As she was waiting for it to be filled in the pharmacy, she was reading an article in a magazine on the rack about how Jane Pauley spiraled into a huge manic-depressive state after taking the same thing (talk about coincidences). My wife researched it more afterwards and it turns out that this medication has depressive side effects for 5% of people who take it (that's a lot of people). If my wife hadn't read that article and had taken it, being predisposed to depression, who knows what would have happened. Her orthopedist who prescribed it told her nothing about this.

    Anyway, my point is, always research those meds on your own before you just trust the docs. Usually they are right on, but they aren't the walking encyclopedias we sometimes think they are, and sometimes they forget to mention some REALLY important information before handing over a script.
     
  19. RTE

    RTE Well-Known Member

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    If y'all notice I have a quote in my signature from Dr. William Glasser. I recommend anyone that has problems related to the mind, read his works. You will see a different view of our needs and what we do to compensate for the not having them met.

    He doesn't believe in chemicals.
     
  20. slush_puppy

    slush_puppy Well-Known Member

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    rtestes, I really like a lot of your posts and respect your knowledge, but this post bothers me. There are some people who are depressed because they are going through hard times, have had something traumatic happen to them, or have just given up on themselves. To those people, your quote applies.

    However, there are many, many, MANY others who have very real imbalances that cause a depression much deeper than despair alone. It happens to people who have no reason at all in the world to be sad, yet they are sad in unimaginable ways and don't even know why. For those people, your quote is a slap in the face, because it implies that their condition is their own fault, that they haven't looked into the right motivational tools to "get happy". It doesn't work that way.
     

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