What is the best antidepressant for weight loss? (3 research studies) 

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In this blog post, we are going to answer the question, “What is the best antidepressant for weight loss?”. Antidepressants are drugs that are used in the treatment of depression, anxiety, and several other mental health conditions. 

However, some antidepressants may make you gain a tremendous amount of weight. Weight gain is also common in depression comorbid with an eating disorder. 

This is why we have decided to talk about the best antidepressant to help manage your weight while fighting against the symptoms associated with your mental health condition. 

What is the best antidepressant for weight loss? 

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The best antidepressant for weight loss is Wellbutrin (Bupropion). Bupropion can significantly help manage your weight, especially if you suffer from depression comorbid with an eating disorder. 

The distinct mechanism of action of this antidepressant is the reason why it stands out from the other antidepressants when it comes to the weight management. Wellbutrin is a dopamine and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor.

It works by actively inhibiting the reuptake of these two excitatory neurotransmitters to counteract the symptoms associated with depression and other mental health-related problems. It does not affect the levels of serotonin. 

However, Wellbutrin may not suit everyone. It is a known fact that medications don’t work on people in the exact same way. Some people are more sensitive to them, hence they feel a greater difference in their conditions. 

However, the greater difference in their condition is not the only thing they experience. Such people tend to suffer from more side effects as compared to people who are not too sensitive to meds like antidepressants.

What does research suggest? 

Several researchers have worked tirelessly to check the effects of Wellbutrin on body weight. In 2001, researchers designed a clinical trial solely to study the effects of Wellbutrin on the weight of 50 obese women. 

The trial was comparative in nature and it was a double-blind study. Half of the women unknowingly received a placebo, while the remaining half received Wellbutrin. All test participants were kept in a similar environment and they were given a similar diet. 

After 8 weeks of study, it was clearly observed that the women who received Wellbutrin showed more weight loss as compared to those who received a placebo. However, not all women showed a similar rate of weight loss. Some lost much more than others. 

Women who showed good early response to Wellbutrin continued to lose weight after the 8 weeks of study. However, one important thing to mention here is the variable safety outcomes that were observed in this trial. 

As Wellbutrin is an antidepressant in nature, it caused some psychological side effects in some of the test participants. Some showed signs of an allergic response which lead to the discontinuation of treatment in such women. Some women showed negligible amounts of weight loss. 

The purpose of mentioning these little details is to make you understand how you can never compare your effects with anyone and how you should never take any medication without your doctor’s approval. 

If some friend of yours loses weight on Wellbutrin and you think of starting this med for that very purpose, it may not work that well for you. Our world has different kinds of healthcare systems. 

In some places, you can purchase meds without a prescription and these people are at higher risk. Always talk to a licensed healthcare professional before starting any medication. 

I know people can become greedy when it comes to losing weight, but using meds for that can be dangerous for you. Another 2012 study investigated the weight loss effects of Wellbutrin. It was a 48-week study that was also performed on obese people. 

This study included a large population of test participants, over 300 people, but only 190 people were able to cover 48 whole weeks and the rest had to discontinue. Some stopped taking Wellbutrin after 24 weeks, while others stopped it way earlier because of their inability to tolerate the drug. 

After 48 weeks of study, people who were taking Wellbutrin lost 7 to 10% of their body weight. It confirmed that Wellbutrin can indeed help you lose weight, but it can be more useful for people who are obese. 

It is a known scientific fact that the more body weight you have, the more you will lose. An obese person can easily lose 5 to 10lbs, but a person with a slight amount of extra weight will not lose 5-10lbs that easily. 

This is why meds that can help you lose weight should only be prescribed to people who are obese and can not make initial physical efforts to lose weight because of their inability to move or exercise. 

People who are overweight should seek help from physical activities and a healthy diet to lose their extra pounds. There is no shortcut to weight loss and if you think pills can lead to a pain-free weight loss journey then you could not be any more wrong about this. 

Another research study was based on the role of Wellbutrin in smoking cessation, but they observed that smokers who received Wellbutrin showed weight loss, although they were on a balanced diet. 

Similarly, another study was monitoring the antidepressant effects of Wellbutrin, but they also came across this ‘good’ side effect that could help a lot of obese people battling major depressive disorder (MDD). 

Every single study showed variation in results simply because our bodies are different. Our physiological composition and the way our metabolism works are completely different and two people can not expect to have the same results. 

This is why you should always ask your healthcare provider before using any substance that has some medicinal properties.

Is Wellbutrin the best choice for an overweight depressed person? 

Wellbutrin could be a good choice for an overweight depressed person, but not always. Wellbutrin may help you manage your weight, but there is no way to be sure that this drug will give you the best antidepressant effects. 

Most common types of depression are linked with the deficiency of serotonin, which is an excitatory neurotransmitter responsible for modulating mood, cognition, reward, learning, memory, and various other psychological processes.

If your depression is directly linked to serotonin deficiency, Wellbutrin may not be a good choice of antidepressant for you. This is because Wellbutrin does not inhibit the reuptake of serotonin and it does not increase the amount of this neurotransmitter in your brain. 

Even if that’s not the case, a lot of factors are considered. The way your body responds to the drug also makes a huge difference. Some people might exhibit signs of an allergic reaction soon after taking their first ever Wellbutrin dose. 

Such people can not continue the treatment because of the greater risk than benefits. The funny thing is that there is literally nothing you can do to predict how your body will react once it is exposed to Wellbutrin. 

If you have taken it before, you can surely tell. If not, the only way to be certain is to actually use the drug. This is exactly why the drug should be started from the lowest effective dose. 

Once it becomes clear that your body can tolerate the drug well, that’s when the dose should be increased, but too slowly. If the doses are suddenly escalated, you can get subjected to disturbing side effects and your body may not be able to bear a high dose. 

This is why you should always stick to your doctor’s recommended dose. If you have been prescribed Wellbutrin, make sure you take your med properly. 

What are the side effects associated with the use of Wellbutrin? 

Some of the side effects associated with the use of Wellbutrin include:

  • Anxiousness 
  • Unexplainable excitement and happiness 
  • Insomnia or inability to fall asleep 
  • Xerostomia or dry mouth 
  • Dizziness 
  • Drowsiness 
  • Nausea with or without vomiting 
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Headache 
  • Tremors 
  • Weight loss 
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Tinnitus or ringing in the ears 
  • Excessive sweating 
  • Altered sense of taste and smell
  • Constipation 
  • Throat infection 
  • Increased frequency of urination

Conclusion 

In this blog post, we have discussed the best antidepressant for weight loss. We have learned that Wellbutrin comes close to this title. It can significantly help manage your weight, especially if you suffer from depression comorbid with an eating disorder. 

The distinct mechanism of action of this antidepressant is the reason why it stands out from the other antidepressants when it comes to weight management. Wellbutrin is a dopamine and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor. 

It works by actively inhibiting the reuptake of these two excitatory neurotransmitters to counteract the symptoms associated with depression. Always make sure that you talk to your healthcare provider before taking any antidepressants. 

FAQs: Best antidepressant for weight loss 

What antidepressant medications make you lose weight?

The best antidepressant for weight loss is Wellbutrin (Bupropion). Bupropion can significantly help manage your weight, especially if you suffer from depression comorbid with an eating disorder. The distinct mechanism of action of this antidepressant is the reason why it stands out from the other antidepressants when it comes to weight management. 

Wellbutrin is a dopamine and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor. It works by actively inhibiting the reuptake of these two excitatory neurotransmitters to counteract the symptoms associated with depression. 

Is it possible to lose weight on antidepressants?

Yes, it is possible to lose weight on antidepressants. Bupropion is considered the best one for that purpose. As far as other antidepressants are concerned, they may or may not help you lose weight. Antidepressants do not weigh loss pills. In fact, a huge number of them are known to cause weight gain as a side effect. 

However, it may kill your appetite and makes you lose weight, but that’s not a healthy kind of weight loss. It can cause major deficiencies in your body as you stop eating as much as you should, for a healthy body.

Is it possible to lose weight on antidepressants?

Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor and it usually makes you gain weight. It is one of the most common side effects of this antidepressant and the entire class of SSRIs. However, Zoloft may make you lose weight by killing your appetite, but it is not considered a healthy kind of weight loss. 

How much weight do you lose on Wellbutrin?

The rate of weight loss on Wellbutrin depends on the person taking it. It is a known scientific fact that the more body weight you have, the more you will lose. An obese person can easily lose 5 to 10lbs, but a person with a slight amount of extra weight will not lose 5-10lbs that easily. Always make sure Wellbutrin is something your doctor recommends for weight loss. Avoid self-medication at all costs. 

How long does it take for Wellbutrin to leave your system?

Wellbutrin has a half-life of about 30-33 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next 30-33 hours. This process keeps on ongoing until the drug is completely washed out from your body.

References 

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