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Effexor XR and IMPOSSIBLE Weight-loss
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Effexor XR and IMPOSSIBLE Weight-loss

I've been on 75 mg. of Effexor XR for about 4 years now. I do realize that this is a very small dose to be on in comparison to some people. A year before that (when I was first diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety/Panic Attacks), my dr. prescribed me Paxil. While on that, I gained upwards of 30 lbs. in only 1 year!? It worked for my attacks, but after a while, it's effectiveness wore off and my body seemed to have plateaued. The weight-gain was out of control, so I asked my dr. what I should do. She switched me to Effexor XR from that point on. Since that time, I have had excellent success with this med. in the respects of controlling my anxiety (almost to a fault). But since starting all of my drug therapies (in total), I have gained 75+ pounds!!?!?!?? Being that I am barely 5'2", you can imagine how awful I look. I have tried every avenue of removing this weight (from the most basic & strict diet you could imagine, to the South Beach-esque diets) to no avail. I would love to get off this type of med. altogether, but if that is not an option, I am desperately seeking some advice on any other meds that may allow my body's natural metabolism to correct itself and return to what it used to be before I started any meds. Just for a visual, before I started I weighed 114 lbs., now I weigh 200 +. Please help me.
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Avatar_n_tn
Try:  http://www.crazymeds.org
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Avatar_n_tn
I was on effexor for almost 10 years. My weight went up and down by about 20 lbs. I started limectal 8 months ago i went from 106 lbs to 130 in 4 months. I stopped the meds 2 and 1/2 months ago and can't get the weight off. I just started the B12 w/ Adenosine and phentermine to curb my appatite. and a 975 calorie diet. I think this might help you not only with weight loss but b12 and b6 is a natural stress reducer. I feel great on this. I cut out all caffine and alcohol and i don't smoke. I get up in the morning and by the time i get out of the shower i have a ton of energy. i feel like i have had my morning coffee but i haven't had any caffine. Not sure where you live but you can always ask your DR. let me know i can email the diet plan they put me on. Good luck!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have gained nearly 70 pounds since beginning Effexor XR and if the only solution is to go on a 975 calorie diet, then I guess I'l just stay oeverweight.  As a teacher, I doubt that I could get through the day at school on that few calories, not to mention my work at home, or any hobbies or exercise!! I do take sublingual B12, and I do not drink caffiene. "They" obviously know that anybody who eats fewer than 1000 calories a day will lose weight. I'll bet "they" wouldn't be willing to do that. I have tried Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, and one other diet plan.  Each time I lost about 15 pounds, and that was it.  that is not sufficient when you are 5'2" and weigh 221 pounds. Taking off the 15 pounds took extreme measures, and my family referred to my occasional eating out with them as days when I ate "real food".  I have many college hours in Nutrition and a practicum in a Houston area hospital--also, took Anatomy and Physiology...By "real food", I do not mean french fries and pizza.  I should not be a skinny-minny, but I shoud not weigh 221 pounds and I should not continue to gain weight when I eat less and move more. Why do we not demand that science come up with a way to restrict the unnatural weight gain while taking medication important to our health and quality of life?  Why such a martyr?    from "tastelifefully"
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Avatar_f_tn
During the year and a half that I was on Effexor, I gained about thirty pounds.  My diet and exercise habits didn't change, at least not enough to put on that kind of weight.  I weaned myself off of it and have now been Effexor-free for about three weeks.  It is kind of tough going, but I am still taking something for anxiety which helps.  I am just not willing to accept being overweight despite doing all the right things.  So far I have lost a few pounds. Hopefully that will continue.
I will say that Effexor does work.  I was generally more upbeat when I was taking it; but it wasn't perfect.  It kind of killed my motivation and made me feel like a bit of a zombie.
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151951_tn?1267991945
Wow, I completely forgot that I had signed up and posted anything on this website (with good reason, as it was like 4 years ago haha!). But I completely and unequivocally agree with "tastelifefully". He/She is absolutely correct in their response about the 975 calorie-a-day diet suggestion. While I genuinely appreciate the offering of what worked for "serendipity26", I could never function on that few calories. I believe the absolute lowest anyone should go, calorie-wise, is 1,200/day. Also, if you're an active person, that will require even more calories to be taken in. If you go any lower than 1,200 calories per day, your body will simply think that there is a famine (a severe food shortage) and start metabolizing its own muscle for fuel. Essentially, your body will 'eat' its lean muscle mass for energy, and remember that muscle helps to burn fat in your body. So if you're restricting your diet to such drastic levels, not only will you lose the muscle that helps you burn excess fat, you body will probably hold on to what precious fat it has (to your body's functioning it's precious, not so much to us when we're looking at it in a mirror type of precious lol!).

Anyway, I just thought I would throw that out there, because so many people are misinformed about what healthy weight loss is, or should be. As "tastelifefully" pointed out, I think I would much rather be overweight than to have to almost eliminate any nourishment whatsoever (in the sense that I would cutting my food intake down to virtually nothing).

So it is 4 years since my last post, and I am currently in the process of coming off of my Effexor altogether. This past week was my first week in almost 10 years, taking no medication whatsoever. I feel liberated in a way, not having to take a pill-a-day, every day! I'm certainly not saying it has been, or is easy, because that would be misleading. Although certainly better than I had initially anticipated, so that's definitely a good thing! It's too early to tell if my weight will be positively affected by my discontinuing of the Effexor, but I have high (albeit realistic) hopes :) Again, I am barely 5'2", so this weight on my frame is quite a bit more dramatic than say, on someone who was 5'10". This medication has pretty much kept my weight (approx. 195 lbs. give or take) hovering around the 200 lb. mark consistently, regardless of a clean diet and exercise. I will keep you guys updated on any progress or regression (let's hope that's not the case, eh!?) that I go through, as it is always nice to know what others are going through!

Take care and make sure to eat enough calories to sustain your body guys!!
~D
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1379217_tn?1279040606
I was started on Effexor 4yrs. ago. I had a brain injury Dec. 05. Since being on Effexor I have gained 40lbs. I never had to watch what I ate. My metabolism was extremely high. I still don't eat very much different. I am now being taken off this med & find myself feeling extreme vertigo. I feel like like my sugar is low and I need to eat some thing. While taking Effexor I gained weight at 3-5lbs. a week. My weight gain did not happen as soon as I started the med. This last year has been the worst. I gained in 08 then I had a plateau. The end of 09 started my gaining again. At this time I was in the hospital eating nutritionally balanced meals. I hope being off Effexor my metabolism will raturn to normal.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been on Effexor for about 2 months now. I am 16 years old. I have had great success with Effexor! When I was diagnosed with depression, I was using food as comfort. I was 131 pounds and very self conscious about my body. When I went on Effexor, I started to noticed right away that I was beginning to loose weight. After about 1 week, I have already lost 4 pounds. At the end of the month, I lost a total of 10 pounds. My eating habits were slitely affected. I lost my appetite, and I usually went the morning and afternoon without eating and still didn't feel hungry. After the medication got adjusted to being in my body, then I gained some of my appetite back and so far I have only gained 3 pounds back. I am very pleased about Effexor. :)
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1679283_tn?1321078439
I have tried almost every antidepressant out there, and nothing worked for me like Effexor has.  I started on a dosage of 75mg once/day, then went down to THE lowest dosage possible, 37.5 mg...have been on this medication for I think 3 or 4 years now, and I have gained A LOT of weight.  I used to weigh around 170, and now I am up to 205.  What ***** is that the Effexor for me has killed my appetite, but it seems that even if I look at food I gain weight.  I have been to the doctor, had my thyroid checked, had all kinds of blood work done, but everything turned up normal.  I would love to get off of Effexor, but the side effects ARE horrible.  Even at the low dose I'm on, if I don't take it for even ONE day, I experience side effects.  If I could give any advice on this drug--DON'T take it...it's not worth the weight gain, withdrawal symptoms, and not to mention the horribly low libido and inability to climax...I was in a relationship, and this made sex very frustrating for me and my partner.  I think these drugs Pharmaceutical companies are pushing are WORSE than crack cocaine or heroin!!!  They mess up your body and are almost Impossible to get off of!  I've been searching for alternatives, but there really is nothing 'natural' or equivalent that I've found comparable to Effexor so far.  It's awful..like a "catch-22."  Good luck.
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Avatar_f_tn
Please update! While our stories are Not identical you describe what I am dealing with. Hope you are doing well!!
Thanks!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been on effexor for five months now. I started having extreme panic attacks and my Doctor thought it might help my anxiety, it did but I have gained twenty pounds I never had a problem with weight before no matter what I ate or how much I would never gain a pound untill now I want to stop taking this drug but I get sick if I miss a dose I wish I would have never started.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hey, i'm on the same thing. Just eat right, drink lots of water and be active. Eat the recommended calorie intake, 1200-1500. Find a workout regimen that works for you and you'll lose it :) This is coming from a girl with the same experience.I just made sure to cut down on how much I ate, watched what I ate, etc.
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Avatar_f_tn
And how long did it take? In 8 mos gained 20lbs!
Never been this heavy in my life! Tried everything. I know my body n when the weight started to creep and the usual things I do to get it back didn't work, I knew something was up. I tapered off from 150 mg the past  6 weeks and now 11 days effexor free now. Weight not moving much. Please tell me my weight will go back to normal and about how long. And please- I don't need a condescending tip to diet and exercise. Tried everything you can possibly imagine and more to lose this weight.  Thanks!
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Avatar_m_tn
I've been on venlafaxine for a year and I've lost 40 pounds without even trying. It seems to reduce my appetite, but not so much that I am not eating! I was on Ritalin and lost 20 pounds in a month, which was not healthy...
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1110049_tn?1384640486
Looking at the message from happylynnwaterfall it shows that people can lose weight as well as gain it on Effexor, which is what the leaflet with the medicine says.  

I am on a slimfast diet at the moment, eat one 600cal a meal a day, and have a drink or bar of slimfast other 2 meals.  I have now lost 17lbs.  I am going to my son's wedding in two weeks and wanted to lose weight so I could look decent in a dress I already had.  Lost from around my waist, but tummy and bottom not much difference.  It shows that trying hard we can lose weight.

Whether I keep the weight off is another matter.  Without Effexor I lost my appetite and did lose 42lbs, but when on Effexor again put it all back on.  I am sure you will lose weight once your body gets back to "normal."  I hope you don't get a return of the depression.

Unfortunately I always have a return of depression, and Effexor is the best anti-depressant for me.  So fat as I am, I will continue to take it.  I would rather be overweight than in a deep depression!!

Good luck, and let us know if the weight goes.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am on cymbalta right now but it's expensive and I am also quitting smoking right now so everything is hard. My doctor has just switched me to effexor but I haven't started yet. I already weigh almost 200lb's and used to be 120....I'm worried but I just want to be stable. I just need help...
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Avatar_f_tn
I know everyone is different but I take 150 mg of Effexor and since starting have lost 30 lbs (slowly).  I think that I was obsessing about food prior to starting the medication and Effexor just kind of made me stop doing that and gave me more self control.  I feel for anyone who gains from an anti-depressant as I have been there too and it does make you more depressed.  Keep looking and eventually you will find something that works for you.
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