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dropping the Effexor/Lexapro weight gain
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Avatar_n_tn
I would trying these drug can harm you why don't you try out natural way to lose weight you can learn from this site http://www.get-the-body-you-want.com/ if you want..
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Avatar_n_tn
HOORAY! You are asking the same question I am! Very similar to you, I finally lost all my baby weight a year or so back. I am 5'10 and I finally got to 165lbs after being overweight for years. Economy stinks, my husband starts a company, money is tight, etc.....I start having panic attacks. After months of going back and forth I finally agreed with my doc to go on Lexapro 10mg. Felt good within a few weeks so I carried on with my 6 day a wk 5am runs and eating healthy.

I started the drug in April 09 and what do you know, by Oct 09 I'm back up to 186lbs, tight clothes, etc... I took a month to wean myself off and am feeling good about it. I weighed myself this morning and am now at 188lbs!!!!! I have read EVERYTHING on line and, like you, want to know that this weight will eventually make its way off me again. PLEASE, someone post a success story about losing the weight drug free! Could our metabolism be screwed up for life?
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Avatar_n_tn
I posted my story a couple of weeks ago above, and I too was very upset at how this happened, and although I found this website before going to my Dr, I KNEW the Lexapro was the cause of the weight gain.    I told my Dr that I gained 10-15 lbs in 2 months, and she immediately agreed to get off it, and her stats of 1 out of 25 will gain weight!  At least she was honest.

As for your question about metabolism, this is just my guess, based on all the posts on here, and trust me, I read almost every single one...  it seems like the longer period of time you are on the med, the longer it takes for your metabolism to adjust.

My experience over the past 3 weeks since being off Lexapro:

The bloating in the stomach and face went down after a week or so.  I started doing crunches like crazy for the past 2 weeks, and my stomach looks much better but all clothes are still tight.  

I have lost 3.5 lbs in 3 weeks since being off it, and that was with increased exercise (compared to almost nothing prior) and watching calories and seriously watching my sodium intake.  

I did not taper properly, and I ended up taking 5 mg earlier this week for withdrawl (withdrawal) symptoms, and immediately the next day, I was hungry the entire day, and bloated up again.   A few days later now, and the excessive bloating went away again.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for commenting. You've given me hope! I did taper down over a 5 wk period and it worked well. Of course I have had a couple strange zaps but all in all, I've kept myself together and I'm not looking back. I've made a decision to not weigh myself until Christmas Eve. I'm training for a 1/2 marathon in March, sticking to less then 1800 cals a day, so....if I haven't lost a pound by Christmas I'll be pissed. Keep me up to date with your progression, and I'll do the same. I want to know that the weight can come off drug free. Take care and good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
I'm joining this forum as a way to track my side effects, hold myself accountable, and hopefully report weight loss.  I've been on Lexapro for the last 3 years for panic attacks and anxiety.  30 pounds later and somethings got to give.  I've never weighed this much, even when pregnant.  I tried once to wean myself off of lexapro, but felt I was so much of a better person with it.  Now, I've just got to try again.  Please, lift me up in your prayers.  God is the only one who can help me battle this.  
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Avatar_f_tn
I accidently came across this forum and have sat here for almost 2 hours reading and learning from each of you about Lexapro.  I was put on Lexapro approximatly 2 years ago and I have gained a substantial amount of weight.  To the point I am back to being depressed again.  I started Lipo-B two weeks ago and have lost 4lbs.  This with exersise and trying to watch what I eat, I am hopeing it will help me loose weight.  I am seriously thinking about weaning myself of Lexapro but I am scared not only of the side effects but also my mood changing back to where it was before taking the drug. I was not aware of the what antidepressants could do or what they could do when you tried to get off them.  I am greatful to all who have shared their insight and I am glad that I am not alone.  Thank You
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Avatar_n_tn
Isn't it amazing the things you read that others like us have also experienced?  You literally can spend hours reading all of the comments.  I'm like you.  I too am worried about how my mood will change once I wean myself off of Lexapro.  I was very irrational before.  I wished my doctor had adviced me about weight gain before began this medication.  
Please post when you start the weaning process.  I just started weaning for the 2nd time.  Tonight's half a pill.  I wish you the best of luck.  
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Avatar_n_tn
I took Lexapro for a couple months (see previous posts), tapered off in October, started mild dieting until mid December - the scale would not budge.  Since mid December, it's been a slow decline, and I had to really educate myself how to eat and exercise properly.

I have finally lost 10 lbs, but it took a ton of hard work, and 2 months of strict dieting and excessive exercise.  I'm not sure if it was more difficult to lose because of the Lexapro or because I'm a bit older now and haven't seriously dieted in my life.

My doctor keeps pushing me to go on Wellbutrin, and at this point, I just might give it a try.  I've been anxious and depressed for a while now.  I've heard many places that Wellbutrin may cause weight loss.

The question of whether to gain weight to treat the depression is a tough one.   For me, it was very difficult for me to look in the mirror for a long time.  I had been gaining a few pounds here and there, but the Lexapro sky-rocketed it up.  I had never been overweight in my life.  Right now, I am borderline overweight, BMI is very close to 25 now.

Any comments about Wellbutrin?

Thanks!
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Avatar_n_tn
thanx for your post - I've been off lexapro for about 2 1/2 weeks and my scale seems stuck. Glad I read your post so that I don't get my expectations up too high. I'm the heaviest I've ever been and that is what is depressing me now. Post back later and let me know how your weight loss is going. :)
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Avatar_f_tn
I took lexapro, started off at 10mg and went up to 20mg. After 9 months I had gained 45 pounds! i'm a fish eater and a runner and nothing helped.  I stopped taking it immediaitely, started researching it and found an e book on taking vitamins.  So far I've lost 23 pounds just by following a vitamin regimine.  I cant thank these people enough. I still run and each healthy but starting to feel better that my scale is moving. the ebok is Lose the weight from antidepressants from james harper. I think i paid six bucks for it but still have it. Hope this helps for anyone reading this.
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Avatar_n_tn
i have been on lexapro since October 2007. I got off it over a week ago cold turkey. Today for the first time, i got on many forums to see what is wrong with me right now. I have brain flashes, weight gain since i got on them. Hungry all the time, tired all the time, cant sleep at night, I'm afriad what my mood may be in the near future. my bones ache and i just hate the way I'm feeling. Advise for everyone, do the right thing, read ahead of time, dont do what i have done. Contact your doctor and let him advise you.
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Avatar_n_tn
i have been on lexapro since October 2007. I got off it over a week ago cold turkey. Today for the first time, i got on many forums to see what is wrong with me right now. I have brain flashes, weight gain since i got on them. Hungry all the time, tired all the time, cant sleep at night, I'm afriad what my mood may be in the near future. my bones ache and i just hate the way I'm feeling. Advise for everyone, do the right thing, read ahead of time, dont do what i have done. Contact your doctor and let him advise you.
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Avatar_f_tn
I've been on Lexapro for just about a year. My doctor prescribed it because of the stress I endure on the job.  I did not know until just this week that Lexapro has been the culprit in my weight gain for the last year.  It really infuriates me that my doctor did not advise me that weight gain was a potential side effect of this drug.  

Now that I look back I realize that I started gaining weight very quickly after going on this drug.  I've gain about 20 pounds in 10 months.  Ten of those pounds I put on really fast.  The remaining 10 have piled on slowly.  My diet has remained the same as before I started on the drug.  About 3 months ago I went back on the South Beach Phase I and could not lose one pound.  The South Beach has always worked for me.  Lexapro can not only cause you to put weight on, it can prevent you from losing weight.  

I have been taking one 10mg tablet daily for the last year.   As of a few days ago I've cut myself back to a half a tablet for the next couple of weeks, then will go to a half every other day for a few weeks and then stop completely.

There are natural ways to elevate your seratonin level like eating foods that are high in tryptophan (eggs, turkey etc.) which will cause your brain to produce the seratonin.  Lexapro is a seratonin reuptake drug.  You can also purchase tryptophan at vitamin stores.



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Avatar_f_tn
I have had a similar situation as other with weight gain; on Lexapro I gained 15 lbs.   I am an avid exerciser burning up to 3000 calories a day and was eating 900-1200 calories a day with not a 1/4 pound loss during a 5 month period. I met with a nutritionist who said I was staving myself hence the weight gain so started following her direction - no change. I tried no carbs everything and still no change.  I have now gone cold turkey off of the med and am seeing an endocrinologist to see if there is anything they can do.    

What is the time frame that others began to see a drop in weight after going off of the Lexapro?  Any advice on books to read or specific diets to follow would be welcom.  
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Avatar_m_tn
I have been off Lexapro for a year.  I have changed my diet and started exercising more regularly but I still have my belly fat and can not loose the 10 lbs I gained while on Lexapro.  I have never ever had a problem with belly fat and its really driving me crazy that I can't get rid of it.....

I came across something today that I think I will try...go to www.***********.org and go to the weight loss tab.  I found it really interesting and I think I will try the JNK supplements that this nonprofit recommends.....looks like its all natural too!
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Avatar_n_tn
Forget the antidepressants- the two best natural anti-depressants are nac and shelled hemp seed- take one 500 mg of nac and one tablespoon of shelled hemp seed three times a day before you take any anti-depressant- these are way more effective and they aren't toxic like the anti-depressants- from an x-antidepressant user who struggled like hell to get off
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Avatar_f_tn
iiiiiii
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Avatar_f_tn
I thought I would revisit this site after a year hiatus to share my story. I followed responses religiously as I was enduring the frustration of trying to lose the weight; read everyones' responses looking for a glimmer of hope. Well, I want to let you ALL know that you WILL lose the weight and go back to your pre-effexor.

Here's my story:

Started effexor in July 08 noticed an actual weight loss within the first 3 months of being on it. I was (am) 5'5 117 so I didnt necessarily need to lose the weight but didnt find it alarming. Then all of a sudden around November/December I instantly gained 10 lbs. I never paid much attn to a scale and found it to be weird, but thought maybe it was from age and kind of shrugged it off. Then, came the months of January, Feb, March where I noticed the scale creeping up and up and my clothes getting tighter and tighter. One day I was at the gym and I was 140. I couldn't believe it, 23 lbs ?!?! That cant be right. I was doing NOTHING differently. Come April I decided to jump on the web and start researching if possibly Effexor was the culprit. Within 10 minutes it was abundantly clear, Effexor caused this weight gain :(

I immediately started to ween myself off, did not advise a DR but just took a few pills out a day. My withdrawl (withdrawal) was pretty miserable but focused on the light at the end of the tunnel: lose weight! I dropped about 5 lbs within the first week and was stoked. But that was just water weight. Here is where the frustration lied: I worked out, I ate better, I dieted and after 3 more months being cold turkey I still didnt see any loss then from the original 5 lbs. Come July I was frustrated to tears. August maybe saw a lb or 2 come off.

It was around September that things started looking better. I dont know if it was the timing or the counsel of my DR that said I needed to "shock" or wake up my metabolism to get it going again and loose the weight. But I started running, intervals, crazy running. I didnt change my diet at all, just tried to "shock" my body back. FINALLY end of September I think I was down to 128. Then shortly after October I was around 124. Come December I was back to 117.

I think it was a combo of actually shocking my body and timing, but I think it was definitely just timing. You just have to wait it out unfortunately. It felt like around October/November it just fell off literally. Moral of the story: Your body WILL return to its normal state. This weight is what I like to call "fake" weight, medicine weight. Once you have it out of your system and you body is back to performing the way it was pre-effexor the weight will come off.

Just keep the faith, don't beat yourself up because its not coming off as quick as you like. I wouldn't recommend dieting but maybe alternating your workout to see if it quickens the process.  Please know there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I lost all the weight about a year ago from now and have not gained a lb back, if anything I lost weight because I kicked started my metabolism so much.

Good luck to all of you. Its a very hard road but you can do it!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
My story is similar to everyones. The first time around I gained 21 lbs, stopped meds and lost 14 of the 21 in 3 months. I did a lot of cardio, boxing and running. I think the weight came off when it felt like it, not because of the excercise. Prior to A/D s I had borderline 6 pack abs, best shape of my life and then....
Anyway after starting A/Ds for the sceond time, I gained 7 additional lbs for a combined 28 over my "in shape" weight. This time it's been 2 months and not much has come off. I don't even weigh myself cause it gets me going. I've been thinking that since the body didn't put on the weight because of a calorie surplus, then maybe it doesn't recognize it as fat that needs to be burned off and a calorie defecit doesn't do anything. Which means how and when it comes off is up in the air.
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Avatar_f_tn
I've been on Lexapro 20mg for almost a year now and have put on 25 pounds! And I feel horrible the lexapro definitely helps my depression but all this weight gain is just making me feel worse and worse. I got on antidepressants about 6 months after I had my daughter and now almost a year later I weigh 25 pounds more which is almost what I weighed at my heaviest during my pregnancy ahh I just feel crappy everyday because of this weight gain. Wish I could do something to reverse it while still getting the help I need for my depression!
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Avatar_n_tn
i am 16, and was wondering if i should take lexapro. i am very active, and play 3 sports.. not good im guessing.. i also have an eating disorder.. so gaining weight wouldnt be good.
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Avatar_m_tn
So, lately, after 8 years on Lexapro, I quit.  During that time, I went from weighing 150lbs to 178lbs at my peak!  I'm about 5'9, and 178lbs is a flabby.  Although my anxiety was much better, I would say I would still get moody at times, and I feel tired a lot and sleep TOO MUCH.  Well, I happened to watch a great documentary called FOOD MATTERS, and in it there is a Doctor Andrew Saul whom I found charismatic and well spoken.  He mentioned that NIACIN, or Vitamin B-3, taken at large doses (3grams/day) can help cure depression and even schizophrenia without side effects.  Some people get flushing, but you can get non-flushing type.  So, I've been trying that with good results.  I stopped taking the Lexapro about 3 weeks ago cold turkey, and after about two weeks, the dizziness and zaps went away.  Right now, I feel quite good, and low and behold, I've lost about 3 lbs already!  When I started Lexapro in 2003, I also started boxing around the same time, so I had assumed that the weight gain was due to my training at the gym, but actually I think it was the Lexapro.  I also thought it was an age thing (I'm 37), but I've noticed a sharp and healthy decline in my food intake and cravings the past two weeks.  So, yes, Lexapro seems to cause weight gain for me, too.  But, I would highly recommend Niacin as a natural, safe, and cheaper alternative.  Just try it.  I have more energy, haven't felt depressed yet, and I don't feel so tired all the time.  Read here, and good luck everyone.  Depression is a tough illness:

http://www.doctoryourself.com
http://www.doctoryourself.com/hoffer_niacin.html
http://moodydays.com  (my blog on depression)
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Avatar_n_tn
I am 32 and began taking Lexapro in September of 2009. I have Social Anxiety Disorder and depression. I have taken many other antidepressents in the past but never longer then a year at a time and never gained weight! No diet and no exercise.
Up until I began taking it I weighed between 103 and 105. I am 5'4'' and have a very small bone frame. I have been this weight since high school and I have 3 children. I was able to lose the weight after the children naturally. Although it took 3-6 months. I have never dieted or stuck to an exercise program.
After 6 months of taking Lexapro I had gained about 13 pounds. Shocked with weight gain and unable to wear any of my clothes I began a strict diet and exercise plan and still ended up gaining additional weight. I am now 132 and gained about 30 pounds total. I am boderline size 8! I felt like I was going crazy about the weight gain? I went to my doctor on 4 different occasions about the tiredness and weight gain and never once did he say it was the Lexapro. He said it is calories in and calories out.  I feel like I am starving all the time because of the dieting and yet completely bloated. I am upset to be fat and hate to see all the fat on my stomach proturding over my pants waist line and looking at back side rolls under my shirt. I had no idea Lexapro would cause this much weight gain. I also slept all the time (including after 8 hours of sleep falling a sleep at the wheel and getting in a fender bender). I didn't have a passion for things anymore.
However, the plus side is zero anxiety disorder. It def. helped me in some trying times and removed my probles in social issues.
On my own I cut the 20 to 10mg for 2 weeks. Then I cut that to 5mg for 2 weeks. Then went to approx 2.5 for 2 weeks. Next took a tiny nibble of pill each day for a week. I have been off for 3 days and am dizzy, can't walk, running into things, sick to my stomach, shivers, brain feel like its in paralysis, even right now respelling things over and over incorrectly and diarreah (diarrhea). Horrible, Just want to take it to make it go away. If I dont lose any weight and get energy back within 3 months I am just going to get back on it so I can go back to being a zombie.
Thank you for your posts. I dont feel so alone or crazy.
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Avatar_n_tn
Friends, I am so grateful to all of you who posted. I am another who thought it was just me and that I must somewhere in my diet made a change I wasn't aware of that caused me to pack on 20ish pounds. that's a lot when you're 5'3" and small framed. clothes don't fit, feeling lethargic, etc. So I committed myself to a 950-1200 cal diet and to make sure I exercised more. I did this for at 8 weeks, writing down everything I ate and the cals, and staying active daily. I lost nothing, maybe even gained a pound or two.

I finally got thinking it might be the Lexapro. I started weaning myself just yesterday. Your comments have helped me so much. Like many of you, the Lex helped through the crisis, but life is settling down, I think I can do without it, and I don't want overweight to be the new crisis.

Thanks again. Blessings to you all.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for the reminder about Niacin. I saw that video a while back, but I'd forgotten. thank you for posting.
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Avatar_f_tn
I gained....and here i am 20 lbs heavier in 3 1/2 years from 130 lbs to 150 lbs...I feel so stupid not coming here and finding out that this might happen and i can switch to another med....but it wasn't me! I kept telling me docs nonstop, there is something wrong, i can tell this is not normal i am gaining a lot and they consistently said - Lexapro cant make u gain, research doesn't show that. F your research and read this forum and the hundreds of people screaming it does.!
Anyhow - damage is done! Now what? I was on 20mg for 2 years and for last 1 1/2 years tapering it off and now I am at 3 1/2 mg and I workout regularly and eat healthy...when do I get my metabolism back? after I am completely done with this med? or never? or slowly? what happens now...I REALLY need to know...because while ur "mood" gets better with Lexapro the weight gain can make you disheartened
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Avatar_f_tn
I am so thankful for this site.  It let's me and my husband know that I am not crazy or just not being consistent in the gym.  After 2 1/2 years I weaned myself off of Lexapro in May 2009.  By then I had gained 40 pounds.  I keep going to my doctor and he keep saying it was just my age although I have been little all my life even after two children.  At fifty -two I only weighted 110 pounds.  Now it is April 2011 and I still can't lose this weight.  I walk, I run, I Zumba and I've tried all types of healthy eatting but still the weight remain.  I can't wear any of my clothes.  I've gone from a 6 to a size 10 or 12.  I have terrible belly and but fat.  I don't know what to do.  Any suggestions how to get this weight off.  It is so depressing.  I hate going shopping because nothing fits right.  Has anyone thought about suing the makers of Lexapro.
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Avatar_m_tn
I reasonlly started taking Lexapro a long with my other med, ibuprofen 800mg, for joint pain. I also gainned 12 pounds in the past month and half. So, I found this site as I was trying to figure out why I gainned this weight. I did find that one of the side effects of taking ibuprofen is "sudden unexplained weigh gain" ans now, I find the side effects of Lexapro is weight gain..... WTF... I am being treated for depression and now, it looks like, I have to worry about becoming fat on top of it all.
I am 57, 5'5' male, on, 3/13/11, I started taking the ibuprofen, and it is working, and around 3 weeks later, started the Lexapro, a week later, I noticed that I had gained 9 pounds. This is not good. I was already 179 before I gained any weight. Now, it's May 1st, and my weight is 191 pounds. I am not sure which of the meds is responible for this, but I am not happy. I was happy with finding help for the depression but now. I feel like it's a catch 22, help with the depression, and be fat or relieve from joint pain and be fat.... This is not fair! You would think, with all the wonderful work they have done in the field of medicine, they would do better than this?  I don't know what to do about this and would welcome any feedback.... Thanks
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Avatar_f_tn
I've been off antidepressants for two months and I think the reason we lose weight when we go off antidepressants (for me anyway) is that you get your energy back.  I used to love to exercise and was just very active until starting the meds.  Lexapro made me lazy; I completely stopped working out, and I had no tolerance for hunger - even if it was just boredom hunger, I felt I had to eat again and again.  I didn't mind that I needed to lose 30 lbs because the meds had me numbed out.  Now, I'm my real self again and I want to exercise and eat better because I'm not numb to the fact that I went from 5'6 128 lbs to 159 lbs in two years.  I see it every day and I feel it whenever I try to put on pants I used to wear so I'm doing something about it.  What's funny is that my PMS is better.  The meds are supposed to help PMS but it counteracts it by making you so hungry that you eat all the crap that makes PMS worse!   Good luck to all.  These meds suck, but just taper off very slowly and you will get there.
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Avatar_m_tn
Now,it's 2 weeks later, I am so sad. The doctor after hearing my complaint about Lexapro and my weight gain. He increased the dose from 10 mgs to 20 mgs. He said that I was feeling better and was eating more but I'll check into it on your next appointment. My next appointment is in 2 months..... In the past weeks, I've gain another 5 pounds!
Now my weight is up to 196 pounds, in the past 2 months, I've gained 17 pounds. I wonder if my Doctor is crazy. At this rate, I'll be 213..... That's way to much!  Instead of taking 20 mgs, I think, I'm going to start taking 5 mgs and get off this stuff!!!  Wish me luck, and I'll let you know, how am doing......
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Avatar_f_tn
I was so excited when I got off Lexapro back in March and started exercising.  I felt like my old self and I actually enjoyed working out like I used to.  Maybe I expected too much but I really thought my appetite would go down to where it was before the antidepressants and it hasn't.  I also expected to lose some weight through exercise and it's as much of a struggle to lose weight as it was when I was sedentary.  I have been exercising 6 days a week for at least 40 minutes doing both cardio and toning.  I just don't get why I can't lose weight anymore.  The sad thing is that there are no studies out there about the long term effects of antidepressants on metabolism.  I wish there was a professional out there who could tell me that it just takes a while and the metabolism kicks back in after so much time...I just can't find that information.  So, we all tend to think we might as well go back on the meds since we're miserable and fat anyway.  That's exactly what the drug companies want, though, so we have to be vigilant and keep posting any progress that we make!
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Avatar_n_tn
Like so many of you, I am so glad to have found this board because I have had the same issues with Lexapro.  

I have been an athlete my whole life and gained 30 pounds in about 18 months after starting Lexapro.  I have a good diet, I exercise, etc.  I feel disgusting and nothing fits me or looks good on me anymore.  (I am 5'8" and was 150 (size 6 - I'm muscular and thus weigh more than the size would indicate) and have shot up to > 180.)  

I tapered off of the cursed substance (w/o telling the Dr.) about 6 weeks ago, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the weight will start coming off.  I may follow what one of the other posters recommended and try and shock my system somehow.  I'd try anything at this point.

In a country as litigious as ours I'm surprised no one has brought a lawsuit against the manufacturer.
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Avatar_f_tn
The drug makers keep the side effects as cryptic as they can so that we can't directly link it to the meds.  Well, and they always say that people eat more when they feel better.  That is true for me.  Some people eat when they're stressed but I lose my appetite...unless I'm on Lexapro, then I just eat more when I'm sad or stressed.
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Avatar_f_tn
I've tried a few antidepressants over the past year. Zoloft, Effexor and now Lexapro. For the first 1-2 months I feel great, then come the side effects. I've been on Lexapro for a few months now. I'm experiencing crazy tiredness. Last weekend I slept for 3 days. I got out of bed a couple of times, but the rest of the time I slept. That is insane! I have never done that! Everyday is a struggle to get out of bed. When I get home from work, all I want to do is sleep. I even fell asleep at work a few days ago. Overall I have gained 30 lbs...not good! None of my clothes fit. I'm bloated all the time and my weight just keeps going up. I'm going to my doctor soon to get my thyroid checked and see about getting off Lexapro. I have a feeling all the meds have messed with my body and i'm not sure if it will recover.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Don't skip without asking you doctor.  I am weening off b/c I feel fine and I have gained weight that I can't lose.  I totally trust my doc as he has been treating my mom for years.  You must ween off of it.  Yes you may get some withdrawal symptoms but you can't just stop the drug.  The withdrawals will be out of control.  I am also in nursing and know about this. PLease speak to your doc.  You cannot just stop meds without doing so.
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Avatar_f_tn
I just started Lexapro 6 days ago and want to quit do to side effects. Too antsy and now hbp. Any suggestions?
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Avatar_n_tn
In Oct 2009, I had a baby at age 45.  I had a son age 27 and a 2 yr old grandson.  Finding out I was pregnant at my age was a huge shock to say the least.  The pregnancy was difficult with lots of ups and downs.  When we brought our baby son home from the hospital, I literally started having extreme anxiety and did not sleep AT ALL for 2 weeks which made the anxiety even worse.  My Dr said my hormones were skydiving and I was suffering from postpartum anxiety.  She wanted to put me on 10 mg of Lexapro, but I didn't want to take it because of the side effects, etc.  However I was so desperate to get rid of the anxiety because I couldn't even function.  The lexapro worked miracles!!!  Within 6 weeks I went from having extreme anxiety to zero anxiety and was sleeping soundly.  I was also extremely happy and have remained so ever since.  Problem...30 lb weight gain in one year.  I did add in drinking Dr Peppers and eating sweets, something I had never consumed much of.  I cut out the sweets but not the sodas.  I am weaning myself off Lexapro now.  I cut down from 10 to 5 mg about a month ago without side effects.  I am now going to start skipping days of taking 5 etc.  Love the Lexapro...hate the weight gain!  My advice, if you're really suffering from depression and/or anxiety, this drug will save you.  Take it long enough to get you through then get off.
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Avatar_n_tn
Just adding my voice to the 100000s....the doctors who say "you're just eating more' are SUCH *****, aren't they? unreal, the denial.  I went on Lex in 2008 (I cant believe it's been that long!) after a series of traumatic events piled up--I never thought i'd need an antidepressant, never was depressed, but I sort of had PTSD, and it really did save me.

I was one of the lucky ones, it was the right one for me, I only took 10 mg and I had NO side effects (except weight gain)...I didn't feel bad on it at all, I felt really good and healthy and energetic and it gave my brain space to heal and deal with stuff.   As healing happened from the life events (and I did therapy) I was ready to wean off.  Well, I had to wean reeeeeeeeeealllly slooooooooow because if I did too much I got terrible dizziness, almost falling down, and stomachaches.  So i've been warning since the end of 2009!    I got to 5 mg by last summer and now I am at 1.5!    The thing is that at 2 mg if you go to 1.5 you are cutting your dose by a QUARTER, which is a big cut (for me being very sensitive anyway). Whereas when you got from 10 to 9.5, that's like, what, 1/20th of your dose?  As long as I go slow I'm fine.  But I can't wait to be OFF!

Anyway, I had the class weight gain in the classic timing. I had been kind of emaciated when I started and needed to gain  a little, but not as much as I did. I should be about 118-120 for my height. I was 108 when I started Lex. The gain happened in thr classic way--exactly 3 months in, it seemed to pile on it one week (changing nothing).  Literally one week all my jeans fit, the next they didnt (and never did again).  

I was up to 120 in 2009 (which was okay)--but then 130 in 2010.  That was too much.  Now, in summer 2011, I am hovering 124-125.  I squeezed ot down through VERY careful eating--low sugar, lots of vegetables and protein, no meat, plenty of EFAS, green tea....

The weight number isn't the concern to me now, it's the FAT.  All this stubborn goopy fat around my middle and thighs that I NEVER HAD BEFORE.  I dont recognize myself. I look dumpy. I always had a cute, trim little athletic bod.... without much effort.  yeah, I'm 40 but screw that.  I know plenty of 40 and 45 y o who kept their bodies like mine was. Its the Lex.  And it will not go away yet.

Let me tell you, I know what I am doing--I eat SUPER healthy, I hve a nutrition degree.   I bike, run, walk, hike, lift weights, do Jillian Michael's Shred...  the thing  is, I KNOW that if I wasn't so careful and knowledgeable, it WOULD BE SO MUCH WORSE!  I would be one of those who gained 20-30-40-50 pounds!   I only have an extra 5 of fat now maybe...it was ten pounds at the worst point. I think I've MINIMIZED the damage by being so healthy and careful....but I couldn't totally keep it off.

This is so consistent with  The doctors should read these  Many identical  stories--tiny all our lives, then huge gain with Le.  Or athletes all our lives, huge weight gain after Lexapro, changing nothing in lifestyle. And the stubbornness of this Lex-gained fat, when before we could always lose. It's so striking.

I cannot wait to see when Lex is totally out of my system what happens to this fat.  It should be just a few more months Im off. I plan to follow the advice of many here about "shocking' the metabolism.  

GabriellaKW is so right when she says, "The sad thing is that there are no studies out there about the long term effects of antidepressants on metabolism."  God I hope it's not the case that it screws it up forever.   Lex helped me, but I dont want it to have made me FAT forever....
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Avatar_m_tn
I have been on Effexor since May of 2008. For 3 years now I have struggled with weight gain. Every dr appt I made mentioned something about it and all I heard from the docs were "stop putting food in your mouth and you'll be fine". I'm also in the military and while I get free healthcare, it also comes with a price: complete ignorance. I gained 45 pounds because of this medication. The worst part is that when the meeds stopped doing what they were supposed to do my docs would just increase the dose. So now I'm up to 225mg a day. Yes, 225mg. And this is for MILD depression/anxiety. People with schizophrenia take this much. So I am starting a program called The Road Back. Its a program that assists you with weening yourself off of these medications. You take supplements (Omega-3, Vitamin E and JNK Supplement) to help alleviate the side affects associated with withdrawal of antidepressants. Google The Road Back if you think this program might be the right thing for you. My heart is with all of you who have suffered due to antidepressants. I thought taking this medication would HELP me. Not make my life a living hell. Good luck to all of you!
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Avatar_m_tn
i have been on lexapro for 6months and have put on 7kgs.. i started taking half of my 10mg today and only just came across this site tonight... i knew these tablets were the reason i was gaining weight. i noticed straight away i was eating more... coming from a person who would snack through out the day and only having a proper meal at dinner.. soon as i started on lexapro i was having the 3 meals a day and snacks.. hungry all the time which is not like me. the first 3 months i felt so happy then i started being over tired always, lazy and not wanting to have a social life at all... that is not me.. even when i was extremly low before lexapro my social life was something that made me happy.. being alone was what made me sad... now id rather be home alone and down then being around friends,family etc.,. i am becoming very moody and my weight is just making me more sad.. time to get off this thing!! i think lexapro is only good for people to help them overcome stress and tough times and once u feel happy again thats when u should get off,
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Avatar_f_tn
I have taken Lexapro in two rounds. The first time I was on for 1 year and even after tappering off I had shocks, dizziness, and sweats terribly for 7 days after stopping the medicine. I had went from 145 to 175. After I quit taking lexapro I lost about 20 lbs in 2 months with diet and exercise only. Well now I was put on Lexapro again back last Dec 2010. I was 155 and now I am 196. I eat healthy and exercise with a trainier. With about a 5 lb loss. And Yes I am bloated where I feel I cannot breath. My face is a moon shape double chin, I never had this even when I was pregnate with both of my girls and topped the scale at 200 lbs on delivery. I believe weight loss is possible but only if you get off Lexapro.
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Avatar_f_tn
How funny..that you call it "fake" weight...I do too.... I have been on Lexopro and Prozac in the past and after I got off of Prozac...I gained 30 lbs in less than 2 months.   Most recent I gained 20 lbs in less than 3 weeks.   HOW FRUSTRATING!

It is all in my middle area...and i look like I am 7 months pregnant.   grrrr.  
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Avatar_m_tn
OMG you are soo right!  I had not realized it until I read your post, but all my life, when I am sad or stressed I have LOST my appitite and weight.  But NOW, when I am stressed I want carbs, carbs and more carbs.

Like most, Lexapro has been a god send for me...I was put on by a cardiologist to control my neurocardiogenic syncope...and it does.  However, I just keep piling on the pounds.  Now, my general doc says either take the weight off or go on a med for my cholesterol which is creeping up along with my weight...

So, last week I cut my 10 mg pills in half and will take this for 2 weeks.  Then I will alternate 1/2 and 1/4 of a pill for 2 weeks.  Then I will take 1/4 a pill a day for a week and stop altogether.  I have started taking a multi vitamin every day as someone had mentioned certain vitamins help.

I may change the length of time between reduction of dose depending on my side effects...I drive all day long so I simply can not tollerate being dizzy behind the wheel.  Hopefully this will not be a problem.  I have to have surgery and will be out of work for 2 weeks and am hoping that going off will coincide with this so that if I DO experience side effects I will not be driving at the time.
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Avatar_m_tn
could you please explain the running regimn you were doing like how much a day and outside or treadmill  etc
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Avatar_m_tn
happened upon this forum by chance. I was started on Lexapro by my doctor 8 months ago for depression and anxiety. initially 10mgs daily then increased to 20mgs. I have noticed that I have gained weight even though I adhere to a strict diet and try to exercise as much as I can. having adult hip dysplasia curtails exercise somewhat. the weight that I've put on seems to be around my stomach area, I've gone from 30inch to 33 inch waist in the matter of a few months which is not good for my self esteem. being treated for depression then ending up being depressed about weight gain doesn't seem to be conducive to well being
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