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Avatar universal

Zoloft

Hello. I have been working to get down to my ideal weight for several months now, and I am doing very well. However, my doctor prescribed me Zoloft today to treat my anxiety, and even though I addressed the issue of weight gain with her and she told me that I would need to watch my carbs and exercise consistently, I am quite worried about gaining back the weight I've lost (almost 20 lbs). Does anyone have any personal stories that can help me with the dilemma of taking or not taking the medication?
63 Responses
Avatar universal
It all comes down to calories in vs. calories out.  Continue to monitor your food intake as you've been doing and exercise regularly.
Avatar universal
I understand that, but zoloft lowers your metabolism and changes the metabolism of carbohydrates from what I have found in looking it up. I'm just wondering if anybody has been on it, and if so, what happened in the case of weight loss or gain, and what habits changed or stayed the same that may have allowed the medication to cause the effects.
Avatar universal
I was on Zoloft for awhile.  It actually made me lose my appetite, so I ending up losing about 20-25lbs. while on it.  It all depends on your body chemistry and how the drug will react.  There's a few other people i know that lost weight while on the meds.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
I have been taking zoloft for almost four years now.  Boy!! did I gain a ton of weight.  I coudn't take it off no matter what I do.  A few months ago, I stopped taking the drug and actually saw a weight loss so I know that it was the drugs that were making me gain weight.  Unfortunately, I have recently had to start taking them again.  Incidently, I gained all the weight again.  I guess you have to just decide if you'd rather be a thin, sad person or a happy, fat person.
Avatar universal
I have been taking zoloft for 3 1/2 years and have gained at least 40 lbs during that time.  It took me a long time to realize it was the drug.  I just assumed I wasn't watching my diet close enough, or not exercising hard enough.  After going from a size 6 to a 14, I joined a weight loss program, after stringently following the program for 12 weeks, I actually gained 2 lbs!  This past April, I went off the zoloft, (properly tapering).  I've not had any side effects from going off the meds, except that I still can't lose any wieght, although I don't believe I've gained anymore.  I was taking it to prevent headaches, and actually have had fewer headaches since stopping the med.  But I would llove to hear if anyone is able to lose weight after quitting the meds, and how?   (I would question your need for the drug with your doctor if you notice a small weight gain.  Please don't wait until 40 lbs later.  I wasn't depressed before, but this is certainly depressing now.
Avatar universal
Hi. I have been reading all your notes about zoloft and weight loss. I am relatively skinny to begin with and I have recently lost 9 lbs. since I have been taking zoloft (four months).  I consulted my prescribing dr. and my primary physician both claim that the zoloft should be weight neutral and that there is another cause for the weight loss...which has me more worried. I am the skinniest I have been since jr. high. Most of my clothes hang on me and people ask me what is wrong...I look sick, etc. I have had no other changes to my diet or exercise plan. The weight seems to be dropping faster than it did at first. Any insight?
Avatar universal
Hi I have been on Zoloft for 5 weeks and have lost weight.  I was and am quite concerned about weight gain too.  I am very small and a couple of pounds makes a big difference on me.  

Some people say it changes your body chemistry but I have been told that is impossible that it is mostly a change in appetite.  I have also been told craving sweets is common.

I do crave sweets a bit but I am very aware of what I am eating and keep a journal so if I gain any weight I will know and then will be able to make a change.  Weigh yourself often, keep a journal and don't panic if you start to crave something because it will pass.  Many people don't gain weight and instead they loose so try not to worry to much.  If you start to gain weight and you are having problems you can change your meds, you have lots of options.  If you are able to loose 20lbs (great job!) on your own surely you will beable to keep yourself from gaining too.  good luck, Erin
Avatar universal
I would suggest just not expecting anything to happen. If you take it assuming that it will increase you appetite, it probably will just because you expect it to (placebo effect). Though it really does have appetite effects sometimes (i started wasting away when I was on it and i only took it for a few weeks before i couldn't handle it anymore. I lost all my muscle mass, it was awful.) sometimes it doesn't do anything. It just depends on how your body will handle the chemistry change. I just wouldn't want you to suddenly gain a bunch of wright as a result of being so scared of it happening. Just don't think about it, and it might end up being a really good thing for you.
473830 tn?1207760936
Zoloft has more results for weight gain
Effexor has results of weight loss and Paxil
Wellbutrin and Cymbalta have had less complaints of weight gain
****
Avatar universal
I have just been prescribed zoloft and sure hope i don't gain any weight because i sure don't need nay more than what i already have. But will keep posting within the next few weeks.
Avatar universal
i was on zoloft and gained about 40 pounds.  i weighed 120 and got up to about 160.  i did not exercise at all though or watch my food intake....i had never needed too.  when i got off zoloft, i did lose weight though. honestly, meds effect people so differently though....so there's no way to know how it will effect you without tryinging it.  good luck!!!
Avatar universal
Glad to hear you lost the weight!! Can you shed any light on how long this weight-loss process was and anything special that you did/avoided to drop pounds??  

To anyone:  I'm wondering if this sounds like the Zoloft could be responsible for me gaining weight. I have been on Zoloft since July 2006 and in the past two months I have gained 6 lbs. without changing my eating or exercise habits. I'm a small person with an athletic build - 5' 5" and I normally weigh about 114 lbs. I'm 26 and have been at this weight +/- 3 lbs. since my sophomore year of college (as recently as January, I was at 111 lbs. b/c I wasn't eating much due to stress).  

To be honest, I don't eat super well and don't really do cardio, but losing a few pounds quickly has never been difficult for me (I usually cut back on junk for a few days). In the past month, however, I haven't been able to get rid of this weight. I have a super-fast metabolism that I can't see changing "all of a sudden" on its own. Any thoughts on whether this sounds like an effect of the Zoloft?? I'm tapering now so I hope this helps. Thanks so much!!  
Avatar universal
I took Zoloft for 4 and a half months due to panic attacks. Initially I lost weight. Then I gained about 10 lbs by month 4 so I decided enough is enough, especially after reading NUMEROUS blog sites that state prolonged Zoloft use can contribute to an AVERAGE weight gain of 20 - 60 pounds. No thank you. I'd rather be fit and do yoga for stress relief.

I have tapered off recently and am looking forward to losing the weight gained as well as 15 lbs I needed to lose before being prescribed Zoloft.

Exercise naturally releases serotonin and helps ease anxiety and stress which is what I am doing now.  
Avatar universal
I just started taking Zoloft 2 weeks ago.  My doctor told me I should actually lose weight- she also put me on Topamax to ensure the weight loss (I was really concerned with the whole weight thing, since I'd been through a huge ordeal with Paxil and Prozac and fought REALLY HARD to get rid of 20 of the extra 30 pounds they packed on).  I didn't want to go through that again.  As I told my husband- what's the point of being happy if I'm fat?  Then I'm right back to being miserable, but for a different reason!  Anyway.... I've already gained 9 pounds!  I've kept my weight the same since April- not fluctuating AT ALL- and I've actually been feeling a little nauseous on these pills, so I've been eating LESS than normal.  Apparently, I fall into the category of people who gain weight on these types of meds.  I've been told it has something to do with your metabolism.  Who knows- what would be nice is to find a med that works and doesn't make you gain weight!
Avatar universal
I just got off Zoloft 10 days ago.  I was on it for 6 months, and while on it I gained 10 to 15 pounds.  I work out regularly and am watching my diet.  Any insight on when I should expecto to lose some of this weight?  Thank you...
Avatar universal
I have gained at least 45 lbs since starting Zoloft a few years ago. I'm 41 years old and I have NEVER been this heavy in my life. I'm right around 245 at 6 ft tall. As an adult I've fluctuated between 175-195. About 3 years ago I started taking Zoloft gradually. I think I started with no more than 25mg per day, maybe less. Over the next few months I tapered up to higher doses. During those months I started craving carbohydrates. We all get cravings now and then and I didn't think much of it. But I started making special trips to the store just to buy peanut M&M's. Within less than 2 months I had gained 30 lbs. I consulted my prescribing doctor who told me that Zoloft does cause carb craving - information he could have told me BEFORE I started the medication. A few months later I asked him specifically if Zoloft slows metabolism and he said the jury was still out. But I would say my craving for carbs increased and I feel that my metabolism is much slower.

During the initial weight gain I was still tapering up my dosage. I got up to 200mg per day. Interestingly, by that time the carb craving had gone away. It started on a lower dose and you'd expect it to get worse with increased dosage. Didn't happen with me, though. The serious cravings just went away.

Yes, medications can affect different people in different ways. I think in general that Zoloft makes you crave carbs and slows metabolism. But I think the dosage of Zoloft is a big factor also. I didn't notice dosage amounts in any of the posts above. If Zoloft does cause weight gain, you'll probably notice more weight gain with higher doses.
Avatar universal
I have been taking Zoloft for the past three years of my life. I have a very small build to begin with (regularly weighing 108 lbs. at 5'4"). During my time on Zoloft, the only changes in weight I have noticed have been accredited to enviromental causes.

On the contrast, when I began taking Seroquel, I did notice my body requiring less calories to maintain my weight. Since I have stopped taking it, I've found that my body requires 3,000 calories to maintain my weight with 30 minutes of Irish Dance and 30 minutes of Running daily.

My physcaitrist claims Zoloft to be weight nuetral. I do beleive this theory, seeing as I carefully count my calories (being an athlete) and notice the dietary habits of others less cognisent. So for those of you who have gained since taking Zoloft, I'd reccomend counting your calories so you can see where the REAL source of weight gain in coming from!

Exercise is very beneficial, also. As I mentioned, I work out an hour a day, six days a week (except I have bronchitis at the moment, so won't be able to exercise for the next week :(((() Being physically active is an integral part in your physical and emotional health, one aspect that I have found very important in combating my depression. Even after today, day one of not working out, I feel marketably worse :(

Okay, my rambling is over. From my observations and knowledge, Zoloft should niether cause a weight gain or loss. Just monitor your diet closely and adhere to regular exercise, most days of the week. Last but no least, CONGRATS ON LOSING 20 lbs.!!! Keep up the great work, and best of luck to you all :)
770293 tn?1235049112
I've definitely noticed a major weight gain with zoloft, despite my drs assurance that it wasn't "known" to cause weight gain.  I'm 5'7 and I'm weighing about 160 lbs.  I weighed 125-130 when I started zoloft 2 years ago.  I've never had to worry about weight or had problems with my weight until now.  I've actually counted calories for the first time and realize that my intake is about 1,000 a day and I'm constantly on the move.  It's very frustrating and depressing....and I'm not even taking zoloft for depression!  I tried to wean myself slowly last month, but my anxiety became so intense I thought I would crawl out of my own skin.  I told this to my dr. who responded by upping the dosage, which hasn't helped.  I just want to be done with anti-depressants as they've not helped...in fact, I think they've just added more problems.
Avatar universal
since i have started zoloft approx.. a month ago, i have noticed nausea, loose stools often and an increase of being lazy. All of these factors have resulted in a sudden weight loss about 10 pounds in a month. i have been struggling to lose weight and i am happy about losing for the most part. i have noticed i am not able to tolerate some foods and deff not able to tolerate alcohol what so ever.
Avatar universal
I have been on zoloft for about 3 months (50 mg for the first month, 100 for the second and third).  I noticed slight weight loss (about 3-5 lbs) in the first 2 months.  But in the last month I have lost 7 more lbs.  I was worried about it and my doctor told me to continue taking them (as I was benefiting from it) and just make sure I eat a balanced diet, and aim at increasing my calorie intake slightly.  Now, I eat whatever I want, and I stay around 129 (I'm typically 136 or higher).  I do enjoy the weight loss, however, I would not want to loose anymore, as I am 5'10" and losing any more weight would make me look way too skinny.

On a side note, I have known several of my friends to take zoloft, and they all benefited from a 1-2 pound loss in weight.  I've not known anyone to gain weight.
Avatar universal
I was on Zoloft for about 3 years and was always very slim, now that i am married i decided to come off the meds and just balooned!! so am now back on them, perhaps they do slow down your metabolism? i find im not as hungry as i used to be.. also with my depression i eat to feel better, so now that im not depressed i dont eat so much! i think mental health is more important the physical health though, so even if you gain a few kg's or lose a few kg's so long as your happy and healthy that's all that matters!
Avatar universal
I started taking Zoloft 50 mg a month ago and noticed I have no appetite at all. I have to force myself to eat everyday. It has also decreased my anxiety and my depression tremendously. I really like how I feel now and losing weight at the same time is a bonus. I eat healthy foods though ;)
Avatar universal
I took 100mgs of zoloft for approx 3 years. During that time period I have gained 30+lbs. I weaned myself off zoloft very recently over a period of 3weeks. My energy has returned and I have started walking 2miles everyday. I have been zoloft free now for a little over 2 weeks and starting my exercise program of walking 2miles per day a little less than a week ago. I have already lost almost 3lbs! I truly feel a difference and feel that my metabolism has been "rebooted" so to speak! I do believe that zoloft effects everyone differently but believe that weight gain (for the majority) is inevitable on SSRI's.
Avatar universal
I was on Paxil at two different periods in my life, for one time over 1 yr and another time for about 6 months.  Both times caused me to gain 20 lbs, which I lost after getting off the drugs. I am an athlete and exercise regularly,and am convinced it was due to the drugs.  I have been considering trying Zoloft or Lexapro, but it seems like weight loss is prevalent on both of those drugs as well.
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