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Zoloft for Weight Loss: What Studies Say

Zoloft for Weight Loss: What Studies Say
Dr. Constance Odom, MD Picture of Dr. Constance Odom, MD

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Written by our editorial team.

Last Edited 6 min read

Obesity is a huge problem in the United States. According to experts, obesity affects roughly 40 percent of the American population and approximately 500 million adults around the world. Recent studies show that Zoloft, an antidepressant medication, may be responsible for weight loss in a significant portion of the population. Weight loss is a side effect of Zoloft. Known generically as sertraline, the drug belongs to a class of drugs called Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors or SSRIs. 

Zoloft is prescribed to treat anxiety, depressive disorders, and other mental health conditions. Like many other antidepressants, Zoloft has weight loss as a side effect. Zoloft can cause weight loss in some people, but not in others. If you are taking this medication and do not want to lose weight, you should make lifestyle changes to keep this from happening. Weight loss is a common side effect of Zoloft, although it is more common in children and adolescents. This can be a problem, because children need to maintain a healthy weight to grow and develop properly. 

 Zoloft causes weight loss because its generic compound keeps the body from storing fat and affects carbohydrate dysregulation. According to a study conducted by Pubmed, while experts don’t know much about the effects of the long-term use of SSRIs, these drugs were effective in helping monkeys lose weight in a recent study. While many people enjoy the side effect of weight loss, other people are upset by this side effect. Those who don’t want to lose weight must look for ways to fend off weight loss from this drug. To stop this weight loss, some experts recommend stopping the use of this medication. A recent study found that patients with a low urinary MHPG lost an average of 1.06 pounds per week while taking this medication. Those with a high urinary MHPG lost an average of 0.42 pounds per week.

Over the course of this study, the maximum amount of weight lost was 69 pounds over a 36-week period. This is according to a study conducted by Science Direct. Zoloft is also used to treat obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). One study found that individuals taking Zoloft for depression and were overweight were found to have lost an average of 0.42 pounds per week to 1.06 pounds per week. Zoloft has also been associated with weight loss, so losing weight on the drug is a benefit for many patients. 

Weight loss can be rapid at first, but may eventually slow down, allowing many to maintain their weight. While many studies have documented the prevalence of weight loss on Zoloft, other studies have found that others gain weight. It all depends on the body’s composition and how it reacts to different drugs. Experts believe that weight loss is caused because Zoloft reduces appetite, making it easier for people to shed excess weight. This often happens when someone starts taking the drug. However, some patients taking the drug can expect weight gain after taking the drug for an extended period of time. Weight loss is sometimes only temporary.

Although Zoloft has been found effective in helping people lose weight, the drug also has some negative side effects to be aware of. Zoloft has been found to cause nausea, headaches, upset stomach, and problems in sexual function. Patients may also experience drowsiness, diarrhea, dry mouth, and dizziness. According to a study by, children need to be monitored closely when taking this drug, because some children taking Zoloft have lost more than seven percent of their body weight. 

 If you have lost a significant amount of weight and don’t need to lose any more weight, you may need to stop taking the medication. Roughly one percent of people taking Zoloft experience an increase in weight. Experts are not sure what is responsible for this weight gain, as it could be due to a number of other factors, including lifestyle and diet. Weight loss on this medication is often a result of nausea, loss of appetite, and a disinterest in food. This can lead to a decreased calorie intake. Those who gain weight while taking this drug are typically prone to binge eating or are preoccupied with food. Overall, the consumption of foods that are high in sugar leads to weight gain. Those who eat high sugar foods are more likely to gain weight while taking this medication. 

Losing large amounts of weight on this drug does not cause health problems, but rapid weight loss or weight gain can cause serious health problems. Losing weight too quickly on this drug can lead some to become underweight, which can lead to a compromised immune system, nutritional deficiencies, and low energy levels. Those who are underweight are prone to other problems, such as reduced fertility and irregular menstrual cycles. 

However, there are many benefits to weight loss that is caused by Zoloft. Overweight individuals who take this drug are less likely to develop heart disease, sleep apnea, and type 2 diabetes. The best way to facilitate and maintain weight loss while on Zoloft is to exercise and eat healthy. This should include a diet of vegetables, fruit, and whole grains. Those who are underweight should work to gain muscle. Those who are overweight can benefit most from activities, such as bicycling and running. These are high endurance exercises that make the body work hard. 

Weight loss and weight gain are typically the most significant when you start taking the drug. Weight loss or weight gain may taper off as you take the drug for an extended period of time. In some cases, weight loss can be severe. If this is the case, your doctor should change your dosage or explore other treatment options. 

Antidepressants are known to cause weight loss, which is why Zoloft is an attractive option for people who are trying to lose weight. According to experts, taking high levels of this drug can trigger weight loss, while taking lower levels of the medication can trigger weight gain.  

Weight loss on this drug can also be affected by other factors, such as age, gender, race, and socioeconomics. If you want to lose weight on this drug, it’s important to understand how antidepressants work. When used in conjunction with therapy, these drugs are effective in treating depression and other mental illnesses. Antidepressants are taken by more than 17.3 million people worldwide. However, it seems that more women take antidepressants more than men. Antidepressants work by altering neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Changes to these neurotransmitters can lead to weight loss. 

If you take Zoloft with the intention of losing weight, it is also important to incorporate a healthy diet into your regimen. While many people take Zoloft to lose weight, some people gain weight when they begin taking Zoloft. Sertraline, the generic of Zoloft is known to cause significant weight gain. If you take Zoloft to lose weight, you should count calories to make sure you’re not consuming too many of them. Doing so could lead to weight gain or could impede your weight loss efforts. Engaging in high intensity exercise, such as interval training, can help you reach your weight loss goals. You should aim to do these three to five times per week. This can help you lose weight. Doing these exercises can help improve your mental health as well.

 While many people see a decreased appetite on Zoloft, others may experience excessive hunger, which can lead to weight gain. SSRIs change your metabolism, causing your body to burn calories less effectively. Some people lose their appetite when they’re depressed, which may explain why patients taking Zoloft may experience weight loss. People who are depressed often don’t feel like eating. This lack of appetite attributes to weight loss, as depression and hunger are linked.

Some people taking Zoloft have to force themselves to eat, because they are not hungry at all. This seems to be a common complaint. However, if this happens to you, don’t stop eating. The extent of appetite loss varies from person to person. However, while some people welcome weight loss, other people are concerned about it. Your body needs calories to survive. Studies say that Zoloft is designed to boost serotonin levels and make you feel satiated. Because they feel satiated, many patients on Zoloft lose both their appetite and their libido. Experts recommend trying a number of strategies to boost your appetite while taking Zoloft. They recommend eating only foods you enjoy. You may be more motivated to eat if you eat your favorite foods. 

Experts also recommend that you exercise. Your body burns calories when you exercise. This makes you feel hungrier than you would if you are engaging in sedentary activities. To help yourself feel hungry, you may consider drinking less with meals. Because liquid has weight, it can also make you feel full. Try drinking small amounts of liquids until you are hungry enough to consume more solid foods. Then, finish off your meals with a beverage you enjoy. Never deprive yourself of meals. Always eat breakfast. Some people skip breakfast, because they’re too busy or don’t feel like eating. 

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This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your physician about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Nu Image Medical may not offer the medications or services mentioned in this article.