There are a number of medications on the market today that list one of the main side effects as weight gain. Weight gain is one of the side effects for antidepressants. But, what are we going to do? Stop taking them and stay depressed all the time? While many say no, there are a number of people that say yes. They feel like being depressed is better than being significantly overweight or gaining pounds.
According to WebMD, about 25% of patients that take an antidepressant report weight gain and this weight gain is usually at least 10 pounds, sometimes more. This is something that we cannot change so we need to learn how to deal with it. We need to learn how we can lose weight while taking an antidepressant because believe it or not, it is possible.
How do Antidepressants Work? What Are the Areas of Concern?
An antidepressant, especially those known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, works to balance the chemical in your brain known as serotonin, which is the chemical that affects your behavior and mood. With more serotonin, and a balanced level of the chemical, in your brain, your overall mood will be enhanced. However, while antidepressants help to treat the symptoms of depression, they also have a number of side effects – including weight gain.
A couple of other side effects that come along with antidepressants include a lower metabolism as well as an increased appetite. With that said, you can see how it is that a patient would gain weight when taking the medication. Many researchers believe that the reason for the increase in your appetite is simply because the medication allows you to feel better again – like a real, alive person – and this causes you to eat more because you are happy. Then comes the lower metabolism. With a low metabolism, your body won’t burn nearly as many calories. You can exercise, but it won’t make much of a difference as a low metabolism still causes fewer burned calories. Regardless, exercise is still beneficial and should not be marked off your healthy list of things to do.
Counterbalance is the Key to a Happy Life with Antidepressants
You definitely want to exercise when you are taking antidepressants on a regular basis. More than that, though, you also want to be on a healthy, well-balanced diet. You need to consume a proper amount of calories daily because it is not recommended to significantly reduce your calorie intake when taking antidepressants. This can dramatically cause a negative effect on your brain.
Be sure to get enough minerals and vitamins. Researchers have proven that Omega-3 fatty acids as well as B12 may actually help fight the symptoms of depression. You can find Omega-3 fatty acids in salmon, tuna and other types of fish as well as tofu, canola oil, soybeans and walnuts. B12 can be found in milk, eggs, fish and meats. Apart from eating relevant foods, you can also purchase and take a vitamin supplement – these are easily found over-the-counter or at a local vitamin or nutrition store.
Not only will you help to suppress the weight gain caused from taking the antidepressant, you will feel a lot better about yourself. Exercising is said to improve chemical levels that ultimately cause an enhanced mood.
What you must always keep in mind is that you may not immediately see any difference. However, with time you will if you maintain a healthy diet and exercise regularly.
So you got to know how do Antidepressants work. Hope you have found the article informative. You might be also interested in reading what is heartburn articles.