Does Prozac Help You Lose Weight?

The newest weight loss drug, bupropion, has hit the big-time, with sales recently reaching up to $12 million per month. While the pharmaceutical company, Wyeth, reports that over 500,000 people are currently taking the drug, many people are wondering if Prozac might actually help them lose weight. If so, would it be worth getting the prescription or is it a waste of time? Let’s take a look.

Key Facts About Prozac

As mentioned above, the drug in question is bupropion, which is the newest member of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class of antidepressants. When taken, it competes with serotonin for receptor sites at the synapse, thus increasing its availability to neurons – the brain’s messaging system – and helping to boost mood. It was approved by the FDA in March 2002 for the treatment of major depressive disorder and, in August 2007, as a smoking cessation aid. The most common side effects of Prozac include dry mouth, headache, and insomnia. Also, some experts have theorized that long-term use of the drug might cause tardive dyskinesia (TD), a potentially irreversible neurological condition that causes uncontrollable twitching and movements of the face and tongue. A rare but serious side effect of Prozac is neuropathy, a painful nerve disorder. For more information, check out this informative Prozac factsheet from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

Benefits Of Prozac For Weight Loss

There are several potential benefits of Prozac for weight loss. To start with, it is a safe and effective drug with a good safety record. According to research, it is more effective than placebo (an inactive substance) in treating obesity and has a greater effect on losing weight than some of the more popular diet pills. Here are some of the reasons why Prozac might be a good choice for weight loss:

  • It has a good safety profile, making it a viable option for people with certain medical conditions.
  • It effectively treats many psychological disorders associated with weight gain, including depression, anxiety, and OCD, which often go hand-in-hand.
  • It is a relatively new drug, and, as such, it is less likely to be detected in a drug test than older antidepressants like fluoxetine (also known as Prozac) and sertraline (Zoloft).

How Does Prozac Work?

So, how does Prozac work? Well, it probably helps to start by inhibiting a certain enzyme in the brain called monoamine oxidase, which otherwise breaks down serotonin. Serotonin helps to regulate appetite, so if Prozac is boosting serotonin levels in the brain, it would follow that it would also be enhancing the effects of appetite suppression. That would make sense, right? Interestingly, though, Prozac seems to have a different effect on different people. For instance, while it may help to reduce cravings in some people, it has been shown to increase food intake in others. That’s probably because serotonin regulates not only appetite but also mood and cognitive function, and too much of it can become problematic. (For more information, see this informative blog post from Medical Daily).

Where Can I Buy Prozac?

If you are interested in trying out Prozac for weight loss, you might want to consider looking into buying it from an online pharmacy. This is because it is a controlled substance and, as such, it is illegal to purchase online (particularly in large quantities). However, if you live in a state where medical marijuana is legal, you can get a prescription for Prozac, as long as your doctor feels it is warranted. Many people feel that it is. After all, research has shown that it is effective in treating obesity, one of the main causes of which is a depressed appetitive system. If you are interested, ask your doctor for a referral to a good clinical trial group in your area so that you can participate in a double-blind experiment. If not, just go with the natural alternative and eat plenty of vegetables!