Is your medicine making you fat?

Published On: Mar 02 2012 04:00:21 PM EST


Experts warned certain medications prescribed for mood disorders like depression, high blood pressure medicine, diabetes drugs and birth control can sometimes contribute to weight gain.

To help patients identify potential offenders, Harris County Hospital District in Houston, Texas, has created a list of "weight-promoting" and "weight-neutral or weight-loss" drugs.  

"Because of the stigma of weight gain, patients may tend to stop taking their medicines or decrease their dosage without talking to their physician,” said Ryan Roux, chief pharmacy officer. “Doing this is a bad thing. It can affect your health in a number of negative ways.”

Experts said patients who are concerned their medications could cause weight gain should ask their doctor if an alternative medication is available and appropriate.


Weight promoting

• Actos (pioglitazone)

• Amaryl (glimepiride)

• Insulins

Weight loss or weight neutral

• Byetta (exenatide)

• Januvia (sitagliptin)

• Symlin (pramlintide)

• Metformin

• Precose (acarbose)



Weight promoting

• Lopressor (metoprolol)

• Tenormin (atenolol)

• Inderal (propranolol)

• Norvasc (amlodipine)

• Clonidine


Weight promoting

• Paxil (paroxetine)

• Zoloft (sertraline)

• Amitripyline

• Remeron (mirtazapine)

Weight loss or weight neutral

• Wellbutrin (bupropion)

• Prozac (fluoxetine)



Weight promoting

• Clozaril (clozapine)

• Zyprexa (olanzapine)

• Risperdal (risperidone

• Seroquel (quetiapine)

• Lithium

• Valproic Acid

• Carbamazepine


Antiepileptic Drugs:

Weight promoting

• Carbamazapine

• Neurontin (gabapentin)

Weight loss or weight neutral

• Lamictal (lamotrigine)

• Topamax (topiramate)

• Zonegran (zonisamide)





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