Zoloft Weight Gain

by Mark Ivar Myhre on December 24, 2006

(The following post comes from the Zoloft Comments Page at join-the-fun.com.)


I’ve read all of these comments and just want to let you all know that you should please get off of Zoloft. This is a bad drug. I was on it for a year and a half and the first 3 months were fine but after that all hell broke loose.

I didn’t care about anything but having a good time, whether that was drinking, skipping work (even cheating on my husband and almost getting a divorce). Please understand this is something I would NEVER EVER in my life would have done had I not been on 150mg. of Zoloft. This drug took my personality and completely skewed it into something I didn’t recognize.

The RAPID weight gain came around month 4. One Monday I could fit into my suit and that Friday I couldn’t even pull the pants up over my butt (and i’ve never had a big butt in my life, always gained weight in my stomach). It was insane. I went from a size 4 to a 16!!!! I tried several times to get off of this crap and had withdrawals. Finally, the last month I was on it, I saw a picture of myself and completely broke down. It looked absolutely NOTHING like me. I was unrecognizable to myself and it scared the crap out of me. So I decided to go off it and I didn’t care what it took.

It has been 14 months since I have been off of Zoloft and have about 10 lbs more to lose. Here is the only thing that has worked for me. DON’T EAT SUGAR IN ANY FORM. This means especially high fructose corn syrup. Limit or eliminate carbohydrates. Most importantly–weight training and cardio is the magic bullet. Start slow but don’t stop until you are happy with yourself!

end of comments by Mandy re: Zoloft Weight Gain


Anonymous April 19, 2007 at 3:22 pm

Zoloft effects people in different ways. I was on Zoloft after I had my daughter for post partum depression. I am in a job to where I have to work out all the time, while on Zolft I dropped 20lbs with almost no effort. There are multiple side effects to Zoloft. Now with that being said it was hard to keep the weight off after I stopped using Zoloft, but if you truly need this medication stay on it. (For those who want to know my normal weight off Zoloft was around 150-155 on Zoloft it was 140-144).

Anonymous May 12, 2007 at 2:44 pm

I'm in the middle of a zoloft taper myself. After three years on the stuff I have gained roughly 60 lbs. It's a horrible feeling. We are using the liquid form to get me off of it.

Anonymous May 18, 2007 at 10:12 am

Ok.. Zoloft makes you be less fussy about things.. So often people would occassionally have that extra little bit of something to eat.

If the diet remains the same while on zoloft but weight gain occurs, well it's clear that something isn't right about the drug.

I did experience weight gain but not sure which one of the above was the reason for it.

Just something for you to all think about really.

Anonymous July 29, 2007 at 5:34 am

Hi People…
Zolft is a good drug for me to get me in sync and help me thru the craze of my peri-menapausal symptoms. The down fall is that my weight gain of about 15lbs. is a terrible blow to my vanity. I try to crunch my eating habits,because I want to keep my self looking good. I might be going on 51 and being a woman is hard. I work in a large school dept and have active contact with all peoples in the community.For now this is what I need to do to get me thru my times now. My husband and grown sons tell me that I'm so much better on the zoloft. I guess for now its me and my zoloft. Mrs.G

Lucy June 22, 2009 at 12:52 pm

I am so surprised to hear people blame zoloft for weight gain. Everyone I know (including myself) always loses weight when they take it. I ALWAYS gain weight when I get off it.

Anonymous July 12, 2009 at 6:11 pm

Lucy, you are lucky you lose weight with the Zoloft. I have been a petite size 2-4 my entire life, but the Zoloft made me gain 22 pounds VERY QUICKLY. This may not seem like a lot, but it is on someone who is only 5'1".
I have tried exercise, diet, and more exercise, to no avail.
I am now in my second month of trying to taper off the Zoloft. I can't wait to be off of it and hopefully lose some of this weight.

Astro February 21, 2012 at 10:49 pm

I also have gained a ton of weight. My entire life I have never been over a size 6!!! I have been on zoloft for 3 years now, 50mg at the highest and gained at least 30 pounds! I am so sorry but the weight gain has made me even more depressed then what I was before. Trying to titer off now but having severe side effects with my vision and headaches. My dilema: do I not take zoloft and become seasonally depressed again, or continue taking zoloft and continue to gain more weight and become even more depressed because I am now fat> ? Lifes decisions just plain stink

Tanya November 20, 2009 at 7:39 pm

I started at 25mg daily for and increased after 1 month to 50mg. month 3 my doc up’d it to 100 mg, after 3 months on that I too all of sudden couldn’t pull my pants over my all-of-sudden fat ass! I’ve been more depressed on it, anti-social, insomnia, tremors, twitching, and i’ve slowly declined my dosage over the last month and i’m back to 25mg… now i’m not sure how to just stop… any advice? do i take oner every other day? then 3 times/week, then twice/week… or just stop it altogether now?

shell July 17, 2010 at 6:25 pm

OMG. I too gianed a ton of weight. I work out and always have 6 days a week, run lift weights do hot yoga and I am a fricking COW. It is the zoloft for me. I was told to taper taking one every other day. OMG. Now I have this side effects (I am off of it now) like wanting to cry and still fat as a cow (always around 140 and now at 160 but afraid to go on scale to see it my weight it UP! so may be higher). I have what I believe is “brian shivers?” Has anyone had this? I am scared and I am a single mom what am I supposed to do. help

Tara July 28, 2010 at 4:40 pm

I gained 30 lbs on Zoloft in one year. I know it was the Zoloft because I maintained my size 4 figure all the way through having four children (including a set of twins). While the Zoloft was great to elevate my mood, it made me hungry all the time and crave sweets like crazy. I have been off for three months and lost 12 pounds. I am further limiting my calorie intake and upping my exercise to get the remaining 18 off. (I exercised 4-5 hours a week on it, as well.) My advise on any anti-depressant is that if you need it, take it, but for me, the weight gain bothered me enough to committ to working a bit harder on the reasons why I started taking it in the first place. To the person to lost weight, I have a friend on it who has also maintained her figure with no problem. I think that the drug affects people in different ways, but weight gain is such a common complaint with Zoloft that you seem to be the exception rather than the rule. Lucky you!!! 🙂

pat October 14, 2010 at 7:05 am

i came off zoloft 13 days ago only becuz there was issues between my pharmacy and the doc. o well i really thought it was time anyways. but the withdrawal has been terrible. cant concentrate, nausea is killin me, aches, flashes. its even scarey every now and then driving. well i believe i gained weight on zoloft too but my doc said no. but i thought it was. he was also the one that said this was not addictive. well i wouldnt be having withdrawals if it wasnt. but i am also getting bloated. i think my weight might be going up again. so one with experience please tell me is this weight gain again and will it go away. i am work out 3 to 4 times a week and do a lot of work outside on my days off. i am older but i’m hoping that doesnt have any thing to do with it. if you have an answer for me please send me an email classicpat2004 at yahoo. thanks

suzi October 25, 2010 at 11:08 am

i gained weight on Lexapro, when i told my new doctor that i was off of it because of weight gain, he said , “yes lexapro makes you fat and happy”. I had terrible withdrawals and it took a long time before i could happily function again. Now i am on Clonapin and its the same way, i know when i haven’t taken it all day because i begin feeling very tense and have to take it before the headache starts. It causes word loss and the internet says even if you stop taking it the word loss continues. I am doing physical therapy for low back pain, i have to sleep in my recliner, its so bad. My physical therapist is teaching me to breath from my diaphram, he assures me this will help with all my health issues. Also i am doing water therapy. At this stage i am willing to try anything, best to everyone, suzi

Allison April 26, 2011 at 3:11 pm

I need some help/suggestions/advice. I started Zoloft about 10 months ago for anxiety. I started very slowly at 25mg and worked my way up to 100mg after about 3 months. I have always been a size 0 to 3 and an avid runner. I have not changed anything in my diet or excercise and have gained almost 20 pounds! I am very small boned and 5’2″, so a 20 pound gain to me is huge. This is how much I weighed when I was 8 months pregnant! I noticed the weight gain starting after about the 4th month and it has just kept going up, up, up and I’m worried it’s not going to stop. I can’t fit into my pants, and my normal shirts I wear are not flattering at all anymore. I am training for a marathon right now, but am still gaining weight. It doesn’t make sense. It’s definitely not muscle mass. I saw my doctor today and she said that weight gain is a side effect for some people. She gave me a couple of different options and I’m going to try and make a decision. But, I have questions for anyone who might have already gone through this same thing? She suggested adding a low dose of wellbutrin to offset the side effects of the zoloft, but no guarantee that it will help the weight gain. OR switching to Celexa, meaning I’d have to wean off the Zoloft to start the Celexa, which is still not a guarantee that I’ll not gain weight on Celexa. I’m afraid of the things I’ve heard people have experienced coming off the zoloft (or any anti-anxiety med for that matter). The zoloft has worked great for the anxiety, but the weight gain is out of control. I’d love some advice on which path to take…especially if someone has been through this before. Anyone, switched meds after being on one for almost a year? Anyone switch from Zolft to Celexa? Anyone on both zoloft and welbutrin and why? Any suggestions or comments are appreciated. Thanks so much!

Lis June 5, 2011 at 8:34 am

I’ve been on 50 mg Zoloft (generic) for the last 8 months. Started at 25 mg for a couple of weeks, then up to the 50. I talked to my doctor last week, and she cut me back to 25 mg for the next 3 months. She said that way the higher dose is firmly out of my system, and I can see how I’m feeling on the lower dose, and she’ll let me make my own decision about staying at 25, going back to 50, or stopping it altogether. Sounds great. But, like an idiot, I forgot to ask her about expected withdrawal symptoms, so I’m really glad boards like this exist to let me know it’s “okay.”

I’m on the pills for generalized anxiety disorder, I was starting to have what mimicked asthma attacks when I was stressed, but wasn’t responding to any traditional treatments. So, time to try something else. Going on the Zoloft really stunk for the first week or so – dry mouth like I didn’t think possible, and a repeat of the experience when I went up in dosage. Now that I’m weaning off of it, it sounds like I’m lucky – two days at the lower dose, and so far “just” muscle/joint aches and mild headaches. Not looking forward to the next couple of weeks much, nor to when I try weaning off it completely.

Btw, I also experienced weight gain. I was sitting at about 113 when I started it. My “goal” weight is about 120, so granted I was below that and needed to put on a little bit. But, I’ve since shot up to nearly 130, nothing fits right, and I’m uncomfortable in my own body. I talked to the doc about it, but she says it has absolutely nothing to do with the meds. Reading this board and others, I think maybe it does. It was the only change in my life during that time period, and like others it was about 3 months in before the weight gain got significant and felt uncontrollable no matter what I did.

Susan July 14, 2011 at 7:47 pm

I have been on Sertraline (Zoloft ) for several years. Honestly, I have never had a problem until recently. I am not on it for depression, I was put on it years ago because I was going back and forth to the Cleveland Clinic because I was having my aorta reconstructed. More than likely they put me on it to keep me calm. However, I just have decided that I would like to start weaning myself off of this.
I have notice my urine smelling really bad. So I looked that up. The first thing that I read was Sertaline can cause your urine to smell! I don’t think I need to research any further. I thought about using my pill cutter and start cutting my pills a little more each week 3/4 of a pill 1 week, 1/2 the next and then 1/4 then off! I am going to try and see if it works! Has anyone ever tried that?

Mark Ivar Myhre July 15, 2011 at 7:51 am

If it were me, I’d go a little slower than that – like two weeks between cuts.

Lis July 15, 2011 at 9:33 am

My doctor has me coming off it REALLY slowly. I was on a fairly low dose already, so she had me just halve it for three months, which I’m almost at the end of now (I think if I’d been on a higher dose she would have reduced it some, not halved). At the end of three months she’s leaving it up to me to decide what to do – if I think I need to go back to the original dose, stay where I am, or continue weaning off. It can stay in your system a long time, so this was her way of making sure I truly had the higher dosage out of my system and was doing okay with the lower one before making a decision about what to try next.

Tracy September 11, 2011 at 11:56 pm

Zoloft is such bullshit. It was the second antidepressant I went on, and within a few months, I gained 30 pounds. I’m 5’2 and have been around 100-110 pounds most of my life. After I went on Zoloft, I gained 30 pounds. I’m now 140 lbs. I went from size 4 to size 12, which has only added to my depression. Ironic how you go on a drug to help you feel a certain way and then end up feeling shittier because of it huh?

amy October 13, 2011 at 10:54 am

I am at a loss as what to do. I am gaining weight like crazy on zoloft. I think it it is causing my appetite to be out of control. I can sit here and think about how I’m going weight and need to go work out, next thing I know I’m in the kitchen eating pizza. My doctor has cancer and is not real reliable right now. He may or may not show up to appt’s so I’m looking for a new doctor. I’m the mean time I think I’m gonna start wiening myself off of zoloft. I also find myself so exhausted to the point where I feel like I have to take a nap within an hour of waking up. I know this sounds pathetic to some of you but this is my story. I am 34 years old. I went from 145-182. I’m more depressed now than ever.

belinda December 26, 2011 at 1:28 am

Wow. I am so freaking bummed out. I am bi polar and go through HEAVY depressions. I was just in the hospital for depression and they gave me Zoloft. I am already on Lithium (caused me to gain 35 lbs), wellbutrin and clonazepam.
I have only been taking the Zoloft for 2 days but it worked IMMEDIATELY and I have not felt this normal in so long…..I was feeling so happy, then I checked the web and everybody is gaining weight, or trying to get OFF Zoloft, saying how horrid it is. Crap. REALLY? Isn’t there ANYTHING we can take that won’t make us FAT? It is SO WRONG and WEIRD because being fat is NOT HEALTHY. Drug companies are screwing us over by not admisting these meds make us fat. UUUGGGG!

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