Why does Wellbutrin cause weight loss?


Quick Answer

Wellbutrin reduces cravings, improves mood and enhances well-being, which may result in weight loss, according to WebMD. Bupropion, the generic name for Wellbutrin, was developed to help people stop smoking and is proven to ease nicotine withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings.

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Full Answer

Wellbutrin is an antidepressant that relieves depression by restoring the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain, says WebMD. It may also be prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, seasonal affective disorder and bipolar disorder.

Common side effects of Wellbutrin include nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, headache, constipation, increased sweating, joint aches, sore throat, blurred vision, strange taste in the mouth and dizziness, states WebMD. Weight loss is also listed as a common side effect.

Side effects of Wellbutrin that may directly or indirectly contribute to weight loss include restlessness, diarrhea, nausea and stomach cramps. Less common side effects that may contribute to weight loss include difficulty swallowing, indigestion, loss of appetite, throat irritation and taste problems.

Wellbutrin may be a good antidepressant for individuals who experience low energy with their depression, according to Mayo Clinic. Its energizing effect may also contribute to weight loss.

Wellbutrin is an atypical antidepressant and works by targeting the brain neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine, says Mayo Clinic. Unlike typical antidepressants that work solely on serotonin, Wellbutrin does not cause sexual side effects or weight gain. Doctors sometimes prescribe Wellbutrin in combination with other antidepressants to prevent excessive weight gain and counteract sexual side effects.

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