has anyone gained weight after quitting their anti-depressant? i started paxil two years ago at 130. (i think) because i was feeling happier, i got into exercising and got down to about 125. then about a year into it, the weight came back plus five, putting me at 135. i have now been off paxil for two months. i am doing at least 40 minutes of cardio a day. i am scared to do weight lifting because i can't bear to put on anymore weight than i already have. but...here's the kicker...despite all my working out, i am now at 140! and it can't be muscle because i'm not doing weight lifting. i just don't get it and it is getting very frustrating and actually depressing. has anyone else had this problem, and if so, how long did it take your body to get back to normal?? i just feel like i am putting in all this effort for nothing...for infact the opposite of what i want. i want weight loss and i'm getting weight gain! ugh.
As I don't know you, I can only give general advice, so my apologies if any of it is way off the mark, or stuff you already know. :-)
1. Women do not bulk up easily, even if they do weight training. What happens is we build lean muscle mass, which requires more energy than an equal volume of fat, even at rest - this means more calories consumed. If you are worried about gaining weight, try lighter weights, and more reps.
2. Anti-depressants have an accumulative effect, and affect chemical receptors in your brain. If you are concerned you should speak to your doctor, otherwise I would just relax and give your brain and body a while longer to re-adjust.
3. Diet plays a bigger part in weight loss than exercise. If you can, keep a food diary for a few days (make sure you cover week days and the weekend). Don't starve yourself (too few calories and you'll just slow your metabolism), eat a good breakfast, and try and eat before you're ravenously hungry.
4. Stress and poor sleep can both cause you to put on weight (especially around your waist). I mention this especially because my sleep patterns went bananas after I came off anti-depressants. It may not apply to you though.
5. Please consider not weighing yourself for a while. Forget the number. Go by measurements (bust, waist, hips, thigh) for a more accurate way to track your progress, one that doesn't make you worry about putting on muscle. Muscle weighs more than fat but it takes up less space...!
I also came off anti-depressants and my weight changed. I wish I could give you a definite time frame, but everyone is different. The best advice I can give you is to let go of the numbers, enjoy healthy eating habits, try strength training at least twice a week, and just generally take good care of your mental and physical wellbeing. Your body will sort itself out, no worries.