Bupropion For Weight Loss


An article about how Bupropion work for weight loss and how to take this drug properly. This is a very helpful article for anyone who want lose some pound.

Bupropion (also known by its trade name, Wellbutrin) is a prescription medication used in the treatment of major depression and seasonal affective disorder. It is sold as an antidepressant, smoking cessation aid, stimulant, appetite suppressant, and to reduce withdrawal symptoms in those who wish to discontinue using the opiates. At the end you will find out how effective is Wellbutrin for eight Loss?

How does bupropion help me lose weight? Bupropion acts as a norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor (NDRI), which means it blocks the reuptake of both norepinephrine and dopamine into the presynaptic neuron after they have been released. This results in increased concentrations of neurotransmitters in the synapse between neurons and therefore an increase in neurotransmission from one neuron to another. The benefits of weight loss pills have been included at the end of this article.

Bupropion For Weight Loss

Wellbutrin (bupropion) is a prescription medication for depression and smoking cessation. Bupropion can cause weight loss in some people, so it’s sometimes prescribed as a weight loss medication in the form of Contrave (a combination drug of bupropion and naltrexone). Here’s more information about the weight loss potential of Wellbutrin.

Does Wellbutrin cause weight loss?

It can. Bupropion (the generic form of Wellbutrin) was initially prescribed as an antidepressant. It is the only antidepressant associated with weight loss (Alonso-Pedrero, 2019). Healthcare providers noticed that mostly pleasant side effect, and today bupropion is sometimes prescribed as part of a medication for weight loss (naltrexone/bupropion, brand name Contrave), as well as a stop-smoking aid (brand name Zyban). 

As far as the evidence that bupropion by itself causes weight loss: 

  • A 2016 study that analyzed the long-term weight loss effect of various antidepressant medications found that non-smokers who took bupropion lost 7.1 pounds over two years. (This effect was not seen in smokers). Users of the other antidepressants in the study gained weight (Arterburn, 2016).
  • Bupropion seems to be effective for weight-loss maintenance as well. A 2012 study found that obese adults who took bupropion SR (standard release) in 300mg or 400mg doses lost 7.2% and 10% of their body weight, respectively, over 24 weeks and maintained that weight loss at 48 weeks (Anderson, 2012). 
  • And a 2019 review of 27 studies on antidepressants and weight gain found that antidepressant use increases body weight by an average of 5%—except bupropion, which is associated with weight loss (Alonso-Pedrero, 2019). 

Are weight loss drugs right for me?

If you’re interested in taking bupropion for weight loss, talk with your healthcare provider about whether a weight loss medication is the right option for you. 

Healthcare providers consider certain factors before prescribing a weight loss medication. These include the potential benefits of the medication, any possible side effects, your current medical status and medications, your family’s medical history, and cost (NIH, 2016). 

Healthcare providers generally prescribe weight loss medications for people with a BMI (body mass index) of 30 or higher, which signifies obesity. If your BMI is 27 to 29, healthcare providers may prescribe a weight-loss drug if you’re experiencing health problems related to overweight, such as hypertension (high blood pressure) or type 2 diabetes (NIH, 2016). 

Your healthcare provider also might determine your overweight or obesity can be best treated with simple lifestyle changes—such as a healthy eating plan, regular exercise, and better sleep—before prescribing medication. The 8 first steps to healthy weight loss: setting you up for success

Side effects of bupropion

Bupropion can cause certain side effects. Common side effects associated with bupropion include mental changes (like hostility or agitation), dry mouth, headaches, nausea and vomiting and dizziness, and others (DailyMed, 2018). 

Serious side effects can include seizures, hallucinations, confusion, hypertension (high blood pressure), and allergic reactions (MedlinePlus, 2018). Seek medical advice immediately if you experience these side effects while taking bupropion.

Bupropion can also cause drug interactions with certain other medications, including (DailyMed, 2018): 

  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
  • Blood thinners
  • Digoxin
  • HIV antivirals
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Drugs that increase dopamine levels
  • Drugs that lower the seizure threshold 

This is not a complete list of side effects or drug interactions. If you have questions whether a drug or supplement you’re taking might interact with bupropion, ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

How Effective Is Wellbutrin for Weight Loss?

What is Wellbutrin?

Bupropion is a drug known as an NDRI (norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor). It prevents the brain from absorbing free-floating norepinephrine (a.k.a. adrenaline) and dopamine (otherwise known as the feel-good hormone). This increases the level of both chemicals in the brain (Huecker, 2020). Experts aren’t exactly sure how bupropion works to stimulate weight loss. It may act on receptors and neurotransmitters in the brain that affect metabolism and appetite.

Bupropion is sold in generic form and under several brand names, including: 

  • Aplenzin
  • Budeprion SR
  • Budeprion XL
  • Buproban
  • Forfivo XL
  • Wellbutrin
  • Wellbutrin SR
  • Wellbutrin XL
  • Zyban 

Bupropion is FDA-approved to treat major depressive disorder (MDD) and seasonal affective disorder (SAD). It is also used to help people quit smoking (smoking cessation).

Is Wellbutrin safe?

The therapeutic effects of Wellbutrin are typically experienced in the second week of taking the medication. Depending on its formulation, the time it takes for optimal concentrations of Wellbutrin to enter the bloodstream differs from two, three, and five hours for immediate, sustained, and extended releases, respectively.

The effect lasts for approximately one to two days, during which time you should be monitored for any serious adverse effects associated with taking this medication.

Like most drugs, Wellbutrin can cause adverse effects, which have been reported to occur in over 10% of patients.

Common side effects may include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness

More serious adverse effects may include:

  • Cardiovascular problems, such as tachycardia (elevated heart rate) or hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Seizures
  • Suicidal thoughts and behavior, especially in young adults.

If you experience any of these side effects while taking Wellbutrin, it is important to contact your healthcare professional immediately.

It is also important to note that Wellbutrin can interact with other drugs that you may be taking. These interactions may cause undesired and potentially serious side effects. Medications that may react with Wellbutrin include other antidepressants, such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors and anti-seizure drugs (like clopidogrel)¹.

In particular, seizure disorder is a significant contraindication to Wellbutrin use. As a result, you should avoid taking Wellbutrin if you take any anti-seizure medication or have personal factors that predispose you to seizures, such as severe head injuries, stroke, alcohol consumption, or taking sedatives.⁷ This is because concurrent administration of Wellbutrin can exacerbate potential seizure activity.

Caution should also be taken with new mothers who are still breastfeeding due to reports of Wellbutrin being detected in breast milk.⁸ If you have any questions about whether Wellbutrin may interfere with your current medication, you should seek medical advice from your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

The lowdown

Wellbutrin is an antidepressant that is also used to promote weight loss, compared to other antidepressants which have not been shown to produce this effect. Numerous clinical trials have reported reduced body weight in patients taking Wellbutrin, indicating it may be an effective treatment for weight loss.

While the mechanisms of how Wellbutrin supports weight loss are unclear and have not been the subject of significant research to date, medical experts suggest that the medication affects the brain reward pathways that influence food intake, cravings, and behavior.

How Does Bupropion Help Me Lose Weight?

In non-technical terms, Bupropion helps patients who have stress-related eating far better than those who have boredom-related eating. If you merely have bad eating habits, this may not be the best choice for you. If you are an emotional eater, this may be a great medicine for you. It stimulates noradrenaline, dopamine, and (less-so) serotonin receptors. This gives you more energy, suppresses your appetite, and enhances your mood. Stress increases cortisol and ghrelin which stimulate your appetite. Dopamine and noradrenaline suppress your appetite. Because the medicine improves stress and mood, it was originally invented as an anti-depressant. However, later studies showed that it helped people quit smoking, so Bupropion has been FDA-approved to help with smoking cessation. Further studies showed that it helps provide better weight loss than diet alone. Even back in 2001, it was shown in a study at Duke of non-depressed women trying to lose weight … that 3 times as many taking Bupropion saw success as those who were taking placebo (a fake pill). As a result, Bupropion is one of the components of the #1 most prescribed FDA-approved brand-name medication for weight loss, Contrave.

What are the risks of Bupropion?

You may quit smoking if you are taking this medicine. Many patients tell me that their spouses are happier and their bosses report they seem less stressed and are nicer to be around as well as more productive at work. Rarely, a patient will tell me that the opposite happened and they became anxious or crabby or mean. If that happens, stop taking the medicine and call us to let us know you stopped. You can stop taking Bupropion immediately without having to wean off of it like other medicines. You absolutely should not take Bupropion if you have had a diagnosis of anorexia or seizures or if you’re allergic to Bupropion or if you take MAO-inhibitors. In Aug 2009, the FDA added a warning label to many medications saying that they can cause rare cases of depression and suicidal thoughts. The FDA added this warning label to so many medications, including ones that doctors have used safely for years, that I’m not sure how seriously doctors and patients have taken this warning, so my best advice is to immediately tell your doctor if you start developing depressive symptoms after you start any medication – blood pressure, diabetes, aspirin, tylenol, anti-depressant, birth control pills … any medication.

Benefits of Weight Loss Pills


One of the hardest parts of any diet is biting the bullet and getting started. The use of dietary supplements for weight loss will often help you jump start your diet. This is especially true for people who have difficulty losing weight despite exercising and dieting. Keep in mind, however, that it’s best to take them under the supervision of a doctor and that they’re only recommended if you have a body mass index above 30.


One of the most effective ways to curtail overeating and help you lose weight is to use methods that suppress your hunger so that you end up eating less. Drinking plenty of water is a popular way to achieve this, but dietary supplements can also be effective. That’s because they contain stimulants such as caffeine and other appetite-suppressing ingredients.


Speaking in general terms, one of the biggest advantages of dietary supplements for weight loss is that they work. There are many different popular types on the market that people absolutely swear by whenever they’re trying to burn calories and shave off some inches. Although there’s no magic pill, per se, many people have made supplements a regular part of their weight loss plans.


Weight loss supplements don’t care what you’re doing. Whether you’re pumping iron, doing cardio, or sitting at your computer, they’re always hard at work burning fat and helping you slim down. This is different from diet pills, which typically work by increasing your energy level to burn calories during a workout. Even when you’re sleeping at night, weight loss supplements are doing their job.


The positive effects of dietary supplements for weight loss go far beyond simply burning fat. As the supplements help you lose weight, you’ll also see a decrease in blood sugar levels, blood pressure, and cholesterol, while experiencing an increase in your sensitivity to insulin. This means that your health will improve, you’ll have more energy, and you’ll be at a much lower risk of serious ailments.

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