Helpful Insights forPatients and Caregivers
Unfortunately, weight gain is a common side effect of many psychiatric medications. These may cause serious health concerns in the absence of weight loss and proper medical care. It is very important to manage weight gain since medications may be needed over a long period of time. Fortunately, there are a few ways to prevent and reverse weight gain caused by medications1-2.


  1. McElroy SL. Obesity in patients with severe mental illness: overview and management. J Clin Psychiatry. 2009;70 Suppl 3:12-21. DOI: 10.4088/JCP.7075su1c.03. PubMed PMID: 19570497.
  2. Zimmermann U, Kraus T, Himmerich H, Schuld A, Pollm├Ącher T. Epidemiology, implications and mechanisms underlying drug-induced weight gain in psychiatric patients. J Psychiatr Res. 2003;37(3):193-220. PubMed PMID: 12650740.
  3. Domecq JP, Prutsky G, Leppin A, Sonbol MB, Altayar O, Undavalli C, et al. Clinical review: Drugs commonly associated with weight change: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015;100(2):363-70. DOI: 10.1210/jc.2014-3421. PubMed PMID: 25590213; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5393509.
  4. Shrivastava A, Johnston ME. Weight-gain in psychiatric treatment: risks, implications, and strategies for prevention and management. Mens Sana Monogr. 2010;8(1):53-68. DOI: 10.4103/0973-1229.58819. PubMed PMID: 21327170; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3031940.
  5. Accessed April 8th, 2018.
  6. Wu R-R, Zhao J-ping, Jin H, Shao P, Fang M-S, Guo X-F, et al. Lifestyle intervention and metformin for treatment of antipsychotic-induced weight gain: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2008;299(2):185-93. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2007.56-b. PubMed PMID: 18182600.