Many people are concerned about Spironolactone and weight loss or gain due to misconceptions.
Strictly speaking, it’s not a weight-loss pill or supplement.
However, some users of this prescription medicine claim to have achieved weight loss results. On the contrary, many others have reported weight gain after taking Spironolactone.
Many individuals struggling to achieve the ideal body weight are willing to try anything that can help them lose weight. And this pill happens to be one such medication.
What is Spironolactone?
According to Drugs.com, “Spironolactone is a potassium-sparing diuretic (water pill) that prevents your body from absorbing too much sodium and keeps your potassium levels from getting too low.”
Aldactone is one of the most well-known FDA-approved brands of Spironolactone pills available in pharmacies.
This prescription medicine is used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure.
It is also a potential diuretic that works well for treating body water retention symptoms. This pill can help remove excess body fluid and sodium from the body.
Spironolactone is a medication that is also used to diagnose and treat hyperaldosteronism, a condition that causes too much production of the aldosterone hormone by the adrenal gland.
Doctors may prescribe Spironolactone for treating:
- An excess of aldosterone causes hyperaldosteronism.
- excess water retention in the body,
- congestive heart failure,
- hepatic cirrhosis,
- resistant hypertension,
- nephrotic syndrome,
- hirsutism in women (excessive hair growth on the face or body),
- acne in women,
- female pattern baldness,
- hypokalemia (potassium deficiency).
Spironolactone Weight Loss
Because of the diuretic effect of Spironolactone, many patients may experience weight loss.
Water is the single largest constituent of the human body; about 60% of total body mass is water. Excess water retention in the body is one of the common reasons that people become overweight.
At best, a person can lose 5 pounds by relieving the water retention in the body impacted by this pill.
Spironolactone works for weight loss because this pill reduces excess water retention in the body. Taking these pills to lose weight isn’t a good idea in the long run. The weight will return once the pill is stopped; in short, it’s not healthy, specifically for weight loss.
When this pill is administered at a particular dose for weight loss, the body will respond by increasing aldosterone release. Spironolactone may cause temporary weight loss unless higher doses are administered.
Some prescription medications, such as Spironolactone, also may aid in weight gain or loss. Such unintentional outcomes depend on the specific health condition of an individual. But without professional medical advice, off-label use of medicines should be avoided.
Medical associations and healthcare providers are cautious about using it for off-label purposes like weight management.
Does Spironolactone Cause Weight Gain
Spironolactone bloating and weight gain are not true. There is no verified evidence supporting the possibility of weight gain caused by this pill. On the other hand, most patients who take this pill tend to lose weight because it is a purgative medicine.
Some patients might experience an increase in weight during medication because of an increase in appetite or fatigue and decreased activity that happens over an extended period while the treatment is in progress.
The patient should take only the dosage recommended by the physician; taking Spironolactone pills in a higher dosage may trigger digestive and metabolic issues that may cause a moderate increase in weight.
The patient must minimize the intake of potassium while on this medicine. Consuming much of it may cause problems like muscle weakness or a dangerous heart rhythm.
Spironolactone does not affect weight gain, irregular menstruation, or other prominent PCOS symptoms.
Insulin resistance could also be one of the prime reasons for the increase in body weight during medication.
Side Effects of Spironolactone
Spironolactone is a prescription medicine that should be taken only under the strict guidance of a doctor.
It produces certain side effects against the functions of aldosterone (a hormone regulating water and salt balance).
It is an excellent pill that expels sodium and water through urine while retaining potassium.
Spironolactone increases diuresis and consequently has antihypertensive properties, leading to lowering blood pressure.
Continuous use of Spironolactone pills may result in urine and serum electrolyte imbalance leading to hyperkalemia in the body. This condition can potentially precipitate heart failure.
Having foods rich in potassium or using such supplements while taking this pill can aggravate the hyperkalemia condition.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states an overt warning Spironolactone (sold under the brand name Aldactone) has been shown to have tumorigenic potential (causing cancer) in chronic toxicity studies in rats.
The common side effects of Spironolactone are transient and gradually disappear after the completion of treatment.
Here are the common side effects of drugs such as:
- dizziness, unsteadiness, tiredness, headache,
- stomach pain, cramps, diarrhea, or vomiting,
- excessive thirstiness and dryness in the mouth,
- appears to decrease testosterone,
- irregular menstrual periods and post-menopausal vaginal bleeding,
- erectile dysfunction,
- causes dehydration,
- reduces the production of androgen,
- increased hair growth on the body,
- breast pain in women and gynecomastia in men,
- muscle pain, weakness, and cramps.
In rare cases, a few patients who have previously used Spironolactone have reported severe side effects, such as:
- paralysis in the arms or legs,
- extreme tiredness, fainting, and mental confusion,
- constant bleeding or the eruption of bruises,
- severe skin reactions and allergies,
- severe abdominal pain, loss of appetite, bloody stools, or vomiting blood,
- shortness of breath.
Should You Take Spironolactone For Weight Loss
Spironolactone help reduces weight in some people, but no peer-reviewed studies or healthcare professionals recommend it for healthy weight management.
A purgative pill helps flush out excess fluids retained in the body. Sudden loss of excess fluid from the body will reduce your body fat for a short period.
One of the possible side effects of this pill is the loss of appetite, which can certainly have some impact on weight loss with a reduced intake of calories and fat.
Weight loss resulting from it does not generally affect all patients who consume this pill. Patients with excessive water retention in the body will lose a few pounds, but others will lose nothing. It is not a prescription medicine for slimming or belly fat loss.
It is unhealthy and may produce potentially hazardous side effects if Spironolactone is consumed for a prolonged period. You are not advised to take this pill unless recommended by your physician for a specifically approved medical indication.
Suppose you suffer from any form of edema (excessive fluid retention) caused by various hormones, liver, heart, or kidney conditions. In that case, using Spironolactone as prescribed by a medical professional will reduce the excess fluid in the body. This may result in weight loss for a temporary period.
Without professional medical advice, prescription medicines should not be stopped for any reason.
If you’re taking Spironolactone for weight loss, it isn’t healthy. It isn’t a fat loss medicine or diet pill approved by the U.S. FDA.
It would be best if you had a slimming diet combined with balanced nutrition and exercise.
Some patients might experience a temporary reduction in the water weight of their bodies because of the diuretic nature of this pill. Also, a decrease in appetite is a side effect.
They are exclusively meant for treating specific medical conditions; avoid using them for weight loss.
There’s also no scientific evidence proving that Spironolactone can cause weight gain effects, as reported by a few patients.