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Woman pouring pills into her hand from a glass jar.

‘Female Viagra’ Addyi May Cause Weight Loss. Doctors Learning Why.

What is the common side effect which makes women reluctant to try certain medication or contraception methods? Weight gain. Luckily when taking the so-called female Viagra the extra results are… quite desirable.

Recent studies have confirmed that the drug Addyi, prescribed to manage low desire in women, contributes to weight loss. Scientists are uncertain about what causes this. Can women safely take the “female Viagra” to lose weight (and enjoy feeling more horny in the process)?

Concerns about medication-related weight gain common among women

We all know or have heard of someone who has gained a lot of weight as a result of medical treatment. The usual suspects are hormonal drugs and contraceptives. Studies show that some women avoid the pill because the believe it makes them fatter.

Women suffering from depression and other mood disorders have similar concerns. Some sources suggest that up to 25% of people taking antidepressants experience weight increase.

A surprising discovery

When the new drug to manage female hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) entered the market, potential patients worried the drug might lead to excess weight. The chemical composition of the pill described as “the female Viagra” has been associated with weight gain. Analysis of the actual impact of filibanserin on women’s weight has revealed surprising results.

Woman weighing herself on a scale and cheering.

Studies show the “female Viagra” helps women lose weight

It turns out over 25% of women who have been taking the drug to manage their low libido have also lost at least 5% of their baseline weight, which equals 3.6 kilos on average. 17% lost more than 7% of their initial weight, that is 5.1 kilos on average.

Why does the “female Viagra” promote weight loss?

Researchers have been trying to understand the mechanism of weight loss in patients taking HSDD drugs. So far they haven’t been able to find a definitive explanation.

Addyi can in some cases lead to nausea, so scientists have explored this link. It doesn’t seem like there is a connection. Women who lost less weight during the course of the study actually experienced nausea more often than those with a more significant weight loss.

Scientists suspect that decrease in body weight may be a result in general mood improvement and better sleep in filibanserin patients.

Can I take Addyi to lose weight?

A pill that gets you in the mood for sex and helps lose weight? That’s a perfect combination, you might think. Should you consider taking the drug if you don’t have sexual problems but want to lose weight?

A simple answer is: there are better options. There are dedicated weight loss solutions available. These have been thoroughly tested in that specific context and can bring better and more reliable results.

The so-called female Viagra has its own side-effects, such as tiredness and sleep difficulties. It’s also pretty expensive and comes with restrictions. For example you should not drink alcohol when taking the drug.

If you are struggling to lose weight, ask your physician for appropriate treatment options. It is important to remember that pills alone will not do the trick. You will have to introduce lifestyle changes in order to achieve a long-lasting effect.

Do ED drugs help men lose weight too?

Man measuring his waist.

Scientists still haven’t confirmed the link between Viagra and weight loss in men

The link between weight loss and medication to improve sexual function has been explored before. A couple of years ago British tabloid “The Daily Mail” broke out the news that Viagra can help men lose belly fat.

The National Health Service even issued a statement, calling the headline “inaccurate and sensationalist”. NHS experts explained that the German study quoted in The Mail’s article was performed on mice and only revealed a potential ability of sildenafil (active ingredient of Viagra) to transform “bad” fat cells into good ones.

While the impact of erectile dysfunction drugs on men’s weight remains uncertain, one thing we can be sure of. Modern ED drugs provide a safe and easy treatment for most male patients. Check out our erectile dysfunction page to learn about the currently available options.

Anka Grzywacz is a sexologist, reproductive health expert and Certified Sex Coach™. In her online practice she helps busy parents solve their intimate problems.