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Birth Control Pill

Current contraceptive pills do not cause weight gain, claim the experts. There are about 5 to 10% of the women, which might gain some weight, but it is not linked with the usage of the pill.

Low dose oral contraceptives do have adverse effects, such as retention of the fluids and fat buildup. Scientists explain that these effects are present in women extremely sensitive to hormones in the birth control pills.

Potential Weight Gain Causes

Weight Gain

Older birth control pill (DeproProvera and other) contain much higher doses of hormones, and women usually gain about 2.5-3kg (5.3-6.6lbs) when using these pills. The conducted studies show that some women gain weight, while other lose some pounds. Possible cause of the weight loss was the nausea as the side effect of these pills, which affected the appetite of women.

Water Retention

Female sexual hormone estrogen is responsible for the water retention in women using contraceptive pills. Estrogen stimulates renin-angiotensin system in the kidneys, thus causing retention of water and weight gain. Birth control tablets available on the market are all low in estrogen, and because of that less likely to cause increase of the body weight.

Appetite Stimulant

Contraceptive pills can raise insulin levels and insulin resistance in the body and prevent the weight loss, even if the woman is on restrictive diet. Women with glucose metabolism abnormalities might gain some extra pounds while using the medications.

Other Causes

The formulation of the pill may affect your weight. Every pill contains progestin and estrogen, and sometimes, certain progestin or the combination of a progestin and estrogen might cause weight gain. Some pills, especially those that contain desogestrel (Desogen, Ortho-Cept) are known to have lower prevalence of weight gain than some other contraceptive pills. On the other hand, the birth control tablets with norethindrone (Ortho Novum 7/7/7) have increased risk of unwanted weight gain.

Doctors advise using the oral contraceptives with 20mcgm of estrogen, to minimize the risk of weight gain. Currently, these are: Alesse, Levlite, Loestrin-Fe and Mircette.

Be aware that if you gained more than 5% of your current weight, you could be experiencing problems with abnormalities in the glucose metabolism or with insulin resistance. Consult your doctor about the possibility of these conditions. The solution could be the low carbohydrates diet. These patients are advised to avoid sugar and food rich in carbohydrates, since it could affect their weight and cause weight gain.

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