Weight gain when quitting unavoidable?

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I have been taking adderall for almost four years now, and it's slowly started to suck the life out of me, to the point I don't even recognize myself or my actions. I want to feel like I felt when I first start taking the drug, because the first two years were amazing. I know that feeling is not going to return-especially after reading other's experiences on this forum.

I've known I need to quit for a while now, but am terrified of gaining weight; staying thin has always been incredibly important to me (used to have an eating disorder). I have always loved to exercise, way before I started adderall. While the adderall initially made me exercise even more, it's seriously hindered my running/exercise routine at this point. The hypertension is not a good feeling when I'm running on the treadmill and I get tired easily. So I know that if I quit, I'll probably end up being in better shape eventually.

Has anyone quit adderall and NOT experienced drastic weight gain? If so, how did you do it? Willpower? Following a certain diet? It'd be reassuring to know of a few cases where people manage to not gain a ton of weight when quitting, but maybe this is inevitable and I just need to let go.

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I'm not sure if I'm the right person to answer this one because I did gain a lot of weight after adderall... but I think you can definitely soften the blow now that you know that weight gain is common after quitting...if you plan for it, and eat properly, you could even gain nothing....It will be tough but it's definitely, definitely do-able!

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I gained a few pounds the first two weeks of quitting, but then my weight normalized. These are the things that have helped me.

1. L-tyrosine. I take one pill (500 mg) in the morning about 30 minutes before breakfast, and another pill 30 mins before lunch. I find that l-tyrosine suppresses my appetite just as much as Adderall did.

2. Coffee. Caffeine is an appetite suppressant. I have a cup of coffee every morning when I get to work, and sometimes another cup in the afternoon. If you don't like coffee, sugar-free Red Bull is a good alternative. No more than one a day, though.

3. 100-calorie popcorn bags. When I want to snack out of boredom, I have a 100-calorie bag of microwave popcorn. It takes long enough to eat that it satisfies my carb craving, and it's only 100 calories.

4. Fruit and veggies. Try to add fruit or veggies to every meal without worrying about anything else, and you'll start eating healthier.

5. No liquid calories. I only drink water and coffee during the day, and occasionally a glass of wine with dinner. Not drinking your calories will help you lose weight.

6. Protein snacks. Hard boiled eggs, almonds, beef jerky - protein snacks will help you feel full and are healthy. I typically eat a hard boiled egg if I need something to tide me over before lunch. It's easy to make a bunch and keep in the fridge.

7. Don't eat out. I bring my lunch to work every day and eat breakfast and dinner at home. If you make your own food, you naturally won't eat as many calories. If I do go out to eat, it's usually sushi or something fairly light.

8. Fun exercise. I do hot yoga twice a week and go hiking on Sundays. That helps to keep me in shape.

I hope these tips help. Not gaining weight may have been easier for me because I don't have a sweet tooth (I've never drank soda or eaten candy or sweets) and I've always been a pretty healthy eater, but I do love carbs and would overeat if not for the natural appetite suppressants of caffeine and tyrosine!

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That is a really great list. I actually eat exactly like that, too. Except, I have a sweet tooth so I incorporate low calorie sweets. And I was able to lose and keep off all my post adderall weight gain (about 27 lbs). I actually ended up losing more weight then when I was taking adderall with my new eating habits.

1. I drink one or two cups of coffee or a Red Bull and plenty diet sodas. No Sugary soft drinks. Zero calorie orange soda, mountain dew and pepsi..Since these are zero calorie, I drink them unlimited. I also sweeten my coffee with sugar free creamer and low calorie sugar.

2. I also take L-Tyrosine and L-Phenylalanine, which is another dopamine amino acid.

3. I am addicted to the 100 calorie bags of popcorn. I try to eat just half a bag a day, and then I toss away the other half.

4. I eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Fruits 3x a day and salads. I also like the assorted frozen vegetable packages they sell from Green Giant. And I usually make salads from fresh romaine hearts with, cherry tomatoes fat free wishbone italian dressing. Basically, as a habit, I try to eat vegetables along with lunch and dinner.

5.I eat plenty of protein snacks about 2x a day (about 200 calories worth). Here are some great choices for low calorie protein.

- The Oscar Meyer thin sliced turkey in the deli section (90 calories for twelve slices!!)

- Mozarella string cheeses or Laughing Cow Light swiss cheeses (they are 50 calories a pop)

- Greek Yogurt (I like Dannon's strawberry Oikos, about 110 calories a cup)

- I also like Egg Beaters (which are basically just egg whites)

- Canadian bacon (about 50 calories a slice)

- Morningstar sausage crumbles are also a really good choice. (you can get them in the frozen food section)

- Purdue has these precooked chicken strips which are really good and about 90 calories a serving...

- Oscar Meyer has 40 calorie hotdogs! so when I have these I usually eat two at a time

6. I also eat low calorie carbohydrate snacks about 2x a day (about 200 calories worth)

- Weight Watchers multigrain bread (40 calories a slice, much less then most breads)

- Vitatop muffins which are just the muffin tops (these are 100 calories each and so good)

- other carbs I eat include corn tortillas for variety (about 40 calories a slice)

- Fat Free waffles are a good choice, also Aunt Jemima has these confetti pancakes which are a good bargain.

7. I eat low calorie sweets about 2x a day (about 150 calories each)

- Weight Watchers has a good selection of desserts (brownies, chocolate cake)

- also there are frozen fudgsicles which and ice pops from Good Humour that are really low cal (about 20-60 calories a pop)

8. I try not to eat out either. Check out the nutritional info for restaurants. Did you know that most dishes at the Olive Garden have 900-1200 calories per dish. And some of their desserts have 1300 calories per serving? That's almost enough for the entire day!

9. In addition to all these things, I eat the three Nutrisystem meals I get from them. Each meal is about 170-220 calories. It's equivalent to like getting the Smart Choice frozen food meals at the grocery store...

10. Occasionally, I will indulge, especially holidays time, but I always try to get right back on schedule as soon as I can...

You know, I never used to worry about eating when I was on adderall. If I needed to lose weight, if my pants were getting tighter, I would just 'stop eating'..it was really easy, lol. I had to learn all this stuff after I quit. It feels good now too, not cheating, you know? Basically, I am eating constantly throughout the day, but in low calorie form, so I don't get too hungry. The toughest part for me was incorporating more veggies into my diet. I was never a big veggie fan, but now I have learned to like salads and other veggies a lot more .

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I just wanted to add, if you find healthy foods that you enjoy, it won't be as hard to keep the weight off. I'm not a big salad fan, but I like grilled veggies like eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms and bell peppers, so I'll grill them and have them as side dishes during the week, or make paninis. I also like Kashi cereals. They're tasty and high in fiber. If I have a bowl for breakfast it keeps me full until lunch.

You may want to be careful about eating too many 'low-fat' snacks. The fat is what makes you feel full. That's why I like eggs, nuts, string cheese, edamame, etc. You don't need to eat a lot because the fat is satiating.

It's also better to eat foods in their natural state rather than foods laden with chemical additives to make them 'low-calorie' or 'low-fat'. Several studies suggest that artificial sweeteners stimulate hunger, and that people will eat more of a food if it's labeled 'low-calorie'. And, the more processed a food is the worse it is for your body (read Michael Pollan's 'In Defense of Food' or the more concise 'Food Rules' for excellent insight into the reductionist science of nutrition).

I've also noticed recently that I look thinner when I eat three square meals a day and don't snack, vs. several small meals throughout the day. That way of eating seems to better for my metabolism (it's also the way I ate on Adderall), so experiment and see what is better for you. Try to follow some of Michael Pollan's Food Rules: shop at the outer edges of the grocery store (all the processed junk is in the middle aisles, whole foods are on the perimeter), don't eat packaged foods that have more than five ingredients listed, and don't eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn't recognize as food. :)

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I got off in September and by November I had gained at least 25 pounds. I went back on Adderall November 28th but started the "eat to live" diet mid December. When I got off Adderall the second time, on December 30th, I was eating healthy and have not gained the weight back this time. Being cognizant of how fast I could put the weight back on helped this go around. Also the l-tyrosine gives you the energy to exercise and suppressed my appetite much like Adderall did. But I take it sparingly now, so I'll see if I gain weight from stopping it. I think the fruits and vegetables helped to clear the foggy brain feeling I had when I quit last time. I was only down maybe three days after quitting this time, and I've felt fine ever since.

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Thanks for the helpful tips everyone. I think I tend to psych myself out when I try to quit, mentally fearing that I'll eat a ton and gain weight. But if I just focus more on exercising and eating really healthy (since I haven't exactly been eating so well on addy), I'm hoping that any weight gain will come off in a few months. I am so used to just using addy as my main source of energy. Really not listening to my body and what nutrients it needs. And I have to just let go and realize that I may gain a few pounds, but they'll come off eventually and I'll be rid of this nasty pill that is controlling my life.

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