Weight and metabolic effects of dietary weight loss and exercise interventions in postmenopausal antidepressant medication users and non-users: a randomized controlled trial

Prev Med. 2013 Nov;57(5):525-32. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2013.07.006. Epub 2013 Jul 13.


Objective: Antidepressants may attenuate the effects of diet and exercise programs. We compared adherence and changes in body measures and biomarkers of glucose metabolism and inflammation between antidepressant users and non-users in a 12-month randomized controlled trial.

Methods: Overweight or obese, postmenopausal women were assigned to: diet (10% weight loss goal, N=118); moderate-to-vigorous aerobic exercise (225 min/week, N=117); diet+exercise (N=117); and control (N=87) in Seattle, WA 2005-2009. Women using antidepressants at baseline were classified as users (N=109). ANCOVA and generalized estimating equation approaches, respectively, were used to compare adherence (exercise amount, diet session attendance, and changes in percent calorie intake from fat, cardiopulmonary fitness, and pedometer steps) and changes in body measures (weight, waist and percent body fat) and serum biomarkers (glucose, insulin, homeostasis assessment-insulin resistance, and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein) between users and non-users. An interaction term (intervention×antidepressant use) tested effect modification.

Results: There were no differences in adherence except that diet session attendance was lower among users in the diet+exercise group (P<0.05 vs. non-users). Changes in body measures and serum biomarkers did not differ by antidepressant use (Pinteraction>0.05).

Conclusion: Dietary weight loss and exercise improved body measures and biomarkers of glucose metabolism and inflammation independent of antidepressant use.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00470119.

Keywords: Antidepressants; Diet; Exercise; Obesity; Weight loss intervention.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antidepressive Agents / adverse effects*
  • Antidepressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Body Composition / physiology
  • Body Weight / drug effects*
  • C-Reactive Protein / metabolism
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Depressive Disorder / physiopathology
  • Depressive Disorder / therapy*
  • Diet, Reducing*
  • Energy Metabolism / drug effects*
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance / physiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / physiopathology
  • Obesity / therapy*
  • Overweight / physiopathology
  • Overweight / therapy*
  • Postmenopause*
  • Washington
  • Weight Loss / drug effects*


  • Antidepressive Agents
  • Blood Glucose
  • C-Reactive Protein

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00470119