How Antidepressants Affect Energy Levels

How Antidepressants Affect Your Energy Levels

Are you curious about how antidepressants affect energy levels? When managing a healthy lifestyle, we know how important it is to keep up our energy levels. Choosing nutritious foods and taking breaks from daily tasks can make a huge difference.

But sometimes, the things we expect to keep our motivation high end up being the things that keep us down. One example of this is antidepressants. Here’s how prescription medications can affect energy levels.

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Heart Issues

While antidepressants come in various forms, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the ones doctors commonly prescribe. Celexa, Lexapro, Prozac, Paxil, and Zoloft are all examples of SSRIs.

These drugs block the absorption of serotonin in the brain, allowing the brain to freely send and receive messages, resulting in a stable mood.

These drugs are cited as having fewer negative side effects compared to other types of antidepressants, which is why they are the most commonly prescribed.

However, some of the possible side effects can still put a damper on energy levels. These include drowsiness, insomnia, restlessness, and diet impact, resulting in weight loss or weight gain.

It’s vital to note that two of the most important ways to maintain energy levels naturally (sleep and diet) are directly impacted by these antidepressants.

Additionally, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put out updated information regarding these drugs, setting a new standard on dosage amounts. This is because the drug was found to cause dangerous heart abnormalities, which can lead to sudden death.

This, of course, is a huge problem for people already tracking their health progress with step counts and burned calories and monitoring their heart rate. If this drug is being taken, staying active could push heart rates to dangerous levels or at least confuse us about why the heart might be pumping abnormally with a small amount of physical activity.

The Big Picture

Of course, these warnings do not guarantee people will experience heart issues when taking SSRIs. In fact, some percentages of people who use a safe dosage of antidepressants and maintain a healthy lifestyle have no negative issues.

Instead, the important thing to remember is the possibility of these side effects and how they help put our personal goal of health into perspective.

While this should cause us to think carefully about if and how we use antidepressants, sometimes their use is part of the bigger picture. For example, SSRIs are prescribed to help people taper off benzodiazepines to ease withdrawal symptoms. This is a welcome use of antidepressants because the goal is to help the body progress from a drug addiction toward better mental and physical health.

However, while these drugs do not cause the same cravings compared to benzos and other commonly abused drugs, antidepressants still have withdrawal symptoms that can also affect the heart.

Because of this, if you find yourself reading this article and want to stop using drugs, consult with your doctor to avoid any dangerous impact on your heart, either from withdrawal or overdose.


TF Clark Fitness Magazine. (n.d.). Best Guide to Healthy Habits for Physical and Mental Health. Retrieved

Delphi Health Group. (n.d.). Mixing Alcohol and Antidepressants – Can You Do It Safely?. Retrieved

Mayo Clinic. (2019 Sep 17). Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). Retrieved

TF Clark Fitness Magazine. (n.d.). 4 Major Reasons Why Hitting the Gym Is Not Enough. Retrieved

FDA. (2012 Mar 28). FDA Drug Safety Communication: Revised recommendations for Celexa (citalopram hydrobromide) related to a potential risk of abnormal heart rhythms with high doses. Retrieved

TF Clark Fitness Magazine. (n.d.). Your 2022 Health Plan Begins Right Now. Retrieved

NIH. (2009 Feb.). Real-World Data on SSRI Antidepressant Side Effects. Retrieved

Delphi Health Group. (n.d.). How to Ease the Symptoms of Benzo Withdrawal. Retrieved

Delphi Health Group. (n.d.). Guide to Trazodone: Effects, Addiction Potential & More. Retrieved

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