Are Your Birth Control Pills Making You Fat?

Many women worry about the changes that their bodies will go through when they begin to take birth control pills. With the influx of a new balance of hormones into the body, it’s only natural that certain things will change. One of the biggest concerns shared by a lot of women who are considering starting a program of birth control pills is whether or not they will contribute to weight gain.

The answer is not a simple yes or no. The most basic thing to remember about your weight in relation to birth control pills is that your total weight is dependent upon the number of calories that you take in. Because birth control pills aren’t a calorie-rich food source, they themselves willnot cause you to become overweight. However, the changes in your body’s metabolism and other processes can influence the way that you process the foods that you eat, which may lead to some fluctuations in weight.

Metabolic Changes

Each woman will experience a somewhat different reaction to beginning a regimen of birth control pills. It is normal for there to be a certain amount of time for your body to adjust to the new levels of hormones in your bloodstream. During this time, you may find that a number of changes occur, including those to your weight. With your metabolism moving at different speeds, your body may be able to process the food that you eat more quickly, leaving you hungry for more food. It also may slow down considerably, allowing you to gain more energy from the food that you eat in normal portions relative to your diet.

It is when the metabolism slows down that you should be careful in particular. As your metabolism slows, your body converts excess food into fat. If the same amount of food that you previously ate in healthy doses is suddenly more than your body requires, you may begin to gain weight. Typically, however, being cognizant of these changes is enough to adjust your diet accordingly.

Fluid Retention

One other effect that birth control pills may have on certain women is increased water and fluid retention. Once again, due to changes in the way that your body processes liquids, some of the fluid may be retained throughout different types of cells in your body. This can make you feel bloated and, to many women, to feel fat as well. This can also be moderated by changing your fluid intake, although it’s crucial that you continue to drink water in order to stimulate your metabolism and avoid dehydration.

With some careful attention to how your body reacts to birth control pills and appropriate adjustments to your lifestyle, you can avoid any excess weight that you might have otherwise put on as a result of birth control. Ask your doctor for additional information about how to maintain good health while starting a program of this type.


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