The combination of naltrexone and bupropion is effective in bringing about weight loss. You may thus want to try it if you struggle with appetite management.

A Complete Guide to Naltrexone for Weight Loss

Obesity and excess weight gain is not just a physical problem; they are also dangerous to your health.

If you are obese, you are at an increased risk of developing health complications like metabolic syndrome, diabetes type 2, cancer, and coronary heart disease. 

Chances of premature death are increased by 100% from being overweight. Therefore, if you would like to live a long life, it is critical to manage your weight.

When treating obesity, most people may have the right resources but often struggle to manage their behavior. Making changes in lifestyle and diet is the biggest issue. 

For this reason, pharmacological treatment can help to make lasting changes. Combining naltrexone for weight loss with another drug can cause behavioral alterations that sustain obesity interventions. 

Naltrexone has an inhibitive and stimulating effect on certain pathways in your central nervous system, as explained here. These contribute to substantial weight loss.

Naltrexone is an opioid antagonist. It comes in the form of a white compound, which is crystalline in structure.

The substance naltrexone does not work alone. It is combined with bupropion, which is an anti-depressant. 

Together naltrexone and bupropion alter the neurons in your nervous system. That way, any goal-oriented or reward- centered behaviors like eating is affected.

According to this study, opioid peptide-like naltrexone regulates food intake in liaison with another element. Naltrexone is a receptor, while bupropion is an activator or dopamine inhibitor. 

The two work complimentarily to bring about weight loss.


A Complete Guide to Naltrexone for Weight Loss

Yes. Naltrexone for weight loss works by suppressing your appetite. This causes you to eat less and thus increases your chances of managing your weight.

Plenty of evidence exists to back this claim. In this research study, a group of 20 male subjects was taken through the intervention.

These men’s appetites were then monitored upon feeding. They were given a plate of pasta and cheese/tomato sauce. 

A portion of them took 50 mg naltrexone, while the other group did not take anything.

After about 50g of consumption, the researchers would do appetite ratings. The subjects would rate their perception of food pleasantness as their rate of eating was monitored.

It was found that the people who took the naltrexone ate much less than they had before taking the drug or even less than the other subjects who had not consumed naltrexone for weight loss. The participants also gave the food a less pleasant rating than before the drug.

Sometimes you may already know the nutritional changes you need to make and the food you need to reduce.

 However, it may be difficult for you to make those changes because you can’t’ resist the taste of delicious food.

If you constantly find yourself getting off the diet because you eat uncontrollably, you may need an appetite suppressant.

Naltrexone is a proven drug on this front, so that it could be quite helpful.


Since the case is strong for the use of naltrexone, you may then wonder how much weight you will lose on this diet.

 If you are taking naltrexone for weight loss, studies show that on average, the weight loss is 5% of your body weight in the first few weeks of the intervention.

This meta-analysis found that some studies have shown a 5% weight loss in one year. Before you start considering other options, the same review found that weight loss outcomes were significantly improved when subjects combined lifestyle interventions with naltrexone and bupropion consumption. 

However, it did not take 1 year for weight loss to manifest. Patients were subjected to a gradual increase in dosage over a period of 12 weeks.

In week one, it was 90mg and a low-fat meal. In week 2, the dosage was doubled.

Week 3 had the dosage increased by 50%. Then in week 4, patients got the maximum recommended dosage levels. Some exceptions were made for those with renal challenges.

The study found that after a period of 12 weeks, most of the subjects underwent a reduction of weight by 5% or more. They continued taking naltrexone for weight loss for 56 weeks.

It was affirmed that patients should discontinue therapy after 1 year.

In another intervention, it was shown that most people who got on Contrave (a mix of naltrexone and bupropion) reported an average weight loss of about 11-22 pounds. This was after making an intervention of about 56 weeks. 

The same study also confirmed that the average weight loss from naltrexone is 5-6% of one’s baseline weight if it is combined with lifestyle intervention.

Thus, you should be very consistent about making other changes in your life if you want to use naltrexone for weight loss. 

It is not enough for you to simply take the drug and presume that it will do the work for you.

Exercise and diet modifications are paramount.


While the benefits of taking the drug cannot be denied, you may want to watch out for any of the following side effects.

One of the commonest ones is gastrointestinal problems. While on naltrexone, you may start to have stomach pain, constipation, vomiting, and nausea. 

Some people report problems with their skin as they develop rashes. Others tend to be lethargic, while others report headaches. 

It may also cause sleeps disorders and dizziness as side effects.

While the medication can help treat or prevent certain lifestyle diseases, some of its side effects may also lead to these same illnesses. You can develop hypertension when taking naltrexone.

It is for the above reason that the medication is not supposed to be given to underage patients. This study shows that children and adolescents experience increased heart rate and pressure when on the medications. 

You may experience mental health problems while on the weight loss intervention. Naltrexone can lead to anxiety and a reduction in cognitive ability. It may even cause depression in some people.

Users have also recounted certain cases of seizures.

According to this report, some of the side effects of naltrexone are largely due to its opioid nature. If a subject has never taken an opioid before, they may experience withdrawal symptoms common in other opioid drugs. 


The combination of naltrexone and bupropion is effective in bringing about weight loss. You may thus want to try it if you struggle with appetite management.

For the intervention to work, it must be done in combination with other lifestyle modifications. Furthermore, you should be aware of the amount of weight you can lose while on naltrexone.

Most studies show that a considerable number of people lose 5% of their baseline weight in a period of 3 months or less.

Common side effects of the drug include gastrointestinal problems and headaches. You may also have problems with mental health, skin complications, and other minor ailments.

Overall, naltrexone is not a substitute for sustainable weight-loss interventions. However, it can enhance your efforts and make it easier for you to lose weight in the long run. 

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