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Topamax. BED. Side effects? Did it help?

saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
Looking to know if Topamax stopped your binges and at what dose? Also, what side effects did you have. Did you stop taking it and why? Thanks y'all!

Replies

  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    Looking to know if Topamax stopped your binges and at what dose? Also, what side effects did you have. Did you stop taking it and why? Thanks y'all!

    It might sound weird, but does anyone feel hungry on it? Not necessarily to binge, but hunger and I was told I might forget to eat. Go figure!
  • BarneyRubbleMDBarneyRubbleMD Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member
    @saraonly9913 ,

    Topamax has helped me immensely and I'm only on a dose of 75mg/day when I started (& now trying a 50mg dose). At these low doses, I haven't noticed any "side effects" other than the kind of side effects I need, like no longer having a desire to eat cupcakes (I haven't had a cupcake since May 7th but use to binge on a dozen of them several days a week) or other hyper-palatable foods like Doritos or pizza (other binge triggers for me). It also helped me to get to 6 months without a binge. Now, I have had a binge since then for binge-trigger related reasons (i.e. waiting too long between meals, not sleeping well or enough, etc) but at least those are things I have some control over. I really like how, for me, it reduces the "wow factor" of certain hyper-palatable foods like pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc but doesn't change the taste of other foods like vegetables or fruits (those seem to taste the same to me but pizza from my same local pizza place just doesn't taste as fabulous anymore---good!!!, that makes it much easier to just have a slice or two instead of 8 slices like I use to eat). And yes, Topamax can have an appetite-reducing effect with some people. Also, I've been told that Topamax is effective in only about 50% of the people who try it but I definitely turned out to be one of those people. I plan to stay on it until 6 months after I reach my goal weight (I've lost 112 lbs so far with about 50 more lbs to go) and then see if I can manage without it & not have those intense cravings for hyper-palatable foods (pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc.) come back to tempt me into a binge.
  • IsabeausRoseIsabeausRose Member Posts: 129 Member Member Posts: 129 Member
    I’m on 150mg of topomax and it hasn’t helped me at all. My doctor told me for it to be at an effective level to suppress appetite it needs to be around 300 to 400 mg. However I am taking something different that HAS started to help me. A drug called Metformin that is used to treat diabetes, PCOS and metabolic disorder. I have metabolic disorder due to another drug. Metformin has really decreased my appetite and the urge to binge but it’s hard to get a doctor to prescribe it because they will never give it to you just for weight loss and appetite suppression.
    edited April 2018
  • KnitOrMissKnitOrMiss Member Posts: 10,104 Member Member Posts: 10,104 Member
    Metformin has no real effect on my binging, but I take it for insulin resistance, so perhaps that is part of why. I had a doctor who wanted me to take a weight loss drug that included Topamax - Qsymia, but it was going to be nearly $200 a month, and that was just not doable. I've not explored the Topamax on it's own, but I might...
  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    I’m on 150mg of topomax and it hasn’t helped me at all. My doctor told me for it to be at an effective level to suppress appetite it needs to be around 300 to 400 mg. However I am taking something different that HAS started to help me. A drug called Metformin that is used to treat diabetes, PCOS and metabolic disorder. I have metabolic disorder due to another drug. Metformin has really decreased my appetite and the urge to binge but it’s hard to get a doctor to prescribe it because they will never give it to you just for weight loss and appetite suppression.

    I've been on Metformin for years for diabetes and it has not helped with my binges. A blood relative was on Topamax for a month at 100 but now has to increase it as it seems to have stopped working as good??
  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    @saraonly9913 ,

    Topamax has helped me immensely and I'm only on a dose of 75mg/day when I started (& now trying a 50mg dose). At these low doses, I haven't noticed any "side effects" other than the kind of side effects I need, like no longer having a desire to eat cupcakes (I haven't had a cupcake since May 7th but use to binge on a dozen of them several days a week) or other hyper-palatable foods like Doritos or pizza (other binge triggers for me). It also helped me to get to 6 months without a binge. Now, I have had a binge since then for binge-trigger related reasons (i.e. waiting too long between meals, not sleeping well or enough, etc) but at least those are things I have some control over. I really like how, for me, it reduces the "wow factor" of certain hyper-palatable foods like pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc but doesn't change the taste of other foods like vegetables or fruits (those seem to taste the same to me but pizza from my same local pizza place just doesn't taste as fabulous anymore---good!!!, that makes it much easier to just have a slice or two instead of 8 slices like I use to eat). And yes, Topamax can have an appetite-reducing effect with some people. Also, I've been told that Topamax is effective in only about 50% of the people who try it but I definitely turned out to be one of those people. I plan to stay on it until 6 months after I reach my goal weight (I've lost 112 lbs so far with about 50 more lbs to go) and then see if I can manage without it & not have those intense cravings for hyper-palatable foods (pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc.) come back to tempt me into a binge.

    Thank you for your detailed and informative answer.

    My close blood relative was on 100mg for a month and it worked well but now has to increase it because it wasn't working as well ?? My doctor put me on 50mg 2X a day. Morning and night. Seems to make me very drowsy in AM and during the day. I might change the time. Since we are blood relatives, I'm hoping it will work for me too!

    I can't tell if it's working as I started other changes as well. I started Topamax on March 29 and did not binge on that day nor since. On the 31st I began to go to OA (2 meetings a week) and on April 1, I began increasing my water intake as my Dr wanted me to as Topamax causes kidney stones.

    I did mention I am hungry a lot. I have cravings for chocolate sometimes but I can get away with 2 Hershey kisses. Sometimes I think of binging but there's really nothing I want to binge on. Now that is a shock! So maybe the Topamax is working afterall!

  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    KnitOrMiss wrote: »
    Metformin has no real effect on my binging, but I take it for insulin resistance, so perhaps that is part of why. I had a doctor who wanted me to take a weight loss drug that included Topamax - Qsymia, but it was going to be nearly $200 a month, and that was just not doable. I've not explored the Topamax on it's own, but I might...

    $200 a month is not doable! I have been on Metformin for years. Obviously, lol, it hasn't worked for weightloss or binge eating! MFP did help with weight loss but Nothing stopped the binge eating. I'm hoping I have luck with Topamax.
  • BarneyRubbleMDBarneyRubbleMD Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member
    I’m on 150mg of topomax and it hasn’t helped me at all. My doctor told me for it to be at an effective level to suppress appetite it needs to be around 300 to 400 mg. However I am taking something different that HAS started to help me. A drug called Metformin that is used to treat diabetes, PCOS and metabolic disorder. I have metabolic disorder due to another drug. Metformin has really decreased my appetite and the urge to binge but it’s hard to get a doctor to prescribe it because they will never give it to you just for weight loss and appetite suppression.

    The 300-400 mg dose of Topamax is typically used for treating people who have migraines or seizures & their appetites are much more suppressed at that dose than at the typical 150 mg dose used for BED (Binge Eating Disorder). I started out at 50mg of Topamax with the intent on working up to 150mg if I tolerated it OK but at 75mg I noticed a beneficial effect that was sufficient to keep me at that 75mg dose. I originally wanted to try Vyvance for my BED but was denied since I take medications for high blood pressure and Vyvance can raise blood pressure and Topamax was suggested instead, which was a medication I had never heard of. One big issue with these two medications (Topamax & Vyvance) is that they are, at best, only effective in about 50% of the people to try them and there really isn't a good way to determine if one of them may work for a particular individual or not without trying it, starting at a low dose and working up to a therapeutic dose that's effective for that individual or switching to another medication to try.

    I am also on Metformin and have been for years since I'm an insulin-dependent Type-2 diabetic & I think I get a small appetite suppressing effect from it but it never did much for reducing my binge eating episodes or the size of my binges.

  • BarneyRubbleMDBarneyRubbleMD Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,104 Member
    @saraonly9913 ,

    Topamax has helped me immensely and I'm only on a dose of 75mg/day when I started (& now trying a 50mg dose). At these low doses, I haven't noticed any "side effects" other than the kind of side effects I need, like no longer having a desire to eat cupcakes (I haven't had a cupcake since May 7th but use to binge on a dozen of them several days a week) or other hyper-palatable foods like Doritos or pizza (other binge triggers for me). It also helped me to get to 6 months without a binge. Now, I have had a binge since then for binge-trigger related reasons (i.e. waiting too long between meals, not sleeping well or enough, etc) but at least those are things I have some control over. I really like how, for me, it reduces the "wow factor" of certain hyper-palatable foods like pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc but doesn't change the taste of other foods like vegetables or fruits (those seem to taste the same to me but pizza from my same local pizza place just doesn't taste as fabulous anymore---good!!!, that makes it much easier to just have a slice or two instead of 8 slices like I use to eat). And yes, Topamax can have an appetite-reducing effect with some people. Also, I've been told that Topamax is effective in only about 50% of the people who try it but I definitely turned out to be one of those people. I plan to stay on it until 6 months after I reach my goal weight (I've lost 112 lbs so far with about 50 more lbs to go) and then see if I can manage without it & not have those intense cravings for hyper-palatable foods (pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc.) come back to tempt me into a binge.

    Thank you for your detailed and informative answer.

    My close blood relative was on 100mg for a month and it worked well but now has to increase it because it wasn't working as well ?? My doctor put me on 50mg 2X a day. Morning and night. Seems to make me very drowsy in AM and during the day. I might change the time. Since we are blood relatives, I'm hoping it will work for me too!

    I can't tell if it's working as I started other changes as well. I started Topamax on March 29 and did not binge on that day nor since. On the 31st I began to go to OA (2 meetings a week) and on April 1, I began increasing my water intake as my Dr wanted me to as Topamax causes kidney stones.

    I did mention I am hungry a lot. I have cravings for chocolate sometimes but I can get away with 2 Hershey kisses. Sometimes I think of binging but there's really nothing I want to binge on. Now that is a shock! So maybe the Topamax is working afterall!

    @saraonly9913 ,

    I take my Topamax at night before bed since taking it in the morning made me a bit drowsy too. When I started on Topamax I think it took about 2 weeks before I started noticing it's effects on my desire for certain foods I had trouble moderating making it easier to not go "wild" with them. I also drink a lot of fluids during the day, around 100-128 oz--I got into that habit a few years back when I was having issues with kidney stones & now haven't had any in years, plus the extra fluids helps to fill me up--I'd probably eat more if I drank less fluids.

    I try to keep my "hunger sensations" separate from my "craving sensations" as they are two different things. If I'm too hungry, it typically means I've waited too long to eat my meal or I haven't eating enough calories (regardless of what MFP thinks I need to eat--I'll go by what my RMR test indicates I should eat each day). LOL--thinking about binging but not finding anything you want to binge on--I can relate to that!...I had that feeling several times while on Topamax but didn't binge, which was a shock to me also, & I think the Topamax is partly responsible for that "not finding anything I want to binge on" feeling which holds me until my next meal time comes around.

    edited April 2018
  • KnitOrMissKnitOrMiss Member Posts: 10,104 Member Member Posts: 10,104 Member
    @saraonly9913 ,

    Topamax has helped me immensely and I'm only on a dose of 75mg/day when I started (& now trying a 50mg dose). At these low doses, I haven't noticed any "side effects" other than the kind of side effects I need, like no longer having a desire to eat cupcakes (I haven't had a cupcake since May 7th but use to binge on a dozen of them several days a week) or other hyper-palatable foods like Doritos or pizza (other binge triggers for me). It also helped me to get to 6 months without a binge. Now, I have had a binge since then for binge-trigger related reasons (i.e. waiting too long between meals, not sleeping well or enough, etc) but at least those are things I have some control over. I really like how, for me, it reduces the "wow factor" of certain hyper-palatable foods like pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc but doesn't change the taste of other foods like vegetables or fruits (those seem to taste the same to me but pizza from my same local pizza place just doesn't taste as fabulous anymore---good!!!, that makes it much easier to just have a slice or two instead of 8 slices like I use to eat). And yes, Topamax can have an appetite-reducing effect with some people. Also, I've been told that Topamax is effective in only about 50% of the people who try it but I definitely turned out to be one of those people. I plan to stay on it until 6 months after I reach my goal weight (I've lost 112 lbs so far with about 50 more lbs to go) and then see if I can manage without it & not have those intense cravings for hyper-palatable foods (pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc.) come back to tempt me into a binge.

    Thank you for your detailed and informative answer.

    My close blood relative was on 100mg for a month and it worked well but now has to increase it because it wasn't working as well ?? My doctor put me on 50mg 2X a day. Morning and night. Seems to make me very drowsy in AM and during the day. I might change the time. Since we are blood relatives, I'm hoping it will work for me too!

    I can't tell if it's working as I started other changes as well. I started Topamax on March 29 and did not binge on that day nor since. On the 31st I began to go to OA (2 meetings a week) and on April 1, I began increasing my water intake as my Dr wanted me to as Topamax causes kidney stones.

    I did mention I am hungry a lot. I have cravings for chocolate sometimes but I can get away with 2 Hershey kisses. Sometimes I think of binging but there's really nothing I want to binge on. Now that is a shock! So maybe the Topamax is working afterall!

    @saraonly9913 - as far as chocolate cravings, be sure you're getting enough magnesium. It's needed in over 300 bodily processes, and 75% of the first world population is deficient. It's becoming better known these days. Pretty much most forms OTHER than Oxide are okay to take... When you get too much, you'll know, as in excess it causes loose stool...
  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    Warning. TMI ....I'm on a high dose of magnnesium (self medicating) as I suffered from constipation. I'm on a real med cocktail!. Besides whatever is in regular vitamins, I take a 3 magnesium pills a day. 400mg 3X a day. Since I started Topamax and am drinking more water I'm becoming more regular. It might be time to consider lessening the dose a little.

    Uh oh. It says magnesium oxide. It's Spring Valley from Walmart. What is so wrong with oxide?. I've been on this for quite some time.
  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    @saraonly9913 ,

    Topamax has helped me immensely and I'm only on a dose of 75mg/day when I started (& now trying a 50mg dose). At these low doses, I haven't noticed any "side effects" other than the kind of side effects I need, like no longer having a desire to eat cupcakes (I haven't had a cupcake since May 7th but use to binge on a dozen of them several days a week) or other hyper-palatable foods like Doritos or pizza (other binge triggers for me). It also helped me to get to 6 months without a binge. Now, I have had a binge since then for binge-trigger related reasons (i.e. waiting too long between meals, not sleeping well or enough, etc) but at least those are things I have some control over. I really like how, for me, it reduces the "wow factor" of certain hyper-palatable foods like pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc but doesn't change the taste of other foods like vegetables or fruits (those seem to taste the same to me but pizza from my same local pizza place just doesn't taste as fabulous anymore---good!!!, that makes it much easier to just have a slice or two instead of 8 slices like I use to eat). And yes, Topamax can have an appetite-reducing effect with some people. Also, I've been told that Topamax is effective in only about 50% of the people who try it but I definitely turned out to be one of those people. I plan to stay on it until 6 months after I reach my goal weight (I've lost 112 lbs so far with about 50 more lbs to go) and then see if I can manage without it & not have those intense cravings for hyper-palatable foods (pizza, Doritos, cupcakes, etc.) come back to tempt me into a binge.

    Thank you for your detailed and informative answer.

    My close blood relative was on 100mg for a month and it worked well but now has to increase it because it wasn't working as well ?? My doctor put me on 50mg 2X a day. Morning and night. Seems to make me very drowsy in AM and during the day. I might change the time. Since we are blood relatives, I'm hoping it will work for me too!

    I can't tell if it's working as I started other changes as well. I started Topamax on March 29 and did not binge on that day nor since. On the 31st I began to go to OA (2 meetings a week) and on April 1, I began increasing my water intake as my Dr wanted me to as Topamax causes kidney stones.

    I did mention I am hungry a lot. I have cravings for chocolate sometimes but I can get away with 2 Hershey kisses. Sometimes I think of binging but there's really nothing I want to binge on. Now that is a shock! So maybe the Topamax is working afterall!

    @saraonly9913 ,

    I take my Topamax at night before bed since taking it in the morning made me a bit drowsy too. When I started on Topamax I think it took about 2 weeks before I started noticing it's effects on my desire for certain foods I had trouble moderating making it easier to not go "wild" with them. I also drink a lot of fluids during the day, around 100-128 oz--I got into that habit a few years back when I was having issues with kidney stones & now haven't had any in years, plus the extra fluids helps to fill me up--I'd probably eat more if I drank less fluids.

    I try to keep my "hunger sensations" separate from my "craving sensations" as they are two different things. If I'm too hungry, it typically means I've waited too long to eat my meal or I haven't eating enough calories (regardless of what MFP thinks I need to eat--I'll go by what my RMR test indicates I should eat each day). LOL--thinking about binging but not finding anything you want to binge on--I can relate to that!...I had that feeling several times while on Topamax but didn't binge, which was a shock to me also, & I think the Topamax is partly responsible for that "not finding anything I want to binge on" feeling which holds me until my next meal time comes around.

    I like this. We seen to have many of the same experiences even though I only just started Topamax. My relative was told to "only" take it at night. I'm leaving a note with my doctor tomorrow that I'm going to start taking it with my afternoon meds. There will be a little break between that and bedtime. The drowsiness lasted for hours. Sort of messed with my head and moods. That was not good for me at the busy time of my days.

    Hunger vs craving sensations. Hmmm. Yes, I need to pay more attention to them. I'm still craving sweets but not to binge on them. My fault to, for leaving some small ones in the house. Once they're gone, I doubt I'll replace them. When I ate more food the hunger went away for a while. I will need to figure out calories again as I haven't had the extra binge calories (4000-7000) a few days, usually weekly.

    Oh I hope this works! I know I was destroying my insides! Now to get that water in and maintain a good daily level !
  • KnitOrMissKnitOrMiss Member Posts: 10,104 Member Member Posts: 10,104 Member
    Warning. TMI ....I'm on a high dose of magnnesium (self medicating) as I suffered from constipation. I'm on a real med cocktail!. Besides whatever is in regular vitamins, I take a 3 magnesium pills a day. 400mg 3X a day. Since I started Topamax and am drinking more water I'm becoming more regular. It might be time to consider lessening the dose a little.

    Uh oh. It says magnesium oxide. It's Spring Valley from Walmart. What is so wrong with oxide?. I've been on this for quite some time.

    @saraonly9913 - Magnesium oxide isn't wrong, exactly. It is just a form that is VERY POORLY absorbed. And the biggest side effect is to have loose stool, which can help, as you found, if you suffer constipation.

    Here is a thread that explains the different types of magnesium.

    https://forum.bulletproof.com/discussion/2078/bulletproof-magnesium-thread

    According to this, out of every 400 mg of mag oxide, you're likely absorbing maybe 80 mg. So instead of getting 1200 mg, as you are expecting, you MIGHT be absorbing 240 mg. You could easily use a combination form of magnesium, so that you can absorb more of it, while still getting the laxative effect (like Slo-Mag or Natural Calm)... I personally prefer Chelated forms, either of magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate...

    Another thing that ... loosens me up (I have the opposite problem as you, due to no gallbladder), is anything with high antioxidants. I started taking Elderberry Extract (a natural antiviral replicator - prevents cold and flu viruses from replicating - either as well or in some cases at all) to prevent picking up germs from the coworker I have dubbed "Patient Zero." He comes to work sick and proceeds to get everyone else sick. So this year, I took precautions! If I dilute the extract in a drink, it isn't as bad, but if I just need to get it in before bed or whatever, and I take it straight, it's a near instant bathroom need... So adding things with high antioxidants might help, too... (It's one of the "side effects" and "warnings" on the bottle, too.)
  • saraonly9913saraonly9913 Member Posts: 468 Member Member Posts: 468 Member
    KnitOrMiss wrote: »
    Warning. TMI ....I'm on a high dose of magnnesium (self medicating) as I suffered from constipation. I'm on a real med cocktail!. Besides whatever is in regular vitamins, I take a 3 magnesium pills a day. 400mg 3X a day. Since I started Topamax and am drinking more water I'm becoming more regular. It might be time to consider lessening the dose a little.

    Uh oh. It says magnesium oxide. It's Spring Valley from Walmart. What is so wrong with oxide?. I've been on this for quite some time.

    @saraonly9913 - Magnesium oxide isn't wrong, exactly. It is just a form that is VERY POORLY absorbed. And the biggest side effect is to have loose stool, which can help, as you found, if you suffer constipation.

    Here is a thread that explains the different types of magnesium.

    https://forum.bulletproof.com/discussion/2078/bulletproof-magnesium-thread

    According to this, out of every 400 mg of mag oxide, you're likely absorbing maybe 80 mg. So instead of getting 1200 mg, as you are expecting, you MIGHT be absorbing 240 mg. You could easily use a combination form of magnesium, so that you can absorb more of it, while still getting the laxative effect (like Slo-Mag or Natural Calm)... I personally prefer Chelated forms, either of magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate...

    Another thing that ... loosens me up (I have the opposite problem as you, due to no gallbladder), is anything with high antioxidants. I started taking Elderberry Extract (a natural antiviral replicator - prevents cold and flu viruses from replicating - either as well or in some cases at all) to prevent picking up germs from the coworker I have dubbed "Patient Zero." He comes to work sick and proceeds to get everyone else sick. So this year, I took precautions! If I dilute the extract in a drink, it isn't as bad, but if I just need to get it in before bed or whatever, and I take it straight, it's a near instant bathroom need... So adding things with high antioxidants might help, too... (It's one of the "side effects" and "warnings" on the bottle, too.)

    Thank you for all this information! I will be looking further into this!
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