Weight Loss After Stopping PPI

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are frequently used to assist with indigestion and ulcers. While they successfully give alleviation, concerns have been raised in regard to their drawn-out use and likely effect on weight.

So, does weight loss occur after stopping PPI?

When you stop taking PPIs, some people may experience changes in their weight, but no clear evidence shows significant weight loss. However, long-term PPI use has been linked to weight gain, though individual experiences may differ.

This article examines weight changes after stopping PPIs and what factors influence this.

What Are PPIs?

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are medicines that work by reducing the amount of acid your stomach makes. This helps relieve uncomfortable symptoms and helps with the healing of ulcers. PPIs target specific cells in the stomach to achieve this effect.


PPIs are commonly prescribed to manage the following conditions:

  • Heartburn and Acid Reflux 
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
  • Stomach Ulcers
  • Underlying Causes
  • Inflammation in the Esophagus

Medications that are PPIs

PPIs are available in both prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) forms. Some of the commonly used PPI medications include given below in a chart:

Prescription PPIs OTC PPIs
Omeprazole (Prilosec) Omeprazole (Prilosec OTC)
Esomeprazole (Nexium) Esomeprazole (Nexium 24HR)
Lansoprazole (Prevacid) Lansoprazole (Prevacid 24HR)
Dexlansoprazole (Dexilant) Omeprazole/sodium bicarbonate (Zegerid)
Rabeprazole (Aciphex)
Pantoprazole (Protonix)
Omeprazole/sodium bicarbonate (Zegerid)

Weight Loss After Stopping PPIs

When you discontinue medicines for heartburn like proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), the effect on your weight can range from a man or woman to a person. Some people might observe changes in their weight, while others may additionally no longer experience tremendous differences. It’s critical to recognize that they have an effect on stopping PPIs that can vary for every individual. 

The Link between PPIs and Weight Gain

Researchers have determined a doable connection between long-term PPI use and weight gain. For example, one located out about has determined that extended use of PPIs can lead to undesired weight gain, with an average extent of 3.5 kilograms (7.7 pounds) over about two years. This discovery has raised worries about the potential for manageable weight gain in a similar trend.

How PPIs and Heartburn Relate to Weight Gain

Many people take PPIs to manage heartburn symptoms, also known as GERD. Interestingly, weight gain can contribute to the development or worsening of GERD. Thus, using PPIs might create a cycle where weight gain leads to more heartburn, requiring continued PPI use.

PPIs can also disrupt bowel function and promote the growth of harmful gut bacteria, potentially leading to weight gain and other stomach issues.

The Possibility of Weight Loss After Stopping PPIs

You may wonder if weight loss is possible after discontinuing PPIs. While no specific scientific evidence supports significant, unexplained weight loss associated with stopping PPIs, long-term PPI use has been linked to weight gain over time.

Understanding Weight Changes and PPI Withdrawal

Individual experiences during PPI withdrawal can vary, and not everyone may experience weight loss after stopping PPIs. Individual body characteristics and withdrawal symptoms can influence weight changes during PPI withdrawal.

Factors Influencing Weight Changes

Changes in appetite can significantly determine weight gain or loss when you stop taking PPIs. Some individuals may e­xperience diarrhe­a as a withdrawal symptom. This symptom can contribute to unexplained we­ight loss. However, it is important to note that the­se effects are­ not universal and may not occur in everyone­.

Long-Term PPI Use and Weight Gain

Concerns have­ been raised re­garding the potential weight gain associate­d with prolonged use of PPIs, such as omeprazole­. While the exact re­asons behind this connection remain uncle­ar, it is generally advised against using PPIs for an e­xtended period to manage­ acidity or ulcers due to the possible­ risks and side effects involve­d.

Remember to Consult a Healthcare Professional

If you are concerned about change­s in your weight or contemplating discontinuing the use­ of PPIs, seeking guidance from a he­althcare professional is crucial. They can provide­ personalized advice and support you in safe­ly navigating this process.

Why Stop Taking PPIs?

Although PPIs effective­ly alleviate acid reflux symptoms, e­xcessive or long-term usage­ may pose health problems. He­nce, considering the discontinuation of PPIs due to pote­ntial side effects and long-te­rm implications remains a valid consideration.

Some of the reasons to stop taking PPIs include:

Side Effects of PPIs

In most people, rare side effects can occur from taking PPIs. Here are the common side effects:

  • headaches
  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • abdominal pain
  • bloating

Health Risks

Long-term use of PPIs has been associated with:

  • increased risks of kidney disease
  • dementia
  • bone fractures (wrist, hip, and spine)
  • community-acquired pneumonia,
  • Clostridium difficile,
  • Campylobacter
  • drug-induced lupus erythematosus
  • Salmonella infections
  • acute interstitial nephritis (kidney inflammation)
  • low magnesium levels (hypomagnesemia)
  • low vitamin B-12 levels

However,  more research is required to establish definitive cause-and-effect relationships,

Overuse and Caution

Sometimes, healthcare specialists prescribe PPIs for a longer duration of time than they should, which would perhaps no longer be very safe. Using these drugs for a lengthy time can have risks, and we do not understand everything about their long-term results due to the fact there hasn’t been ample research. So, it is vital to be cautious when taking PPIs for a prolonged period. 

Withdrawal Symptoms

When stopping PPIs, individuals may experience a range of withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can vary from person to person, but some common ones include:

  • Heartburn: Increased heartburn or acid reflux symptoms can result from discontinuing PPIs due to the reduction in acid suppression, causing a rebound effect.
  • Stomach Pain and Nausea: PPI discontinuation may result in unpleasant stomach pain, nausea, and discomfort.
  • Headaches and Dizziness: Some individuals may experience headaches and dizziness as their body adjusts to the absence of PPIs.
  • Emotional and Psychological Symptoms: Sometimes, when a person stops taking PPIs, they may experience emotional and psychological symptoms. These can include anxiety, depression, and a sense of withdrawal.

These symptoms can be uncomfortable and may last several weeks or months. It is essential to talk to a healthcare professional before stopping PPIs. 

How to Manage PPI Withdrawal Symptoms?

Here are some strategies to help manage PPI withdrawal symptoms:

  • Gradual Reduction: Your doctor can help you develop a gradual tapering schedule to decrease your PPI dosage, allowing your body to adjust more smoothly.
  • Lifestyle Modifications: Take smaller, more frequent meals – avoid spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol, drink lots of water, get enough rest – try stress-relief activities like yoga or meditation.
  • Symptom Relief: Maybe, over-the-counter antacids or even acid-reducing medications during withdrawal will give you temporary heartburn or acid reflux symptoms relief. But definitely talk to your health care professional before taking any more medicines.

How to Stop Taking PPIs?

Stopping PPIs abruptly can lead to increased acid production, known as rebound acid production, which can cause a flare-up of GERD symptoms. To discontinue PPI use effectively and minimize rebound symptoms, you can follow these three main strategies:

Gradually Taper Your PPI:

Reduce your PPI dose gradually over three weeks under the guidance of your healthcare provider.

Take PPI On-Demand: 

If you’ve been using a PPI for a while, switching to “as-needed” or “on-demand” use makes sense for you.

Instead of taking the daily dose, you take the medication only when GERD symptoms bother you.

This approach may not work well if you start PPI treatment for the first time but it can go very well if you have been on PPIs for some time.

Explore Other GERD Medications:

You can consider alternative GERD medications if you experience rebound symptoms while trying to stop PPIs.

  • H2 blockers are one option; they help reduce stomach acid production. Famotidine (Pepcid, Zantac) and cimetidine (Tagamet) are examples of H2 blockers.
  • Antacids can also be used. They work by neutralizing stomach acid and providing quick relief. Examples include calcium carbonate (Tums) and calcium carbonate/magnesium hydroxide (Rolaids).
  • Cimetidine (Tagamet) can interact with various medications, such as warfarin, phenytoin, and certain antidepressants.

Discuss these options with your healthcare provider to determine the most suitable alternative medication.

Seek Professional Guidance:

If you experience severe rebound symptoms or if they persist for more than two months after stopping PPIs, consult your healthcare provider. This could indicate a more complex GERD or another underlying issue that requires extended PPI treatment.

How To Lose Weight After Stopping PPI?

After stopping PPIs, focus on healthy habits to lose weight:

  • Eat a Balanced Diet: Include fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains in your meals. The foods give you the essential nutrients so you are fuller for longer.
  • Limit Sugary and High-Calorie Foods: Reduce sugary treats and high-calorie snacks. Opt for healthier choices instead.
  • Stay Active: Regularly exercise to burn calories and boost your metabolism. Even simple activities like walking or dancing can make a difference.
  • Drink Plenty of Water: Drink enough water throughout the day. Water helps control appetite and supports your weight loss efforts.
  • Reduce Salt Intake: Too much salt can lead to water retention and bloating. Cut down on salty foods to support your weight loss journey.
  • Limit Alcohol Consumption: Alcoholic beve­rages pack a punch when it comes to calorie­s, making them a potential roadblock on the path to she­dding pounds. To make meaningful progress towards your we­ight loss goals, it is advisable to minimize or abstain.
  • Get Enough Sleep: To ensure­ better health, it is important to prioritize­ getting enough slee­p. Making an effort to achieve 7-9 hours of quality sle­ep each night can play a significant role in maintaining a he­althy weight.
  • Manage Stress: To effe­ctively manage stress, individuals are­ encouraged to practice various re­laxation techniques. One such te­chnique involves engaging in de­ep breathing exe­rcises or meditation.

Remember, losing weight takes time and patience. Focus on making small, sustainable changes to your lifestyle, and celebrate your progress along the way.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does Omeprazole Stop You Losing Weight?

There is no direct relationship between omeprazole and weight increase or decrease. However, if your situation gets better after taking omeprazole and your digestive signs and symptoms go away, you may find that your starvation increases, which could result in weight gain. 

Does Omeprazole Make You Retain Fluid?

A study discovered that 0.45% of those utilizing omeprazole experience edema, otherwise called water maintenance. More seasoned ladies taking the medicine for under a month are bound to have this issue.

How Long Does It Take For PPIs To Work?

PPIs usually take a few days to start working and may need up to a week for full effect. For example, Protonix (pantoprazole) can reduce acid by 85% within seven days. But the exact time may vary, so it’s best to ask your pharmacist or doctor about your specific PPI.


To conclude, even though there is now not any stable proof that stopping PPIs causes weight reduction, long-term PPI use has been linked to weight increases.  For your wellness, put an emphasis on a healthy diet, exercise, and stress reduction. 

Marzia Khan
Marzia Khan

Marzia Khan is the director of content and operations at RobustAlive. She contributes to content strategy and process management across product initiatives, RND, and the editorial. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, Frontline, and the PBS. Before joining RobustAlive, she also co-authored award-winning research on health and wellness and participated in various initiatives to increase awareness about healthy living and chronic disease prevention. She acts as the co-editor for RobustAlive and brings an expansive network of connections to the table while managing activity execution where required.