How to Lose Weight While Taking Prednisone

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The prescription drug prednisone reduces inflammation and treats a variety of conditions, such as arthritis and polymyositis. Although effective, weight gain is a common side effect of long-term prednisone use due to an increased appetite and fluid retention. But fortunately, there are ways to maintain your weight while taking this medication.

Prednisone
Prednisone (Image: Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Step 1

Check packages for their sodium content. Sodium contributes to water weight, and processed or frozen foods typically have a higher salt content. Lower your salt intake to below 2,400 mg a day, and replace processed foods with fresh fruits and vegetables and low-sodium alternatives.

Read food packages
Read food packages (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Step 2

Modify your carb intake. Carbohydrates affect your weight on prednisone by increasing water retention and food cravings. Stick with a low-carb diet to maintain your weight and eat no more than 20 to 30 grams of carbs a day.

Modify your carb intake
Modify your carb intake (Image: Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Step 3

Incorporate more potassium into your diet. Potassium keeps your body's water level balanced, and a low-potassium diet stimulates the storing of water. Consume potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, cereals and apricots, to reduce fluid retention and lose weight on prednisone.

Bananas
Bananas (Image: Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Step 4

Modify eating habits. Food cravings and an increased appetite contribute to weight gain. Maintain your weight by reducing or eliminating fatty and sugary foods from your diet. Eat four to six smaller meals a day to stay full longer and lower your caloric intake.

Eat four to six smaller meals a day
Eat four to six smaller meals a day (Image: Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images)

Step 5

Drink plenty of water. Losing weight on prednisone often calls for flushing excess water and salt from your body. Keep your body hydrated and flushed by drinking at least eight glasses of water a day.

Drink plenty of water
Drink plenty of water (Image: Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images)

Step 6

Exercise regularly. A fitness routine helps your body burn excess calories and fat, and exercise releases stored water through perspiration. Work out for 30 to 60 minutes three to five times a week.

Exercise regularly
Exercise regularly (Image: Jupiterimages/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

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