You are here:

Bipolar Disorder/long term lithium use


hi Jurriaan, what are the effects of long term lithium use on weight gain and is it reversible. ive been on lithium for 21 years. does the long term effects also affect my thyroid in any way. will i get my pre-lithium weight back if i get off lithium completely. thanks.

Hi Christopher,

I have not been able to find any connection between lithium and weight gain. It believe the weight gain is due to hypoglycemia, which is  common feature among bipolar disorder. See:

What is Hypoglycemia?

This can be treated by going on a hypoglycemic diet (

Also see: Bipolar Disorder - Treatment with Lecithin

Also look up:
and lithium at:

Please discuss with your doctor.

Jurriaan Plesman BA (Psych) Post Grad Dip Clin Nutrition
Editor of the Hypoglycemic Association of Australia
Also at Facebook:  

Bipolar Disorder

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Jurriaan Plesman, Nutritional Psychotherapist


Have worked as a psychotherapist for overv twenty years, dealing with many personality disorders


I have a degree in Psychology from the Sydney University and a Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Nutrition. I am also the author of “GETTING OFF THE HOOK” which deals with the nutritional and psychological treatment of personality disorders. It is freely available on the internet at Google Book Search. I am interested in the relationship between nutrition and behaviour, and as a Probation ans Parole Officer facilitated groups for offenders, many of whom were alcoholics and drug addicts, sex offenders or compulsive gamblers, as well as the whole gamut of “personality disorders”. I am also the ex-editor of the Hypoglycemic Health Association of Australia Newsletter, a quarterly publication dealing with hypoglycemia and related health problems. Its web site, together with a shortened course of PSYCHOTHERAPY can be visited at:

Editor of the Hypoglycemic Health Association of Australia. Its web site is at:

Author of the book "Getting off the Hook", It is freely available on the internet at Google Book Search. My articles can be found at:

BA (Psych) (University of Sydney), Post Gad Dip Clin Nutr (International Academy of Nutrition)

©2017 All rights reserved.