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Celexa (citalopram) may help to treat eating disorders in a few ways. Celexa is an antidepressant medication that belongs to a category of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). It is thought to help improve depression by adjusting the level of the chemical serotonin in the brain. Depression is a common problem for many people who have eating disorders, so improving depression may make someone with an eating disorder feel better overall.
In addition, Celexa may have a particular benefit for people who are binge eaters or overeaters or who have bulimia (a problem in which people binge and then purge or vomit). There is some evidence that SSRIs can help people feel full when they're eating, possibly preventing overeating. Decreased appetite is a common side effect of Celexa, making it potentially a good treatment for people who eat too much but perhaps not a good choice for someone who doesn't eat enough (people with anorexia nervosa, for example).
Celexa is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating major depressive disorder. Treating eating disorders is considered an "off-label" use of the drug.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.