Do oral contraceptives affect a woman's metabolism?

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No negative effect on metabolism has been found.[1][2]

Other studies found that women on oral contraceptives had slightly (3-5%) raised metabolism.[3][4]

We can safely concluded that there is no negative effect on your metabolism from oral contraceptives, and it may actually increase it slightly.

Oral contraceptives based on antiandrogens may make it harder to gain muscle mass,[5] but there is still far too little research in that area to make a statement of certainty.


  1. ^ Roy S, et al. Comparison of metabolic and clinical effects of four oral contraceptive formulations and a contraceptive vaginal ring . Am J Obstet Gynecol. (1980)
  2. ^ Godsland IF, et al. Relationships between blood pressure, oral contraceptive use and metabolic risk markers for cardiovascular disease . Contraception. (1995)
  3. ^ Diffey B, et al. The effect of oral contraceptive agents on the basal metabolic rate of young women . Br J Nutr. (1997)
  4. ^ Piers LS, et al. The validity of predicting the basal metabolic rate of young Australian men and women . Eur J Clin Nutr. (1997)
  5. ^ Ruzić L, Matković BR, Leko G. Antiandrogens in hormonal contraception limit muscle strength gain in strength training: comparison study . Croat Med J. (2003)