Weight Loss Drugs

It is a well-known fact at this point that obesity and being overweight areĀ  becoming a health crisis in many of the countries around the world. There are a number of efforts that have been reported in the news recently about different outreach programs and restrictions being placed on advertising for fattening food, requirements that calories be posted by restaurants so that consumers are aware of how much they’re eating, and even on the food being offered in schools to children. Even the size of the soft drinks available for purchase are now being controlled in an effort to stop people from gaining weight. But for those who have struggled to lose weight for a long time, any one of these efforts alone is probably coming too late. For the thousands of people for whom cutting calories and exercising alone has not been successful, there are a variety of weight loss drugs that are available on the market. Some are only available by prescription while others are available at your local pharmacy, over the counter. Each has its benefits and drawbacks too, and each has varying levels of success depending largely upon how well you are complying in other areas of your weight loss regimen. There are basically three different methodologies for weight loss offered by each of these medications; slimming, inhibitors, and fat burners.

Slimming Pills

Slimming pills are basically designed to either increase your metabolism or to decrease your hunger. Some of them do both. Over the years there have been a lot of slimming pills available that people have gotten addicted to because they have contained amphetamines. Amphetamines are what was once known as “uppers”. They can provide a euphoric feeling and make you feel like you have lots of energy. Most of today’s slimming pills no longer contain those addictive substances, and instead have high levels of caffeine. Though the caffeine may provide energy, for some people they give a sense of being very jittery. One of the medications that has been developed that works similarly to the amphetamines but does not include them is a product called phentermine.


Phentermine is only available by prescription. It is sold under a variety of different brand names, including Fastin, Obenix, Oby-Trim and Adipex-P. Phentermine works by stopping you from being hungry. It works directly with your brain by increasing the activity level in your nervous system; because of this there are risks in taking it for those who have high blood pressure. It is usually prescribed for a period not greater than twelve weeks because after a while people can get too used to it and begin to tolerate its impact, then start gaining weight again.


Hoodia is also sold as an appetite suppressant, but unlike phentermine, it is not available by prescription – in fact, it is not approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and has been the subject of a great deal of controversy among medical experts. Those who are proponents of Hoodia describe the product, which comes from a plant that grows in the Kalahari Desert, as a miracle drug. Indigenous tribes in the area where Hoodia grows have traditionally used the plant as an appetite suppressant, but that has been geared towards survival, not weight loss. Marketers say that it has remarkable appetite suppressant properties and helps people lose weight quickly. On the other side are those who have indicated that the product does not work as well as has been stated, and also are quick to point out that too little is known
about the potential side effects. The other problem with Hoodia is that it is a product that is not regulated – many researchers who have examined products sold as containing Hoodia have found that the samples tested haven’t actually contained the ingredient.

Acai Berry

Acai is a berry that comes from a palm tree that is grown in Central and South America. It is a very valuable food source to the people who live in the region, and several years ago a number of marketing companies seized upon the plant and started singing its praises for a variety of health benefits. Today you can purchase acai supplements that are advertised as helping you lose weight, stop your diabetes, make your penis grow larger, and other claims. None of them have proven to be true, and many of the companies selling Acai have been accused of fraudulent practices and repeated credit card charges.

Weight Gain Inhibitors

A completely different approach to the problem of obesity has been the creation of weight gain inhibitors. These products work within your intestinal system to prevent the absorption of fat. This means that when your food is being broken down by your digestive system, rather than having fat absorbed through the walls of your intestine it simply passes through, thus preventing you from taking in calories from fat. The truth is that blocking fat absorption won’t actually help you lose weight you still need to take in fewer calories and burn more for weight loss to happen. But what weight gain inhibitors can do is help you as you are adjusting to a healthier, lower fat diet. They are a great way to help you transition into a new way of eating.


Xenical is one of the weight gain inhibitors that has been proven to be very effective. It is what is known as a lipase inhibitor. Lipase is an enzyme found in your digestive tract that helps break down the food you’ve eaten. After the food has been broken down, lipase carries the fat to the walls of your intestines for absorption. By stopping this action, Xenical lets the fat get carried out of your system. Xenical’s generic name is Orlistat, which is also known as the product Alli. Xenical is a stronger version of the product that is only available via prescription. The non-prescription over the counter version is known as Alli. One note of caution – if you eat foods that are heavy in fat while you are taking an Orlistat product, you will be sorry; the fat will pass out of you very quickly, and many have complained of losing control of their bowels and extreme flatulence with oily staining. Also, be sure to take Vitamin supplements, as many of the essential nutrients that you need are carried
into your system by the fat molecules you are voiding.

Fat Burners

Fat burners are products that are sold over the counter, often via the internet or in health food stores or through fitness websites. They are generally made of different herbs and are said to give extra energy and increase your metabolism. Like many other products that are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, the biggest problem with these products is that they are not regulated, so there is no way of monitoring or knowing what they contain. That being said, experts have indicated that when used in combination with an exercise program, they do seem to increase in weight loss.


Lipofuze is a popular fat burner whose main ingredients are green tree extract and chromium picolinate. Of the fat burning ingredients available on the market, Chromium Picolinate is one that scientists say is not particularly effective. Instead you should look for products that contain CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid.


Phen375 bills itself as being able to help you lose dramatic amounts of weight quickly, and contains none of the fat burning ingredients that scientists have indicated are actually effective. It is a good idea to stay away from products that promise too much, as the best way to lose weight effectively is gradually, and in combination with improving your diet and exercise habits.