There are so many different pills for weight loss. But what do they each do?
This page will give you a brief introduction to the types of weight loss pills as well as further information and where you can purchase them.
There are 3 main types of weight loss pills. They are:
- Appetite suppressants – controls your junk food cravings.
- Sibutramine – by altering neurotransmitters within the brain.
- Orlistat – inhibits dietary fats from being absorbed.
1) Appetite suppressants – suppresses your appetite and controls your junk food cravings.
These are used in conjunction with an overall diet plan to reduce weight. Appetite suppressants are not a substitute for proper diet, they just remove the need to eat as much. The most common of these is the drug Phentermine.
Drug brand names for appetite suppressants include:
2) Sibutramine – alters neurotransmitters within the brain.
Sibutramine is a medication that assists with weight-loss by altering neurotransmitters within the brain. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that are produced and released by nerves in order to communicate with other nerves. Released neurotransmitters may attach to other nerves or they may be taken up again by the nerves that release them, a process termed reuptake. Sibutramine blocks the reuptake of the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. Blocking the reuptake of neurotransmitters alters the balance of neurotransmitters within the nerve cells and thereby affect nerve function and interaction.
Patients taking sibutramine may achieve a 5-10% reduction from their baseline weight. Additionally, sibutramine-assisted weight loss has been accompanied by improvement in blood lipids (e.g, cholesterol). Sibutramine was approved by the FDA in 1997.
The most common Sibutramine is Meridia.
* Note: there is currently a class action pending for the drug Meridia.
3) Orlistat – inhibits dietary fats from being absorbed.
Unlike other obesity drugs, orlitstat prevents enzymes in the gastrointestinal tract from breaking down dietary fats into smaller molecules that can be absorbed by the body. Absorption of fat is decreased by about 30 percent. Since undigested triglycerides are not absorbed, the reduced caloric intake may have a positive effect on weight control.
The most common orlistat is Xenical.
XENICAL® is a prescription weight-control medication useful for the long-term treatment of significant obesity. XENICAL® can also help to improve risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar which, if not treated, could lead to other diseases such as hypertension and diabetes. Each XENICAL® capsule contains 120 mg of the active substance orlistat, which acts as a lipase inhibitor. XENICAL® is a weight loss medication that targets the absorption of fat in your body rather than suppressing your appetite. It is useful for long term use and has been shown to be effective for 1-2 years. Dietary fats are inhibited from being absorbed and this allows about 30% of the fat eaten in the meal to pass through the gut undigested. This helps you to reduce and maintain your weight, as well as to minimize any weight regain.
Xenical has become a very popular drug for weight loss.