Weight Loss Drugs: 5 Weight Loss Pills described with Pros & Cons

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The lifestyle of modern world has made life easier for humans. With the help of machines and robots, we have stopped doing any physical labor ourselves. It results in unhealthy lifestyle and obesity. The problems of obesity are increasingly spreading all around the globe. It is not surprising anymore that 2 out of 5 people are obese and doctors recommend weight loss to them.

The medical science has come up with drugs, which can accelerate the weight loss in patients when followed by healthy eating habits and movement of the body. They do not work miraculously like surgeries but they have been proven effective for a lot many people.

There is a drastic change in blood pressure and blood sugar levels of patients when they lose a little weight. The hormonal balance is retained when the body starts losing extra weight.

Who can benefit from weight loss drugs?

Weight Loss Drugs are not prescribed for patients who are overweight but for the ones for who qualify in the obese category. The BMI of 30 or higher is the condition when a doctor would prescribe weight loss drugs to the patients. The patients with a BMI of 27 or higher with heart problems because of weight can make use of the weight loss drugs.

Others are advised to lose weight in a healthy manner by eating right and exercising regularly.

The benefit of weight loss drugs is that they help lose weight quickly which keeps the patient motivated to work harder. It would not work if the patient continues to follow an unhealthy lifestyle and does not work physically.

Patients are monitored carefully when they start taking these drugs. It is recommended to use them for three months to see the results. If the patient is unable to lose at least 5% of his weight in three months, the doctors stop recommending the weight loss drugs.

These medicines can only heal the body for certain duration. Once the patient stops taking weight loss drugs, he might get back the weight if he/she does not adopt healthy lifestyle. All medications have risk factors associated with them whereas adapting healthy lifestyles would cure obesity from its roots.

What drugs are available?

The pharmaceutical companies have been researching about the medications that can make world citizens healthier again. The weight has become a major issue around the globe as our lifestyle continues to deteriorate day by day.

There has been a widespread research on these drugs but only the Food and Drug Association have approved a few for long-term use in obese patients. They are;

Orlistat

It was one of the first drugs used in weight loss during 1999. FDA approved it with only a prescription. In 2007, the drug was made available over the counter. It is sold under the brand name Xenical.

Orlistat is recommended for obese patients. It treats obesity when accompanied by low fat diet. Its mechanism is quite simple. It works on the pancreatic enzyme called lipase that aids in breaking fat from the food in small intestine. When Orlistat in taken with every meal; it would not let the pancreatic enzyme, lipase break down all the fat from the food. The fat would not be absorbed by the body but would be burned with high metabolism.

The side effects of Orlistat include gases, oily bowel movement, and other changes in bowel activities. In the worst cases, some of the patients have also been reported of having severe lever damage on consumption of this drug. If a patient notices sign of liver malfunction such as yellow eyes, yellow stool, itching, loss of appetite or brown urine, they should immediately consult a doctor.

The use of Orlistat drug can cause disturbed bowel movements, severe liver damage, and gastrointestinal turbulence in some patients. However, it promises a steady weight loss. The patients who consumed the drug along with regular exercise and healthy eating habits lost around 5 more pounds than the patients who just took the medicine.

Lorcaserin

This drug acts on brain elements, which makes the obese patients, feel fuller. It reduces the appetite and accelerates weight loss. It acts on serotonin receptors inside the brain. This drug is not approved for pregnant women. It can adversely affect the health of pregnant women and the women who are trying to conceive as it causes drowsiness, headache, and constipation. The serotonin receptors inside the brain can react to other drugs taken alongside the Lorcaserin as they are used to treat depression in the patients.

It is sold under the brand name, Belviq. It is taken by mouth twice a day.

Phentermine + topiramate

Phentermine is a drug that decreases appetite in the patients. Topiramate is another drug which is used in patients of migraine which makes them feel fuller and works on appetite functioning. It is sold under the brand name of Qysmia. Approved in 2012, the drug can have severe side effects.

It can cause birth defects such as cleft palate in feteuses, pregnant women and women trying to conceive a baby are restrained from using this drug. It is advisable that women of childbearing age should use birth control along with these medications and conduct pregnancy test every month.

Another common side effect, which is quite strange in patients using Phentermine + topiramate, is suicidal thoughts. It is quite rare but it has been noticed that 1 in 500 people consuming this medication, especially topiramate start having suicidal thoughts.

Bupropion+naltrexone

Bupropion is a drug used to treat obesity. FDA had rejected it as it had long-term impact on heart and cardiovascular system. It is associated with increased rate of suicidal thoughts. It comes in a black box packaging, which is a strictest of FDA warning labels. Naltrexone is a drug used to treat alcohol addiction and opioid addictions.

The combination of the drugs works on hypothalamus, an almond shaped element inside our brains, which caters to the hunger and appetite.

Sletrokor

While all major drug companies dealing in weight loss medications suggest exercising and healthy diet as a prerequisite for maintaining weight, Sletrokor promises weight loss without any of it. The process is simple and effective. It controls the digestive system and reduces the cholesterol content of the body. It reduces appetite and increases the metabolism rate.

It has all ingredients approved and made from natural plant products. The only drawback is that the drug is not easily available and there is not much information about the company.

It is advisable for all patients suffering from obesity to make use of healthy diets and regular exercise. The drugs can aid the weight loss but there is always a risk factor associated with all medicines.