Best Weight Loss Pills: Are you a grown-up dealing with significant health issues due to your weight? Have you attempted dietary changes and physical activity but have not achieved the desired weight loss? If your response is positive, a prescription weight loss medication might be a viable option for you.
Unlike over-the-counter medicines, Prescription drugs are recommended by a healthcare provider and are not available for direct purchase from a drug store without a prescription.
You should know that you should incorporate prescription weight loss medication as a supplement to, not a replacement for, regular exercise and a healthy diet.
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Who can take weight loss pills?
Your healthcare provider may recommend weight loss drugs in certain situations. These include instances where you have been unable to achieve weight loss through exercise and diet, and if your:
- If your body mass index (BMI) exceeds 30, it indicates that you are affected by a condition known as obesity, which involves excessive body fat.
- If your body mass index (BMI) is higher than 27, you also have a severe medical issue associated with obesity, like high blood pressure or diabetes.
Before selecting a medication for you, your healthcare provider considers your medical history and health obstacles. Afterwards, they discuss with you the advantages and disadvantages of prescription weight loss medication.
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These medications are not suitable for everyone. For instance, if you are attempting to conceive, currently pregnant, or breastfeeding, you should avoid taking prescription weight loss pills.
How well do weight loss pills work?
Long-term use of prescription weight loss medication, lasting for more than 12 weeks, results in significant weight loss compared to a placebo, which is an inactive treatment without medication. When combined with lifestyle changes, weight loss medicine leads to more weight loss than depending on lifestyle changes alone.
Using these medications for a year can result in a total body weight reduction of 3% to 12% more than what can be achieved through lifestyle changes alone. While this percentage might not appear substantial, shedding 5% to 10% of your overall weight and maintaining it can yield significant health advantages.
For instance, it can reduce blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and triglyceride levels in the blood.
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This emphasizes the significance of discussing all available treatment options with your healthcare provider and inquiring about each medication’s potential benefits and risks.
Weight loss medications can be costly and may not always be covered by insurance. Check with your insurance company to inquire about your coverage.
After discontinuing weight loss drugs, numerous individuals experience weight regain. However, adopting healthy lifestyle habits can help minimize weight gain.
Perfect time period to take a weight loss medication
The duration for which you should take a weight loss drug varies based on its effectiveness in helping you lose weight. If you achieve sufficient weight loss to increase your health and have not experienced severe side effects, your healthcare provider might recommend long-term medication usage.
If your healthcare provider is likely to modify your treatment plan after taking the full dosage of a weight loss drug for 3 to 6 months, you have not shed at least 5% of your body weight. This could involve switching to another weight loss medication.
What drugs are approved for weight loss?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved six weight loss drugs for long-term use.
- Orlistat (Xenical, Alli)
- Bupropion-naltrexone (Contrave)
- Liraglutide (Saxenda)
- Setmelanotide (Imcivree)
- Semaglutide (Wegovy)
- Phentermine-topiramate (Qsymia)
The majority of prescription weight loss medication function by either reducing your appetite or making you feel fuller. Certain drugs do both simultaneously. However, Orlistat is an exception, as it influences the fat is absorbed by your body.
It is a combination medication. Naltrexone is utilized for treating opioid and alcohol addiction, while bupropion serves as both an antidepressant for depression and a quit-smoking aid. Similar to all antidepressants, you should know that bupropion have a warning regarding the risk of suicide. Also, bupropion-naltrexone has the potential to elevate blood pressure.
Your healthcare provider will need to regular monitor your blood pressure when you begin treatment. Typical side effects may include constipation, nausea, and headache.
Liraglutide is utilized for diabetes management and is administered as a daily injection. Nausea is a frequently reported side effect, and vomiting may restrict its usage.
It is available in a lower-strength version without a prescription, known as Alli. Side effects of Orlistat may include passing gas and experiencing loose stools. It is important to follow a low-fat diet while using this medication.
In rare instances, individuals have experienced severe liver injury while using Orlistat. However, researchers have not established a definitive causal link between the drug and liver injuries.
It is a combination medication with a weight loss drug known as an anticonvulsant and phentermine called topiramate. Due to its stimulant-like properties resembling amphetamines, phentermine has the possibility for misuse.
Additional side effects encompass an elevated heart rate, increased blood pressure, constipation, insomnia, and feelings of nervousness. Moreover, topiramate usage heightens the risk of birth defects.
Phentermine, sold under names like Adipex-P and Lomaira, is employed solely for weight loss purposes. It belongs to a group of four similar weight loss drugs approved for short-term use, typically lasting less than 12 weeks. The other medications within this category are not frequently prescribed.
Semaglutide is also employed to manage type 2 diabetes while serving as a weekly injection for obesity management.
Possible side effects include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain
Setmelanotide has received FDA approval solely for individuals aged six and above who have obesity resulting from specific rare inherited conditions, as follows:
- Proprotein subtilisin-kexin type 1 deficiency
- Pro-opiomelanocortin deficiency
- Leptin receptor deficiency
Before starting the drug, you will need to provide test results confirming that you have one of the mentioned conditions. Setmelanotide does not address the genetic issues causing these conditions directly.
However, it can aid in weight loss by reducing your appetite, promoting a feeling of fullness, and potentially increasing calorie burn while your body is at rest.
- Irritation and swelling at the injection site.
- Darker skin patches development
- Suicidal thoughts
- Abdominal pain
- Feelings of depression
- Unwanted sexual reactions
Under no circumstances should setmelanotide be administered to a child below the age of 6 years. The drug can provoke hazardous reactions in newborns and infants.
Weight loss drugs are not a quick fix for losing weight, but they can assist you in adopting the necessary lifestyle changes to achieve weight loss and enhance your overall health.