I know this is not a topic of conversation on our blog, but I see a lot of parallels between skin care products and weight loss products and I felt we could help spread the word on some hocus pocus. Just like skin care there is no "magic pill" that will make your thin, but there are some things you can do outside of diet and exercise.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommends using pharmacology in the treatment of obese people that have maintained a diet of 500 to 1000 calories for six months without results.
- The FDA has approved Meridia (sibutramine) with a doctors prescription which inhibits the reuptake of serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.
- Also available is Xenical 120mg (orlistat) reversible inhibitor of gastric and pancreatic lipase; and phentermine, an adrenergic medication.
- Some off label drugs are antidepressants and anticonvulsants (used to prevent convulsions).
- Bariatric surger is recommended for extreme obesity.
Now we go to over the counter products.
- Xenical 60mg (orlistat), side effects tend to be gastrointestinal when consuming more than the 15g of fat recommended with the diet. Xenical studies showed similar efficacy as the prescription version with much less side effects.
- Alli 60mg (orlistat), uses the same active ingredient as Xenical, but they claim less side effects. Bottom line for Xenical and Alli is that they work, but results are modest.
- Bitter Orange- there is little evidence showing that it works, but can raise blood pressure and heart rate.
- Chitosan - scientific evidence suggests that it does not block fat absorption as advertised.
- Chromium - can work as a cofactor for insulin secretion, but not for weight loss.
- Conjugated Linoleic Acid - does not help with weight loss, but can assist people that are CLA deficient
- Fiber - most western diets are fiber deficient and a supplement can be helpful, but don't count on it for weight loss.
- Green Tea - most green teas have caffeine and caffeine can act as a diuretic effect which some people perceive as weight loss.
- Guar Gum - great source of fiber, but not recommended for weight loss.
- Guarana - ususally studied with ephedra. Guarana can have and adverse effect on the nervous system.
- Hoodia - there is little or no scientific literature supporting it as a weight loss agent.
- Hydroxycitric Acid - appear to be safe, but more studies needed on weight loss efficacy.
- L-Carnitine - studies show that is does not work as a supplement.
- Natural Licorice - improves cellular water content, but can raise blood pressure. Should not be use for weight loss.
- Usnic Acid - no supporting evidence and potential for severe side effects.
- White Kidney Bean Extract- inhibits the digestive enzyme alpha amylase which can block the absorption of starch and carbohydrates. Can have a modest weight loss result.
- Willow Bark - no evidence supporting weight loss and people with aspirin allergies should avoid.
- Yohimbine- two well controlled studies say that it doesn't work.
A table with common trade names, doses and pricing is available here.
I guess the bottom line is, you can't substitute diet and exercise. :)
Source article for this information comes from here http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/574182_1