If you are having trouble maintaining weight loss or if you are overweight, or worse yet obese it may be worth considering talking to your primary care provider and be prescribed a medication known as orlistat. Dietary changes and exercise are still important component for weight loss but it has shown that people have a hard time losing weight and maintaining that weight loss therefore something like this may help in people losing weight and keeping the weight off. Orlistat works by inhibiting digestive enzymes produced in the body such as lipase, amylase that are primarily utilized to break down triglycerides. This drug was synthesized by Streptomyces toxytricini. A one year studied showed 35-50% were able to lose more than 5% of their body weight. Though that being said it showed that the majority did regain the weight they lost when they stopped using the drug.
The pill is usually taken 3 times a day and in some countries it is simply over the counter, still caution is advised people should consult their primary care provider first and foremost. This is generally recommended for people with a BMI over 30 or at least a BMI of 27 with comorbidities. This is not recommended for people under 18 or people over the age of 74.In Australia this is over the counter, in canada it is still considered a prescription drug. Primary elimination is through the feces. Contraindications against taking this drug include people with malabsorption issues and pregnancy as well as issues with an obstructed bile duct and issues with the pancreas. It would be not recommended for those with specific GI issues such as chronic pancreatitis, chronic gastritis, crohns, ulcerative colitis, celiac, IBS, etc Side effects include greasy stool, fecal incontinence, as well as possibly frequent or urgent bowel movements.
Cost can and should be considered an issue. Approximate cost is about $100.00-$150.00 per month supply. Worth to contact a doctor if you start breaking out in hives, intense abdominal pain that doesn’t go away, yellowing or darkening of the skin and eyes, change in color of urine, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing. If someone does consider taking this drug after consulting with their primary care provider they should understand this will also block fat soluble vitamins so it will be necessary for them to take a supplementary intake of Vitamin A,D,E and K otherwise they will become deficient which will and can cause a spectrum of side effects. It would also be advised not to take orlistat if on immunosuppressive drugs such as cyclosporine. People will often look for the “next” great magic bullet to help them with their appearance, image, etc because they are not happy with how they look. This is why people used stimulates such as amphetamine products, thyroid hormone product, leptin derivatives in a way to help them feel better about themselves. None of these provide a great outlook for one’s long term health and often provide only a short term fix. It will take hard work such as diet control with changes, exercising regularly, and if need be a supplement or drug that can help reduce one’s appetite or reduce one’s metabolism of bad fats/lipids/cholesterol, etc.
Orlistat would likely be recommended for a specific set population in need of weight loss with a targeted short term goal because of a necessary procedure that needs to be done and their BMI is to high. It may behoove one to try nutrition, diet, and exercise changes before trying to add or incorporate with a drug that will likely help some short term but is unproven to show long term maintenance of weight loss.