Weight Loss Medication Pros And Cons
Are you wondering about the Orlistat pros and cons for weight loss? Orlistat is a FDA approved medication to help people with weight loss. The over the counter version is called Alli, which has a smaller dosage for Orlistat than the prescription dosage found in Xenical. Like any medication, there are always risks and potential benefits, so let’s review the Orlistat pros and cons to determine if it is right for you.
Weighing the Orlistat pros and cons is an individual endeavor, but should be done with your physician even though it can be bought over the counter in some countries. All factors of your health, what you’ve tried so far in your weight loss goals and whether there is other things you could try, should all be considered very carefully. Many people including health care professionals sometimes take prescribing medicine as just the thing to do without really considering all options. Indeed, there are many people who benefit greatly from a variety of pharmaceutical intervention, even saving their lives, but still one should think it through and it is the same with Orlistat.
Side Effects When Considering Orlistat Pros And Cons
Orlistat works by preventing absorption of some of the fat from the foods we eat. Studies show that 91% of people taking Orlistat have at least 1 gastrointestinal side effect, frequently oily, loose stools. Related to that are increased gas, frequent and urgent bowel movements including some leaking out into the underwear. By the 4th year, only 36% experienced side effects. Eating a low fat diet tends to decrease side effects. With the use of this medication, the recommended maximum fat content per meal is 15 grams. Even bean salad and most chicken dishes are over that, so this in itself will be a challenge. There is speculation and study into this lower side effect causing people to start eating higher fat diets. The “aversion” to eating high fat diets is no longer present as when a person first started the medication.
Study statistics when considering the Orlistat pros and cons are that 25.5 to 54.8% of the people using Orlistat accomplished 5% or more decrease in their total body mass, some of that was not body fat. Also, 16.4 to 24.8% accomplished at least 10% decrease in total body mass. Important to note though is that after the Orlistat was stopped, a large number of the people taking Orlistat in the study gained at least 35% of the weight back that they had lost while taking the medication.
Additional Studies On Orlistat
There was also a study done in Canada on 900 people taking the medication. It showed kidney injury of more than triple that of non-users. Liver issues are still being questioned as well. Another thing to consider is that it will inhibit the absorption of fat soluble vitamins. It also inhibits certain medications, so even if you purchase this over the counter, you should always consult your physician first.
Orlistat Pros And Cons Summary
So, in summary the cons found with the use of Orlistat for weight loss are the…
1. Potential side effects that could be unpleasant as mentioned above. 91% have at least one side effect.
2. Potential side effects that could be damaging to kidneys and liver.
3. Weight loss according to statistics is generally low. For example, in a year’s time if you are 200 pounds and you lose 5%, that is 10 pounds. Or if you are one of the people who lose 10%, that would be 20 pounds.
4. You still need to make lifestyle changes for it to have lasting effects. (This is a pro also, depending on how you look at it).
5. Many people gain the weight back as soon as they stop the medication.
The pros might be…
1. You have tried absolutely every thing else, including lifestyle changes and nothing has worked for you. This should be discussed with your doctor, but it may be determined that it is something to try to hopefully get things moving.
2. People who are on the verge of diabetes may benefit. There is a small percentage according to the study that were taking the medication that didn’t develop diabetes. Maybe they never would have or maybe the weight loss helped. It is not clear. This may be a reason to try it if you and your doctor are concerned about that.
Again, although considering the Orlistat pros and cons is an individual decision, it should be done with your physician. Obviously, there are cons or potential risks when taking any medication as well potential benefits. It is no different with Orlistat. People should make sure that they have tried a proven nutritional plan for weight loss including positive lifestyle changes and not just all the fad diets out there that often do more harm than good. There are also natural supplements that may have a similar action of preventing fat from being absorbed, which may have less side effects than Orlistat. Whatever is decided, weighing the Orlistat pros and cons should not be taken lightly.