Have you tried all sorts of diets to lose weight yet nothing seems to be working for you? If that’s the case, you may want to consider weight loss pills. Although many people think of diet pills as something that’s dangerous to our health, there are weight loss pills that are approved for use by the FDA. These pills are made from ingredients that will not put your health at risk and will not lead to harmful side effects or complications.
To help you decide which of these pills is the best, here is our guide to some of the best weight loss pills for 2018.
Buying the Best Weight Loss Pill
There’re three major types of weight loss pills that you can buy:
- Prescription pills – These are pills that you can only obtain with a prescription from your doctor.
- Non-prescription pills – OTC (over the counter pills) that can be bought without any prescription.
- Herbal supplements – Weight loss supplements that aren’t considered as drugs, and therefore, they won’t need to follow the strict guidelines set by the FDA.
Your healthcare provider is the best person who can provide you with helpful information regarding the use of weight loss pills. If you’re planning to buy a pill that you are doubtful about, it is best to talk to your doctor about it. Your doctor can also offer some helpful advice if the pills are safe to use given your current medical condition.
Setting Realistic Expectations
Remember that there are no shortcuts when it comes to losing weight. The best way to lose those extra pounds is by eating a healthy diet and being more physically active.
Weight loss pills are merely tools to help you lose weight, but you still need to do your part to achieve your weight loss goals. There’s not a lot of research done on non-prescription pills, unlike prescription pills. For instance, a study done in 2017 has shown that an obese person living a healthy lifestyle taking prescription diet pills can achieve a clinically meaningful weight loss in only a year!
Clinically meaningful weight loss is a term that refers to losing enough weight that could help lower your chances of getting heart diseases and diabetes. It means losing 5% or more of your total body weight.
It’s important to note that the weight loss achieved through a research setting could be greater than the actual practice. Moreover, any possible side effects of the pills could affect how much a pill can help you lose weight.
Weight loss pills, especially prescription pills, could be beneficial to your weight loss goals but they aren’t magical. Furthermore, the pills may not work for everyone, and the benefits that one can get out of them may be only a few. Check out more info on liquid diets for morbidly obese here
Nevertheless, here are some of the best weight loss pills for 2018:
After selling one of the top Garcinia Cambogia online for the past years they have certainly learned a thing or two about this powerful little fruit. Known for its appetite suppressing and mood enhancing attributes, when formulated just the right way can deliver amazing results.
Studies done on the Garcinia Cambogia have shown that the HCA can help prevent certain fat-producing enzymes in the body while also increasing the level of serotonin, which helps to curb one’s cravings. A study done in 2011 regarding the Garcinia Cambogia has shown that, on an average, the diet pill has led to a weight loss of about 2 pounds after several weeks. Furthermore, there have been no reports of any serious side effects although a few people have complained of mild digestive problems.
- Boost your energy & mood
- Reduce and Supress Appetite
- Improve digestion
- Boost brain function & memory
The Hydroxycut supplement has been on the market for more than a decade now and is still one of the most sought-after weight loss supplements in the world. The supplement is available in different types, and the most common is known simply as the Hydroxycut. These supplements are made from several ingredients that have been proven to help with weight loss. Some of the main ingredients are caffeine and plant extracts.
On a study conducted about the Hydroxycut, the supplement helped with the loss of up to 21 pounds in only a 3-month period. Unfortunately, only one study has been conducted for this supplement. Furthermore, if you’re someone who’s sensitive to caffeine, the supplement could lead to some serious side effects, such as diarrhea, nausea, anxiety, irritability, jitteriness, etc.
- Encourages you to follow a balanced diet.
- Not associated with any serious health problem
- Easy to use
- Not evaluated by the FDA
- May cause minor side effects
Orlistat is a type of pharmaceutical drug that can be obtained over the counter under the name “Alli.” The pills can also be obtained with a prescription under the name “Xenical.” Orlistat works by preventing the breakdown of fats in your stomach, and as a result, you will end up taking in fewer calories.
In a review done about Orlistat, it has been shown that the pill can lead to a weight loss of up to 6 lbs. The pill has also been proven to help in slightly minimizing the risk of type 2 diabetes. The pills also come with some digestive side effects, such as loose and oily stools, frequent bowel movement, and flatulence. It can lead to the deficiency of fat-soluble vitamins in the body, such as Vitamins K, E, D, and A.
Experts recommend following a low-fat diet when taking Orlistat so you can minimize the side effects. Interestingly, it has been found that a low carb diet without the use of any drugs has been shown to be quite as effective as taking Orlistat and following a low-fat diet.
Orlistat works by helping to minimize the amount of fat that your body absorbs, thereby helping you lose weight. However, it comes with many side effects, and most of them are somewhat unpleasant.
- Effectively reduces weight by up to 5%.
- Long-term use may lower high blood pressure
- May cause severe toxicity to internal organs.
- Cancer cells could multiply faster when taking the pill
Raspberry ketones are substances found in raspberries and that are recognized for their unusual smell. There are synthetic versions of the raspberry ketones that are being sold as weight loss supplements. In a study done on rats, the raspberry ketones have been shown to increase the breakdown of fats while enhancing the level of a hormone known as the adiponectin, which is said to help with weight loss. Unfortunately, there was no single study conducted among humans regarding the effectiveness of raspberry ketones. But on that study done on a rat, massive doses of the raspberry ketones led to significant weight loss. One of the reported side effects is that they could make your breath smell like raspberry.
- Made from all-natural ingredients.
- Contains a high level of antioxidants
- Protects against diseases, like diabetes and fatty liver
- No human studies were done on the pill
- The FDA has not evaluated this supplement
Green coffee beans are just like your average coffee beans but not roasted. They contain ingredients that can help you lose weight such as chlorogenic acid and caffeine. Experts believe that caffeine can encourage fat burning and chlorogenic acid can help slow down carbs breakdown. Several studies done in humans have shown that the extracts from green coffee beans can indeed help people lose weight.
A review of the three studies done on the green coffee beans has shown that people who took the supplement have lost up to 5.4 pounds of weight when compared to other pills. The green coffee bean extract may also help in lowering the blood sugar level and in reducing blood pressure. Moreover, it contains antioxidants that keep your body protected from certain diseases.
The green coffee beans could result in similar side effects as caffeine. The chlorogenic acid in the beans could cause diarrhea among people who are allergic to green coffee beans. While the green coffee bean extract may be effective in helping you lose some weight, keep in mind that most of the studies conducted were industry-sponsored.
- All-natural ingredients
- Health-enhancing compounds
- Boosts energy levels
- Studies are industry-sponsored
- Dangerous for pregnant women
Glucomannan is a fiber obtained from the roots of konjac, also known as the elephant yam. Glucomannan works like a gel-like substance. It will remain in your stomach so you will feel full for longer, which helps to curb your hunger and makes you eat less. In the three studies done on humans, it was shown that taking the glucomannan, along with a healthy diet, has helped people lose up to 10 pounds of weight in just 5 weeks.
As a type of fiber, glucomannan can also feed the friendly bacteria that linger on your intestine. Moreover, the fiber can help you lower down your level of bad cholesterol, blood sugar, and triglycerides. It has also been found to help treat constipation. However, this pill comes with some side effects. Some people reported a feeling of bloating, soft stools, and flatulence. Also, the glucomannan is also said to interfere with some medications.
- Controls blood sugar
- Lowers cholesterol level
- Treats rheumatoid arthritis
- Appetite suppressant
- May cause flatulence, indigestion, and abdominal discomfort
- Not approved by the FDA
Meratrim is among the latest diet pills to have been released in the market. It’s made from a combination of plant extracts that are said to alter the metabolism of your body’s fat cells. When taken, the pills work by making it difficult for the fat cells to multiply, which decreases the number of fats gained from your bloodstream. This process also helps in burning your body’s stored fat. Only one study has been done on Meratrim so far. In this study, 100 obese people were asked to go on a strict diet of only 2,000 calories per day, and others were asked to take Meratrim, while some took a dummy pill.
After about eight weeks, those who took the Meratrim lost 11 pounds of weight. They also had improved wellbeing. Their blood sugar was reduced, and so were their triglycerides and cholesterol. In addition to this, none of those who took the Meratrim complained about any side effects.
In conclusion, the Meratrim may be effective in helping you lose weight and has a few health benefits, but it should be noted that the study was industry-sponsored and further research is needed to conclude if Meratrim is indeed effective.
- All-natural supplement
- Effective for weight loss
- No reported side effects
- Further studies are needed.
Green tea extract is one of the most popular ingredients in most weight loss supplements. Various studies show that its main antioxidant, known as EGCG, can greatly help in burning fats. Furthermore, the green tea extracts are believed to improve the activity of a hormone known as norepinephrine, which helps you burn fat. Several studies done on humans have shown that the green tea extract can indeed improve the body’s ability to burn fats and could significantly shed some pounds on the belly area. But since it contains some caffeine, it may also lead to some side effects among people who are sensitive to caffeine.
The green tea extract is also known for its many health benefits, and if you took these pills to lose weight, you would be able to take advantage of these benefits as well.
- Contains antioxidants
- Fights liver diseases
- Reduces any weight regained
- Could lead to irritability, anxiety, and upset stomach
- Difficulty to sleep due to caffeine.
Also known as CLA, the Conjugated Linoleic Acid has been a popular weight loss supplement for many years now. Considered as the healthier version of trans fats, the CLA is obtained naturally from fatty animal foods, such as butter and cheese. The CLA is said to help boost metabolism, reduce appetite, and encourage the breakdown of fats. In a review done on the studies about CLA, the supplement has been found to cause a weight loss of 0.2 pounds each week for up to six months.
In another study done in 2017, the CLA has been found to make a person lose up to 3 pounds of weight when compared to a dummy pill. As most of the weight loss pills in the market, the CLA has also been shown to trigger digestive side effects and could be harmful to the body in the long run. Among the long-term side effects are fatty liver, increased inflammation, and insulin resistance.
To conclude, CLA may be an effective supplement for weight loss. However, it could lead to detrimental effects in the long run. You could lose a small amount of weight, but it’s just not worth the risk.
- Helps you lose weight in a short time.
- Keeps you fit and energetic.
- Helps improve metabolism.
- Digestive side effects
- Harmful to the body in the long run
Forskolin is an extract obtained from a plant that belongs to the family of mint and is said to be effective in making a person lose weight. It’s also been shown to increase the level of compounds inside the cells known as CAMP, which stimulate the body’s fat burning abilities. On a study done among 30 overweight individuals, it’s been shown that the Forskolin can help lower body fats while increasing muscle mass. Another study was done among 23 overweight women, yet, no effects were seen.
As of now, there’s a limited data on the safety and the effectiveness of the Forskolin as well as its side effects. The two studies done on the supplement have shown conflicting results. For now, it’s best to avoid this supplement until further research is done.
- May help with Alzheimer’s disease and cancer
- Helps with weight management
- Not enough studies are done on the pill
- May lead to harmful side effects.
Everything You Need to Know About Weight Loss Pills
Most of the advertisements and marketing campaigns for different weight loss pills claim that the pills could help you boost your energy, improve your health, and melt those fats away. With a pill as good as this, people no longer must rely on diets and exercises to lose weight. This has turned the industry of weight loss pills into a multi-billion-dollar industry.
Although several weight loss pills can help you lose weight, some of them are associated with serious heart diseases and other health problems. In fact, certain diet pills are linked to cases of sudden death.
As mentioned, weight loss pills are available in different varieties and are classified in three main varieties: over-the-counter drugs, prescription drugs, and herbal supplements.
OTC or over-the-counter drugs can be obtained even without a prescription from the doctor, and they can be bought from your local supermarket or drug store. Most of these drugs are regulated by the FDA, which means that they are considered safe for use. The pills that are regulated by the FDA are made from active ingredients known as phenylpropanolamine or PPA. In 2000, the FDA recommended that drug manufacturers should reformulate products containing PPA since some pieces of evidence show that the ingredient could increase the possibility of a stroke. There are still some diet pills that are made from this ingredient.
On the other hand, prescription drugs can only be obtained with a prescription from a doctor. Xenical and Meridia are two examples of prescription drugs. These drugs are carefully regulated by the FDA and are often closely monitored.
Herbal supplements for weight loss are available with and without prescription. You will usually find a wide variety of these supplements in nutrition stores, and in some cases, in the local supermarket. These herbal supplements are usually labeled as all natural and are considered as food products by the FDA instead of drugs.
There are also weight loss drugs that are administered in the form of a powder, as a patch, or as a liquid. These drugs may also fall under any of the three main categories mentioned above, but the only difference is the way in which they are administered.
Prescription Weight Loss Pills
Weight loss pills work in several different ways, although it mainly depends on the ingredients they are made from.
Appetite suppressants like Tenuate, Meridia, and Fastin work by affecting the appetite-regulating region of the brain known as the hypothalamus. These suppressants work by blocking the re-uptake of norepinephrine and serotonin, two chemicals that help create a feeling of satiety and make you feel full after eating a huge meal. With plenty of these chemicals circulating in your brain, you’ll feel full for longer, and therefore, you will end up eating less.
Prescription weight loss pills like Xenical (Orlistat), work by inhibiting the action of an enzyme known as lipase. If we eat foods loaded with fats, lipase will work by breaking down fats as soon as they get into our intestinal tract. Once the lipase inhibitor starts working, a certain percentage of fats that your body has ingested will be removed.
Several prescription drugs these days are being used as diet aids although that isn’t their main purpose. There are antidepressant drugs that are being labeled as diet aids since they have helped many patients lose weight. Moreover, some researchers are studying certain drugs that are normally intended for treating epilepsy and diabetes to be made into weight loss pills.
Since weight loss pills have become a lucrative business these days, pharmaceutical companies are now pushing to introduce more weight loss products in the market. Currently, there are now more than a hundred new weight loss medications that are in development or under clinical trial.
One of the most promising of all the weight loss pills being studied currently is the rimonabant (Acomplia). It acts as a protein in the brain known as the endocannabinoids. This protein is similar in structure to the active ingredient found in cannabis or marijuana and is capable of controlling one’s appetite. Rimonabant works by keeping the endocannabinoids from getting into brain receptors. By blocking the endocannabinoids, food cravings will be minimized. In some clinical trials, it has been shown that one-third of people who are obese and were prescribed with Acomplia have lost more than 10% of their body weight and they were able to maintain their weight for up to 2 years. The drug also comes with some benefits – it could increase HDL or good cholesterol levels while also lowering triglycerides. In fact, it’s been said also to help smokers easily kick off their habit.
Who Should Use Prescription Weight Loss Pills?
Prescription weight loss pills are not intended for those who want to shed a few pounds off in an instant to fit in a dress for an important upcoming event. These pills are intended for obese and overweight people who want to gradually and safely lose some weight. They are also recommended for people who have a history of diabetes and high blood pressure.
Although almost 16% of American children are said to be overweight, most of the weight loss pills are not recommended for use by kids below 16 years old. The only exception is the Orlistat pill, which is said to be safe for use by kids 12 years old and above.
Over the Counter Weight Loss Pills
Some OTC pills, such as Zantrex-3, Xenedrine, and Dexatrim, use a combination of stimulants like caffeine and ephedra to help a person lose weight. They are said to be effective in losing weight and have also helped in increasing one’s level of energy while reducing appetite. However, during late 2003, when the Food and Drug Administration banned the sale of drugs containing ephedra as a result of some evidence linking the drug to heart attack, ephedra was replaced with a mixture of vitamins, such as vitamin B-6, folic acid, and riboflavin. Furthermore, an ephedra-like substance known as the synephrine, which is often obtained from certain citrus foods and caffeine, is also combined with these vitamins, which increased energy levels while also boosting one’s metabolism.
You’ll find plenty of weight loss supplements being sold in the market these days which make use of different mechanisms in helping one lose weight:
- Chitosan, a substance found in the exoskeleton of shellfish and shrimps, works by blocking fat from being absorbed.
- Guar gum, psyllium, and glucomannan give a feeling of being full.
- Herbal ephedra, guarana, caffeine, and country mallow increase metabolism.
- Hydrocitric acid, conjugated linoleic acid, green tea, and pyruvate slow down the production of fat.
Side Effects of Weight Loss Pills
Weight loss pills are made from different ingredients, which is also why their side effects often vary.
- Orlistat (Xenical) – These are fat blockers, and they work by removing excess fats from the intestines. Thus, they could lead to an uncomfortable cramp feeling and may even lead to diarrhea. Since these drugs tend to lower the body’s ability to absorb essential nutrients, those who are taking Xenical are also advised to take multivitamins along with the pill.
- Sibutramine (Meridia) – Along with other appetite suppressants, these pills help to stimulate the sympathetic nervous system, which could lead to an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. This may also lead to heart attack and cardiac arrest, especially for people who are already suffering from high blood pressure and heart diseases. The FDA has received reports of about 49 deaths from 1999 to 2003 related to the use of Meridia. Some of the minor side effects that come with taking this pill are constipation, dry mouth, insomnia, and headache.
- Herbal diet pills – Although herbal weight loss pills are “all natural,” they may also lead to dangerous side effects, depending on the ingredients that they are made from. Herbal doesn’t necessarily mean they are safe. Also, since these supplements are regarded as part of the food industry and are differently regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration, there’s not a guarantee that they can indeed work according to what their manufacturers would claim.
A Brief History
Beauty is often perceived differently in this day and age. Starting in the late 19th century, people’s view towards weight, especially among women, has started to shift into a slimmer and more athletic appearance. This change has resulted in the search for solutions that can make losing weight easier. Because of this, weight loss pills have gained popularity and have continuously evolved over the years.
- Early Diet Pills
The first discovery of weight loss pills was during the patent medicine era in late 1800. Known as fat reducers, the pills were made from a thyroid extract, which is geared towards increasing one’s metabolic rate. The pills resulted in successful weight reduction, although they also come with unexpected side effects. Among these are increased heart rate, abnormal heartbeat, chest pain, weakness, high blood pressure, and in worst cases, death. But despite these significant risks, the weight control pills continue to thrive.
- Early 20th Century
During the 1930s, a new medicine called the dinitrophenol became a popular weight loss treatment. The medicine worked by producing a thermogenic effect in the body. Unfortunately, there have been plenty of accidental deaths that were reported because of hypothermia that was triggered by the drug. Other reported side effects as a result of using the drug were rashes and eye cataracts. This incident contributed to the new law that the FDA has enacted regarding the use of dinitrophenol and has halted the production of the medication in the United States.
- Mid-20th Century
Around the mid-1950, the use of amphetamine as a weight loss treatment became popular. It all started when soldiers started using the drug to help keep them alert during the World War II. Although the main purpose was to keep the soldiers alert, the drug came with side effects that led to weight loss and one of these was appetite suppression. Because of this, the pills were then prescribed in the US to help patients lose weight. The risk of abuse that could lead to adverse psychological and neurological effects proved to be more significant than the benefits that the medication could provide. Another weight loss medication known as the aminorex fumarate was developed in 1965 for the main purpose of treating obesity. However, the drug led to pulmonary hypertension in several patients and thus, it was recalled from the market in 1968.
It was also in 1960 that the use of thyroid hormone for weight loss became very popular. The hormone was used along with laxatives, diuretics, and amphetamines, to promote weight loss. This approach led to risks of toxicity and was therefore banned.
- The 21st Century
Fast forward to the 21st century, weight loss pills based on herbal formulations proliferated the market. The latest drug to have entered the diet pill industry was the Orlistat. Sold as a prescription under the name “Xenical” and as OTC drug under “Alli,” Orlistat worked by reducing the amount of dietary fat that the digestive tract could absorb. The drug is often used along with a reduced-calorie diet.
Weight Loss Pills for Teens
According to the CDC or Centers for Disease Control, about 12.5 million of children in the US were said to be obese or overweight. Kids and teenagers, in particular, are still at the developmental stage, both physically and mentally. Thus, proper nutrition is necessary during this stage of their life. Improper dieting will only lead to serious health issues and could result in eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia.
The FDA doesn’t regulate the use of weight loss supplements, so it’s hard to tell if these weight loss products are safe. Most teens would often use fat burners or thermogenic to increase the heat using metabolic stimulation. Once your metabolic rate increases through metabolic simulation, you’ll end up losing weight. Ephedra has been commonly used for weight loss. However, the FDA has banned it due to reports of adverse side effects that include seizures, heart attack, and death.
Orlistat sold under the name Alli is a type of OTC or over the counter medication sold in the UK and US market. Elsewhere, Orlistat is being sold as a prescription medicine. Manufacturers have not yet tested the drug on teens. In fact, it’s not yet recommended to be used by teenagers. There are some weight loss supplements that work by helping you lose fat, which lead to a reduction of your weight. For instance, Orlistat prevents the absorption of fats into your diet by acting as a lipase inhibitor. It has been found to result in an average weight loss of 10 pounds, which is considered a moderate weight loss.
However, Orlistat must be used along with regular exercise and a reduced calorie diet. Taking the drug alone won’t help you lose weight. Moreover, there are always risks and side effects that come with taking something for the body. In the case of Orlistat, it’s been reported to result in some unpleasant side effects like gastrointestinal problems, which include flatulence, abdominal bloating, and loose tools. Heat-producing thermogenic have been known to cause heart problems, stroke, and even untimely death.
Several other supplements have caffeine in them, and if taken in large quantity, could lead to some harmful side effects. Among these are anxiousness, restlessness, dizziness, and extreme palpitations.
If teenagers want to lose weight but don’t want to experience any of the side effects mentioned, they should consult with their doctor about the weight loss pills that are safe for them. Furthermore, they should eat a balanced diet and exercise on a regular basis.
What Are the Age Requirements?
One of the most common questions that people have when it comes to using weight loss pills is the age requirement. There are no age restrictions when buying over the counter pills, except if they are made from certain ingredients like Ephedra and some steroid-type substitutes. In the US, most particularly in some states like Florida, the sale of weight loss pills is prohibited for those who are below 18 years old. There are lots of natural products that can help one lose weight, and since they are natural, they are safe for everyone to use, including teens, but can only be bought by adults.
Weight loss pills and supplements should only be considered as an additional supplement to lose weight and must, therefore, be taken along with regular exercise and proper diet.
How to Use Weight Loss Pills Safely
Today, you’ll see many dieting products and programs that are being advertised in the market. From juice diets, cleansers, to diet pills, they all claim to help with weight loss. While most of the diet pills can be bought over the counter, there are some important things to keep in mind before you decide to take them. In case you are not aware, the FDA has not evaluated most of these weight loss pills for safe use. It’s therefore important that you are well informed, and you exercise caution when taking any weight loss pills.
Here are some tips:
Research online – Before you buy any diet pills over the counter, take the time to do some research online. Look for websites that provide reliable information regarding the advantages, disadvantages, and possible side effects of the weight loss pills and supplements that you plan to take.
Read the weight loss claim – All manufacturers of diet pills claim that their products can help you lose weight but it’s important that you understand how they work in making you lose weight and if the FDA regulates them.
Find out possible side effects – All weight loss medications, including the prescription weight loss pills, come with side effects. Thus, it’s very important that you know exactly what the possible side effects are and see for yourself if these side effects could affect your day to day living.
Talk to your doctor – Your doctor should be able to do a basic physical examination on you and review your existing medications as well as your medical history. This is to determine if a weight loss pill is appropriate for you to take.
Consume enough fluids daily – A lot of the diet pills of today could make your body lose more water due to frequent urination. Some of these pills are diuretics and have ingredients that work in the same way.
Always opt for prescription pills – Prescription medications are usually regulated by the FDA and are safe to use for people who are trying to lose weight because of health reasons. Along with proper diet and regular exercise, these weight loss pills should help you safely lose some weight!
When looking for a weight loss pill, it’s important that you choose something safe and effective. One way to know if a pill is safe for use is to check its ingredients and see if any of these ingredients could lead to harmful side effects, especially the more serious long-term side effects. Reading reviews from people who have used the pill is one way to know if it’s truly effective in helping you achieve your weight loss goals.
Based on the information that we have gathered, we believe that PurityLabs Garcinia Cambogia Pure Extract is a good option to consider. It contains the exact amount of garcinia cambogia that can help you shed pounds easily. It speeds up your fat burning abilities up to 50%. It also includes BioPerine for Maximum Absorption Non GMO 1500mg 60% HCA, Natural Weight Loss and Appetite Suppressants. However, just like with taking any drugs or medications, it’s important that you consult with your doctor to ensure that the pill is safe for you.