Obese people often require sustainable strategies for losing weight to lead a healthy life. In addition to diets and workout programs, a doctor may prescribe weight-loss drugs.
However, these medications are not a cure, and for best outcomes, they should be complemented with an appropriate diet and physical activity.
Weight loss prescription medications are available in a variety of forms. Here are the most common terms you will likely hear:
- Prescription weight-loss drugs – These medications are used as complementary fat supplements for improving diets and exercise when trying to lose weight. They act as agents that alter the absorption of calories or curb one’s appetite to achieve the desired body shape.
- Weight loss tablets – They are produced from safe stimulants that suppress a patient’s appetite.
- Prescription weight loss medicine – they are prescribed for the treatment of severe weight-related issues such as hypertension, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, and type 2 diabetes, among others.
- Prescription weight loss patch – Weight loss patches are stuck onto your skin to reduce weight. There is, however, little research supporting their effectiveness.
- Prescription weight loss shakes – Sometimes, a doctor may recommend other efficient ways of losing weight; shakes. They are low in fats, are balanced, and they contain fruits and vegetables in abundance and the form of shakes. These diet shakes help one gain control of calories ingested, thereby keeping you healthy.
Types of Weight Loss Medication
Orlistat, commercially known as Alli, which is now an over-the-counter drug, is the most popular prescription weight loss medication that has been around for a little over two decades now. It was approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in 1999, and it is still as effective as ever.
The past few years have also seen the approval of more equally effective products for weight loss. Some new prescription weight loss drugs include Qysmia, Contrave, Saxenda, and Belviq.
The approval of these medications came after a requirement that the drugs must prove a loss of more than 5 percent of body weight, more than the effectiveness of the placebo.
How effective these medications are, depends on one’s underlying medical history and overall health. It is also worth remembering that there are no one-size-fits. What works for another may not work for you.
Qysmia, off-label drugs (drugs primarily targeted for treating other conditions but also prescribed as weight loss aids like bupropion), and Meridia are commonly termed best prescription weight loss pills.
Since the introduction of Qysmia, Contrave, Saxenda, and Belviq, they have become some of the most popular prescription weight loss drugs on the market.
While many relate well to these products, others also respond well to Orlistat and Phentermine, which are very popular.
Which is the Most Effective Prescription Weight Loss Medication?
Manufacturers producing prescription weight loss pills spend dearly to ensure that their drugs are the best. It is, therefore, difficult to pinpoint which one is the best.
But going by the FDA tests on the drugs mentioned above, Qysmia came out the top, with 75 percent of the participants losing the required five percent body weight.
Saxenda, Contrave, and Belviq came second, third, and fourth places. Sadly, Orlistat was at the bottom.
Who Are the Ideal Candidates for Prescription Weight Loss Drugs?
Most prescription weight loss drugs were generally designed for overweight persons. Candidates for prescription weight loss drugs should first try to lose weight using a diet and physical exercises.
Weight loss drugs fall under pregnancy category X and are inappropriate for the child’s healthy growth. This is particularly the case for pregnant women. Almost all weight-loss drugs are not ideal for pregnant women, and they are contraindicated in pregnancy.
Prescribed Appetite Suppressants
Some weight loss diet programs often leave people hungry, making their journeys quite a hassle. They find keeping up with such a tedious task difficult and likely give up.
The best solution for these kinds of people is prescription appetite suppressants. These medications activate the satiety hormones in the brain and circulate them, keeping one feeling full and having less desire to eat.
Phentermine is the most popular and commonly used prescription appetite suppressant. However, it is highly addictive and is only recommended for use for a short period of up to six weeks.
Phendimetrazine, Diethylpropion, and Bupropion are other commonly used appetite suppressants.
Prescription weight-loss drugs for:
a) People With Diabetes
Overweight issues place victims at increased risk of severe health problems like hypertension, dyslipidemia, and type 2 diabetes. Prescription weight loss for those with diabetes shows improved glycemic control and improved fat profiles.
Not all prescription weight loss drugs are effective, and among those approved by the FDA for people with diabetes, Lorcaserin and Phentermine were the first. FDA also approved Contrave, Belviq, and Qysmia for weight loss people and those with type 2 diabetes.
b) People Who Are Overweight
Belviq, Contrave, Qysmia, and Xenical (Orlistat) are the best for obesity treatment. Each product works differently, with Orlistat being the best for adolescents and adults. The rest are only approved for adults and not the young.
c) Persons with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that mainly affects women, especially those of childbearing age, and if not carefully looked at, it leads t infertility.
The best drugs for overweight women with PCOS include Phentermine, Xenical, and Metformin.
d) People with Hypertension
Losing weight when you have high blood pressure will help you grow healthy. The best prescription weight loss drugs to start with include Bupropion, Orlistat, and Topiramate.
Where Can One Get Prescription Weight Loss Pills?
Weight loss prescription pills are available online, while others are sold over the counter. More official channels are available through the manufacturer’s websites or weight loss professional centers.
Although there are lots of drugs for weight loss, there are those that you cannot get without a prescription. It is the best choice to consider when you want to lose weight properly and minimize the risks of side effects.
Remember always to get prescription weight loss pills that suppress your craving for food. They make you feel satiated for long while blocking the absorption of fat. Others that slow gastric emptying, like Saxenda, are also the best. Basically, most appetite suppressants cause weight loss.
The proper way to procure prescription weight loss drugs is by visiting a doctor. If losing weight has been incredibly difficult even after exercising or following a diet, and you meet the following criteria, your doctor may recommend prescription weight-loss drugs for you:
- Your body mass index (BMI) is more than 30.
- The BMI is over 27, and you have a primary medical concern connected to obesity, such as diabetes or hypertension.
Your doctor will evaluate your medical history and current health issues before prescribing a medication for you. They will then discuss the benefits and drawbacks of prescription weight-loss medications with you.
Nevertheless, there are weight loss program centers with professional MDs that prescribe the pills. Alternatively, you can order them through certified online channels.
Can You Purchase Prescription Weight Loss Drugs Online or Over the Counter?
Many prescription weight loss medications are for sale over the counter and on the internet. As much as they are available off the records and through third-party vendors, the correct way to buy them is through trusted channels or the manufacturer’s website.
Orlistat, for example, is available as an over-the-counter drug but should you be looking to buy pills like phentermine, Contrave, Belviq, among others, check their websites and consult with your doctor before ordering them.
Some have platforms to fill in your details, including medical records and consultations. Alternatively, you can buy them from weight loss medical centers after a doctor’s assessment. Doing it the appropriate way will ensure that you don’t get the wrong product.
Are Prescription Weight Loss Drugs Safe?
Like many other prescription drugs, weight-loss pills are safe if used within the required parameters. They have been thoroughly researched and have passed medical standard requirements, unlike many over-the-counter medications.
They are effective in many people’s weight loss journeys, but the first step you should take is to talk to a doctor. This is because you might have underlying medical issues that could influence the type of medicine.
Hypertension, heart diseases, diabetes, high cholesterol levels, and certain types of cancer will determine if the drugs you use are safe or not. Also noteworthy is that if your body mass index is more than 30 and you do not suffer from any health condition, it is still good to talk to the doctor before purchasing any prescription weight loss pills.
Phentermine is the primary and practical choice that your doctor might prescribe or Orlistat if you are fit.
Do Prescription Weight Loss Drugs Really Work?
Prescription weight-loss medications that have been licensed for long-term usage (greater than 12 weeks) result in considerable weight loss compared to placebo. Weight loss medicine combined with lifestyle modifications leads to more weight reduction than lifestyle changes alone.
Over a year, this can equate to a weight reduction of 3 percent to 7 percent of total body weight over and above what can be accomplished with lifestyle modifications alone. That may appear to be a small sum.
A prolonged weight reduction of 5 percent to 10 percent, on the other hand, can have significant health advantages, such as decreased blood pressure, blood sugar, and lipid levels.
Are there Side Effects to using Prescription Weight Loss Drugs?
Serious adverse effects are uncommon. Typical side effects include nausea, constipation, and diarrhea. They may diminish with time. Therefore, it is critical to discuss treatment choices with your doctor extensively.
Weight-loss medications are costly and aren’t usually covered by insurance. Enquire with your insurance provider regarding coverage.
When they stop using weight-loss medications, many people regain some of their lost weight. On the other hand, adopting healthy living behaviors may assist reduce weight growth.
Weight-loss medications are not a simple solution to weight loss. They may, however, assist you in making the essential lifestyle modifications to reduce weight and improve your health. But it is highly recommended that you try a diet and exercise first before heading to the doctor for prescription weight-loss drugs.