When it comes to weight loss, many people are just too impatient to get results. They want a fix-it-quick solution. Any wonder that drug treatment for weight loss is a big business? Just because the once-dreaded diseases like polio, typhoid and pneumonia are all well under control now, people often thinks the same can likewise be performed to lose weight using drug treatment for weight loss.
Browsing through magazines, we can see advertisements of these drugs. Don’t we have drugs and other products like this already? Sorry to disappoint, but the answer is negative. But that has not stopped people from promoting drug treatment for weight loss. For the most part of the last century, scientists, hustlers and snake oil salesmen alike have searched for that magic bullet that can keep us slim and trim without too much physical exertion, effort, willpower, or sweat. A simple and convenient way indeed, if it works. But that magic bullet has remained as elusive as ever.
For the better part of a century, many drug treatments for weight loss had been promoted and failed. They actually did more harm than good. Complications ranged from addiction, hypertension to death.
In the next decade or two, it is possible that fundamental discoveries about genetics, hormones and neurotransmitters may lead to some effective advances. Pharmaceutical companies are looking into the possibility of creating some new anti-obesity drugs. The increasing understanding of obesity as a chronic illness, and its treatment like diabetes or hypertension and breakthroughs in molecular biology leading to understanding of the relationship between brain, body and behavior have re-kindled the interests in pharmaceutical firms to discover drug treatment for weight loss.
Drug treatment for weight loss generally falls into 3 categories:
o Appetite Suppressants. Appetite suppressants as the name suggests act to suppress our appetite. They create a false sensation of satisfaction, of fullness without having to eat as much.
o Stimulants. They act to speed up our rate of metabolism. More calories will be burnt, hence leading to less excess energy remaining to be stored in our body system.
o Fat Blockers. As the name suggests, will prevent the digestion of the fats in the food we take.
Currently there are very few drugs available in the market that can do the job. In general, most prescription drugs approved for weight control work by suppressing appetites. The negative side of appetite suppressants is their side effects such as insomnia, dry mouth, headache, nervousness and constipation. Additionally, it may raise blood pressure, increase heart rate and may be unsuitable for people with a history of stroke, heart disease or uncontrolled high blood pressure.
The limitation of drug treatment for weight loss is that they are only effective in the near term. Whatever ‘achievements’ will only be short-lived. After about 4 to 6 months, the loss is steadily regained.
Disclaimer: Drug treatment for weight loss must be properly prescribed by a medical professional who has knowledge of your medical background. These notes are for educational purpose only and in no way should be taken to substitute sound medical advices.