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Weight Loss Pills-Is There An Upside?

Updated on March 18, 2010

Maybe Not So Great


Everywhere you look, there are advertisements for this diet pill and that one, all of which claim to be the miracle cure for your weight gain problems. You have brand a which boasts ‘natural’ ingredients. Then there is brand b claiming immediate results. Brand c offers cleansing properties. Brand d says their product is used by all the stars. Additionally, brand e claims maximum weight loss in the shortest possible time and brand f and beyond are all versions of the latest fad.

With so many choices, how do you choose? How do you know which one is right for you? The first step is to do your homework. Look at their labels closely. Notice what their active ingredient(s) is (are), how much of it there is, and what their inactive ingredients are. Read the directions carefully, how much water do you need with it, how many times do you need to take it, and what else does it require or recommend?

If you notice, many of them require a minimum of two to six pills a day, each with eight ounces of water. They also tell you that to me more effective, their product should be used in conjunction with a regular diet and exercise plan. In other words, the dieting, exercising, and water consumption are all important factors in achieving effective weight loss, this pill will merely aid in your efforts.

It is very important that you discuss your efforts with your doctor. There may be underlying health conditions that one or more of the pill’s ingredients could interact with. For example, L-taurine acts the same as caffeine and causes the heart to pump more rapidly. That reaction is what reportedly speeds up metabolism and therefore aids calorie burning efforts. Some people are sensitive to caffeine and may not realize it, adding the high levels the pills give you can be dangerous, especially if there is a history of heart conditions in the family.

There is also the possibility of a pill having negative effects on a diabetic are also a concern. Some popular pills now banned caused extensive liver damage or kidney failure. Studies take a long time and there have been occasions where long term effects were not determined until it was too late. Even so-called natural pills can have negative interactions with one’s body.

Diet pills may have a hand in helping you to achieve your weight loss goals but it should never be assumed that they can replace diet and exercise. Our ancestors were not thin and healthy because they took a pill everyday. They were active, hard working people who ate proper, well balanced, nutritious meals. They must have been doing something right and maybe striving to emulate their ways would benefit us more than a little pill.


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    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      I have learned that there are specialists in Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy. They do some lab work which tells them which hormones are deficient and I think that it tells them the level. Then they "compound" a recipe that is personalized. If you can find a local "Compounding Pharmacy" like the People's Rx, they will be able to tell you who to see for the specialized prescription. These Rx's are sugar free, gluten free, and also contain nutritionals that are lacking in your body. My friend swears by this and she recommended a pharmacist here in Austin. There should be someone who does this where you live. Let me know.

    • Chaotic Chica profile image

      Chaotic Chica 8 years ago

      Please do!! I have been reading a little bit into this myself and have come to the same conclusions. I want to talk to my doctor about this but I have to get insured again before I go see her. The last time I talked to her, she was of the mind that my thyroids were to blame for my sudden weight gain but mentioned a life-long medication, then I lost my coverage due to company lay-offs. I am convinced that custom hormones are the way of the future and would love to be a guinea pig for it.

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      I just wrote an article about Bio-identical hormones ( and during my research I discovered some very interesting information.

      In the past when women took hormone replacement therapy, it was kind of a shotgun approach. Now, you take specific tests and each natural hormone is tailor made to replace just what you need and no more. This lessens the side effects, yet gives your body exactly the hormones you lack. I'm convinced that insulin (which is a hormone) and thyroid hormones are a major reason we gain weight when they are out of balance. I'm going to try to get evaluated soon. It is expensive though and insurance may or may not cover it.

      I'll keep you informed.

    • Chaotic Chica profile image

      Chaotic Chica 8 years ago

      Austinstar~That must really be frustrating. I don't take pills because they make my body want to go into cardiac arrest but I understand the fatigue that comes with weight gain. My thyroids have stopped working properly which caused me to gain fifty pounds in one year despite still eating right and excersizing even more than before. There's medication for it but I lost my medical so I'm not on it. The weight has caused my previously dormant asthma to start acting up which means cardio is out of the question. But I can't lose the weight without excersize and cardio always took it off fastest. It is a vicious cycle and very frustrating. I started taking B12, B6, and D regularly and that has helped with my energy levels tremendously! You might want to talk to your doctor about starting on those. They won't give you a stroke and help with energy.

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 8 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Strangely enough, the only time I felt like a normal weight person is when I took diet pills. And they worked. I lost a lot of weight, got on an exercise plan, and felt wonderful. Then the doc said I had to stop taking the pills because I would have a stroke. Ok, now the weight is back, plus more and I can't exercise because I weigh too much and don't feel like it, so now I'm going to die of obesity. Which is worse? I hate my super efficient, fat storing body!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 8 years ago from United States

      Good advice, as diet pills can have bad side effects. I like your analogy to our ancestors because that is true. Good hub.


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