A Primer on Diet Pills

Before going to the doctor to ask if taking diet pills is the best solution for your weight problems, you may have already tried looking it up. The problem is, there are so many kinds and brands of diet pills available that you can easily get confused. Some claim to burn fat while others claim to flush out fat from your body. So what does a diet pill really do to help a person lose weight? It pays to get to know these miracle drugs first before you head on to the doctor’s clinic so you can make a more informed decision when it comes to choosing the right tool to help you lose weight.

Different types of diet pills and where you can get them

These are the major types of pills that can help you get rid of the extra pounds. It is important to consider which one you are going to get based on where and how you are going to buy them. Keep in mind that some diet pills are not like cough medications that you can simply pick up from a shelf at a pharmacy.

  • Prescription diet pills – From the name, you can already ascertain that this type of pill cannot be bought without a prescription. In fact, not only are doctors keeping a close eye on the use of these drugs, even the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research and the FDA closely monitor the performance and use of these pills. The good thing is, with all these regulating bodies checking on the pills, you are somehow reassured that they do work. However, prescription diet drugs are not for everyone. Typically, prescription pills are only taken by people who are deemed to be obese. It is a “last resort” for those who need to get rid of the excess weight but cannot limit their diets or exercise due to other health-related reasons. Two popular examples of such diet pills are Xenical and Meridia.
  • Natural or herbal pills – this type of diet pill takes a lot of flak from critics who believe that natural products don’t really work. Based on the name, natural diet supplements are made from ingredients derived from nature. These are very popular with vegans and vegetarians who want to lose weight without ingesting products that come from animals. They can be bought from health stores without a prescription and are labeled by the FDA as food products. LIPObind is a popular example of diet supplements endorsed by vegetarian societies to be an effective herbal diet pill.
  • OTC diet pills – Over-the-counter diet pills are pills that you can readily buy at your local pharmacy or drugstore without any notice from a doctor. This does not mean that the FDA does not monitor the use of these drugs. In fact, due to some studies that connect phenylpropanolamine, an active ingredient that is commonly contained in most OTC diet pills, to incidences of stroke, the FDA has asked diet pill manufacturers to reformulate their products.

A closer look at how diet pills work

Whether it is a prescription, herbal, or OTC diet pill, these miracle drugs perform certain functions to stop your body from gaining weight. Each addresses a particular problem that makes it hard for a person to get rid of the unwanted pounds. It is important to get to know the different types well so you can tell the doctor which one you think will work best for you.

  • Appetite suppressants – One of the major problems of people that are overweight is that they just can’t stop eating. This is the problem that is addressed by appetite suppressant. The pills work by making the body produce more catecholamine. This chemical makes your body give off signals to the brain that the stomach is already full. How can you eat if you are already full? Two appetite suppressants that are available worldwide are Phen375 and Unique Hoodia.
  • Fat Blockers – If you have heard of Xenical or Alli, then you have heard of fat blockers. These diet pills work by keeping the digestive system from “digesting” fat that comes from the food that you eat. If the fat cells are not broken down, they cannot be used or stored by the body. They simply pass through the system. Fat blockers are perfect for people who cannot keep a close eye on what they eat.
  • Thermogenics – These pills are commonly known as fat burners. The main ingredient of this type of diet pill is either caffeine or ephedrine. These ingredients work by speeding up the body’s process of burning energy. The raise in one’s metabolism rate helps one consume more calories. Thus, fat cells are used up rather than stored.

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