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Which Type of Pills are More Effective For Weight Reduction?

Over-the-Counter Weight Loss Pills vs. Prescription Weight Loss Pills

To date there are no super-effective pills to help you lose weight.

Prescription Weight Loss Pills

Pharmaceutical weight loss drugs that must be prescribed by your doctor, go through rigorous scientific research before being released and most of the claims that the pharmaceutical companies make although exaggerated can usually be substantiated.

Over-the-Counter Weight Loss Pills

This is not the case with the supplements and "weight loss pills" that you may get from your local health food store. None of these weight loss pills have to go through any sort of scientific tests to be marketed, and the pill-makers do not have to substantiate their weight loss claims.

Despite this lack of evidence and even in the presence of evidence of no effect, people keep buying them in the hope that it may help. Weight loss is difficult, it requires effort and determination and there is a high level of failure.

So sellers of these weight loss supplements capitalise on desperate people that want an easy way out.

Do Over-the-Counter Weight Loss Pills Work?

In a recent review in a scientific journal many over-the-counter weight loss supplements were reviewed and the evidence for and against their effectiveness in weight loss was presented. Conclusion? There were no weight loss supplements that had any dramatic effects on weight loss. The only supplements that had any effect were capsaicin, caffeine and fiber, but they were only effective if eaten in food.

There was no evidence that they were effective when taken as a supplement.

In conclusion, some substances have pharmacological effects but none have a proven role in weight reduction. The substances that have the best evidence for effect can easily be supplied in a low fat diet and therefore there is no reason whatsoever to use any of these supplements for weight loss.

Unless the manufacturers of these over-the-counter weight loss pills can show clear scientific evidence of the effect of these substances I would not recommend that you use any of them.

SOURCE: Egger, Cameron-Smith, Stanton, "The effectiveness of popular, non-prescription weight loss supplements", MJA 171, 604-608


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