The CR Way: Better than a weight-loss drug

If you are weight challenged, the temptation to a take a drug to lose weight increases. However, the U.S. FDA warns that weight-loss medications should not be taken unless you are at medical risk because of your weight. The reason is straightforward: too many side effects, some of them serious.


Drugs currently approved for weight loss

Table 1

Generic Name

Food and Drug Administration Approval for Weight Loss

Drug Type

Common Side Effects

Phentermine Yes; short term (up to 12 weeks) for adults Appetite Suppressant Increased blood pressure and heart rate, sleeplessness, nervousness
Diethylpropion Yes; short term (up to 12 weeks) for adults Appetite Suppressant Dizziness, headache, sleeplessness, nervousness
Phendimetrazine Yes; short term (up to 12 weeks) for adults Appetite Suppressant Sleeplessness, nervousness
Orlistat Yes; long term (up to 1 year) for adults and children age 12 and older Lipase Inhibitor Gastrointestinal issues (cramping, diarrhea, oily spotting), rare cases of severe liver injury reported
Bupropion No Depression Treatment Dry mouth, insomnia
Topiramate No Seizure Treatment Numbness of skin, change in taste
Zonisamide No Seizure Treatment Drowsiness, dry mouth, dizziness, headache, nausea
Metformin No Diabetes Treatment Weakness, dizziness, metallic taste, nausea


Notice that many of the drugs are not approved for long-term use, In three instances, the user is supposed to take them only for a maximum of 12 weeks – not long enough for most people to achieve significant weight loss benefits. And what do people do when they stop taking it? Unless they change their eating habits, they will gain the weight right back, possibly ending up heavier than before taking the drug.

The CR Way to Happy Dieting is far more effective than diet drugs. This happiness diet plan changes the biochemistry of the brain’s weight loss control center – helping decrease the desire to eat unhealthful comfort foods. Healthful Weight Loss Members, mark your calendar and make sure to join us Friday, March 30, for the first of three Healthful Weight Loss teleconferences. This one is the most important. Follow the advice and you will increase forever your enjoyment of food and ability to lose weight and then maintain it.

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