How Do Weight Loss Pills Work

How Do Weight Loss Pills Work - Results, Ingredients & Side Effects

5 min read


04 Oct 2017

Losing weight isn’t as complex as most make it out to be: You need to eat fewer calories than you burn, and you’ll lose fat. Yet millions still search for, and try, weight loss pills on a regular basis.

Whether you take over-the-counter diet pills or a prescription pill, the dangerous combination of ingredients can cause terrible side effects. In this article, we explore these side effects, as well as the basics of how weight loss pills work, to help you better understand why you should never rely on traditional diet pills for weight loss.

How do weight loss pills work

No two diet pills are exactly alike. Many contain different main ingredients, or a different mix of ingredients, that will affect their intended results and relative success.

Here are some of the most common ingredients in weight loss pills and how they work:

  • Stimulants (caffeine, green tea/coffee extract, and guarana) – stimulants are used in diet pills to increase metabolism and burn more fat. Studies support claims that stimulants increase the body’s ability to burn fat, as well as influence the body’s ability to use fat.

  •  carbohydrates for energy. Green tea and coffee extracts are particularly effective at increasing fat oxidation, though green tea has been proven more effective in this regard.

  • Appetite suppressants (hoodia, yerba mate, and chromium picolinate)appetite suppressants make you feel full before you’ve eaten as many calories as usual. There are few, if any, clinical studies that support the effectiveness of these ingredients in diet supplements. However, they can cause common digestive issues, explored in greater detail below.

  • Laxatives (cascara, senna, and psyllium) – laxatives aren’t in most diet supplements, but they are in some! The idea is to improve digestion and increase bowel movements. However, most laxatives don’t cause weight loss.

As you can imagine, there are other ingredients that commonly appear in diet supplements. These include Garcinia Cambogia, raspberry ketones, and guar gum. Many cause gastrointestinal distress, though there may be other side effects, too! And when you consider the limited effectiveness of most weight loss pills, they aren’t worth the side effects they create.

Dangerous side effects of common weight loss pill ingredients

While the ingredients listed above are effective in some cases, they might also cause negative side effects.

Here are the side effects of the popular weight loss pill ingredients listed above:

  • Stimulants – stimulants are known to increase heart rate, cause problems with sleep, and can make you feel jumpy or jittery. Stimulants may also make you feel dizzy or nauseous.
  • Appetite suppressants – appetite suppressants may suppress your appetite, but for the wrong reasons. In fact, appetite suppressants are known to cause gastrointestinal issues like gas, bloating, and diarrhea. Some people have experienced heart arrhythmias, insomnia, irritability, and headaches.
  • Laxatives – while laxatives aren’t the most popular ingredient in diet supplements, it’s still important to understand the side effects! Most obviously, you’ll have to go to the bathroom more often. Laxatives may also cause dehydration and gastrointestinal distress, so you should use them sparingly, if at all.

Are the limited benefits worth these side effects? The answer is an obvious “no.”

Prescription weight loss supplements and their side effects

Prescription weight loss supplements can be more dangerous than their over-the-counter counterparts. One example of such a supplement is Alli.

Alli is used, along with diet and exercise, to help you lose weight. It works by blocking the enzyme responsible for breaking down fat in your diet. You then dispose of excess fat in bowel movements.

While this may sound promising for weight loss, it isn’t always great. In fact, some of the side effects can be uncomfortable or even dangerous! They include:

  • fatty or oily stools
  • oily spotting between bowel movements
  • intestinal gas with discharge
  • intense feelings that a bowel movement is coming
  • poor bowel control

Is it worth the weight loss to be scared that you’re going to spot between bowel movements, or possibly have an accident? Not a chance, especially when there’s a better solution!

Read: 3 common dangers of fake weight loss pills 

What’s the better solution?

Dangerous ingredients combined with uncomfortable and often embarrassing side effects make traditional diet pills a bad idea for most people. However, this isn’t to say that you can’t take any diet pills as part of your diet, especially if you’re looking to expedite weight loss.

In fact, there are some comprehensive weight loss supplements, like PhenQ, that contain only gentle, natural ingredients. You can take it without worrying about side effects, because you won’t experience any of the gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, or other complications mentioned above.

Some of PhenQ’s natural ingredients include:

  • Capsimax powder – a powerful blend of capsicum, caffeine, and vitamin B3, or niacin
  • Calcium Carbonate – calcium, plain and simple!
  • Chromium Picolinate – this is a natural mineral found in many vegetables, whole grains, and meat
  • Caffeine – caffeine, nothing more!
  • Nopal – this is part of a cactus, and is rich in fiber and amino acids
  • L-Carnitine Furmarate – this is a naturally occurring amino acid found in red meats, nuts, and vegetables

Does calcium pose any health risks? What about nopal, a naturally occurring part of a cactus? They don’t, and neither do the remaining PhenQ ingredients. Each was carefully chosen so as not to compromise your general well-being for weight loss. After all, the entire point of taking PhenQ, or any dietary supplement, is to maximize your health, not harm it for the sake of weight loss.

Read: Can You Really Lose Weight Without Dieting?

Never sacrifice your health for a diet pill

It’s simple to convince yourself that you should take diet pills, especially if your weight loss is at a standstill and you haven’t been able to break through your own personal barriers. However, it’s important to consider the repercussions of your actions before you take any pills.

Let Alli be an example: Diet pills can be dangerous. And even if you believe that the results are worth the negative side effects, remember that you could do permanent damage to yourself, or at the very least suffer embarrassing, uncomfortable side effects in the meantime.

After all, why would you sacrifice your health if you could take PhenQ weight loss pill, get better results, and not experience any of these negative side effects? The choice is simple, and it’s yours!