Saturday, May 12, 2012

Fitness 101 {The Truth About Diet Pills}


 I would like to ask you…how are YOU trying to lose weight? Are you trying to eat right? Are you trying to incorporate more exercise into your daily routine? Are you trying a new fad diet that your friend told you about? Or are you trying some of those fancy diet pills that you see at your local store? Today, I would like to educate you and inform you of the dangers of using diet pills to help you reach your weight loss goals. When speaking with people about health and fitness, one of the first things they complain about is NOT wanting to eat healthier and NOT wanting to try to exercise. They want some magic solution that will help them to lose weight and look like they want. In reality…that can NOT happen in a healthy way. In order to be physically fit YOU HAVE TO work out and eat right. There is no way around that (unless you take the shortcut way and get liposuction and plastic surgery…but that is only a temporary solution for a long term problem!) There are so many diet pills out there on the market for you to choose to try. My advice…do not try any of them! Most of the pills that you see on TV have been untested, they are unregulated strictly, and are also not proven to have long term weight loss with the people that use them. These pills may be a short term solution for dropping a few pounds but they can leave some long lasting negative effects on your body! There are dangerous side effects that may occur before, during, or after you take some of the diet pills.
  Most of the companies that create these pills pack so many good and bad things in a little pill for you to try. Taking these pills puts you at a huge risk especially if you already have pre-existing health issues. One of the most common tragedies I hear about these pills is someone getting hurt or dying because the ingredients in the pill harmed them due to other medications they were taking. Sometimes the ingredients in those pills should not be mixed with certain types of prescribed medications (or alcohol!). There have been reports of heart attacks, strokes, seizures, high blood pressure, and other severe health problems! Some of the bottles say “all natural” or “herbal” pills. This can be misleading! These pills can also contain some potentially harmful ingredients. Most health pills are unregulated by the FDA which means they can put almost anything they want in there pills. This results in people getting hurt and the pills being pulled off the shelf. Why do you think pills you have seen on TV years ago can no longer be found? It is possible they hurt so many people and they had to discontinue that brand. Taking these pills can also cause digestion problems. The pills that advertise being “Fat Blockers” means it’s a fancy way of saying laxative. These pills can cause access gas, oily stools, digestions pain, and other harmful digestion problems. Taking these “fat blocking” pills can cause you to become vitamin deficient. Vitamins D, E, A, and K are fat soluble vitamins. These vitamins are digested with the fat you do eat and stored in your body for later use. Taking the pills can block the absorption of these essential vitamins and cause other health issues in the future. Thanks to MayoClinic.com, they created this chart to inform you of the ingredients found in some of the weight loss pills.

Product Claim Effectiveness Side effects
Alli — OTC version of prescription drug orlistat (Xenical) Decreases absorption of dietary fat Effective; but weight loss is even more modest than that with Xenical Loose stools, oily spotting, frequent or hard-to-control bowel movements; reports of rare, but serious liver injury
Bitter orange Increases calories burned Probably ineffective Similar to ephedra: raised blood pressure and heart rate
Chitosan Blocks absorption of dietary fat Probably ineffective Uncommon: upset stomach, nausea, gas, increased stool bulk, constipation
Chromium Decreases appetite and increases calories burned Probably ineffective Uncommon: headache, insomnia, irritability, mood changes, cognitive dysfunction
Conjugated linoleic acid Reduces body fat Possibly effective Upset stomach, nausea, loose stools
Green tea extract Decreases appetite, and increases calorie and fat metabolism Insufficient evidence to evaluate Dizziness, insomnia, agitation, nausea, vomiting, bloating, gas, diarrhea
Guar gum Blocks absorption of dietary fat and increases feeling of fullness Possibly ineffective Abdominal pain, gas, diarrhea
Hoodia Decreases appetite Insufficient evidence to evaluate Insufficient information available

So when you see celebrities endorsing such products, I would think twice before buying and consuming such products. Yes they may help you drop the few pounds you want but they can cause health issues and to be honest you can gain back those few pounds just as fast as you dropped them. Adapt a low calorie diet and try to incorporate exercise into your daily routine. That is a fool proof way to help you lose weight AND keep it off in the long term. Eating right and exercising is a better choice instead of spending money on pills that could potentially be harmful to you! You can find out more information by looking at http://www.webmd.com/fda/tainted-weight-loss-pills-health-risks or at http://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/consumerupdates/ucm103184.htm. So think twice and be smart about how you want to start living a healthier lifestyle. Please feel free to check out my health and fitness blog at infinitelifefitness.com.



5 comments:

  1. In my late teens, I took a lot of "diet pills"... from chromium picolnate (semi natural?) to Xenadrine EFX. I am now not even thirty and suffer from some pretty intense auto immune disorders and migraines, though I cannot say they were the cause, I know they were not effective, and many were pulled off the shelves for safety reasons. Thank you for sharing this post! These pills are so not worth it!

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    1. Thank YOU for sharing your story with us. Its interesting to hear it from someone who has taken them and knows the bad effects they cause.

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  2. Well, if you think that diet pills generally publish misleading information regarding weight loss techniques, then you must not hesitate to follow the advice of your doctor, and try clinically approved diet pills to be on the safer side.

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  3. There are numerous health benefits of saffron extract, and it is more often used for reducing body weight by suppressing appetite without causing any side effects.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave your thoughts with me!

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