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Diet Pills and Supplements
You have several options for managing and treating excess weight, including diet pills, drugs, and natural supplements. Some are more popular than others but they all claim to help lose weight or supplement other weight loss methods to make losing weight easier.
The mechanisms these types of products work can be classified as follows:
- Reducing appetite – These make you feel fuller and less hungry so you feel like eating less.
- Reducing carb and fat absorption – These prevent your body from absorbing the carb and fat from the food you eat, making you take in fewer calories.
- Increasing fat burning – These increase the number of calories you burn so you can consume the same amount but still lose weight.
When taking these products, you should still need to focus on diet and exercise instead of completely relying on them. You should also consult your doctor or a certified dietitian before taking these products as some of them could have serious health consequences for some people.
Are Diet Pills Safe?
Are diet pills safe? Diet pills work in three main ways. To answer the question ‘Are diet pills safe?’ let’s look at all three types in turn.
1. Appetite Suppressants
The idea of appetite suppressants (as you might guess) is that they can make you less hungry, so you eat less. Phentermine is an example of an appetite suppressant. It is only available on prescription and is marketed under many different names, including Adipex-P, Suprenza, Teramine and Kraftobese.
Phentermine is prescribed for short periods only because it is habit-forming. So it’s not safe to try to buy it illegally. Apart from its addicting qualities the side effects, if any, are usually mild: some people suffer from constipation, insomnia or a dry mouth; others notice no side effects at all.
Non-prescription weight loss supplements that are marketed as appetite suppressants include hoodia and chromium. Chromium is an essential mineral that can be found in some multi vitamin tablets and it is considered safe at the recommended dosage. Hoodia is a natural supplement that has not been tested so thoroughly.
Do appetite suppressants work? This is a good question. It’s clear that a person with normal eating habits probably would lose weight when they are less hungry. Just look at what happens to people of normal weight when they are stressed or depressed. They have no appetite and they lose tons of weight.
But for people who are significantly overweight, it’s not so easy. We tend to comfort eat even when we’re not hungry, and eat beyond the point where we feel full. So even if you are taking an appetite suppressant it’s important to find activities to distract you from the thought of food at times when you are not hungry.
2. Fat Blockers
Fat blockers are supplements and food components that prevent your body from absorbing the fat from the food you consume. They can help you lose weight as they tend to bind to fat so that it will not be absorbed during the digestion. This process will help you lose weight gradually.
The best known fat blocker is orlistat which is marketed on prescription as Xenical. The non-prescription form, which is a lower dosage, is available from drugstores under the name of Alli.
Orlistat has some side effects including loose stools (diarrhea) that can be embarrassing, especially if you eat too much fat. This is a good thing in a way because it means you MUST regulate your intake of fat when you are taking orlistat. You could still overeat sugar, pasta etc but it will surely stop you having those super high calorie foods that are stuffed with both fat and sugar, like donuts and chocolate.
3. Metabolism Boosters
The first two types of diet pills worked by having us eat less. The third works by increasing the number of calories we burn, so that we can eat the same amount and still lose weight. These are known as metabolism boosters or stimulants.
One example of a metabolism boosting diet pill was ephedra, which was mostly prescribed as a decongestant but was sometimes also taken for weight loss. It was banned from sale in the US in 2004 because it was found to be linked to a higher risk of death from heart attacks and strokes.
There are many other stimulants that people can take but they do have side effects and may not be good for health. For example, caffeine is a stimulant. You can also get metabolism boosting diet pills that are advertised as being ephedra-free. Some of these contain a natural substance that has similar effects to ephedra and may be just as dangerous.
A certain type of diet pill that is safe for one person can have life-threatening side effects for another person. To be sure, it’s best to take diet pills under medical supervision.
Green Tea Extract – An All Natural Diet Pill
If you are looking for all natural diet pills, there are a lot on the market. One of the most popular is green tea extract. Green tea has been found to help with weight loss in several studies. Some people simply drink green tea, but you don’t know how much of the active ingredients you are getting that way. If you want a more predictable dosage or if you don’t like the taste of green tea, you can get it in the form of green tea extract all natural diet pills.
Green tea contains caffeine which has a stimulating effect on the metabolism. However, it doesn’t have as much caffeine as coffee, and yet it is promoted as a better solution for losing weight. This is because of the special antioxidants in green tea known as catechins, which are believed to have an extra metabolism boosting effect. Because of this extra boost, research has shown that you can get more of a weight loss effect from green tea without having too much caffeine.
When you are buying all natural diet pills, keep in mind that ‘natural’ does not necessarily mean ‘safe’. There are many poisonous plants out there! There are also substances that can be safe in small quantities but can have serious side effects if you take too much.
Caffeine is a good example of this. Drinking one cup of coffee a day with breakfast is unlikely to have side effects for anybody. However, if you drink ten coffees plus ten cans of cola containing caffeine and maybe have some chocolate too, you are likely to have trouble with insomnia, irritability, restlessness, headaches and perhaps heart palpitations.
The amount of caffeine that is in most green tea extract diet pills is less than what you would get from one coffee and does not produce side effects in most people. However, you should check with your doctor before taking any supplements, including all natural diet pills. Be aware that you may have problems if you take more than the recommended dose.
The best time to take green tea extract or drink green tea for weight loss is about a half hour before meals. This gets the metabolism working well before you start eating. It’s better not to take it late in the evening. Why not simply replace one or two cups of coffee with green tea, either as a drink or as a supplement? That will ensure you are not adding more caffeine to your day – in fact, you will probably end up with less.
If you don’t currently have caffeine at all or if you are sensitive to it, you might want to start by taking green tea extract only in the morning, before breakfast. If you don’t notice any side effects such as headaches after a week, you could try also taking it before lunch. Then if that’s okay, take it before dinner too (but not after).
Of course, when you take any weight loss supplements you must be careful that you don’t end up eating MORE than you did before. It’s a natural temptation when maybe you feel hungrier because your metabolism has been increased. But if you compensate for the calories you are burning off by eating more calories, of course, you don’t have much chance of losing weight. So it’s important to keep a check on what you are eating at the same time as taking all natural diet pills.
African Mango Extract – A Natural Diet Pill
The latest discovery in natural diet pills is African mango extract. The active ingredient in this fruit is said to help people to lose weight by both reducing appetite and giving a boost to the metabolism so that we burn calories faster.
The African mango or Irvingia gabonensis is a fruit native to West Africa. It’s eaten like other fruit in Nigeria, Cameroon and the surrounding countries. However, the beneficial extract doesn’t come from the flesh of the fruit but from the seed. Unlike other mangoes, Irvingia gabonensis has an edible seed that has been used in traditional West African cooking for hundreds of years. The active ingredient in the African mango weight loss supplement is the substance extracted from these seeds.
Two studies carried out in Africa in 2005 and 2009 found that people taking the supplement lost more weight than a control group. At the same time, they had improvements in blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, implying that the supplement has a part to play in reducing fat and cholesterol in the blood.
How African Mango Works
The message of African mango supplement promoters is that being overweight is not your fault. There’s a substance called leptin produced naturally in the digestive system that makes us want to eat more than our body really needs right now. Leptin is a hormone that can give us cravings for high fat, high calorie food even if we’re not really hungry.
Centuries ago, leptin had a purpose. It helped our ancestors to store fat in times when there was plenty of food, so that they could survive the droughts and long winters when there was not so much to eat. Neat, huh?
But these days it’s not so helpful to have a body that produces plenty of leptin so that we naturally store a lot of fat. Now – at least in the developed world – there’s all the food we need, all year round. Even the poorest people in our society find that the cheapest and most filling food is high in calories so it’s possible for them to pile on the weight even though they may not be well nourished.
So how do African mango natural diet pills help us to overcome this instinctive desire to eat more than we need? We’re told that it suppresses production of leptin so that we can recover our natural feelings of being full and stop wanting to overeat.
At the same time it is believed to give a boost to the metabolism, helping us to burn more calories.
Safety And Side Effects
There have not yet been any studies on long term use of African mango. Some people have reported minor side effects when starting to take these natural diet pills. The most common ones are headaches, insomnia and gas. Taking them in the morning or with lunch should prevent any problems with sleeping. Reducing the dose or beginning with a very small dose and working up, should help with other side effects, if you get them.
You should consult with your doctor before taking any supplements. Even natural diet pills should not be taken by pregnant and nursing women or people with medical conditions, without medical advice.
Raspberry Ketone – A Natural Weight Loss Supplement
One of the most popular natural weight loss supplements to hit the market in recent years is raspberry ketone. This natural extract of raspberry fruit has been used for a long time to add raspberry flavor to foods, but it is only recently that it has been marketed as a diet supplement. Then it made an appearance on the Dr Oz show on national TV and shot to fame.
One of the biggest advantages of raspberry ketone over other natural weight loss supplements is that it has no known side effects. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has categorized it as ‘generally recognized as safe’.
Raspberry ketone has been used as a food flavoring since the 1960s, so it’s not new and untested. If there were any serious side effects it seems likely that they would have been identified by now. So it’s probably much safer than many other diet pills, although of course you should consult with your doctor before taking anything, even 100% natural weight loss supplements.
There have not been many research studies carried out into the effectiveness of raspberry ketone at the time of writing. That is partly because its use for weight loss is so new, and partly because it is difficult to judge the effectiveness of something that is often marketed along with other weight loss products and systems.
The best known study that is quoted by many raspberry ketone supplement manufacturers involved mice. It showed that when mice were given raspberry ketone along with a stimulant (noradrenalin, which is a natural brain chemical) they burned more fat than if they were fed noradrenalin alone.
Noradrenalin is a known fat burner but it’s not safe to take as a supplement. However, since we have noradrenalin in our bodies already, the theory is that we can take raspberry ketone to increase its effectiveness. Raspberry ketone is therefore believed to help us burn more fat, without having to take dangerous stimulants.
There is not much other research. The other studies that have been carried out so far have not found much weight loss benefit to taking raspberry ketone alone. Therefore, most raspberry ketone natural weight loss supplements contain other ingredients. The combined effect of these ingredients is marketed as a safe and effective weight loss product.
Ingredients that are added to raspberry ketone supplements can include metabolism boosters like caffeine or green tea extract, acai berry extract and more. You should be aware that some of these can have side effects – for example, large quantities of caffeine can cause insomnia and headaches. So if you take a weight loss product that contains caffeine, you should reduce your intake of caffeine from coffee or other sources by the same amount.
Is Raspberry Ketone Really Natural?
You might wonder if this is a natural weight loss aid when you hear that the raspberry ketone that is found in our natural weight loss supplements is no longer extracted from raspberries. But when you consider the cost of a fruit like the raspberry, and the tiny amount of raspberry ketone that can be extracted from each one, this is not surprising.
Raspberry ketone is now made in laboratories, whether it is going to be used as a food flavoring or as a diet pill. However, this doesn’t mean that it is not natural. It can still be made from natural ingredients, even if it is not extracted from raspberries. So it is worth considering raspberry ketone when you are trying natural weight loss supplements for yourself.
Chia Supplements For Weight Loss
If you are looking for natural supplements for weight loss, you might want to try chia. It is a plant whose seeds are sold as a nutritional supplement with many reported benefits. Weight loss is just one of them. Let’s look at chia and its uses in more detail.
What Is Chia?
The botanical name for chia is Salvia hispanica. It is a flowering plant native to central America. It was cultivated by the Aztecs and is still used as a food crop in Mexico and Guatemala. The seeds are eaten whole or ground. They are often added to drinks: when soaked, they swell up and become gelatinous, a little like flax seeds. The rest of the plant is not eaten.
Health Benefits of Chia Seeds
Like many seeds, chia seeds contain the essential oil omega-3 which has well known health benefits for the brain and heart. They are also high in protein and fiber. They contain several essential minerals including calcium, potassium and manganese, plus antioxidants that are believed to strengthen the immune system.
Chia seeds have been shown to have benefits for diabetics. A few years ago, a study was published in ‘Diabetes Care’ showing that treatment with chia helped to reduce blood pressure and inflammation in people with type 2 diabetes.
However, if you have diabetes be sure to discuss with your doctor before taking chia or any other supplement. Some studies have found that chia increases the effectiveness of diabetes medication, so taking it without adjusting your medication could be dangerous.
Can You Lose Weight with Chia Seed Supplements?
There are many natural supplements for weight loss and chia is among them. Its effectiveness is not known. Studies have not so far shown measurable benefits from taking chia alone. However, the theory is that the way the seeds swell up in liquid could help people to eat less and feel full. It works a little like fiber supplements in that respect.
If you want to take chia supplements for weight loss you can at least be sure that you are adding a natural and healthy food product to your diet. Unlike many diet pills, chia seeds have no known side effects when eaten whole – unless you happen to be allergic to them, which is very rare. They also contain tons of healthy nutrients.
In order to lose weight with chia, it is important to adjust your eating habits. You will need to take chia before or at the beginning of a meal in order to feel full sooner. It won’t help you if you eat your regular amount and then take chia at the end of the meal!
More benefit can be gained if you eat slowly. People of normal weight have a ‘full’ signal that stops them eating when their body has had enough. In people who are overweight, this signal is often weak and it can be delayed by 10 minutes or more. In those 10 minutes, we can pack in a lot of extra food! Eating more slowly and with awareness, so that you are watching out for the signal, can be very helpful.
You might also want to replace other snacks with chia seeds. In this case, don’t forget that it contains fats. They are healthy fats but they still have just as many calories as the other sort!
So chia seeds should be consumed with care and as part of a controlled diet and exercise program. In that situation, chia could prove to be one of the effective supplements for weight loss.
Glucomannan or Konjac Root – A Zero Calorie Weight Loss Product
Anybody who likes glucomannan or konjac root weight loss products will tell you that dieting has never been easier since this ‘zero carb, zero calorie pasta’ was invented. You can eat all you want and not gain any weight. But is there a downside to this miracle food? Let’s find out.
What Is Glucomannan?
Glucomannan is a soluble fiber extracted from the root of an Asian plant called konjac. It’s similar to the kind of fiber that is used in some natural constipation remedies, that swells and goes gloopy in the stomach without being absorbed.
Konjac root has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. It’s also well known as a food in Japan, mostly in the form of noodles. Chinese medicine uses it to treat many illnesses other than constipation, including asthma, coughs, skin disorders and allergies. It is believed to help the detoxification process by carrying toxins out of the system.
Recent studies in the US have shown that glucomannan can help with weight loss as well as lowering blood cholesterol.
For weight loss products, glucomannan is available in two forms. First you can buy it in capsule form and take it as a supplement. Second you can buy it as a food in the form of ‘all you can eat’ zero calorie noodles.
The noodles are a very popular option and suppliers often sell out because of the limited supply of konjac root. It’s worth trying the noodles if you can find them, because as well as the filling effect in the stomach which you get with the capsules, you have the feeling that you are eating plenty. You can substitute them for high carb, high calorie foods like pasta and get even more benefit from this most interesting of weight loss products!
Is It Really A Zero Calorie, Zero Carb Food?
Yes, unless there are added ingredients. But will you like It? It’s better not to fill your kitchen with ‘all you can eat’ noodles until you know you like them! The ‘pasta’ made from konjac root can have a strange, fishy taste that not everybody appreciates. Be sure to rinse them well before cooking. We find it also helps if you boil them up for a couple of minutes and then rinse and boil again in fresh water. That will make them taste much better. Adding a strong-tasting sauce, such as one based around tomato, is even more of an improvement.
If you don’t like the noodles, you can buy glucomannan fiber capsules to take as a supplement. There are no known side effects although if you take a lot, you may have abdominal pain, bloating and gas. This is just the effect of having too much fiber in the system at once. If you take less or spread it out over the day more evenly, these symptoms should disappear.
Where To Buy Glucomannan Weight Loss Products
You can buy glucomannan supplements online in the form of powder, tablets and capsules. The noodles are usually known as konjac noodles. Most stockists import them from Japan. You can find them online as weight loss products, in health food stores or in Japanese food stores.
Resveratrol – A Weight Loss Diet Aid
In the search for safe and effective diet aids, you may come across some information on resveratrol as a weight loss diet aid. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant, but can it also help with weight loss?
What Is Resveratrol?
Resveratrol is a natural substance found in the skins of some fruit and other foods. Red grapes are especially rich in resveratrol but it is also found in blueberries, peanuts, dark chocolate and the plant Japanese knotweed, from which most supplements used as anti aging and diet aids are derived. Resveratrol is believed to be one of the reasons that red wine has been found to have beneficial effects when drunk in small quantities.
Uses Of Resveratrol
Resveratrol’s best known use is as an anti aging supplement. It is believed to help the body to rejuvenate by killing off old cells so that the cellular structure stays fresh. This ‘cleaning up’ action may also help prevent cancer (which is caused by overgrowth of cells). It has also been found to have antiviral properties and is sometimes used to prevent outbreaks in people who have the herpes virus.
Finally, resveratrol has been shown to lower blood sugar levels in several studies. This could be helpful for diabetics or if you have pre-diabetes. However, it’s important to talk to your doctor before taking it for this purpose because it might interfere with other diabetic medications.
How It Works For Weight Loss
After hearing about all of these other effects of resveratrol, you may be wondering why it is listed among diet aids! This is a good question. The reason is that some studies have found that it increases the metabolism of fat so that fat is converted to energy instead of being stored in the body. One such study carried out on mice at the University of Georgia found that resveratrol helped to prevent weight gain in mice who were fed a high fat diet.
So resveratrol is not a fat blocker but it is believed to help us digest fat. This could be helpful for people who suffer from the side effects of fat blockers like orlistat.
Like other diet aids, resveratrol works best if you pay attention to what you eat and try to get some exercise. It should help with hunger and cravings but sometimes people have eating habits that are psychologically addicting. It’s important to overcome these by changing your routine, e.g. switching to fruit if you are in the habit of grazing on chips or chocolate while watching TV.
Is It Safe?
There are no particular side effects to resveratrol as far as we know but it’s better not to take too much. While most research has demonstrated benefits both in terms of weight loss and for anti aging, there have not been any studies in long term use in humans. Like most supplements, it is not recommended for use by pregnant or nursing women. It can interfere with certain medications so if you decide to take diet aids that include resveratrol, check it out with your doctor first.
Hoodia Gordonii – A Natural Appetite Suppressant
Hoodia gordonii is marketed as one of the top safe diet pills that is also very effective in helping people to lose weight. It has become well known over the last couple of decades and many people have taken it. However, there are some issues that people should be aware of before beginning to take hoodia natural weight loss supplements.
What Is Hoodia?
Hoodia gordonii is the botanical name for a succulent plant found in the Kalahari desert in Africa. It looks like a cactus. It has long been used by bushmen who eat the bitter-tasting stem when hunting or in times of famine, to take the edge off their hunger.
How Hoodia For Weight Loss Works
The simplest way to explain how hoodia works is to describe it as an appetite suppressant. It tricks the brain into thinking that it already has enough energy in the form of glucose, so we don’t get ‘hungry signals’.
Independent studies carried out on animals have found that hoodia’s active ingredient, known as P57, caused animals to eat less when it was injected into the brain. A small study of human volunteers carried out by a manufacturer of P57 showed that hoodia supplements reduced the food intake of people who were previously overeating by an average of 1000 calories a day. That’s not an independent study of course, but it’s pretty amazing!
For a person in good health, there are no known side effects of hoodia. There has not yet been time to research the effects of long term use in humans, but it is a substance that has been taken by the bushmen of the Kalahari desert for centuries without identifiable side effects. That’s why it’s promoted as one of the top safe diet pills.
However, hoodia may have negative effects for people with certain diseases or taking certain medications. Mostly these are unwanted effects of its beneficial actions. For example, eating less means having lower blood sugar levels. For most people this is a good thing but for a diabetic who is taking insulin or other medications, it could result in hypoglycemic episodes if the medications are not adjusted.
Hoodia can stop people feeling thirsty as well as hungry. In Africa, this sometimes leads to people dying of dehydration because they go without water for too long after eating the plant. If you take it as a weight loss supplement, be sure to continue to drink your regulation 8 glasses of water a day, even if you don’t feel any thirst.
There is a problem with supply which means that low quality hoodia weight loss supplements can be less effective. Hoodia is not easy to extract, the plant is rare and it is difficult and expensive to produce it in the laboratory. Therefore, some manufacturers cut corners. Their supplements do not contain as much hoodia as they claim – maybe even none at all. Therefore, it is very important to order a top quality hoodia weight loss supplement from a reputable supplier.
With a good quality source, it seems to us that most overweight people who are in good health could benefit from taking hoodia. Provided a person takes steps to prevent dehydration, we can conclude that hoodia is one of the top safe diet pills.
Bitter Orange – A Diet Energy Pill
Until 2004 ephedra was the best known of all diet energy pills. It was marketed as a supplement that could help you lose weight while boosting the metabolism. Unfortunately, it turned out to have serious side effects. It was found to contribute to a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, as well as increasing the body’s susceptibility to heatstroke which was said to have caused the death of at least one athlete.
So ephedra was taken off the market and it is now illegal. However, other diet energy pills have sprung up to replace it. Are they safe or do they carry the same risks as ephedra?
The scientific name for bitter orange is Citrus aurantium. It comes from the same family of trees as the one that produces the bitter fruits known as Seville oranges, used for making marmalade. The bitter orange extract that has been promoted as a weight loss supplement is made from the peel.
Like other diet energy pills, bitter orange acts as a stimulant. The active ingredient is synephrine which is said to boost the metabolism and suppress appetite.
However, it has dangers. Studies have found that synephrine is very similar to the active ingredient of ephedra, epinephrine. It also seems to be like ephedra in its effects. Therefore, it carries a similar risk of heart attacks and strokes. It also interacts with some other drugs, e.g. statins, in a way that can have serious effects. In this respect it is like grapefruit, which must not be eaten if you are taking certain medications.
In small quantities, extracts of bitter orange are used in many foods. It is used to make bergamot oil which is an ingredient in Earl Grey tea, among other things. Bitter orange peel can be an ingredient in gingerbread and cakes, as well as marmalade. All of these uses are considered safe – but the quantity of synephrine in them is very small.
Most medical sources agree that bitter orange should not be used for medicinal purposes. So most people consider that diet energy pills containing bitter orange are not safe to take as a weight loss supplement.
But if bitter orange comes with many of the same side effects as ephedra, how come it isn’t banned? That’s a good question. The answer lies in the regulatory system. Ephedra was marketed as a drug, requiring approval from the FDA. In the beginning this approval was given, but when it became clear that people taking ephedra were dying, the FDA withdrew its approval and the drug was banned.
However, bitter orange is sold as a food supplement. Food supplements are not regulated in the same way, so it does not require the same FDA approval. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s completely safe.
Alli – An Over The Counter Diet Pill
If you ask a pharmacist for safe over the counter diet pills, they are likely to recommend Alli. Alli is the non-prescription brand name for a drug called orlistat which is also sold on prescription under the name of Xenical. At the time of writing, Alli is the only over the counter weight loss pill that is approved by the FDA. There may be other safe over the counter diet pills but they are required to be sold as food supplements, not medicines.
Alli or Xenical?
Alli and Xenical are both forms of the drug whose chemical name is orlistat. The main difference is that Xenical is a higher dose, and that’s why it’s only available on prescription. Xenical needs to be taken under medical supervision. So if you are looking for safe over the counter diet pills, Alli is an option but Xenical would require a visit to the doctor’s office.
How Does Alli Work?
Alli is a fat blocker that prevents the body from absorbing some of the fat that you eat. It attaches to certain enzymes in the digestive system to stop them working to digest the fat. This fat then passes through the body without being absorbed, so it’s as if you didn’t consume those calories.
When people first hear about Alli and how it works as a fat blocker, they often think: Finally – I can eat all I want and not lose weight! Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that.
First, it only blocks some of the fat we eat, not all of it. Second, even safe over the counter diet pills can have side effects. In the case of Alli, the most common problem is loose stools or diarrhea. This is easy to understand if you think about how Alli works.
Alli stops fat and oils from being digested. Fat and oil are lubricants – they’re slippery. So to put it very simply, you can imagine that when fat is not digested, it makes everything very greasy. All the waste slides through the digestive system very easily – resulting in possible embarrassment!
To avoid these embarrassing side effects it’s very important not to eat too much fat when you are taking orlistat, either Alli or Xenical. So you do have to restrict what you eat. In particular, you have to be sure not to eat too much fat. So it’s not suitable for use with high fat, low carb diets like the Atkins plan. It’s also not completely effortless: you do have to think about what you are eating.
On the positive side, the embarrassing effects of overeating fat while you are taking Alli means that it is much easier to stick to a low fat diet than if you didn’t take it. You cannot cheat or the results will be disgusting!
Of course you should talk to your doctor before taking any weight loss products, especially if you have any medical conditions. If you think you can handle the possibility of side effects and your doctor says to go ahead with safe over the counter diet pills, Alli might be a good choice.