4 Weight Loss Medications and How They Work

May 11, 2019
Health Equity


Welcome to Norton Community Medical Associates, your trusted source for comprehensive health information. In this article, we will discuss four popular weight loss medications and delve into how they work to promote weight loss effectively. If you are considering these medications as part of your weight loss journey, it is important to understand their effects and consult with a qualified healthcare professional.

1. Phentermine

Phentermine is an FDA-approved weight loss medication that works by suppressing appetite. It stimulates the release of certain chemicals in the brain that help control hunger, making it easier to consume fewer calories.

Phentermine is usually prescribed for short-term use in conjunction with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity. It is important to note that phentermine can cause side effects such as increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, and insomnia. Therefore, it should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare professional.

2. Orlistat

Orlistat is a medication that works by inhibiting the absorption of dietary fats. It blocks the action of enzymes in the intestines responsible for breaking down fats. As a result, the body excretes the undigested fats, reducing the overall calorie intake.

Orlistat is typically used in combination with a low-fat diet and can help with weight loss, especially for individuals with obesity or overweight-related health conditions. Side effects may include gastrointestinal discomfort, oily stools, and increased frequency of bowel movements.

3. Liraglutide

Liraglutide is an injectable medication originally developed for managing diabetes. However, it has also been approved for weight loss purposes. Liraglutide works by mimicking a hormone called GLP-1, which regulates appetite and helps control blood sugar levels.

When used in higher doses for weight loss, liraglutide can effectively reduce appetite, increase feelings of fullness, and lead to sustainable weight loss. It is important to note that liraglutide should be used under medical supervision and may cause side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and thyroid abnormalities.

4. Bupropion and Naltrexone

Bupropion and naltrexone are two medications combined in a single pill for weight management. Bupropion is an antidepressant that also helps to reduce cravings, while naltrexone is used to treat addiction by blocking the effects of certain drugs.

When taken together, bupropion and naltrexone can help with weight loss by curbing cravings and reducing hunger. This combination medication is usually prescribed for individuals with obesity or with weight-related health conditions. It is important to note that this medication may cause side effects such as increased blood pressure, insomnia, and headache.


When considering weight loss medications, it is crucial to remember that they are not standalone solutions. To achieve sustainable weight loss, a comprehensive approach that includes a balanced diet, regular physical activity, and lifestyle modifications is often necessary.

If you are interested in exploring weight loss medications, we recommend consulting with a reputable healthcare provider who can evaluate your specific needs and guide you towards the most suitable options. Remember, your health and well-being are our top priorities at Norton Community Medical Associates, and we are here to support you on your weight loss journey.