Saturday, January 24, 2009

Chemists to provide obesity pill

From BBC News:
The obesity pill, orlistat, has been licensed to be sold over-the-counter at chemists in the EU.

The pill, which works by blocking the absorption of fat in the body, will be available at a lower dose than doctors generally prescribe.

It is aimed at adults with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 28 or more.

One expert said it may help some people with weight loss but they would have to take a conscious decision to eat less fatty foods.

The Royal College of GPs said everyone who wanted the pill should go to their GP for advice because some of them would have treatable causes for their obesity - and all of them would have risk factors for other illnesses which would need to be discussed.

GlaxoSmithKline, who make the pill known commercially as alli, say their clinical trials show that adding orlistat to a reduced calorie, lower fat diet, can help people lose 50% more weight than dieting alone.

But if they persist in eating fat, they will experience some nasty side effects such as diarrhoea and gas problems. ...more

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