Among the most popular categories of diet pills – both prescription and over the counter – is fat blockers, also known as lipase inhibitors. This is a type of product that functions by stopping the body’s ability to absorb all of the fats that are consumed in foods that are eaten in snacks and meals. The idea is that when some fats are not absorbed, they pass directly through the body without contributing their calories, thereby making it easier to lose weight.
Fat blockers are not appropriate for everybody. Regardless of whether a prescription drug or over the counter supplement is being considered, it is very important to consult with a doctor before starting their use, as it does change the way that the digestive process functions and it could be dangerous to the health of the wrong person. For instance, these pills are not appropriate for individuals under the age of 18, for pregnant or breastfeeding women and for people with certain other medical conditions.
Fat blockers work by causing a certain amount of consumed fat from food to go unabsorbed by the body, so that it is excreted instead. The actual percentage of fat that is blocked from being absorbed varies from one product to the next. Among pills that actually work (as there are many that claim to work, but do not, or are unproven and not understood), approximately 25 to 30 percent of consumed fats are sent through the body undigested.
Higher doses of those medications will not offer higher fat blocking, but it will increase the risk of side effects, so it is highly recommended that these products be taken only as prescribed, or according to the directions on their labels.
A diet recommended by a doctor will need to be followed while using these pills, as this will help to keep side effects to a minimum. By consuming the wrong diet while using fat blockers, consequences can include chronic diarrhea, flatulence, vitamin deficiencies, oily stool, loss of bowel control, abdominal cramping, nausea, and other common unpleasant symptoms.
It is very likely that a doctor will recommend a very specific regimen of vitamin and mineral supplementation, as fat soluble vitamins will have less of a chance of being absorbed by the body when taking fat blockers.
Certain fat blockers have been shown to help to ease blood pressure and can help a dieter to be able to work to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes. As of yet, it has not been made clear whether those results are because of the pills, themselves, or whether they are the result of reducing the body weight.