I had envisioned sort of “easing into” my new blog with some lighter posts, but it seems that hasn’t been working so well (see lack of posts since November)… So, grab your swimsuit, we’re diving right in!

As we get to know each other better, you’ll find I’m generally not a big fan of pharmaceuticals. Sure, they have their place in certain instances, but overall I think they are really best avoided. At all costs.

Really, put down the prescription bottle!

Ok, now I’ve gotten that out of my system lets get to the point. ūüôā

Yesterday it was announced that the FDA had approved Belviq (Lorcaserin), the first new prescription weight loss pill in over 10 years to hit the market.¬†The new president of American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery said: “I think this is great. Thirteen years without any other medical option.” [source] Well of course he did! He isn’t privy to the bevy of natural, holistic methods that have been so effective in overcoming obesity and other lifestyle diseases. Medical doctors are not trained in nutrition or holistic lifestyle management. They get ZERO hours of nutrition training, zero. Nada. Zip. I feel bad for them, really I do. They’re missing out on the opportunity to witness such amazing results, without all the nasty side effects found in surgery and pharmaceuticals.

This drug was actually first sent for FDA approval in 2010. Back then it was rejected over “concerns about possible heart damage, depression and other issues.” [source] That same site (the company’s own) states concern over tumor development in lab rats. Well, apparently the FDA has now determined the the benefits outweigh any possible negative side effects. While I can’t find any formal documentation yet, several online sources list headaches, nausea/dizziness, upper respiratory infection, depression/suicidal thoughts and tumors. Odd to me that heart disease isn’t actually on anything I’ve seen so far… Although the site does reveal that while total cholesterol in trial patients dropped, blood pressure stayed the same. ????

What are the benefits? Over the 12-week trial period patients reported anywhere from 4 – 8 pounds, depending on dosage, and they weren’t monitored for diet or exercise during that time. That’s a maximum of 0.67 pounds per week. I’m sorry, but I feel like if you’re going to hit me with all those side effects I’d better be getting like 2 pounds a week! I don’t get excited about 1/2 a pound or less. I can get that, and more, through diet and exercise, and all while eating until I’m full and satisfied. Oh, and longer term studies (1 -2 years in length) resulted in 5% body weight reduction, that’s 15 pounds if you weighed 300 to start, and that was WITH diet and exercise programs added in!

So, how does it produce these “miraculous” results (can you hear the sarcasm dripping???)? It’s an appetite¬†suppressant. I’m still not sure how it’s all that different from what we’ve seen on the market so far, but now that I think of it, most appetite suppressants now are over the counter, aren’t they? Anyway. So, you aren’t as hungry. Cool. But if you’re still eating crap, now your also¬†malnourished¬†and probably cranky? You’re also limiting the calories you’re getting, thereby reducing your metabolic rate. I know, I know, reducing calories is widely recognized as the answer to weight loss. But guess what, it’s not. I promise.

My bottom line on lorcaserin is it’s too little results for too high a price. And restricting your caloric intake is kind of important, but not like this. It’s not about the volume of food, it’s about what that food is and the nutritional density of the food you eat. When you are consuming mostly whole, unprocessed foods of all kinds you naturally eat fewer calories and you feel so much better in the process. And it’s not as hard as you think. Honest.