Whatever You Want, And Don't Worry About the Fat?!?!
That's What The Ads Say!
companies have released their big selling fat blocker, Xenical.
The supplement companies have been cashing in with their over-the-counter
fat blocking agents containing chitosan.
Although with Xenical the drug, and chitosan, the supplement,
the end result, blocking the absorption of fat, is the same,
the two substances are quite different in the mechanisms by
which they attempt to achieve that end.
previous obesity drugs had stimulant or brain altering effects,
Orlistat (Xenical) operates strictly in the digestive tract.
Rather than acting directly to stop fat from leaving the intestine,
it acts as a lipase inhibitor. It prevents enzymes (lipase)
in the gastrointestinal tract from breaking dietary fats down
into a molecular size small enough to pass through the tiny
holes in the intestinal lining. Even the most optimistic studies
have predicted Orlistat can act to prevent only about 30%
of dietary fat from being absorbed. The claims made by Roche
Laboratories, the pharmaceutical giants who are capitalizing
on Orlistat sales often refer to a study published in the
Journal of the American Medical Association which supposedly
demonstrated that the Orlistat-fed group achieved greater
weight loss than the control group. A close look at that study
shows that after one year . . .yes an entire year . . . the
Orlistat group lost an average of 19 pounds . . .but the control
group . . the group being fed a placebo lost 13 pounds on
average! That amounts to a greater weight loss by the Orlistat
group of 1/2 pound per month! Worst of all, the study did
not measure fat loss or body composition, so it is possible
and even likely that the Orlistat induced dieters sacrificed
lean body mass and slowed metabolism. Keep in mind that this
is the study most quoted, but it is far from the only study
that took place. Another study at Baylor Medical Center in
Dallas took place over 57 weeks. 120 mg. Orlistat (or placebo
for the control group) was administered three times daily
with meals. The Orlistat group lost 6.2 pounds of body weight
vs. 4.3 in the control group. In 57 weeks! Here is an example
of how drug companies use the words, "research has proven"
when in reality the miniscule difference between the two groups
can simply be random coincidence. An interesting side line
. . nine of the women taking part in a Hoffman-La Roche funded
research study using Orlistat developed breast cancer as compared
with only one such incident in the control group. A spokesperson
for Hoffman-La Roche referred to animal studies that failed
to find an Orlistat-cancer link when he stated that "this
cancer incident could be due to chance." Interesting
how a nine-to-one ratio they are willing to dismiss as "chance"
where a ridiculously negligible weight loss differential in
the same study is considered substantial "proof"
of product efficacy.
recommended dose of Orlistat is one 120 mg. capsule with each
main meal that includes fat. The first challenge here lies
in the fact that such a recommendation will encourage users
to consume high fat foods believing the fat will not be absorbed.
Looking at the recommendations further, Orlistat is indicated
for obese patients with a Body Mass Index (BMI - I covered
this in a previous Member's section month so I won't get into
the flaws of BMI measurement here) of 30 or more. That means
Orlistat would be recommended, not for people who simply want
to lose a few pounds and minimize the damage caused by the
cheese on their pizza, but for chronically obese. Many chronically
obese individuals have over 100 excess pounds of bodyfat to
lose. The Orlistat group in the best case controlled study
lost only 1/2 pound per month greater than the control group.
In order, therefore, to knock off even 60 pounds of excess
body fat, the study would suggest it would take 10 years!
I've helped people lose excessive bodyfat in a year or less
. . . without any drugs at all!
is a substance extracted from shellfish and has a "balling
up" effect on oils it comes in contact with. When you
put chitosan in the digestive tract, it doesn't affect enzymes
as Orlistat, but rather attracts fat molecules and blobs them
up into such large "fat balls" they can't be absorbed.
Different mechanism, same effect.
you block absorption of fat, there are some likely discomforts
and risks. First of all, the essential vitamins, A, D, E,
and K are "fat soluble" vitamins. That means that
they are carried, along with fat, into the bloodstream. If
you are limiting fat absorption, you can not help but restrict
absorption of this essential micronutrients. They play a major
role in metabolism, immune function, and overall health.
As many supplements, Chitosan
can "play a role," albeit a minor role, as a fat
loss aid. If you follow my program recommendations,
and make one day per week the cheat day, one Chitosan capsule
prior to a high fat meal can limit the likelihood that the
dietary fat in that particular meal will wind up as fat on
your body. I take a Chitosan capsule before my Sunday
spotting, anal leakage, intestinal cramping, gas with discharge,
nausea, diarrhea, oily discharge, fecal urgency, loose and
oily stools, fecal incontinence, frequent bowel movements,
and inability to control bowels. Does it sound like a wonder
drug to you? Or . . . an opportunistic release by a pharmaceutical
company that recognizes this as potentially the largest selling
drug of all time.
Note: I have not heard of any side effects
from using one (1) 500 mg chitosan
capsule prior to infrequent "cheat" meals