Orlistat enables you to lose weight safely and gradually. It is principally for the obese, however if you have a body mass index of 30 then you are classified as medically overweight & Orlistat can enable you to lose weight and keep it off permanently.
Orlistat is different to the other medications in that it doesn´t suppress your appetite. It works to block a third of fat absorption in the digestive system. When taking Orlistat you should have a healthy diet with no more than 30% of your calories from fat. Orlistat does reduce high blood pressure, cholesterol as well as body fat.
Side effects of Orlistat
Because Orlistat works by blocking the absorption of fat the unabsorbed fat passes as fatty/oily stools. This can cause:
Urgent bowel movements
Dosages of Orlistat
Orlistat should be taken one 120 mg tablet 3 times a day with food or up to an hour after a meal.
Each meal should contain no more than 30% of calories from fat.
If you forget a dose of Orlistat skip that dose and resume regular schedule from the next dosage, there is no point
taking that dose twice.
Frequently asked questions on Orlistat
Can I take other medications with Orlistat?
There is no evidence that taking Orlistat with other medicines has any adverse effect. It is advised to discuss the compatability of other medicines with your doctor.
How long should I use Orlistat?
Up to two years is the recommendation.
Do I need to diet/exercise when taking Orlistat?
A healthy lifestyle is recommended in which a controlled diet and regular excersise should be incorporated.
Exercise will encourage faster weight loss and help with body tone.
Orlistat cannot be relied upon to achieve your desired weight loss if your diet is excessive. Although a strict
calorie controlled diet isn´t necessary a healthy diet and sensible eating will aid your weight loss whilst using Orlistat.
Do I need to take extra vitamins with Orlistat?
Yes, it is advisable to take a daily multivitamin containing vitamins D;E & K and daily beta carotene. These should be taken two hours before or after taking Orlistat.
Orlistat (Generic name – Orlistat)
Orlistat is a weight control medication for the management of significant obesity. Orlistat targets the absorption
of fat in your body rather than suppressing your appetite. Dietary fats are large molecules, which need to be broken down by enzymes called lipases before they can be absorbed into the body. When taken with a meal, Orlistat interferes with the activity of these enzymes.
This allows about 30% of the fat eaten in the meal to pass through the gut undigested. Your body therefore cannot convert these excess calories to fatty tissue or use them as a source of energy. This will therefore help you to reduce your weight,maintain your lower weight and minimise any weight regain.
Orlistat is a prescription weight-control medication useful for the long-term treatment of significant obesity.
Orlistat can also help to improve risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar which, if not treated, could lead to other diseases such as hypertension and diabetes.
Which substances may interact with Orlistat?
Before starting treatment, make sure your doctor knows if you are taking other medicines (including those not prescribed by your doctor). This is important as using more than one medicine at the same time can strengthen or weaken the effects of the medicines. Orlistat does not affect most commonly prescribed medicines. However, it increases the effect of some lipid lowering medicines and therefore your doctor may change your dose of this medicine. Orlistat reduces the absorption of supplements of some fat-soluble nutrients, particularly beta-carotene
and vitamin E. You should therefore follow your doctor’s advice in taking a well balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables.
May Orlistat be taken during pregnancy or while breast-feeding?
You must tell your doctor if you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of taking Orlistat during pregnancy. You should not breast-feed your infant during treatment with Orlistat as it is not known whether Orlistat is secreted in human milk.
How should Orlistat be taken?
Follow the directions for using this medicine provided by your doctor, otherwise you will not fully benefit from Orlistat.
The recommended dose of Orlistat is one 120-mg capsule taken with each of the three main meals per day. It can be taken during the meal or up to one hour after the meal is consumed.
Orlistat should be taken with a well balanced, calorie controlled diet that is rich in fruit and vegetables and contains an average of 30% of the calories from fat. Your daily intake of fat, carbohydrate and protein should be distributed over three meals. This means you will usually take one capsule at breakfast time, one capsule at lunchtime and one capsule at dinnertime. To gain optimal benefit, avoid the intake of food containing fat between
meals, such as biscuits, chocolate and savoury snacks.
Orlistat only works in the presence of dietary fat. If you miss a main meal or if you have a meal containing no fat, you do not need to take that particular dose of Orlistat.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have not taken your medicine exactly as prescribed. Otherwise, your doctor may think that it was not effective or well tolerated and may change your treatment unnecessarily.
Method and route of administration
Your medicine should be swallowed with water.
When and how does treatment with Orlistat end?
Orlistat is suitable for long-term treatment or as instructed by your doctor.
Weight loss normally starts within 2 weeks and continues for 6 to 12 months on Orlistat treatment. Orlistat will then help you to maintain this new lower weight and also help prevent weight being put on again. Losing even small amounts of weight and keeping it off produces additional health benefits for you especially when you are at risk from other diseases such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The improvement in risk factors (such as reduction in high blood pressure, normalising blood sugar levels and lowering cholesterol levels) is usually noticed within
one month of starting therapy and should be maintained during the course of Orlistat treatment.
What if I miss a dose of Orlistat?
If you forget to take your medicine at any time, take it as soon as you remember provided this is within one hour of your last meal, then continue to take it at the usual times. Do not take a double dose. If you have missed several doses, please inform your doctor and follow the advice given to you. Do not change the prescribed dose yourself unless your doctor tells you to.
What are the possible unwanted effects of Orlistat?
Along with its desired effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are taking Orlistat. The majority of unwanted effects related to the use of Orlistat result from its local action in your digestive system.
These commonly include:
urgent or increased need to open the bowels
flatulence (wind) with discharge,
oily discharge and oily or fatty stools.
These symptoms are generally mild, occur at the beginning of treatment, go away after a short period of time and are particularly experienced after meals containing high levels of fat. Normally, these symptoms disappear if you continue treatment and keep to your recommended diet.