Know Your Options: How to Choose Between Most Popular Diet Pills and Supplements

Need to jump start a diet or break through a plateau? For many dieters, pills and supplements are a popular way to get a little extra help and discipline. It’s not a decision that should be taken lightly. But if you decide to add a weight loss supplement to your diet program, then you need to know your options.

Basically, there are two different types of diet pills — those that are available by prescription and those that can be bought over the counter.

Prescription diet pills are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration and must meet certain safety requirements. Supplemental diet pills are sold over the counter and aren’t classified as “diet drugs,” so these weight loss pills have no federal safety regulations. Most dieters are most familiar with over-the- counter diet pills because they are marketed so heavily on TV by celebrities in informercials.

Here is a list of the most popular diet pills and supplements for weight loss. This is a good overview to get started.

Types of Popular Diet Pills & Weight Loss Supplements


The main ingredient in Alli is the fat blocker Orlistat. This pill blocks 25% of each meal’s fat intake from being absorbed. The unabsorbed fat is passed through the colon. One major side effect is that the excess fat in the colon can cause leakage or runny bowels that are uncontrollable.

Hoodia Gordonii Plus

Hoodia Gordonii is a succulent harvested for its appetite suppressing qualities. This pill tricks the body into believing it’s full before a large quantity of calories are consumed. Taken a half hour before meals, the Hoodia Gordonii pill can help people take in up to 1,000 less calories a day.

Thermogenic Hydroxycut Advanced

The original Hydroxycut products were recalled in May of 2009. This new product relies on caffeine anhydrous to help increase metabolism for a faster calorie burn. Its rapid release capsules are supposed to promote higher energy so a person can work out longer and harder.

Orovo Advanced Weight Loss

Inspired by an episode of Oprah and Dr. Perricone’s whole foods philosophy, Orovo combines vitamins and whole foods that help promote weight loss. The pills contain a mixture of herbs, ground whole foods such as alfalfa and flaxseed, and a small amount of antioxidants. The ingredients work together to reduce fat absorption and increase metabolism.


This diet pill makes some serious weight loss claims, with some dieters claiming to lose 12 pounds in two weeks. Fenphedra uses Dicaffeine Malate, Chocamine, Phenylethylamine, and Synephrine. The ingredients work together to burn fat, increase energy, and suppress appetite. Since this product relies heavily on stimulants, some users may feel jittery while taking the pills.

There are many more diet pills and weight loss supplements available on the market, and diet researchers create new blends of pills each year. Dieters need to research the ingredients and side effects of each product before choosing to begin any new pill or supplement routine. Diet pills aren’t a weight loss cure, and most of them still require diet and exercise to see optimal weight loss success.

Be sure to talk to your doctor before taking any supplement or weight loss pill.

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