Obesity, which has been identified as a contributing factor in many health problems and chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, diabetes, and heart disease, has reached epidemic levels. More than 60 percent of Americans are overweight and, of those, more than 30 percent are clinically obese. The first step to safe, healthy weight loss is establishing a balanced diet and incorporating moderate exercise on a regular basis.
There are natural health products that can enhance the effects of diet and exercise and contribute to weight loss, leading to an improvement in overall health and wellness and diet pills offer another option for accomplishing weight loss goals. The desire to lose weight has created a lucrative market for natural weight loss aids, which has resulted in the availability of a wide variety of products.
Diet pills or appetite suppressants, have been prescribed by doctors since the 1950s and the most of the first diet pills available contained the drug amphetamine. Amphetamine, also known as speed, is highly addictive and doctors quickly realized that appetite suppressants containing amphetamine were not a healthy weight loss solution. Other drugs that followed were fenfluramine and dexfenfluramine, and later a drug combining phentermine with fenfluramine (fen-phen) became available.
Prescription weight loss drugs must be approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before doctors can legally prescribe them to their patients. The FDA is also responsible for monitoring the effects of medications on the health of the general public and any side effects that may be associated with taking those drugs. When the previously mentioned weight loss drugs were suspected to cause several serious medical conditions (ranging from stomachaches to heart attacks to death), the FDA banned their use and as a result, those drugs are no longer available by prescription.
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