Guide To Weight Loss in 2024: Discover 3 Fat Burning Pills That Actually Work

Key Takeaways

* Metformin, GLP-1 agonists, and SGLT2 inhibitors are the best pills to lose belly fat. 

* Only your doctor can decide if weight loss pills are safe for you. 

* The best way to lose weight while taking fat burner medicines is to also make lifestyle changes for more rapid weight loss.

Introduction

Some medicines that help in controlling blood sugar levels also act as medicines to burn belly fat. The best part is that these medicines have a small risk of severe side effects.

Some medications developed initially for preventing diabetes also show benefit in weight loss. These medications can help you shed 20% more weight than any other fat burner. So, what is the best pill to lose belly fat? Is it even a pill or something else? Let's find out!

Best fat burners for people with diabetes

1. Metformin

Metformin is a first line of medicine to treat type 2 diabetes, especially in people who are overweight. Metformin has a modest effect on weight and helps you control blood sugar. Studies show that people taking metformin show a more significant weight reduction than those taking other medications like sulfonylureas (medications that lower blood glucose by promoting insulin production in the pancreas).

How it works

Metformin's effect on your weight is due to its ability to suppress your hunger. This pill affects your appetite regulation as a side effect. However, this side effect is helpful for people who want to lose weight.

By eating fewer calories than you need daily, your body starts using your stored fat for energy, making you lose weight. Hence, the appetite suppressant effect of metformin helps you lose weight by making you eat less.

Metformin as a weight loss pill: side effects

Common side effects of metformin include:

  • Experiencing abdominal discomfort
  • Feeling bloated
  • Suffering from gas
  • Diarrhea
  • Pain in the belly
  • Constipation
  • Reduced appetite

Rare side effects of metformin include:

  • Heartburn
  • Headaches
  • Upper respiratory infections
  • An unpleasant taste in the mouth

Serious Side Effects of Metformin include:

  • Lactic acidosis (a condition with too much lactic acid in the blood. It disrupts normal bodily functions and can potentially cause serious health issues)
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Hypoglycemia (abnormally low blood glucose levels)

2. GLP-1 agonists

The full form of GLP is Glucagon-like peptide-1. This hormone increases insulin secretion and inhibits glucagon secretion.

GLP-1 agonists are a group of medications that help manage blood glucose in type 2 diabetes and also lose weight. They are mostly administered in the form of an injection under your skin (subcutaneous). These medicines can help you lose weight even if you do not have type 2 diabetes.

GLP-1 agonists are excellent belly fat burners. They can effectively induce ≥5% or ≥10% weight loss in T2DM and non-T2DM with overweight or obesity.

Examples of GLP-1 agonists include:

  • Tirzepatide
  • Semaglutide
  • Dulaglutide
  • Liraglutide
  • Albiglutide
  • Exenatide BID
  • Exenatide QW
  • Lixisenatide

How it works

Pic credit:Cardiovascular benefits of GLP-1 agonists in type 2 diabetes: A comparative review - Scientific Figure on ResearchGate.

GLP-1 receptor agonists influence body weight and blood sugar levels by:

  • Slowing down stomach emptying
  • Activating certain breaks in the digestive system
  • Interacting with specific areas in the brain that regulate appetite

GLP-1 Agonist as a weight loss pill: side effects

The most common side effects of GLP-1 agonists may occur at the beginning of therapy but may go away after some time. These include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea

Some other side effects of GLP-1 agonists include:

  • Headaches
  • Indigestion (upset stomach)
  • Dizziness
  • Mild tachycardia (increased heart rate)
  • Infections

Some rare but severe side effects of GLP-1 agonists include:

  • Acute kidney injury
  • Medullary thyroid cancer
  • Pancreatitis
  • Worsening diabetes-related retinopathy

3. SGLT2 inhibitors

SGLT2 stands for sodium-glucose cotransporter-2. SGLT2 is like a "glucose transporter" in the kidneys, helping reabsorb about 90% of glucose back into the body. Without this transporter, you will lose 90% of your blood glucose through urine.

SGLT2 inhibitors lower blood glucose by stopping the kidneys from reabsorbing glucose, leading to its removal in urine. They not only reduce blood sugar and pressure but also result in modest weight loss.

How it works

Pic credit: Cardiovascular benefits of GLP-1 agonists in type 2 diabetes: A comparative review - Scientific Figure on ResearchGate.

SGLT2 inhibitors help with weight loss by causing the body to excrete glucose through the kidneys, leading to a loss of calories.

SGLT2 inhibitors as a weight loss pill: side effects 

Some common side effects of SGLT2 inhibitors are:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Frequent urination
  • Dehydration
  • Increased chances of getting yeast or urinary tract infections
  • Loss of bone density
  • Higher likelihood of bone fractures

Are weight loss pills safe?

Weight loss medications may help you lose a significant amount of weight. However, even the best weight loss tablets may have side effects, as discussed above. Determining the safety of these medications involves many considerations.

Whether taking these medications is the right choice depends on the severity of your weight loss needs. If the need for weight loss is more significant than the potential side effects, then taking medications may be good.

But if you are not too overweight, maybe lifestyle changes are a better way to lose weight.

Your healthcare provider is the best person to tell you if weight loss medications are safe for you.

The best way to lose weight: medication + lifestyle changes

Suppose you talked with your doctor about starting medicine to reduce belly fat, and you got them. In that case, you can boost your weight loss even more by making simple lifestyle changes.

A combination of lifestyle changes and medication leads to faster weight loss than any of them individually. A study found that people using semaglutide (a GLP-1 agonist) along with making lifestyle changes lost about 15.3 kg compared to only 2.6 kilograms in those who didn't use the drug.

Let's discuss some lifestyle changes to help you lose weight faster.

  1. Intermittent Fasting: Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern in which you alternate between eating and fasting periods. Fasting means you eat less food, leading to lower calorie intake, which helps in weight loss.
  2. Eat more fibre and protein: Fibre and protein make your stomach feel full quickly. They take time to digest; hence, you feel less hungry.
  3. Eliminate liquid calories: Liquid calories include cold drinks and packaged fruit juices. Cold drinks have about 10 g of sugar per 100 ml, which can significantly increase your calorie intake.
  4. Stop eating packaged foods: Packaged food is high in refined carbohydrates, adding enormous empty calories.
  5. Don't add sugar: Stop adding sugar to your tea, coffee and juices.
  6. Stop snacking: Snacking between meals (especially with packaged foods) makes you eat more calories than needed.
  7. Sleep adequately: Inadequate sleep leads to higher rates of obesity. Hence, getting a good night's sleep is essential to lose and maintain weight.
  8. Do cardio: Cardio exercises are excellent for burning calories while giving your heart a solid workout.
  9. Strength training: Strength training will build lean muscle. Having more lean muscle increases your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). Even when you do nothing, your body burns more calories when you have more lean muscle.

FAQs

Which medicine is best for reducing belly fat?

The best medicine to reduce belly fat can potentially be GLP-1 agonists. But only your healthcare providers can tell you if GLP-1 agonists are the best medicine for you. Prescribing medication involves many factors that your healthcare provider understands. Hence, asking your doctor is the best method to get this answer.

What is the best diet for diabetes weight loss?

A diet that is rich in fibre, protein and healthy carbs is best for people with diabetes who are looking to lose weight. You can choose to follow a Mediterranean diet for the best results. Also, avoid refined carbohydrates like bread, rusks, biscuits, cookies, cold drinks, ice cream, etc.

Also read: The Best Foods to Improve Your Heart Health.

How to lose 10 kg weight?

The best way to lose 10 kg is to make some lifestyle changes, like: 

  1. Sleep adequately
  2. Eat more fibre and protein
  3. Stop eating packaged foods
  4. Do some cardio
  5. Eliminate liquid calories
  6. Don't add sugar
  7. Intermittent Fasting
  8. Perform strength training
  9. Stop snacking

It is best to lose weight gradually. Keep doing these activities, and you will be able to lose 10 kgs in a few months. If you find it challenging to lower your weight through lifestyle changes alone, you may also discuss taking weight loss medications with your doctor.

How to lose weight without exercise?

To lose weight without exercise, you must keep yourself in a calorie deficit.

Your body needs about 2000 to 2500 calories every day. When you eat more than this amount, you gain weight. So to lose weight, you should consume less than 2000 calories in food daily.

Eat whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and healthy protein sources. These foods are high in nutrients and low in calories. They will help you lose weight without exercise. But we still recommend adding exercise to your routine for added benefits.

What to eat for breakfast to lose weight?

Some good breakfast options to lose weight are:

  • Eggs
  • Any fruits
  • Smoothies (without added sugar)
  • Berries
  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseeds
  • Oatmeal (non-packaged oats)
  • Nuts

Also, remember that controlling your breakfast portions is essential to help you lose weight effectively.

Conclusion

Medications like Metformin, GLP-1 agonists, and SGLT2 inhibitors are promising for weight loss and blood sugar control. However, potential side effects exist, and a healthcare professional's guidance is crucial.

You can enhance results by combining medication with lifestyle changes like intermittent fasting, healthier eating, and regular exercise. Always talk with your doctor for personalized advice.

For an intelligent way to manage diabetes and lose weight, consider the Aware Health Rewards app. Our app helps you track your blood glucose levels and weight and provides insights for a healthy lifestyle. You will also get daily action steps and a free diabetic diet plan to lose weight. Download the Aware Health Rewards app today!

Note:
This blog is for informational purposes only. The information provided in this blog is no substitute for consulting with your healthcare provider. Any medication should only be started on prescription by your healthcare provider.

About the author: 

Lucky Mehtani
, B. Pharm, merges his healthcare expertise with a passion for writing to enhance India's heart health. Through insightful blogs, he provides well-researched information on managing Diabetes, Hypertension, and High Cholesterol, aiming to prevent heart attacks and strokes.
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