Many of us have heard horror stories about the ‘diet pills’ that were popular a generation or so ago. These pills, available with a prescription, were basically ‘speed’ – which, in a slightly different form, was sold as a street drug. And yes, these pills did make women lose weight – sometimes a great deal of weight. This weight loss came at a heavy cost, though. A lot of people became addicted to diet pills. Others simply took them for so long, or at such heavy doses, that they ruined their health.
Nowadays, those types of diet pills still exist, but they are not prescribed or used nearly as often as they used to be. In general, people today are more aware of the importance of good health and doing things the natural way. All the same, losing weight is still a going concern, and there are many people looking for an easy way to do it – a ‘shortcut’, so to speak. That’s where natural medicine comes in.
Natural, naturopathic or herbal medicine has been around for literally hundred of years – long before western medicine or modern pharmaceuticals. It has also undergone a bit of a revival of late. People are disenchanted with the mainstream medical system, and looking for answers through an older system of medicine, one that is based on natural substances such as herbs and vitamins.
In fact, you can see how true that statement is just by browsing the shelves of your local drug store. Chances are, there will be almost as many herbal medicines available on your drugstore shelves as there are conventional medicines. Even some doctors are coming to accept the role that herbal medicine and natural medicine has to play. Even if they don’t out and out endorse it, many doctors will concede that natural medicine does no harm, at any rate.
So, when looking for a quick fix to the weight problems that plague so many of us, natural or herbal diet pills might seem very appealing. Actually, they really do have their strong points. Herbal diet pills are not speed – they don’t even resemble the harsh pharmaceutical diet pills of a generation ago, and they work in totally different ways. For example, some natural diet pills work as a ‘glucophage’ – they ‘eat up’ the excess glucose that is circulating in your system after you eat. Glucose, according to some, is precisely what does make you gain weight. It can even lead to other problems, such as diabetes later in life. Glucophage can be a great way of eliminating excess glucose in your system if you happen to eat too much.
Of course, as might be expected, that doesn’t work well for everyone – in fact, it sometimes backfires. You might use it as an excuse to eat even more, in fact, in which case no amount of glucophage can save you! It may also be true that this type of herbal remedy has inconsistent results – it may work much better on some people than on others. That having been said, though, there are people who have used glucophage and had excellent results.
Other types of herbal diet pills act as appetite suppressants. They just make you want to eat less, plain and simple, much as the diet pills of a generation ago did. There the similarity ends, however – herbal diet pills are less effective than pharmaceutical ones, but they are also much less harmful.
Then there are the herbal supplements that you would take in order to cleanse your body of toxins. Some people choose to do this once or twice a year – the early spring, particularly, seems a good time. The herbal supplements that you take during a cleanse are not diet pills per se, but the end result of the cleanse is often weight loss. Furthermore, you might find it a lot easier to lose weight after you’ve done a cleanse. For one thing, you will have gotten out of any bad food habits you might have accumulated!
The diet pills of the seventies were not a great idea, except maybe in extreme cases where weight loss was imperative. Even then, there were probably better ways to do it. Don’t assume that all diet pills are bad, though – and do check out the new types of herbal diet supplements available today.
This information is not presented by a medical practitioner and is for educational and informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read. Since natural and/or dietary supplements are not FDA approved they must be accompanied by a two-part disclaimer on the product label: that the statement has not been evaluated by FDA and that the product is not intended to “diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.”