Maybe it would be helpful to be more specific then (since, apart from two replies, no one mentioned having experience with this particular type of medication) . . . .
So for those who were unsuccessful - what type of diet plan did you follow while on the medicine? If any? Or was it just taking the medicine for appetite suppression alone? Did you have weird/bad side effects that caused you stop the medication?
If anyone was successful long term what do you think the keys were? Did you wean off the medication slowly or just stop taking it all at once? What type of diet and lifestyle change did you follow?
Unfortunately, the research I've read hasn't shined much light on this, hence why I'm asking for anecdotal evidence. In the research those on the pill did lose more weight than those on placebo, but many gained it back - and their "diets" were largely about calorie restriction - they studies did not mention whether they were Zone, Low-Fat/High-Carb, "Clean", Portion Controlled, Low Carb, etc. Which may have had as much effect on long term success as anything else. Hence the questions.
For me, I am going to be following a more SCD/paleo template (based on previous success with it) and trying to keep calories in the 1500/day range (so portion control on top of food quality) in addition to walking more and strength training (since muscle mass helps burn more calories). (I already walk a fair bit, according to my FitBit - but I'm challenging myself to hit at least 6,000 steps every day - and 10,000 steps most days).
That's my plan - but I'd love input from others with experience with the medication regarding the above questions.
(Though perhaps I should have asked elsewhere, because there is another thread about a medicine with the same active ingredient as what I'm taking where the conversation has been much different - but I didn't see it until after I'd already posted this one.)
"I posted the thread to ask if others had tried similar medications and what their experiences were with it - if they had any tips to have maximum success."
I would suppose that if there were some Sparkers around that had used that sort of medication with good and/or lasting success, a few would be posting their testimonials and tips here.
The lack of such response actually says something...
Since you have your heart set on this course of action, I hope it works out well for you.
I suspect the medication's effects will fall short of your expectations. If my hunch is right, then I hope you won't beat yourself up for having "failed" or being lacking in willpower or all the other negative self-talk that we all too commonly revert to. I hope you'll see it more as the medication/diet plan failing you.
I wish you wouldn't see the others' responses as being some sort of attack or judgement on "you" - nobody here is trying to cut you down, more to the point is, so many of us have "walked in your shoes" already... so many of us have tried assorted supplements, diets, plans, regimes, medications (including doctor-suggested/prescribed ones), only to end up right back here again... when we see another Sparker walking down a path we have painfully walked ourselves, we want to help! intervene! Spare a fellow traveller from walking that long journey to nowhere! I hope you will take the comments in the spirit they are intended.
You are very right Jenni. Though I do NOT suffer from depression, though it does run in my family. I do believe I have a genetic pre-disposition to low dopamine levels and I have used food to self-medicate (esp. sugary stuff). (This is based on the evidence of depression, substance abuse and Parkinson's in my family history, as well as my own ADD tendencies, which are all issues related to low dopamine). And actually, that's one of the reasons I chose to take the pill when it was offered (I did NOT seek it out, my doctor, knowing my situation offered it and discussed the side effects and possible benefits with me - again My DOCTOR - not me).
One of the things the materials my doctor showed me in the literature was that the pill is thought to effect the dopamine receptors so that you don't have those cravings any more. To me, it's no different than a depressed person taking Prozac to help with their serotonin levels - and that, along with talk therapy, helping to treat the disease.
Yes, earlier in my food log I was eating junk - some intentionally - for the purpose of having accurate medical tests (I was doing a gluten challenge to get tested for celiac) - but also because of the aforementioned addiction.
I've tried "cold turkey" following diet dogma for 12 years and it hasn't made any lasting difference. The only thing I was truly successful on was eating Primal, but the sugar addiction knocked me off that wagon. My doctor, knowing this, suggested the pill as a way to get a good jump start back down the hill (I have kept off 10 of the 30 lbs. I lost last summer) to help me break the addiction and create new habits that I can maintain (hopefully) after weaning off the pill.
But - more importantly - I DIDN'T POST THIS THREAD TO DEFEND OR ARGUE MY CHOICE! (This is why I've actually avoided the Spark Community over the last several months, because it's NOT been helpful to me - at all. I'm not asking you for medical advice or your judgments and opinion. I have made my choice based on my own copious research and the advice of my doctor who knows me and my situation better than any strangers on the internet just looking at a food log).
I posted the thread to ask if others had tried similar medications and what their experiences were with it - if they had any tips to have maximum success. If you're not going to reply to the question, then please, don't reply!
So again - have any other spark members used similar medications? What have your experiences been? Good? Bad? Any pitfalls you encountered? Tips for long term success?
I completely agree with Jennilacey. I'm worried for you - the foods that you are eating are seriously bad for you and I don't see a single nutritious item on your tracker. Just eating less junk is not going to help you - some nutrition is needed to keep you healthy. You are craving food because you aren't getting the proper nutrition to fuel your body - starving yourself is not the answer. Just swapping milk for soda will give you protein and healthy fats, and minerals.
Is there a reason for the fast food? There really is nothing worse to be eating IMHO. You can make sandwhiches with homemade bread, and fill it up with lean meats and veggies. Keep fruits like apples and bananas (nature's candy) around for snacks instead of the candy. Just a few ideas to get you going.
Fitness Minutes: (75,533)
2,489 10/24/13 9:58 A
I completely agree with Dietition Becky and SlimmerKiwi.
I took a peak at your nutrition tracker (hope you don't mind) and the vast majority of your diet is made up of fast food, soda, chocolate and candy and very few veg/fruit. None of these calories are going to keep you full and satisfied compared to whole fresh foods, they are severely lacking in nutrients, full of added sugars, sodium, preservatives and saturated/trans fat. Of course, I've only seen a small window into your diet, perhaps you ate very differently when you've lost weight before.
Taking an appetite suppressant would be the equivalent of putting a Band-Aid on a broken leg. If you do suffer from depression, that could be the very issue that is returning you to these high sugar/high fat comfort foods in an attempt to self-medicate. These foods have been discovered to activate the pleasure center of the brain in the same way addictive drugs do. I'm not sure if you've seen this article floating around (seems to be everywhere right now):
I've been tempted to go this route again. Years ago I was on one and lost lots of weight - which came back after I stopped using it! Also, I developed sleep issues as I was too stimulated from the med so then I was prescribed additional scripts for that. It just isnt' worth it in my opinion. I've been on a plateau for 3 months now and I need to lose weight desperately to reverse diabetes, hi cholesterol . . . but I'm determined to do it through proper eating and exercise so I can keep it off. Good luck!
Fitness Minutes: (33,526)
22,033 10/24/13 6:06 A
Well, unfortunately for you, this other spark member actually agrees with Dietitian Becky. Does this mean that you will always 'need' an appetite suppressant? You really need to learn the healthy way for you to eat, not rely on a pill.
I feel that there are a lot more issues involved here than throwing an appetite suppressant at will fix. You suffer from depression. You have IBS. and you obviously have quite a love of fast food. The fast food isn't an appetite quencher - it is more an emotional quencher. It has a load of fat, but unhealthy fats. One thing that I noticed with my late husband and my Stepfather is that the higher fat in the diet actually triggered their symptoms more. The soda has a lot of processed carbs. Neither do anything much with helping take care of hunger, and unfortunately, they don't help the IBS, or Depression, either. (I suffer depression and my late husband had pretty bad Crohn's, and my Step Father has IBS.)
I think that your Dr may be better off to refer you to a Therapist who deals with eating issues as well as Depression. They can actually have a significant positive impact for IBS, too!
If you start your day with a good, healthy breakfast, with filling foods that you CAN eat, and with quality lean protein, you might find that you are less likely to go for the less wise choice of foods later in the day. Ensure that you eat ALL of your meals, and aren't tempted to skip them. That helps the IBS as well as weight issues. It keeps you fueled properly throughout the day and evening and reduces the temptation to eat/drink those less wise choices.
As a query, has your Dr checked you for your Vitamin D and B12 levels? .... and has he/she prescribed multivitamins? That can help a lot with Depression, and also because of the IBS it can be very helpful, but your Dr is your best source of info there.
Well, I'm with my doctor on this one . . . I've been trying through will power alone to lose weight since high school, over 12 year now, with no long term success.
Also, I can't do too much whole grains - esp. wheat and gluten grains - because it upsets my digestion and causes a return of my IBS-D symptoms. I do have rice and corn chips as occasional treats - but the 6-11 servings that My Plate suggests, even when whole grain sources, always cause digestive symptoms AND put me over my daily calorie recommendations. I choose to focus on protein, fruits, veggies and natural fats.
(And no - I'm not going to do low-fat either, because I have a family history of depression which can be triggered by diets too low in fat - your brain NEEDS fat. I am trying to avoid all trans fats though - which are good for no one.)
When I lost over 30 lbs. last summer it was on a primal plan eatting no grains, but moderate-low carbs (from lots of veggies and fruit), moderate-high protein and moderate-"high" fat. And that is the plan I am returning to, because I've done it before, was successful and I felt great! I wasn't able to sustain it because of addiction to sugar. (Which, is another reason to avoid grains for me, as they are triggering - I'm more likely to binge on days I eat grains, than not).
I appreciate the input, but I must respectfully disagree. :)
But how about you other Spark Members? Have you had any success? Encountered any pitfalls?
I don't encourage the use of this type medication. I think you will get the biggest benefit in cleaning out the fast food Whoppers, soda pop, tortilla chips, kit-kats, peanut butter cups, microwave popcorn, etc.
I agree with you on lean meats and high quality protein, fruits, veggies. Even though they are not on the paleo plan, I encourage low fat dairy, and beans, and a variety of fruits, and even whole grains---none are off limits. If you really ate these type foods 90% of the time, you would not need the medication.
Just curious if anyone has experience with prescription appetite suppressants and whether they worked for you or not? Any tips for success?
I just started a prescription for a stimulant based appetite suppressant today and am hoping to use it in conjunction with a primal/paleo type diet (since I'm gluten free anyway, because of IBS-D and I think we can all agree that trying to eat higher quality meat and higher quantity of vegetables and low sugar fruits like berries is a good thing for most people) to help kick-start my weight loss.
I've spoken with my doctor about side effects to watch out for and I am fully aware of the potential for addiction, so we are working together to implement diet and lifestyle changes to create good habits before weaning off the drug completely.
Apart from that though, I'm wondering if anyone has had success with this, and what helped most? Or if you didn't have success what do you think were the pitfalls?
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