Metabolism Drugs

Unlocking the Potential: The Latest Breakthroughs in Metabolism-Boosting Drugs



Metabolism plays a crucial role in regulating energy levels and weight in the human body. Metabolism drugs aim to directly influence metabolic processes to help achieve weight loss or control diabetes. However, not all metabolism drugs are equally safe or effective.

Weight Loss Drugs

Prescription weight loss drugs work by altering metabolism to promote weight loss in addition to diet and exercise. Some popular options include:


Phentermine is one of the oldest and most commonly prescribed weight loss drugs available. It works by suppressing appetite. However, it should only be taken for short periods as addiction and side effects are possible with long term use. Common side effects include dry mouth, increased blood pressure, and insomnia. While effective for initial weight loss, long term results are often disappointing without lifestyle changes.

Liraglutide (Saxenda)

Liraglutide is an injectable Metabolism Drugs that inhibits appetite and works similarly to the diabetes drug Victoza. Research shows it can produce weight loss of around 3-7% over 56 weeks when combined with diet and exercise. Common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, constipation and headache. Though generally well-tolerated, the risks of long term injectable use need to be considered.

Orlistat (Alli/Xenical)

Orlistat works by inhibiting fat absorption in the gut. It can help reduce weight by blocking about 30% of fat from being absorbed from foods. Common side effects are oily spotting, gas, and loose stools due to unabsorbed fat in stool. It may also reduce absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. Overall a safer option but modest 1-2 kg weight loss on average.

Diabetes Drugs

Several medications are used to control blood sugar levels in diabetics that can also promote weight loss as a side benefit.


Metformin is the most common first-line drug used for type 2 diabetes. It works primarily by reducing glucose production and absorption in the liver and intestines. Weight changes are generally modest, often resulting in 3-6 pounds of weight loss. It has few side effects but should not be used by people with kidney problems.

Incretin Mimetics

Incretin mimetics like Victoza (liraglutide), Bydureon (exenatide), and Trulicity (dulaglutide) mimic the effect of GLP-1 hormone in the body. This helps regulate blood sugar and suppress appetite, leading to weight loss of around 3-5 kg on average in clinical trials. Nausea is a common side effect which usually subsides over time. May increase risk of pancreatitis.

SGLT2 Inhibitors

Newer SGLT2 inhibitor drugs like Jardiance (empagliflozin) and Farxiga (dapagliflozin) work by causing the kidneys to expel excess blood glucose through urine. This lowers blood sugar without increasing insulin levels. Along with good control, it leads to about 2-3 kg average weight loss due to urinary calorie loss. Risk of genital yeast infections and urinary tract infections may be higher.

Risks and Precautions

While metabolism drugs offer weight loss benefits, they are not without risks if improperly used. Common precautions that must be followed include:

– Only taking drugs as directed under medical supervision part of diet/lifestyle plan

– Monitoring blood sugar and other health markers regularly

– Avoiding use by people with certain medical conditions

– Watching for side effects and stopping use if serious symptoms occur

– Recognizing limited ability for sustaining weight loss without behavior changes

– Understanding costs not always covered by insurance for long term use

Metabolism drugs can be useful adjuncts for weight management or glycemic control in diabetes when taken judiciously as prescribed. However, sustainable success depends on integrating medication into a permanent plan involving diet, exercise and behavior modification. Given risks and costs, non-drug approaches like lifestyle changes should always be priority. Appropriate medical guidance is a must when opting for any drug treatment approach.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it