I know what it’s like to be at a loose end with weight loss. It’s soul-destroying to feel like you’ve done everything possible to lose weight and yet you still cling on to those unwanted pounds.
In your frustration, you may have searched for the best weight loss pills and stumbled across Alli diet pills reviews. But what exactly is Alli? Is it actually effective for weight loss? Is it safe? I’m going to answer these questions and more, as well as providing Alli weight loss reviews, so you can make an informed buying decision.
Other Names for Alli
Alli is also known as Orlistat and often sold under the brand name Xenical.
What is Alli (Orlistat)?
Alli, or Orlistat, is an over-the-counter weight loss drug. There is a prescription version, called Xenical, which contains a higher dosage of the active ingredient (orlistat).
All diet pills contain 60mg of orlistat, while Xenical has 120mg.
This is not a dietary supplement but an actual drug designed to help overweight adults over the age of 18 lose weight. Alli is typically given to those people who are overweight but have failed to lose weight through traditional dieting and exercise.
Summary: Alli is the over-the-counter version Orlistat, a prescription drug used to help manage obesity. Alli has 60mg of Orlistat compared to 120mg in the prescription version, Xenical.
Is Alli Safe?
Alli is generally considered to be a safe option for overweight people to lose fat when other options have failed.
It is a medicine, however, despite being able to obtain it over-the-counter, so the typical precautions you normally take with new medicine should also be taken.
You should also discuss whether or not you can take Alli with your doctor if you are already on prescribed medication or have a medical addition. You also should not use Alli continuously for more than 2 years. There are also a few documented side effects of Alli.
How Does Alli Work for Weight Loss?
Alli works by preventing the body from absorbing dietary fat.
All works by stopping the body from absorbing dietary fat. It blocks an enzyme in the gut called lipase, which has a primary role of digesting fats we eat.
Without lipase, we are unable to break down fats and therefore the fat just bypasses digestion and is expelled by the body.
Fat is obviously high in calories so this means your body takes in fewer calories, thus making weight loss easier and slightly more assured.
Alli has been shown to reduce the absorption of fat by around 30% (1).
Summary: Alli works by blocking a gut enzyme called lipase which results in the absorption of dietary fat being blocked. Basically, when you take Alli, you don’t digest dietary fat and the body expels it. It has been shown to reduce absorption by 30%.
It Can Help You Lose Some Weight
There are a few studies that have been conducted on Orlistat, which is the active compound in Alli pills.
One large study by XENDOS lasted for 4 years and included 3305 overweight people (2). In this study half of participants took 120mg of orlistat 3 times a day (120mg is the prescribed dosage, compared to the over the counter dosage of 60mg. Something to keep in mind). The other half took a placebo.
All participants walked everyday and were told to eat 800 fewer calories each day as well as limit their fat to 30% of overall calories.
During the first year of the study, those taking orlistat lost an average of 23.3 pounds, while the placebo group lost an average of 13.6 pounds.
Over the last 3 years there was a significant weight regain in both groups. The final weight loss was 12.8 pounds in the orlistat group and 6/6 pounds in the placebo group.
So in conclusion, it would seem that you will lose twice as much when you take orlistat and combine with diet and exercise, compared to just diet and exercise alone. However the amount of weight loss is pretty small overall.
Anorther study showed that a low carb diet was just as effective as taking orlistat and a low fat diet combined (3).
that a drug-free low-carb diet was just as effective as both orlistat and a low-fat diet combined
Summary: Orlistat is slightly effective at helping your lose weight but weight loss is only small. A low carb diet has been shown to be just as effective as taking orlistat and a low fat diet together.
Other Benefits Of Alli
Weight loss is the main reason why people take Alli. However, Alli does have a few other benefits. Other benefits of Alli include:
- Decreased total and LDL colesterol - Studies have shown that Alli can reduce cholesterol levels (4)
- Lowers blood pressure - Studies have dhown Alli can lower blood pressure (4, 5)
- Lower risk of Type 2 diabetes - Thde XENDOS study above, showed that using orlistat for 4 years reduced the risk of participants developing type 2 dibaetes by 37%.
These health benefits are likely linked to the fact that partciipants lost weight.
Summary: Alli has other health benefits such as lower blood pressure, decreased cholesterol and reduced risk of type 2 diabetes which are likely linked to the reduction in weight is aids.
Alli Side Effects
Alli is considered safe but, like every diet pill and supplement, there are a few documented side effects (6).
Alli side effects include:
- Abdominal pain
When fat absorption is blocked it can cause absdominal pain and flatulence has the undigested fat moved through the bowel.
It is also recommended to take a multivitamin along with Alli because Alli can reduce the amount of vitamins A, D, E, and K in your body.
Summary: Alli diet pills has some side effects including digestive discomfort and nutrient deficiencies.
The recommended Alli dosage for weight loss is 120mg taken 3 times a day. You should take Alli with a meal that contains fat or after a meal that contains fat. If you can’t eat a meal that contains fat at that particular time, it is advised to skip that dose.
Pros of Alli
- It does work. Alli is backed by many scientific studies that have proven the weight loss pill to be effective.
- There are tons of Alli weight loss pills reviews available so you can see what you can expect when you take Alli yourself. You can also see some great before and after pictures. One reviewer credits Alli with helping her to lose 88 pounds.
Cons of Alli
- Alli might help a lot of people lose weight but it’s certainly not a magic pill. Even if you get the prescription-only variety, your doctor will tell you that you still need to have a diet and exercise regime in place. Alli isn’t for people who are lazy and simply want to keep eating like they normally do. You still need dedication in order to make it work.
- The side effects can be off-putting. Obviously, not everyone will experience side effects from Alli but if you do, there’s nothing nice about diarrhea.
- Alli is kind of expensive. You could get a high quality tub of protein powder for the same price.
- There are some Alli reviews that say the company has changed their formula.
- One reviewer noted that Alli seems to have a new formula that isn't as effective.
There’s only one product you need to be aware of if you’re interested in Alli and that’s the official company supplement itself.
You’ll see on the package that as well as “Alli”, there is also “Orlistat”. Remember what is orlistat? It’s the same as Alli. It’s just a different name. L
et’s take a few Alli/Orlistat reviews so you can get a good sense of whether the product is for you. We’ve already touched upon a few issues in the pros and cons section but it’s important to elaborate upon a few issues.
Some Alli diet pills reviews credit Alli as a miracle supplement as long as you put the work in.
One reviewer lost 60 pounds with the help of Alli. She did however diet properly and exercised regularly which is a very important part of making weight loss work.
It’s important to observe that this reviewer didn’t just take the pill expecting it to do all the work for her. She still dieted and exercised.
Another reviewer states a similar thing, saying that she used Alli but also ate sensibly over half a year which led to 50lbs of weight lost in that time. See that “eating sensibly” part? It’s important!
Many reviewers have made comment about Alli changing their formula and now being less effective than it once was. One reviewer was super sceptical about trying Alli after all the negative reviews but decided to try it anyway. She knew it was working because she “went to go and have a bowel movement and upon wiping and flushing there was ORANGE all over the toilet bowl!” So, there’s that.
Some reviewers highlight the side effects. One reviewer pointed out, however, that the side effects only occur if you aren’t following the proper Alli instructions. Alli does have a reputation for some side effects such as gas and diarrhea which will only be worsened if you take too much per meal.
For more reviews click here.
Summary: Alli has plenty of positive reviews from people who have used it successfully to lose weight. Some reviews also highlight the negative side effects that can occur.
Personally, I wouldn’t say that Alli, or Orlistat, is a number one top recommendation for a weight loss product.
Although it is among a small few weight loss aids that actually work, the effects are not that impressive. At best you will lose a little bit of weight but only if you conbine it with a healthy diet and exercise regime. Your diet also still needs to restrict calories.
Alli also has some side effects that mean you will have to consider supplementation of some nutrients to ensure you aren't deficient.
There are however some great reviews out there of the positive outcomes people have had by using it. So it isn't all doom and gloom and has potential to help you in your goals.