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Orlistat: This Popular Weight Loss Drug May Cause Permanent Liver and Kidney Damage


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  • Weight-loss drug orlistat (Xenical and Alli), even at low levels, inhibits a major detoxification enzyme (carboxylesterase-2) in the liver, kidney and gastrointestinal track, which may lead to “severe toxicity of internal organs such as the liver and kidney”
  • Orlistat may also alter the efficacy of certain drugs, including cancer drugs, and may increase your risk of bleeding if you take aspirin
  • Despite the known risks of liver damage, and other health effects, from weight loss drugs already on the market, the FDA approved two new weight loss drugs in 2012, each with its own set of significant health concerns
  • If you need to lose weight, switching from a carb-based diet to a fat- and protein-based diet will help rebalance your body's chemistry, and a natural side benefit of this is weight loss, and/or improved weight management once you're at an ideal weight

By Dr. Mercola

The weight loss drug orlistat (known as Xenical by prescription and Alli, available over-the-counter) is one of the most popular on the market.

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