Phentermine is a popular, FDA-approved weight-loss medication that can help you lose weight in two ways: First, by suppressing the appetite so you feel less hungry and consume fewer calories, and second, by increasing your energy levels so you burn more calories and may find it easier to stick to an exercise program.
In a nutshell, phentermine works by stimulating the release of neurotransmitting chemicals like dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin (the so-called “feel good” chemical) to help create feelings of fullness and satiety while also reducing food cravings. Patients who take phentermine typically report decreased feelings of hunger and also find they tend to eat less during meals.
At the same time, phentermine also acts to release adrenaline, a hormone usually associated with increased physical activity that promotes faster metabolism so you burn off calories more efficiently and more quickly. By ramping up metabolism and energy levels, you may find it easier to stay physically active, burning off more fat than you would ordinarily.
Phentermine: Recommended Dosage
Your specific dosing will be determined by your doctor based on your medical condition, your health needs and your weight-loss goals, but generally speaking, phentermine is taken on an empty stomach before breakfast or in some cases, an hour or two after breakfast. The average dose may range from 15 mg to 37.5 mg, although a lower dose form is available that provides 8 mg. This lower-dose medication (sold under the brand name LomairaTM) usually is taken three times a day about a half hour before meals to help curb afternoon and evening food cravings. Like other medications, you should only take phentermine according to the dosing prescribed by your doctor. Increasing your dose on your own can result in serious side effects and an increased risk of medical problems.
More tips: While it’s OK to cut tablets in half to make them easier to swallow, they should never be crushed or chewed. People with kidney problems and those over 60 years of age may need to follow a reduced dosing regimen.
Potential Side Effects
Phentermine is an FDA-approved drug with a long history of clinical use and testing, but like any medication, phentermine can cause side effects in a few people, and knowing what to look for can help ensure you’ll know when to call your doctor for guidance. Major side effects that should be reported to your doctor right away include:
- chest pain
- pounding or very fast heartbeat
- numbness in the arms or legs
- difficulty breathing
Minor side effects include:
- dry mouth
- agitation or feelings of nervousness
- decreased interest in sex (less commonly, there may be an increased interest in sex)
- skin flushing
In most cases, these minor issues will resolve on their own once your body becomes used to the medication, but it’s still a good idea to report them to your doctor.
Ready to learn more?
Phentermine is designed to work with diet and exercise, and it can be a great tool for just about anyone who wants to enhance their weight loss efforts and reduce their risks of weight-related health problems. To find about more about phentermine, call Dr. Weight Loss of Atlanta at 770-330-4214 and schedule your free consultation today.