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Alli Diet Program Review

By John Fleming

Let’s face it, losing weight is a difficult business. If there was a way to keep your body from turning food into fat, that would solve a lot of problems.

The Alli diet program includes a reduced fat diet coupled with taking a weight loss supplement called orlistat that prevents your body from absorbing some of the nutrients from the food you eat. Alli is an FDA approved product sold in non-prescription form by GlaxoSmithKline.

A stronger version of orlistat is marketed in other parts of the world by Roche as a prescription drug called Xenical. Because Alli has been approved to be sold over the counter in the United States and the United Kingdom, you do not need a prescription and can buy Alli at drug stores and even grocery stores.

To keep your body from absorbing some of the nutrients and calories from the food you eat, Alli works to keep your pancreas from producing an enzyme called pancreatic lipase. This enzyme works to help your body absorb nutrients. If there’s less of the enzyme produced, you’re going to take in less calories from the same amount of food.

The Alli program is not just about taking the orlistat supplement. Participants are encouraged to engage in moderate, regular exercise and maintain a healthy, low fat diet. Though a study done by GlaxoSmithKline shows a significant increase in weight loss by people on the Alli program, how much is due to taking orlistat and how much is due to lifestyle change is unclear.

Orlistat works in the digestive system to restrict the absorption of nutrients and can therefore avoid some of the unpleasant side effects like dizziness and a racing heart common with other popular diet pills. There are, unfortunately, some other side effects that may cause you to think twice. Industry scientists have coined a term called BSP, or brown stain problem. Yes, that’s what it means. If loose stools and excessive gas are a problem for you it may be a good idea to reconsider Alli.

In rare cases, liver damage has been reported by people taking orlistat and almost exclusively by those taking the stronger version, Xenical. The FDA has recently started requiring liver damage information included in the packaging of both Alli and Xenical.

Positive results in losing weight have been obtained by many people using Alli. Educating people in portion control and regular exercise is critical in maintaining that weight loss and, unfortunately, most people gain the weight back after stopping the Alli program. A change in lifestyle to include eating smaller portions and engaging in regular exercise is still the one way to ensure losing the weight and keeping it off.

Looking for more information on the best weight loss plan for you? Visit to find advice and dieting reviews.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Fleming, John "Alli Diet Program Review." Alli Diet Program Review. 4 Jul. 2010. 1 Sep 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Fleming, J (2010, July 4). Alli Diet Program Review. Retrieved September 1, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Fleming, John "Alli Diet Program Review"

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