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Phentermine: Does It Burn Fat or Just Suppress Appetite?

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Phentermine is a prescription medication that can lessen your appetite and promote weight loss as a result.
  • Although phentermine may have a reputation for burning fat, it is important to note that it only works to suppress appetite.
  • Phentermine and Semaglutide are both common, but they work slightly differently in their mechanisms.
  • Any weight loss effort that includes phentermine should also include healthy habits like healthy eating, exercise, and stress management.

Phentermine for Weight Loss

Phentermine is a popular medication that can be prescribed to suppress appetite. As a result, it is one of the most commonly prescribed weight loss medications. Phentermine has gained popularity, along with other weight loss medications like Semaglutide, as a quick fix for losing weight.

However, phentermine is surrounded by some misinformation in the mechanisms it uses to help you lose weight. Understanding how phentermine really works and its true impacts on weight loss is important for crafting a weight loss plan that works for you. With any weight loss effort, it’s crucial that you take steps to not just rely on medication, but also build healthy habits around your regimen.

How Phentermine Works

Phentermine is a prescription medication that suppresses appetite, either by causing you to feel less hungry or help you feel full longer.

Phentermine is often taken by mouth in the form of an extended-release capsule. Doctors will typically prescribe the medication and then check back in after 12 weeks to assess how much weight you’ve lost. If you haven’t lost a notable amount of weight, they may either increase your dose or recommend that you stop taking the medication.

Phentermine helps promote weight loss as weight loss is often an equation of calories in against calories out. When you eat fewer calories than you expend through physical activity or to support bodily functions, your body must burn fat for energy. By encouraging you to eat less, phentermine leads to a calorie deficit and weight loss.

Although phentermine can support weight loss, it is not intended to promote weight loss on its own. Anyone taking phentermine for weight loss should only do so with the goal of also incorporating healthy lifestyle habits, like eating nutrient-rich foods, exercising regularly, and getting appropriate sleep.

Phentermine Fat Burning Claims

There have been some claims around phentermine stating that it burns fat. However, this isn’t exactly how the medication works. It’s important to understand the difference between a medication that burns fat and one that suppresses appetite and where a medication like phentermine fits into that.

The difference can be laid out like this:

  • Fat-burning – Promotes the body’s conversion of stored body fat into energy.
  • Appetite suppressant – Appetite suppressants influence you to eat less, which can lead to weight loss by reducing your calorie intake.

Phentermine is formulated to suppress appetite and reduce food intake by influencing chemicals in the brain. However, Phentermine does not burn fat. Understanding this mechanism is important for managing your expectations when taking the medication. To lose weight while taking Phentermine, you must burn more calories than you consume through food.

Regardless of its mechanisms for promoting weight loss, it’s also crucial to remember that taking medication is not enough to promote weight loss on its own. Phentermine medication cannot replace a healthy lifestyle that includes physical activity and a nutritious diet.

Sustainable Weight Loss Through Healthy Habits

At re:vitalize, our programs are designed to help you not just lose weight, but keep it off, giving you the tools, support, and lasting habits you need for sustainable results.

Phentermine vs. Semaglutide

If you’ve heard of phentermine, you’ve likely heard of Semaglutide, which is a medication that has made literal headlines for its supposed weight loss miracle solutions.

Semaglutide is a medication prescribed by a doctor, most commonly used through injections. This medication works by mimicking the hormone glucagon-like peptide-1 in the body, helping to control insulin levels and signaling to the body that you are full. Wegovy is the only Semaglutide medication approved for weight loss, while Ozempic and others can be prescribed off-label by a doctor.

Some of the similarities between phentermine and Semaglutide include:

  • Both Semaglutide and phentermine can be prescribed as appetite suppressants by increasing feelings of fullness.
  • Both medications can promote weight loss by reducing your calorie intake.
  • Both are supposed to be used in conjunction with healthy lifestyle habits.
  • Both medications can lead to weight gain after ending your regimen.

Meanwhile, some of the differences between the two include:

  • Phentermine is used as a short-term option, while Semaglutide is used as a long-term weight management tool.
  • Phentermine’s effectiveness may decrease over time, so it is only approved for use for about 12 weeks.
  • Phentermine acts as a stimulant to the nervous system to reduce appetite.

Both medications have been shown to be effective at helping people lose weight, but neither option is a standalone weight loss solution. The most notable similarity between the two is that even if you lose weight during your regimen, if you do not incorporate healthy habits, you are likely to regain the weight.

If you choose to utilize either of these medications as a tool to support your weight loss efforts, you shouldn’t stop there. For real, sustainable results, you should take a holistic weight loss approach. 

Holistic weight loss efforts include taking steps to build healthy lifestyle habits like exercising and eating right—these will not only help you lose weight but also help you build routines that you can sustain for long-term wellness.

Phentermine Alternatives for Weight Loss

Although phentermine sounds like an easy approach to weight loss, the easy approach is rarely ever the correct one. Phentermine is often only approved for six weeks of use, which is not enough to lose significant amounts of weight in a healthy manner, let alone keep it off long-term.

Healthy habit formation is the only way to sustainably lose weight and actually keep it from coming back.

If you are considering turning to phentermine for weight loss, then you should consider incorporating the following habits instead:

  • Eating nutritious, whole foods – Choosing healthy foods makes suppressing appetite less necessary, as your body feels fuller when it is getting the nutrients it needs.
  • Engaging in physical activity – Exercise and physical activity helps get the body in motion to burn calories, promote metabolic health, and encourage body fat to turn into energy.
  • Managing stress Stress produces cortisol, which negatively affects weight gain. Stress management strategies can help promote healthy weight management by keeping cortisol levels low and keeping you on top of your daily habits.
  • Staying hydrated – Staying hydrated helps promote metabolic health and support the conversion of foods and body fat into energy while also helping you feel fuller to reduce your calorie intake.
  • Sleeping well – Poor sleep can lead to increased cravings, a slower metabolism, and a lack of energy that causes you to gain weight, so getting 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night can promote weight loss.

Of course, incorporating weight loss efforts and forming healthy habits is easier said than done, as it can be hard to stay accountable. A weight loss program like our programs at re:vitalize can provide this support and accountability.

Explore Holistic Weight Management Strategies

Although phentermine sounds like a great solution to weight loss, it’s like many popular quick fixes and is unlikely to bring sustainable results, especially on its own. A holistic weight loss management program can equip you with the tools you need to see tangible results and achieve sustained weight loss success.

At re:vitalize weight loss and wellness, we’ll help you lose weight the right way—safely and sustainably. Our Weight Loss and Metabolic Reset programs and Flexible Weight Loss programs will support you in your weight loss efforts by providing you the tools and accountability necessary to succeed, not just offering a quick fix that doesn’t last. 

We’ll use our BioScan™ technology to identify which foods are optimal for your weight loss and wellness success, empowering you to build a meal plan that fits your nutritional needs. With the accountability of our expert weight loss coaches and board-certified nutritionists, you’ll experience lasting weight loss.

Schedule a consultation with us at re:vitalize weight loss and wellness to learn more about your options for healthy weight maintenance and how to achieve sustainable weight loss success.

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