Naltrexone for weight loss is often prescribed for obese individuals. The cornerstone of successful weight loss is usually a well-balanced, low calorie diet rich in vegetables and protein and very minimal in calorie and fat-rich food. Proper exercise to encourage muscle growth or repair, along with increased caloric burn, is also important.
It should be noted that a low dose of naltrexone may cause severe and life-threatening side effects in certain patients. Patients taking higher doses of naltrexone for weight loss are at a higher risk for death from complications such as seizures, heart attack, pulmonary embolism, and hypertension. The low dose naltrexone for weight loss also increases the possibility for developing cancer. Naltrexone can be prescribed in either a shot form or as an injection, usually used in cases where a person’s appetite has gone off dramatically. If you have decided to use this option, it is imperative that you find out from your doctor how much of the drug you should take and that you are allowed to have an accidental or missed dose.
Like other drugs used for weight loss, naltrexone can cause serious and sometimes life threatening side effects. It is known to cause panic attacks, agitation, trouble breathing, high blood pressure, constipation, vomiting, and diarrhea. In the long term, it has been known to result in severe depression, irritability, impulsivity, panic attacks, memory loss, blurry vision, speech problems, and slow reaction times. It can also lead to osteoporosis, fluid retention, heart failure, and progressive organ failure.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved naltrexone for treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms. This is why it is often prescribed when someone has drank too much and is experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms. This type of treatment is only given when the patient is ready to go through a period of discomfort with their drinking and their ability to function will be greatly impaired without it. Taking naltrexone during this time can help them deal with the side effects better and they may be able to continue on with their drinking for a little longer. Unfortunately, because this type of treatment is quite risky as there is a good chance that many patients will not qualify to take this medication. They will have to try another form of therapy or they will need to ask their doctor if there is another drug they can take that will mask the effects of the naltrexone.
There are also other drugs available for weight loss that are used to block the reward pathway in the brain, which is why many people lose weight while gaining it back. These include zantac, which act in the same way as naltrexone, and phentermine, which is used to curb cravings and increase metabolism. The nice thing about these drugs is that they also cause fewer calories to be eaten and they do not increase hunger which is an added benefit. Another drug that is commonly prescribed for weight loss when detoxing from alcohol is alsavanine, which is found in many dietary supplements today.
While there are many benefits to taking naltrexone for weight loss, there are some common side effects that may make you less than eager to give it a try. Some of the side effects include nausea, upset stomach, headache, and insomnia. This should not prevent you from giving it a try, however as these are very common side effects when taking any over the counter or prescription medication for a long period of time. Also, because this is a medication that is used to help with alcohol withdrawal, you may experience cravings during the detox process. These cravings should not deter you though as there are also many nutrients within naltrexone that will help to curb your cravings for the addiction.