Sunday, February 10, 2008

Teenage Obesity

by Mary Rose Antonio

There is pharmaceutical relief for teenage obesity. Though the medical community is firm in its message that lifestyle changes have to be implemented to effectively deal with childhood obesity, there are medications which can be prescribed for overweight teenagers.

As with other lifestyle-related illnesses, obesity is a chronic condition that can require long-term treatment. Once beginning such a program, there is a slight possibility that an obese person might need to take medications for the duration of his or her life to realize and maintain weight loss. At the very least, treatment could be necessary for several years.

The mediations most commonly prescribed for obese teenagers are categorized as appetite suppressants and lipase-inhibitors. The activity of appetite suppressants on the human body is to increase the feeling of fullness in the stomach while suppressing appetite - a person will simply have a decreased craving for food.

These drugs suppress the appetite by interacting with certain chemicals in the brain involved with both mood and appetite. They include serotonin and catecholamine. Lipase-inhibitors, on the other hand, prevent the absorption of fat by not allowing it to be broken down to a chemical form and then consequently absorbed by the body.

Taking appetite suppressants has been known to reduce weight by several pounds more than that lost through only physical exercise and other non-drug therapies. The greatest impact in obese teenagers is typically observed after six months of taking the medication. So patience is a must.

Though medication usage should always be considered with a sober mindset, taking the appropriate ones for teenage obesity, however, does eradicate some of the need for diet control and physical activity. Despite this, studies support that the right medications actually help improve eating and exercising habits.

On another note of caution, these obesity-reducing medications for teens are needed only for those in a position of pending medical danger due to their excessive weight. Such prescriptions cannot, and should not, be made available casually to teens merely entertaining a short cut for weight loss. The consultation of a trusted family physician is critical in the decision-making. Doctors will usually consider the distribution of fat in the patient's body and how many pounds overweight or obese the individual is as a basis for prescribing medications.

The main goal for taking obesity reduction medications is to move away from alarming health dangers brought about by an undue increase in weight. Obtaining and maintaining an ideal weight based on height and body structure for most obese persons is normally not a realistic goal, though it certainly can be accomplished.

A modest reduction of five to ten percent of one's previous - or benchmark - weight is a worthwhile short-term objective that will lead to an improved state of health. Beyond the shorter duration, one's prior success can serve as a launching pad for even greater weight loss where deemed still beneficial.

If a teen is very heavy and ill on an abnormally frequent basis, a visit to a doctor to discuss the prospect of controlling obesity through medications would be time well invested.

Once prescribed, the need for remaining on the medications will likely last for years, if not for a lifetime. However, the benefit of the appetite suppression or prevention of fats being absorbed into the body may well be worth the trade off for greater health through the teen years and into adulthood.

About the Author
Mary Rose Antonio is the owner of two successful tea websites: www.theteaavenue.com and www.green-tea-expert.com. She sells all types of organic tea and exquisite tea accessories.

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Teenage Obesity

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