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June 27th, 2012
02:43 PM ET

FDA approves drug to treat some obese, overweight adults

Some people who suffer from chronic weight issues may soon get some help from a pill. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration Wednesday approved Belviq, or lorcaserin hydrochloride, to be combined with a reduced-calorie diet and exercise, for treatment of chronic weight problems.

Specifically, the FDA says, it is approved for overweight or obese adults who have one or more medical conditions due to their weight, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes or high cholesterol.

The FDA says the drug works by activating a receptor in the brain that helps a person to eat less and still feel full.

In trials, 47% of patients without type 2 diabetes lost at least 5% of their body weight. By comparison, 23% of patients treated with placebo lost at least 5% of their weight. In people with type 2 diabetes, 38% of patients on Belviq lost at least 5% of their body weight compared to 16% on placebo, according to the FDA.

"The results overall are quite modest," said Dr. Melina Jampolis, a physician nutrition specialist and CNN's diet and fitness expert. "But most experts agree that even a 5% weight loss has significant implications in terms of reducing the risk of obesity associated diseases including heart disease and diabetes."

The FDA says the manufacturer of Belviq, Arena Pharmaceuticals, will be required to conduct six postmarketing studies, including a long term cardiovascular trial to assess the risk of heart attack and stroke.

CNNMoney: Arena surges on weight loss drug approval

The most common side effects of Belviq in non-diabetic patients include headache, dizziness and fatigue; and in diabetic patients low blood sugar and pain, according to the FDA.


soundoff (734 Responses)
  1. Carmen Rivera

    I AM OVERWEIGHT BUT NOT FROM EATING, IS THE MEDS I TAKE,LIKE SEROQUEL,EFFECSOR SO FOOD IS NOT THE ONLY ISSUE. TO THOSE PEAPLE TALKING IT SEEM YOU NEVER HAD A WEIGHT PROBLEM. WITH THE MEDS I AGAIN ABOUT SIXTY POUND. I HAVE TRAY TO LOOSE IT,BUT AM SIXTY IS MUCH HARDER. I HATE THE WAY I LOOK, I WISH NOT TO WAKE UP WEND I GO TO SLEEP. THIS IS KILLING ME, ANY HELP WILL BE PPRECIATED. I DONT HAVE A MIRROR IN THE APT AND AM PRACTICALLY HOME BOUND, PEAPLE ARE CRUEL. IF I HAD THE MONEY I WOULD DO A LIPO, BUT I DONT HAVE FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS. I LIVE IN A FIX INCOME. THANKS.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • angelad

      I agree with you wholeheartedly. People are so nasty thanks to the anonymity of blog boards. I understand the complexity of weight issues. It's not all about the eating – there are genetic conditions and medication issues. People think they are so smart – well until you educate yourselves about all the conditions that make people obese – just shut up. You have nothing to say that is worth anything at all.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:29 | Report abuse |
    • Jose Cuervo

      Carmen, lipo won't do anything. The fat cells will grow back and leave you with the same problem. Don't take advice from people on the CNN chat boards. Talk to your doctor about what the meds are doing to you and how you can combat it. If you're on steroids I know that can cause massive weight gain. Good luck to you, girl! I bet you're beautiful at any weight!

      June 27, 2012 at 16:36 | Report abuse |
    • karina

      sorry for all the inconsiderate, rude and downright ugly comments people post on this page. It is a mere reflection of their own inadequacies as people usually put others down only to try to elevate themselves in the process. Take care!

      June 27, 2012 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
    • Edwin

      Carmen: I agree that you should talk to your doctor(s) about this. If you don't already exercise, talk to them about it - it is good for you to even do a little. It doesn't always help with weight, but it is good nonetheless. I have a friend who gained a lot of weight because of steroids (for asthma) - but she is still able to exercise and is maintaining her HEALTH, if not her weight.

      Agreed that people on posting boards are not reliable sources of advice. And people ARE cruel. Talk to a doctor about that, too - they might know a support group or something that could help. Don't give up, and try to remember that the mean people actually have it worse than you - you might have extra weight, but the burden on their souls is much heavier.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:41 | Report abuse |
    • Maya P

      If you consume less calories then you burn, you will lose weight no matter what medications you take. I work out 2 hours/ day, don't eat fast food ever, don't drink soda ever and eat salads for lunch with a tiny bit of dressing. Everyone including you can lose weight yes it's difficult but it's worth it! Drink only water when you are thirsty and eat fruits, vegetables fish and lean meat. No bread, pasta, sweets, soda, or snacks. And move around every day , even if you are in your apartment. Do easy work outs and there is no way you will not lose the weight.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:44 | Report abuse |
    • markantony

      Please don't use all caps when writing–it makes it hard to read. Thanks.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:54 | Report abuse |
    • agree

      i agree. for me, its yeast infections from antibiotics. yeast infections keep your blood sugar too high. and i get them back again immediately if i eat grain, but that might be an allergy that looks like an infection. (plus fungicides, pesticides, etc. in our food, or gmo's making it thousands of times worse than when i tested for corn allergies)

      June 27, 2012 at 16:55 | Report abuse |
    • agree

      mayp: that's not it. people have undiagnosed infections (yeast, streps, etc) that don't have a fever of 102 and are going undiagnosed and untreated (they have diflucan for yeast, but doctors miss all of this because its not in their training, and not sure it completely wipes it out so might get recurring infections) that are keeping their blood sugar too high. it wouldn't matter at that point if they were dieting or exercising, the infection (yeast seems like the worst culprit) will keep their blood sugar too high. your body will send insulin to deal with it. insulin loves to store fat and hates to let go of fat. VERY difficult to lose weight with a yeast infection (maybe any infection). some allergies look like infections to our body as well. corn and corn derivatives for me. and just about everything has corn or corn derivatives in it if its processed. watch out for AMA (protecting physician wages) because they don't think corn has to be labelled. and corn producers just flat out lie. yes, our body know the difference.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:00 | Report abuse |
    • agree

      maya: if you get the corn and corn derivatives out of their diet, and get control of yeast infections (seems to go along with antibiotics), then diet and exercise will probably work.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:03 | Report abuse |
    • gdouglaso

      Carmen, thanks for taking the time to put your thoughts down. I think that people who are amazing singers probably do not know how people cannot sing...and for some people who do not have issues of weight, they probably do not know how hard it is to get to/maintain a healthy weight. My heart is with you and all those who struggle - keep up the good fight.

      Doug

      June 27, 2012 at 17:03 | Report abuse |
    • Bucky

      Can you walk? Work on an exercise bike? Take it light at first, especially at your age but doesn't mean you can't do anything.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:06 | Report abuse |
    • Angela

      I don't agree that if you take in less calories you will burn fat all of the time, if it's medication that's causing the problem. I gained a lot of weight and finally got the gumption to lose it, so I started out hiking slowly and worked my way up to 8 miles of steep hills 5 days a week and lost 89 lbs- almost to my goal weight. I decided to try a different birth control, went with the depo shot and after the 2nd shot I started gaining uncontrollably. I packed on over 40 lbs in less than 2 months, even with still dieting and hiking. I couldn't control the weight gain. My mom has depression and one of the pills that she was taking made her gain a considerable amount of weight, she was living with me at the time and I seen the small amount she was eating, there was no way her eating habits were making her gain. Certain medications do make you gain weight.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:06 | Report abuse |
    • Crocky

      It doesn't mean that you shouldn't try to eat healthy and exercise (there are exercises for all sorts of folks with disabilities online). You may not lose weight, but there are definitely benefits to at least making the effort to take care of your body.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:18 | Report abuse |
    • jim in Dallas

      I feel your pain and understand where you are coming from. And for at least one of the replies – you obviously have never had to be on Meds for long term treatments. There are some meds that the only way you can reduce intake to lose weight is to NOT EAT AT ALL. And there are some folks who are on these meds who are NOT physically able to do exercises. Some have heart problems that proscribe exercising. There are some with back problems that will not allow the movement of exercise without causing unbearable pain.

      For you folks to judge another person with out knowledge – I wish on you the 'parents curse'. In a paraphrase of "I hope you have a child just like you" I change it to "I hope you someday have to live with the level of pain experienced by the folks you are making fun of".

      As for the comment that she should not use all caps – in today's society all caps means she is YELLING in frustration. And the way I read that post – in real life she WOULD have been yelling at the people who are showing their lack of understanding AND their lack of human compassion.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:18 | Report abuse |
    • FattyMcFat

      Yes, some people have genetics fighting against them for sure. And for those people, it's going to take lots more work to become and stay trim than it will for someone without the genetic disadvantage. But that's still no excuse. I know people with pretty bad thyroid problems who get off their *** and move and don't eat unhealthy s*** all the time, even though it practically kills them to do so.

      If you are suffering from something that totally prevents you from exercising, then you need to go to the doctor or compensate. There's no excuse. If you exercise and burn calories and don't eat as many calories as you are burning, you *will* burn off the fat. I've seen countless claims about not having enough time to eat healthy or having some "debilitating" illness – 98% of the time it is some person that has horrible eating habits and rarely gets off their *** to do anything physical. Do you eat fast food at all? Do you know the sodium content of what you are eating? Do you cook fresh meats and/or veggies for dinner or do you have processed foods? You wouldn't believe what fast food, high-sodium food, and quick heat-up meals (and other processed foods) do to your body. I'm not saying you should go totally hippie, but you should probably examine what you eat if you can't lose the weight.

      And the person who is using yeast infections as an excuse – next time you get a medication that you *know* will give you a yeast infection, have the d*** doctor prescribe medicine for the infection. You should have been doing this after it happened two or three times.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:18 | Report abuse |
    • justin

      have a gastric bypass. that will lower your total intake of calories on a PERMANENT basis. it is a risky surgery, but it does have extreme effects. weight loss is fairly fast (within 12 to 18 mo.) also know you MUST work out, and you MUST change your diet completely to do this, as you can only eat like 1 cup of food per meal. Talk to your doctor about this. it's definitely worth asking your doc questions about.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:32 | Report abuse |
  2. alex

    u want to lose 20 pounds of ugly fat fast cutoff your head

    June 27, 2012 at 16:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • anagram_kid

      Please find another outlet for your anger or better yet, get some help.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:35 | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      What an ugly thing to say to someone...how would you like it it someone said that too you??

      June 27, 2012 at 16:38 | Report abuse |
    • Edwin

      Anagram: this IS alex's way of crying out for help. Unfortunately, there is no way we can help due to the anonymity of the internet.

      Good luck with you pain, alex. If we could help, we would.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:43 | Report abuse |
  3. Chris

    Yes, lets give them a pill, the solution to everything! Shame on the FDA.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jose Cuervo

      So, what happens when they stop taking the drug? A pill doesn't teach you to eat right and exercise.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:33 | Report abuse |
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      This is America where a pill should fix everything !

      June 27, 2012 at 16:41 | Report abuse |
    • agree

      i agree. rather than fix the problem they just make another pill that won't work.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:04 | Report abuse |
  4. angelad

    I posted this already in reply to someone's comment but I'm going to stick it out there again for those of you so arrogant as to assume all one needs is diet and exercise: there are some people out there (my daughter for example) that have a genetic problem that causes them to gain weight. Look up the Melanocortin receptor 4 deficiency – there is a receptor in the brain that doesn't communicate properly causing the person to always be hungry, be extra tall for their age and extra heavy for their age among other issues. I get so aggravated with people that are so quick to jump the diet and exercise bandwagon and assume everyone has to just follow those rules to lose weight. Sadly, there are people out there that that just isn't enough for. It's a daily battle to steer her in the proper direction for healthier foods and more exercise. Trying hard NOT to slap some smart a$$ comment out there to you all but I realize a great many of you speak in ignorance. Educate yourselves before you cast the first stone please.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:26 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jose Cuervo

      Yep, you're right. Although I'd say the majority of overweight people do need diet and exercise, there is a percentage who simply have a disorder or are on meds that cause weight gain. My cousin was 25 and almost 400lbs. He has something called Cushing Syndrome. Diet and exercise help, but he needed treatment for the disease before he could lose any real weight.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:42 | Report abuse |
    • LDPOPINTION

      There is another one out there as well... It is called Prader-Willi Syndrome. It is a genetic disorder of the 15th Chromosome. It is the most common known genetic disorder causing obesity.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:45 | Report abuse |
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      You speak of a very small minority. Some people are cruel, that is true and mostly unecessary. But in reality, don't put down the bandwagon people. If your daughter exercised more, she would indeed burn calories, build muscle tissue and help keep her weight in check.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:46 | Report abuse |
    • anagram_kid

      Angelad,
      You are correct and there are also glandular factors. However, those are the exceptions and cases where drugs like this should be used. The 60% of adults in this country that are overweight cannot all blame it on genetics or other medical factors. IMHO, the problem they cause is that they consume medical services that should be reserved for people like your daughter who has medical issues that she is not responsible for. I really hope she is able to find a treatment and lives a long happy life!

      June 27, 2012 at 16:50 | Report abuse |
    • dogman

      There are some excpetions, your daughter maybe being one of them. However the majority of Americans do have a diet and exercise problem. I see what you guys are doing all day long, i don't live in a cave. I go to the same grocery stores and see what your carts are filled with. It's not too hard to look at the contents of the cart and guess what the person is going to look like. Most people eat garbage and think it's healthy. So many think yogurt and orange juice are healthy breakfast choices and then wonder why they can't lose weight.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:54 | Report abuse |
    • agree

      people don't understand because front orgs have lied to people for so long now that they have to unlearn a lot of the crap they learned in order to be healthy again. diet and exercise will work when you get rid of the yeast infections (streps or whatever else you have going on there), and allergies (corn and corn derivatives most obvious).

      June 27, 2012 at 17:07 | Report abuse |
    • Maryland

      Sleep apnea can also cause a person to not be able to lose weight. My sister was working out and dieting, but couldn't lose more than a few lbs, even though she was at the gym 5 days a week. She went to the doctor, because of her headaches, inability to lose weight, and being tired all of the time the doctor had her tested and she had sleep apnea. They put her on that apnea mask and she lost 10 lbs the first week and has continued to lose weight. I agree, many times it is just pure laziness, but other times there is an underlying medical condition.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:11 | Report abuse |
  5. Yep

    I wonder how long it will take before this experiment on the American public is done? I give it 2-3 years and then they will determine that more people are dying from heart disease or some other ailment that was CAUSED by the wonder wieght loss pill. Have we seen this one before? By then the company that made the pill will have their BILLIONS and the lawsuits will only equal a small percentage of the profits so hey, let's roll. If you've ever struggled with weight then you know that you will do just about anything to lose it, and that is just what they are counting on. Eat less, exercise more, and find out what is truly the source of negativity in your life that has you out of control when it comes to eating, barring those with the genetic pre-disposition for bigness. Good luck!

    June 27, 2012 at 16:27 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      It will last until the first class action law suit is settled.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:55 | Report abuse |
  6. RealityChick

    Seriously don't like it when "reformed" fatties or x smokers try to tell everyone how easy it is. I have lost more weight than Oprah or Liz but life deals you curves. Not saying much "isn't my own fault" for sure but...I don't drink, smoke or do drugs. Sit down job, post menopausal, stressful life....I don't think this pill is gonna fix it. I tried all of the other so called diet pills and they didn't do anything but make me more stressed out. Lets look into not judging others huh?

    June 27, 2012 at 16:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      KNow someone that had to walk 6 miles a day just to help keep their weight down.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:47 | Report abuse |
  7. Johnnyboy

    Listen I am tired of the diet nazis out here preaching the same crap when most of them have never been overweight. I have lost and gained and lost again it is not easy at all, in fact it could one of the most difficult things to do in one's life.

    First, the whole eat less and exercise more stuff only works if you have an efficient metabolism. If you are a person who starves all day like I did, then it just does not work. ( you have to eat to lose weight, just eat healthy things that digest well.)

    Second, please see a doctor before you start exercising. Unlike myself, you can prevent many many problems down the rode by not over doing it.

    Thirdly, you have to be patient, you won't just simply start losing weight right away (as some of these folks would lead you to believe just starting an exercise routine does not mean that you'll magic get smaller overnight.)

    June 27, 2012 at 16:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. JackAlias

    Whatever happened to self control?

    June 27, 2012 at 16:30 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Timothy

      I'm sorry, just have to say it, fat people are just generally lazy, depressed, gluttonous individuals, I have no sympathy. Nobody held a gun to their head to eat junk food, or fast food for every meal of the day, nobody forced them to not exercise after you put in your 8-10 hours of sitting on your butts doing that thing called a job (if they have one heard some fixed income people complaining). At 6% of the population we are the most overweight and unhealthy country, that isn't due to genetics, or health conditions.

      What ever happen to the good old days were we all made fun of fat@$$es. We didn't have an obesity problem then.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:46 | Report abuse |
    • LuisCamacho

      I still say the lack of wolves and bears is at least partially to blame.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:32 | Report abuse |
  9. awesome

    So I can keep eating McDonald's daily and drinking liters of coke as long as I take my pill in the morning. That's great!

    June 27, 2012 at 16:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • personal accountability

      Make sure it is only diet-coke, and that you have no less than 64 oz of it to wash down the 4 double quarter pounders

      June 27, 2012 at 16:59 | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegend101

      The article talks about the drug in conjunction with diet and exercise, but reading all those words is hard.

      June 28, 2012 at 13:02 | Report abuse |
  10. CW

    REALLY FDA!!!!!! You couldn't have done better!!! There are REAL people that need help with REAL weight loss. Overweight people are NOT happy with themselves and everytime they look for medical help they always get this kind of nonsense. I understand that obesity is a MULTI BILLION dollar industry for the living and the same for the dying. I totally understand WHY the FDA doesn't help these people.....VERY disgusted with this government agency!!! But NICE job FDA for controlling the population, you are doing a great job at that!!!!!

    June 27, 2012 at 16:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • joethejuggler

      You seem to be confusing the government regulatory body with the pharmaceutical industry. The FDA has no control over what drugs the industry develops. They only ensure–reasonably well–that the drugs are safe and effective (at least as effective as they are claimed). Then the question of whether or not to take a drug is one of costs/benefit analysis.

      Still. . .I'd rather governments encourage the development of drugs to prevent or treat infectious diseases than encourage more of these life-style drugs. It's not cruel to observe the fact that obesity really is the problem of a wealthy nation (with plentiful cheap food). It's cruel to think that that obesity problem outweighs (ahem!) problems such as lack of access to safe drinking water and the specter of death by infectious disease that we could probably prevent.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:57 | Report abuse |
  11. Cherry Pop

    A lot of ppl commenting that seem ignorant of the realities. My SO has a hard to treat med condition that makes her insulin resistent. To help my SO get healthy, we go true vegan. We have a structured meal plan. My SO eats under 1500cals dailey on a vegan diet and lost 0 weight. This pill would do nothing for my SO.

    I, on the other hand, went through withdraw from fatty foods and high sugar diet. I was 15 lbs over optimum. Lost it in a month. The problem wasn't hunger but real withdrawel symptoms. It was worse than when I quit smoking. I got the shakes driving past a Popyeyes chicken resteraunt. Severe headaches and body aches the first 2 weeks. There is no pill for that. It takes some serious willpower to muscle through.

    My SO and I feel much better after going vegan. No more acid reflux or sluggish feeling throughout the day. My weight loss has slowed down. My SO never dropped any. This pill would have done nothing for either of us. Pointless medication.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Sweet Fannie

      BEST POST OF THE DAY (probably the only true and meaningful one too) I salute you sir, for having the courage, determination, stamina, and belief in yourself to overcome your addiction on your own terms. AWESOME WORK! GOOD FOR YOU! Peace. and best wishes on finding the path for your SO that works within the confines of their condition...

      June 27, 2012 at 16:49 | Report abuse |
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      Be carefuk, full vegan diets can be hard on your system lomg term.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:50 | Report abuse |
    • joethejuggler

      Regardless of what meds your SO is on, if he or she takes in only 1500 calories per day, in order to lose weight, he or she only needs to burn more than 1500 calories per day. The meds might make that more or less difficult, but the math still doesn't lie.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:59 | Report abuse |
  12. Edwin

    Reading these comments, I can tell one thing for sure: people who were able to lose weight without drugs or medical intervention clearly believe EVERYONE is able to do what they did, even in spite of the fact that so many people have not been able to do it.

    I think, basically, those few who are successful at lifestyle changes cannot understand simple statistics, or see everyone else as weak-willed and undeserving of medical treatment.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Johnnyboy

      This is why I am being honest. It is not easy to lose weight, in fact it can be frustratingly difficult. I went to a church a couple of years ago and the pastor had a heart problem and his doctor told him to lose weight. He did that and every morning he walked and started eating better. However, he over did it and passed away because of a heart attack. Now, why do I mention this? because the eat and exercise folks do not understand that it is not easy to lose weight and for some folks it can be dangerous. There has to be a mature discussion about health and weight loss and not this scapegoating that continues every time there is a post about weight loss or obesity.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:47 | Report abuse |
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      Be good all week long, then have a dagwood and a twelve pack of beers while watching the games on Sunday just won't cut it.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:59 | Report abuse |
    • A Different View

      Perhaps the answer is not to get fat to begin with. Then we wouldn't have to hear how losing the weight is so difficult or why it is important to use my tax dollars to make you skinny again.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:00 | Report abuse |
  13. Will

    I'm fat, I admit it. I am not eductaed. I will wok harder later, but right now I have to pile my breakfast dishes in the corner and start my brunch..

    June 27, 2012 at 16:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Janet

      Good on ya Will! That's the first step, let down the ego, let it down, good boy......wait, did you mean that were going to go eat again? no no, no mas eat, no mas eat!

      June 27, 2012 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
  14. Diet Man

    It's all about diet. The pill I'm sure helps, but things like BULLETPROOFEXEC which is a modified PALEO diet, make the difference. Quit eating grains, eat healthy foods, quit drinking soda. It's a combination, you can lose weight and look fit just by eating. Not everyone needs to be a crossfit wonder.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. A Different View

    It's called DIETING!!! Start eating healthier foods and get out from in front of the TV and exercise. This may not be politically correct but fat people can change their size if they want to. Don't waste my tax dollars on finding cures for problems you created yourself.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • vnouvelle

      You are an idiot.. If losing weight was so straight forward as you are saying, then people would be doing it. But it's not. Here's something simple for you, read up on something before commenting on it. Then you don't look so stupid to everyone else.

      June 28, 2012 at 04:28 | Report abuse |
  16. Paraskevi

    Side effects are akin to malnutrition and dehydration. Just eat a good diet and get some exercise. Drink an adequate amount of water and you will feel full enough not to over indulge.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. gotta

    Obesity is food addiction and lack self control. All addictions revolve around the physical and pyschological dependence of the addiction. If breaking addiction was simply a matter of stopping what ever the addictionis, addiction would not be the epidemic in this country. Addiction really is all in one's head-the psychological triggers that bring relief are indeed short lived and followed by more self loathing-regardless of the nature of the addiction....such a vicious cycle. I seriously doubt this new pill will make a dent in the obesity rate in this nation. Only when science figures out a way to blunt the addiction center in the brain, will the battle be won. The maker of the drug-Arena will sell alot in the beginning, but just like ALLI-it will all be disappear in short order.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Dude

      well said! (except this 'Only when science figures out a way to blunt the addiction center in the brain, will the battle be won.' that battle should be won be each and every human themselves in their own psyche)

      June 27, 2012 at 16:46 | Report abuse |
    • Johnnyboy

      but unlike drugs, cigerettes and alcohol you can't stop eating or you will die. So there is really no cure.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:48 | Report abuse |
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      Kind of like saying methadone is a cure for heroin addiction. You are a more functional human being, but you are still addicted to the crap that got you there in the first place.

      June 27, 2012 at 16:52 | Report abuse |
  18. Daywalker_kyle

    Thats right.... In the words of Lloyd Christmas: "Pills are good.. Pills are good!".

    June 27, 2012 at 16:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Boo

    Portion control, people. That's why Weight Watchers gets it right. You can eat everything but it's portion control.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      Amen!

      June 27, 2012 at 16:52 | Report abuse |
  20. Blake068

    I totally understand the fact that some people just gain wait due to a disease or meds they are on. BUT, for those of you who are lazy people and do not take proper care of yourself, you have no excuses. A lot of people also blame medical reasons for their weight problem so they have an excuse to be over weight. This topic is very touchy. I will always advise diet and excercise no matter if you have gained weight due to meds or a disease. You just have to find the right way for yourself to loose weight. Everyone is different. Pills are a joke by the way. Self control is the key to sucess.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Steve

    I was a thin, fit person from my youth up to my 40's. I am 56 now. Things happened, I ate my way through 2 divorces, got sedentary in my lifestyle and went from 180-185 up to 330 pounds in 10 years. In my case and many others, it is simply eating healthy and exercise that are the solution. I understand that some mediciations affect weight gain. I work as a therapist in a psychiatric hospital and I see what some medicines to do people and make them gain weight. There are some who have genetic and other physical problems that cause weight gain and retention. But way too many people claim those things as the reasons they are obese while eating fried chicken, twinkies and drinking lots of sodas everyday. I have lot 70 pounds in the last 11 months doing it the old fashioned way. Eating healthy, eating less and exercise. Sounds boring, no pill, no shakes, no low carb diet, no mail order foods form some company with celebrities endorsing their products. My blood pressure has gone down to where I don't need meds anymore, my cholesterol is perfect. I am at 260 now, plan on getting down to 200 in the next year. And wthout some pill or shake to do it. Losing that much, 130 pounds,for a man that is 56 years old is not easy but I ahve no one to blame but myself for doing it. I havent had a donut in a year, no fried foods in a year but I enjoy meals now nonetheless. It's a lifestyle choice that makes me feel a whole lot better.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Sweet Fannie

      another honest post, THANK YOU! GOOD JOB! WAY TO GO STEVE!!! 🙂 Best wishes for the future...

      June 27, 2012 at 16:52 | Report abuse |
    • Johnnyboy

      good job steve

      June 27, 2012 at 16:59 | Report abuse |
    • Fred

      Good work. You had a problem, faced it, now you're solving it. That's what most of America needs a prescription of!

      June 27, 2012 at 17:13 | Report abuse |
  22. Allen

    Here is my medicine its cheap with little side effects. Salads and exercise.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • vnouvelle

      Not all salads help you lose weight. So your post makes no sense and won't accomplish a thing, well except for making you look small minded and dumb.

      June 28, 2012 at 04:33 | Report abuse |
  23. Bryan

    America is about to cross the %40 mark for obiese adults. Yes, there are exceptions, but the vast majority of overweight people brought it on themselves. Loosing weight is a combination of many things, most of all willpower. As they stated, the pill, if it would work only looses about %5. Obiesity, in large is not a medical condition, exceptions excluded. Obiesity should not be about how one looks, but the health they are in. Football players are large, but can sprint and have extreme endurance. A large majority of people are too lazy to get off the couch and put in actual effort.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Johnnyboy

      Bryan, folks and BMI do not see it that way, If you were a football player or had there body type you'd still be viewed as obese. The problem is that being healthy does not mean that you would look like a supermodel. Just does not happen.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:01 | Report abuse |
    • LuisCamacho

      Exactly. BMI is not a good measurement, the real statistic to look at is body fat percentage. I played football in high school and college, and had to get my body fat percentage checked (tape, usually) every year in the military for weigh-ins because I was considered 'overweight' in the BMI index (5'11", 240, but only 12% body fat). They should just get rid of BMI altogether and make caliper measurement the standard.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:47 | Report abuse |
  24. mbell002

    ALOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!! "The U.S. Food and Drug Administration Wednesday approved Belviq, or lorcaserin hydrochloride, to be combined with a reduced-calorie diet and exercise, for treatment of chronic weight problems."

    Here's a novel idea – do the exercise with the reduced-calorie diet – and watch how the weight falls off. LOL

    June 27, 2012 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fred

      Sometimes all you need is a healthy diet. Rules of physics still apply. You cannot gain weight if you are putting in fewer calories than you consume supporting life. Most Americans are too lazy to care or have other mental issues that prevent them from holding that in check. A pill for a tiny weight loss will give plenty of obese people more ammunition to claim that they are doing something while they hide in the closet and eat a gallon of ice cream. Not sure how I keep gaining weight I take this magic pill! Soon the lawsuits will come claiming that the company misrepresented the product because it did not make obese people slim. Mix in a salad people.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:10 | Report abuse |
  25. Larry of Boston

    ".........to be combined with a reduced-calorie diet and exercise..." Not much of a break through because even a Snickers candy bar a day "combined with a reduced-calorie diet and exercise" will get the same results.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Energy Independent America

    Maybe we should take a page from Stephen Colbert's show. We need to herd all these fatties into processing stations, give them lipo, and use the harvested lard as a bio fuel.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Jon

    Taking the fact that it's this country that is so overweight should be clue enough to let you know that the culprit is probably the food you eat. It's so easy to point out what food too. Including the fact that I'm sure most of you think it's okay to eat sugar in everything. This is now just another way for big pharma to cash in on the unsuspecting american public. You want to lose weight, dont drink juices dont eat food with sugar and dont eat processed fake ass food. Also do yourselves a favor and stop making excuses. Or take the pills and have a new series of issues crop up and continue to whine and complain about it as they take your money.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Just lost 15 pounds in three months - 45 to go

      Can't blame just sugar, it is in that dammed High Fructose Corn Syrup that's the real killer.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:02 | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      Yeah I agree, I didn't want to bring that argument up though because really just eating healthy and staying way from sugar and processed foods is all you need for most people.

      June 27, 2012 at 19:20 | Report abuse |
  28. Larry of Boston

    I lost 20 pounds ..... no, wait a minute, I found it again. Seems like I can always find that lost weight....

    Losing weight has never been the problem -- the lifestyle changes needed to keep the weight off –that is the problem for us older guys 60+

    June 27, 2012 at 16:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Scott Pilgrim

    Okay, let's be real here: not everyone is lazy or doing nothing.

    I have a beer gut, like a good portion of Americans, and I don't particularly care for vegetables. I do, however, have a gym membership and I go about 3-4 times a week, doing a combination of cardio and weight lifting to try and improve my health, put some what I eat to muscle-buidling, and to try and trim the waistline. There are a lot of people like that: people who are at least trying and making an honest effort. It's just a long process.

    June 27, 2012 at 16:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Johnnyboy

      exactly. It's not like you ran 5 or 10 miles and dropped 20 pounds automatically, it takes time. I would recommend that if you hate veggies to get a juicer. You can juice Spanich or kale with strawberries, blueberries, and bananas and get your veggies in. I drank a mix today and have had 5 servings of veggies.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:03 | Report abuse |
    • Fred

      As well it should be. It is easy to get fat, much harder to remain slim. Just seems absurd that we need presciption pills to lose 10 pounds of body weight.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:04 | Report abuse |
  30. Feed them Cake

    Let them keep eating until they pop... Just go for a walk daily, start slow at 15 minutes a day then build up... Buy a comfortable pair of shoes and clothing just for your walk. Don't try to eat less (doing so is a mind game and you will lose)... Just Eat more fruits and veggies... If you like to eat like a pig... make a deal with yourself... you can have that extra slice of "whatever" so long as you eat two apples before you have seconds... Most people are fat and getting fatter because they lack the ability to stand up for themselves... Next time instead of eating the pie, smash it in the face of the person causing you to run and hide in the security blanket that the pie offers...

    June 27, 2012 at 17:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Fred

    This "drug" approval is absurd. People need to stop eating so dang much and not rely on a pill to help them lose 10 pounds. I think that docs will be reluctant to prescribe it.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JOSE0311USMC

      FRED I SAW A GUY WEIGHING ABOUT 300 POUNDS EATING AT BURGER KING.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:06 | Report abuse |
    • Johnnyboy

      misconception, you eat nothing all day and then have the big meal at night, you still ate 2000 or less calories, but your body does not metabolize the same. I know I don't eat that much, but I have irregular meals.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:07 | Report abuse |
    • Healthcare Reform?

      The Doc's are going to get kickbacks from big pharma for scripting this puppy. That is the way it works, this is a sticky lifetime drug so the doc's will get big rewards to script it.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:25 | Report abuse |
  32. Bucky

    Of course the FDA approves a drug for something, they have been in the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies for decades. They don't want the non-cost solutions like proper diet and exercise, they want something you have to buy and keep coming back for. I lost 55lbs in the last 15 months and I didn't take one drug, I changed [get this] my lifestyle. I never went on a diet, I changed my life habits. Diets stop, life habits don't. This didn't cost me a dime, in fact it saved me a bundle. I still eat several meals a day and never go hungry. Even a Chipolte Burrito as I type this [it was a treat I allow myself, sometimes its pizza]. I can play basketball again without looking like a fool. Don't be lazy, move your butt. It is that easy.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. JOSE0311USMC

    TACOS GOOD FOR YOU ??? I LOVE TO EAT TACOS.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. CnnGrrl

    You people are so cruel. To the people who have true disorders like Cushings, you are right in that these disorders can make weight loss _much_ more difficult to attain. To those who say these disorders are a very small minority of the overweight population, you are also right. However, an equally small minority of the overweight population are the people who got there strictly by being glutenous and lazy! As an RN, I can tell you that most people's weight issues have an extremely complex psychological foundation. People are overweight mostly because they have been verbally, physically, psychologically or sexually abused (and often a combination thereof) by multiple people throughout there lives. Being overweight is a way to hide from the rest of the world, because when you are fat you are invisible to others. People do not see you as a real person with real feelings. This can hurt, but its often times much less painful that opening yourself back up to those other abuses. Obese people are obese for the same sorts of reasons that anorexic people are anorexic. It just manifests in a different way. And, much like addiction, it is a disease that is very hard to overcome once you are in the thick of it. Have a little compassion! And you healthy people, be grateful that a) you never had to face that sort of adversity or b) you were lucky enough to have a support system to overcome it.
    We all live by Maslow's Hirearchy of Needs. To survive, each of us needs: Self-actualization, Esteem, Love/Belonging, Safety, and Psychological needs met. Food falls under Psychological Needs. If some of these other needs aren't being met, people will take as much as they can from another need to make up for it. Some people take more food to make up for one or more other needs not being met.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bucky

      Most people? Sorry but not true. Too much of our population is overweight to say it is a mental thing. Yes there are other issues but that isn't the main cause. The main cause is people sucking down fast food and doing any exercise. I was overweight myself and it was because I was lazy and drank too much. That is about 95% of the obese people's problem. Coddling them isn't going to do anything, that is how we got to this point.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:15 | Report abuse |
  35. AtheistHuman

    You want people to lose weight? Stop putting fast food joints on every corner. Stop putting vending machines everywhere... There are even vending machines at the cancer ward where my sister works. PATHETIC! Pills are not the answer, as soon as you get off the pills you will gain it all back, plus more. Obesity is a disease which requires life long treatment.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. David Ellis

    Lost 45 pounds dieting. The real issue is that you really have no idea how many calories you are taking in. The size of a meal has doubled or more in the last 50 years and eating out for lunch at work could easily be 1K calories by itself.
    Try going to a restaurant that has calorie information and really pay attention to what your intake is. You would be surprised. Then try to keep breakfast around 250 and lunch under 500 calories. Eat a solid dinner and you should be ok.
    Exercise helps but it is nothing without diet. If you just exercise and don't diet you will just be hungrier, eat more and gain weight with no real benefit.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rocket Science

      It is a pretty simple equation, every 3,400 calories you take in in excess of what you burn is a pound.Figure as an adult male that you burn about 2,000 calories on a normal day and work from there.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:21 | Report abuse |
  37. Donna Loveless

    If it was soooo easy everybody would be thin..... I love these smart asses that think they are so high and mighty because they can keep there weight down .... its moe complicated for many people. MANY MANY MANY..... take a look around.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Suzanne

    Alot of foods have corn syrup, additives, preservatives and food dyes all of which will impact weight gain. The FDA approves a weight loss pill for obesity only to make money. They will allow all these bad things in foods and support Genetically modified meats without warning. These all make people gain weight and directly causes health conditions like high blood pressure, high choleserol and diabetes. The government should support educating people in they right types of foods, quanities and what a healthy lifestyle looks like to maintain optimal health. Not to mention stress management for all the financial stressors of the economy....

    June 27, 2012 at 17:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. MD

    Few years ago, I lost almost 30 lbs in 4 months while living in Europe without even attempting to lose weight. Why? It's because I walked to public transportation to get around, food portions were so much smaller, and society there took several breaks in the middle of the workday – less stress. There were farmers market everywhere to get fresh fruits & vegetables to pick up on the way to work for snacks or on the way home for fresh cooked meal, hardly any fast food places unless you're in a large city. When I got back to USA, I've regained all the weight and more. The high stress level & being overworked cause me to not eat properly and not sleep regularly. There's no time to cook so I go to a convenient drive-thru for fast food, then I'm too tired to exercise. Weekends are for catching up on work and errands. It all made me realize that there's nothing wrong with my genetics or metabolism (which used to be my favorite excuses) and that my weight gain is my own fault for allowing stressors to ruin my health.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:15 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Clueless

      Return to Europe?

      June 27, 2012 at 17:18 | Report abuse |
  40. Clueless

    To say the results are modest is putting it kindly. I hope this is not paving the way for some new extraordinarily expensive drug to be handed out like candy. Seems to me that the rewards ought to follow the results and this should be a cheap to free drug...... Somehow, I don't see American as a performance based industry

    June 27, 2012 at 17:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Tom

    Drug plus reduced calorie diet plus exercise. Sounds like the active ingredients are the reduced calorie diet and the exercise.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:18 | Report abuse | Reply
    • basketcase

      Except for the part where the people getting the drug along with the diet & exercise changes were more likely to lose the weight than those who didn't have the drug, but whatever. It's not like you should let the data get in the way of your opinion.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:34 | Report abuse |
  42. Daywalker_kyle

    Eat REAL food and take the stairs. Stop drinking diet cokes. Problem solved... Next question please!

    June 27, 2012 at 17:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Joshua

    Lets go ahead and approve this drug even though we have no idea of its long term effects, thanks FDA!

    If I didn't know better I would think the FDA is staffed by people who used to work for pharmaceutical companies, but that's just crazy...

    June 27, 2012 at 17:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Healthcare Reform?

      Yea! Can you imagine an agency of the government that actually represented the interests of the people? Foolish thought, go get a lobbiest...

      June 27, 2012 at 17:22 | Report abuse |
    • Daywalker_kyle

      That sounds like an evil conspiracy. You ought to be ashamed to mention such things while the FDA and Big Pharma shoves you know what down our throats...

      June 27, 2012 at 17:22 | Report abuse |
    • basketcase

      If we had to wait to determine the long term effects of every medication, it would take decades to get a drug to the market. If you want, say, 50 year studies on every drug, then no new drug could be sold for 50 years after discovery. Not only does that slow down the rate of developing new medications, but it also destroys the incentive to invest in drug development.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:29 | Report abuse |
  44. Kitty

    Some people have hypothyroidism to varying degrees that make it hard to lose weight, I want to see a drug that counteracts that mainly because I have extreme hypothyroidism which means I have near no metabolism so I have a highly restrictive diet as a result.
    What I wouldn't give to eat a real breakfast and more than two(1.5 really) meals 3 small snacks a day.. I would kill to be able to eat more than 750 cals, if a drug could help increase my metabolism I could.

    So could others.
    Note: I actually do not have a "fat" body type by nature, I was put on a pill when I was younger prior to which I had no fat mass at all on me. It made me insatiably hungry, by the time I was off it damage was done.
    I may be one of those that could get lipo and have it stay off, since most all of my fat cells were created as a result of that pill.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. alientech

    No pill will fix the American diet and lifestyle that are causing this obesity problem.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Jay Sunleeh

    It amazes me how high and mighty those with high metabolisms get. Not everyone is built the same.

    I do not deny the lazyness plague, but, there are millions who cannot afford to eat healthy. They cannot afford personal trainers. There is no pill to change genetic make up.

    I have a condition that keeps my body in starvation mode. No matter what I eat, my body stores fat.

    Even with moderate exercise and a low fat diet, I have to be careful because I still gain weight. I have been working with my doctor and an internal medicine doctor to figure out a way to reset my body. But we have found none.

    It is actually sad that everyone is so judgemental. Fat does not equal lazy. Not all potheads are obese.

    June 27, 2012 at 17:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • alientech

      Going for a run outside doesn't require a personal trainer. Change your 'moderate' exercise to something more intense and you'll see results. There are very few fat people in countries where people walk instead of driving and eat a lot less food than a typical American.

      June 27, 2012 at 17:29 | Report abuse |
  47. Bob the Cat

    Just eat right. No more mcdonalds, no more slushies. Treat yourself once a week with some junk. You don't need to exercise to begin with, just eat RIGHT. Apple sauce, unsweetened, apples, oranges, turnips, egg salad sandwiches, light mayo, flavored vitamin water... get some online food guides. I lost 35 pounds in two months by eating RIGHT whiles sitting on my couch and desk 24/7. Fat will flow off like crazy...

    June 27, 2012 at 17:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Bob the Cat

    Eating healthy is cheap. Calculate your junk food spending and see...

    June 27, 2012 at 17:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. me

    drugs drugs and more drugs! Such a sad state our society is in....

    June 27, 2012 at 17:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Joshua

    For those who talk about the meds they are taking causin weight issues, it is because those meds slow your metabolism d

    June 27, 2012 at 17:30 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.