The Hemp Connection + women's health

Contrave: Let the marketing…er…assaults on your confidence.begin

Last night evening news reporters shared that a new anti-obesity drug is headed toward approval. I Googled this drug,"Contrave", to learn more.

On the the manufacturer's website, there was some technical information about this drug (see below). What caught MY eye, however, was a deviation from facts to the following commentary:

We believe that bupropion helps initiate weight loss while naltrexone may sustain weight loss by preventing the body’s natural tendency to counteract efforts to lose weight.

Really? It has been scientifically proven that the body has a natural tendency to resist weight loss?Well, if you believe that you're helpless and without any solution other than a medication, you're more likely to help this company's profit margin. That's what they need you to believe in order to satisfy their investors!

The buzz on the news was that the drug has been shown to induce a weight loss of 5%. That means if you're 250 lbs, you can expect to lose about 12 1/2 of them. We've been taught as health professionals, to tell the public that a small weight loss of 10% of body weight can have important health effects, and not to focus on large, drastic changes. But taking a pill to achieve only half of that? Not impressive at all.

I'm insulted for this blog's readers. Can't you do better than that? Can't you just tell the truth about the drug and trust that it has potential in certain cases? Which I'm sure it does? I like to think most people who I have ever come in contact with, deserve much more credit than that. They can make intelligent decisions and do not need to be manipulated in this fashion.

Here are the facts about the medication.

1. It is a combination of two medications that have been used for a variety of clinical purposes, naltrexone and bupropion (Wellbutrin).

2. Naltrexone is an opiate antagonist. According to NIH, it is"used along with counseling and social support to help people who have stopped drinking alcohol and using street drugs continue to avoid drinking or using drugs." The link above provides a pretty long list of contraindications and side effects, and they include pregnant and trying to become pregnant…not likely a great option for many of our readers.

3. Bupropion is an antidepressant that has been found to help facilitate weight loss. It's been used for this off-label purpose for a long time. Not that it can't help, especially if there is depression accompanying your weight gain (not ABOUT the weight gain but as a co-existing condition). But I believe there are many things about most of our audience that can be done to alleviate depression and normalize weight which should be tried BEFORE resorting to medication.

If anyone from Orexigen can produce peer-reviewed research supporting the claim that the body resists weight loss, they're welcome to comment on this blog.

Until that happens, I maintain that any time someone tries to tell you that you can't do something, and your believing them holds potential to transfer money from one bank account to another, you should consider the tactic a challenge to prove them dead wrong.

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Contrave: Let the marketing…er…assaults on your confidence.begin + women's health