February 1, 2009 -- Question: What is Bontril (phendimetrazine), how does it work, and can it help me lose weight?
Answer: Bontril falls into a class of drugs we call appetite suppressants. Those can be a very useful addition to a healthy, balanced lifestyle and exercise and eating, but they can't be considered some sort of a magic pill or substitute. The most important thing to keep in mind is this is an FDA-approved drug. It can be prescribed by a physician or other health care provider. But it isn't made for long-term use.
The idea behind appetite suppressants is that you take them during the short-term -- several weeks -- to give you a little bit of an edge if you're overly hungry when starting a reduced calorie plan. The one thing that I've found is that often people's nutritional balance, if it's made to be a fulfilling diet and they're not over restricting, hunger isn't so much of an issue, so don't think of these as a way to fend off the inevitable hunger of dieting. If you pick a really good, balanced and volumetric meal plan, you may not be so hungry and you may not need to use these types of drugs.