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Health Guide Review: 2,7/5


Xenical Review: Does it work?

Intro: What is it?

Xenical is a prescription weight loss drug made specifically for reducing the intake of fats during a meal. It’s available only for certain people including those with a BMI of 30 or higher, or those with a 27 and above BMI who have obesity related illness.

Since it’s only available by prescription, a physician has to make sure you’re healthy enough while still being obese enough to use it. The manufactures also list a huge list of potential side effects and a description of who should avoid it. It’s also required to include a diet and exercise plan. So what kind of a total effect does it have? Is Xenical useful and safe? Provided in this review are all the details you need to know about Xenical.

Xenical Ingredients

Orlistat 120 mg Microcrystalline Cellulose Sodium Starch Glycolate Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
Povidone Talc


Orlistat: The key active ingredient which acts as a lipase inhibitor, which means it reduces the absorption of fats from passing the intestine. A fraction of fats are then passed through the stool. This is why Orlistat is known to potentially cause oily, loose, and frequent bowel movements.  The full potential side effects include:

  • Flatulence and bloating.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Reduced intake of fat soluble vitamins.
  • Abdominal cramping and pain. Muscle soreness.
  • Raised blood pressure.
  • Oily discharge, diarrhea, loose stools, and frequent bowel movements. 

It’s made to be taken with a low fat meal in limited amounts. When taken with high fats it’s known to increase the risk for side effects lasting up to 3 days.  Results are expected within 2 weeks, though it’s not guaranteed.  If no results occur it’s advised to talk to a physician as it might mean one cannot benefit.

Diet and exercise is required as well.

The most comprehensive one year study published by the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Group revealed:

orlistat reduced weight by 2.9 kg”

This translates to a high of 6.39 pounds. This means that in a yearlong study per month this leads to an average of 0.53 pounds of weight loss a month. Roughly half a pound is an incredibly low amount. This also came from people who exercised and dieted, which may account for some of the weight loss.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate: Commonly used in detergents and stain washers, this surfactant is known to cause dry skin and skin and eye irritations. A byproduct of this ingredient is considered a carcinogen according to the EPA.

Talc: Used to prevent caking. It’s been shown to potentially cause tumors and pulmonary problems.

Xenical Quality of Ingredients

5 of the 6 ingredients are only added to make the product look and digest in a certain way; they’re not for weight loss.

The only active ingredient is Orlistat and it’s only been shown to reduce around a half pound per month. Still, this comes at the expense of having to include routine diet and exercise, as well as keeping fats low to reduce the high potential rate of symptoms.

Including the lifestyle changes required, the high price, low quality of results, and potential side effects, a lot of effort has to go into maintenance.

The Price and Quality of Xenical

After being prescribed this brand you can purchase it via many common pharmacies.  A 30 capsule bottle comes at the lowest current price of $172.29. So at the advised 3 capsules day, the daily price is:

$172.29/10= $17.22 for one daily serving.

This also means that a full month’s supply is $516.87. This is exceptionally high for what clinical studies show only leads to around a half pound of weight loss in a full month. This means that the overall strength is low for what you’re getting in return.

It’s one of the priciest drugs available for weight loss which isn’t even guaranteed.

Full list of Potential Side Effects

The company behind Xenical has to provide all the potential side effects that have been shown through clinical studies. There are also reviews from other websites such as which have listed all the verified potential side effects. Here are the most prominent symptoms that may occur:

  • Symptoms of liver disease and liver damage.
  • Severe stomach and abdominal pain.
  • Bloody and or pink urine.
  • Kidney stones.
  • Back and muscle pain.
  • Serious allergic reactions leading to hospitalization.
  • Discolored, oily, sudden, and fatty stools.
  • Loss of vitamin and mineral absorption. 

The FDA has also listed liver damage as a potential problem which can be identified by the following:

  • Yellowing skin, eyes, or nails.
  • Discolored or dark urine.
  • Loss of appetite.

These are all symptoms which indicate liver damage.  The FDA advises to immediately seek medical help and to cease using Xenical if you experience these symptoms.

The UK Clinical practice ran a review which showed that the active ingredient could cause colon cancer:

“Risk of colorectal cancer after initiation of orlistat”

Not only has the FDA confirmed liver damage after the company ran their clinical studies, recent studies also showed it lead to colon cancer and colon lesions.

Fat Soluble Vitamins

Xenical does not distinguish between healthy fats and bad fats. It also prevents the intake of fat soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, D, E, and K.

When the body doesn’t get these vitamins in certain amounts it’s known to lead to serious side effects. Here’s a description of what possible symptoms may arise:

Vitamin A Deficiency: Blindness and eye issues, increased risk for diseases and infections, and dry skin.

Vitamin D Deficiency: Misshapen and brittle bones, rickets, cognitive issues, increased risk from cardiovascular damage, increased risk for cancer, and severe asthma.

Vitamin E Deficiency: Poor nerve function, retina damage leading to blindness, muscle weakness and fatigue, damage to the immune system.

Vitamin K Deficiency: Increased risk for bruising, uncontrolled bleeding, bone malformation, stomach pains, and increased amounts of calcium in the blood.

This can also increase the need to supplement with either whole foods or vitamins to make up for the lack of vitamin absorption.

It’s unknown how this may affect people. Another issue is that taking extra vitamins might not be enough since they’re all fat soluble. Therefore, this product may produce severe side effects listed above that cannot be avoided.

Business of Xenical

The brand is made by the Swiss health care company Hoffman La Roche.  They do have US offices with customer representatives available below:

Phone Number: (800) 821-8590

Address: 1 DNA Way Mailstop 258 A

South San Francisco, California 94080

The company has been subject to serious controversies:

  • They plead guilty to fixing prices around the world and including in the USA. They ended up paying $500 million in fines.  The company was once gain fined the same amount for the same crime.
  • A smaller company owned by this business was involved in a $200 million dollar settlement due to their role in a patent dispute.

Customer Opinions of Xenical

Many reviews are available from users of Xenical:

“showing very little effect”

“haven’t lost no weight. Although I have all the side effects”

“no results for me”

“unable to leave the house for fear of accidents”

People often mention they had serious bathroom issues where they couldn’t control their bowel movements. There’s an often reported side effect of oily stools which come and go unexpectedly.

They were people that also add that they added diet and exercise and kept fat lows, but that they still experienced side effects.

Those that mentioned they lost weight also add how they included a dedicated diet and exercise plan.


There are many things to consider about Xenical:

  • Clinical studies show only a modest weight loss: The most in depth clinical study showed that people experienced a high rate of side effects, and that it didn’t produce much benefit in terms of weight loss. This yearlong study which was performed alongside diet and exercise showed an average of a half-pound of weight loss a month. It’s also important to consider that studies also show that when you stop taking the active ingredient that people often regains a lot of their weight back. Half a pound a month is considerably low and it’s not a guarantee. There have been also customers who reported they didn’t lose any weight at all. Keep in mind that you’re going to pay more than $500 for a month’s supply, and you still have to commit to a diet and exercise plan. Also, limiting fats is crucial in order to prevent side effects.
  • Many side effects are possible and they have been reported by customers: There are opinions from customers who mention they couldn’t continue using Xenical. The side effects became too much where regular activities were impossible. Many mention they couldn’t leave the house without experiencing sudden bowel movements that came without warning. This unexpected sensation is not only embarrassing but many add that it prevented them from being able to continue. Some add that they don’t know if this brand works, but it didn’t work well enough in the short period they were able to take it. The people who could stomach it for longer periods often add that they didn’t notice any changes. Possible side effects listed by the company include indigestion, loose and oily stools, nausea, organ damage, nausea, and diarrhea.
  • Serious symptoms can occur according to the FDA: The FDA was forced to add a warning to this brand that it could lead to liver damage. This was after many people started experiencing issues requiring liver transplants. The FDA mentions that although it’s not yet proven to be the sole reason, there’s too much confidence to believe it isn’t related. It’s unknown what kind of a long term effect Xenical might have on the body. It is FDA approved, but a doctor has to ensure that a person is of a healthy enough body in order to use. People with histories of liver damage or other symptoms are advised not to use this. Therefore a doctor who knows a patient’s medical history is highly advised.
  • It’s not guaranteed to be effective or safe: Due to it being a prescription drug, there’s no return of money or safety guarantee. The company clearly lists all the potential side effects which may occur, and there’s no assurance that one will not face these dangerous side effects. Another possible issue is the lack of absorption of fat soluble vitamins. This may make it necessary to supplement with further foods or vitamins to make up for the lack of nutrients. This not only raises the price of the overall maintenance required, but it’s unknown what kind of a total effect this may have from person to person. It’s costly to try this brand since one bottle offering 10 days’ worth of product retails for $173 at its cheapest.
  • Serious lifestyle changes are required: You have to ensure you have some fats in your meals when taking this brand since it’s used to get rid of dietary fats. However, you also have to eat a low amount of fat since it can produce side effects when excess fats are eaten. These effects have been shown to last up to 3 whole days. This can include symptoms including sudden bowel movements and digestive issues. To take this brand you can’t have a history of gall bladder or liver problems, and you have to ensure you count calories and exercise more. Studies also show that it isn’t a long term solution for weight loss. In one clinical study people who took the key active ingredient regained their weight as soon as they stopped taking it. So considering the brand is worth around $500 for a month’s supply, it’s a costly addition to minimal and unguaranteed weight loss.

The majority of customers who took this brand either faced embarrassing side effects, or they didn’t experience much weight loss.

There’s no guarantee that this brand won’t cause side effects, and no money back guarantee is offered. It’s also incredibly pricy and will cost over $1,000 for 2 month supply.

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