Reductil is a discontinued weight loss medication that has been banned by the EU and no longer available in the UK....

Published: Wednesday 18 May 2016


What is Reductil and what is it used for?

Reductil is a discontinued weight loss medication that has been banned by the EU and no longer available in the UK. Its active ingredient, sibutramine hydrochloride, is an appetite suppressant and until 2010, was prescribed as an anti-obesity treatment along with a healthy diet and some exercise for clinically obese patients (BMI higher than 30). In addition to treating obese patients, the medication was also prescribed for overweight patients whose weight caused them medication complications. 

How does it work?

Reductil is a satiety enhancer or an appetite suppressant, so the medication works to control the amount eaten by elevating the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain and increasing the feeling of fullness. 

Why was it banned?

The EU banned the weight loss aid in 2010 due to potentially dangerous side effects: it is linked with an increased risk of patients suffering from non-lethal heart attacks and strokes. 

Where can I buy it? 

You cannot buy this medication from a reputable source without a prescription, and now that it has been taken off the market, this is no longer possible. 
Beware of counterfeit medication sold as Reductil without a prescription as these can have a detrimental effect on your health. 

Are there any alternatives? 

Xenical is a good alternative, which doctors are now prescribing instead of Reductil as a high-strength treatment for obesity. Orlistat is another option, which is the generic version of Xenical, available at the same strength of the same active ingredient but a lower price. 
New weight loss pill Alli is also used as a weight loss aid. It contains 60mg of orlistat and is available over the counter. 

What is the difference between Reductil and Xenical?

  Xenical Reductil
Active Ingredient Orlistat Sibutramine hydrochloride
Weight Loss Method Lipase inhibitor Satiety enhancer
Works on Intestine- blocks fat-digesting enzymes so 30% of fat is not absorbed and is excreted Nerve cells in brain - increases serotonin to heighten feeling of fullness
Eligibility BMI 30+, or BMI 28+ with type II diabetes or heart disease BMI 30+, or BMI 27+ with other weight-related health complications
Diet and Exercise Yes Yes
Side Effects Loose stools, flatulence, low levels of vitamins A, D, E, K Insomnia, constipation, dry mouth, hypertension
License Yes No

For the difference between Xenical, Orlistat and Alli, you can view our related blog post here.

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