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Weight loss

How to Lose Weight at Home

Posted Monday 17 May 2021 10:00 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

There are many weight loss theories online, but finding information that’s backed by science can be tricky. It’s important to know how to lose weight safely so that you don’t cause lasting harm to your body. Here are some top tips on how to lose weight at home and see results that won’t damage your health.

1. Increase your protein intake

Adding protein to your diet is key to weight loss - it’s one of the primary nutrients you’ll need if you want to shift the pounds. Your body burns calories when it’s metabolising protein so a higher protein diet can actually boost your metabolism by as much as 100 calories each day. What’s more, protein is more satiating so it will leave you feeling fuller for longer, which is a common issue when you’re dieting. By feeling fuller, you’ll consume fewer calories over the course of the day.

2. Up the amount of exercise you do

When it comes to understanding obesity, it’s important to remember that exercise is just as important as food. While a balanced diet is a great place to start, exercise will impact how quickly you lose weight and the health of your body.

Being active is important for weight loss, but it also provides a host of other health benefits such as improving heart health and improving your mental health.

3. Skip processed foods

Processed foods are typically very high in added sugars, fats and calories, so if your day-to-day diet is centred around ready meals and processed foods, it will be harder to lose weight. These types of foods are designed to make you eat as much as possible, and it can be all too easy to become addicted to eating junk foods due to how much salt and sugar they contain.

When you’re trying to lose weight, aim for healthy meals that are packed with fruit and vegetables, which are naturally low in fat and don’t contain processed sugars.

4. Consume more water

There is truth to the claims that drinking more water can help you with your weight loss. In fact, upping your intake of water by as much as half a litre a day could help you burn more calories, so it’s a good way to improve your health while also shifting excess weight. Try drinking water before meals and replace sugary drinks and coffee with water to skip additional calories throughout the course of the day too.

5. Speak to your GP about medication

If failing to lose weight, you can seek help from weight loss tablets. These are prescription medications that can help to treat obesity.

Some weight loss pills work by making it more difficult for your body to absorb fat while others make you feel fuller, so you consume fewer calories overall. Doctors usually prescribe weight loss pills for people who have a higher BMI, so if you think that you’d benefit from weight loss medication, it’s worth speaking to your GP.

6. Plan out your meals

Often, when we fall off the diet wagon, it’s because we get caught out and don’t know what to eat, so we reach for something quick and easy. This isn’t always the healthiest option, as snacks and convenience foods are typically laden with fat and calories. Instead, plan your week out in terms of your daily calories allowance so you can make nutrient-rich meals that adhere to your diet and are focused on whole foods.

7. Minimise alcohol consumption

Many people don’t realise just how many calories are in a glass of alcohol, but just a standard glass of wine can have as many calories in it as a piece of chocolate. There’s a reason why these drinks are known as liquid calories, as the likes of beer and wine are packed with sugar and calories.

It’s easy to have a few glasses of an evening without realising how much it’s impacting your diet. Alcohol can contribute considerably to weight gain, so if you’re trying to lose weight, it’s a good idea to skip the drinks in favour of water or something low calorie.

Understanding Obesity and How to Reverse It

Posted Wednesday 13 January 2021 10:00 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

Did you know that obesity affects 25% of adults and 20% of children in the UK? This guide will talk about obesity --- what it is, how you get obese, and how you can reverse it.

What is obesity?

Obesity is a condition used to describe a person who is more than overweight. One of the most common ways to tell if you are obese or not is by a measurement called Body Mass Index or BMI. BMI determines whether or not your weight is healthy for your height.

BMI What It Means
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5 - 24.9 Healthy weight (relative to your height)
25 - 29.9 Overweight
30 - 39.9 Obese
40+ Severely obese

Note: the measurements above are for an average adult.

Is BMI enough? No. BMI is not enough to know for sure whether you are obese or not because some people can have higher BMI without the fat (e.g., people who go to the gym to build muscles). Another way to measure obesity is through your waistline. Men who have waistlines of 80 cm or more are more likely to be obese. The same is true for women with a waist size of over 94 cm.

What are the causes of obesity?

The causes of obesity include a lot of factors, like hormonal imbalance, metabolic issues, genetics, and underlying illnesses such as hypothyroidism. However, for most people, obesity is caused by lifestyle problems. Let's look at it this way:

Your body needs energy (calories) to function properly. This is called your basal metabolic rate and your daily goal will depend on several factors like sex and age. The total calories you need each day will be your basal metabolic rate + the calories you burn doing your daily activities.

If you eat more than what your body needs, the excess calories will be stored as fat, showing up on the scale over time.

Is obesity dangerous?

You can avoid several illnesses if you stay within your healthy weight range. People who are obese experience problems like:

  • Snoring
  • Back pain
  • Joint pain
  • Getting tired easily
  • Breathlessness
  • Low confidence
  • Increased sweating

If untreated, obesity can lead to serious problems like:

  • High blood pressure
  • Asthma
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Gallstones
  • Infertility
  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Sleep apnea

Studies show that obesity can lower an average person's life expectancy by as much as 10 years.

How to reverse obesity

Estimates show that 1 in every 13 mortalities in Europe is caused by obesity-related diseases. Fortunately, obesity can be reversed. Below are some tips on how to reverse obesity.

Changing your diet

One of the best ways to reverse obesity is to change your diet. You can do this by:

  • Cutting your calorie intake – if you want to lose weight, you have to put yourself in a calorie deficit. To do this, evaluate your eating habits and determine how many calories you are consuming each day. Once you know this number, use a calorie deficit calculator to work out how much you need to cut back on.
  • Make healthier food choices – sweets, soda and processed foods contain large amounts of calories. Try to substitute these by eating fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain foods. Plant-based proteins like soy and beans are also great. Limit your salt intake too. Lastly, eat small amounts of healthy fats from nuts, olives, and canola. Try to include fish in your diet as well.

Increase your physical activity

Increasing your physical activity is a good way to burn off those excess calories. Here's how to do it:

  • Move often – any extra movements can do wonders. Simple changes that get you moving such as parking farther from the store entrance, moving around, gardening, and doing household chores can help burn extra calories.
  • Exercise regularly – if you are obese, you will need at least 150 minutes of moderate to intense exercise every week to prevent further weight gain. For significant weight loss, you'll need at least 300 minutes of exercise a week. If exercising is hard, try walking 10,000 steps a day.

Changing your behaviour

There are behaviour modification programs that can help you make the necessary lifestyle changes for weight loss. These include:

  • Support groups – you can always find support and encouragement from people who are experiencing the same challenges as you. Talk to your doctor to see if there are any local support groups around that you can join.
  • Counselling – weight loss begins in the mind. A mental health professional can help you determine and address the underlying emotional and mental issues that are behind your overeating habits. Depending on your preference, counselling can be one-on-one or by a group. Choose more intensive programs that include between 12 to 26 sessions a year for best results.

Take weight loss medications

Another great way to lose weight is by taking weight loss tablets. Express Pharmacy stocks high-quality weight loss medications like Xenical, Saxenda, and Mysimba that you can order online today. Most weight loss tablets work by making it hard for your body to absorb fat. Others also make you feel full sooner --- eliminating the urge to eat more than what you need.

How to Lose Water Weight

Posted Thursday 10 December 2020 11:00 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

Did you know that most of your body weight is made up of water? Any extra water held by your body is referred to as water weight or oedema. While not serious, water weight can cause bloating and puffiness especially in the areas around your legs, abdomen, and arms. Too much water weight can also cause complications in your heart and kidneys. Within this guide, you will find some simple tips to help you lose water weight.

8 easy ways to lose water weight at home

Tip #1. Get enough sleep

If you want to lose water weight, get a healthy amount of sleep every night. A good night’s sleep can help your body manage its sodium and fluid levels more effectively. Aim for around 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night.

Tip #2. Keep your electrolytes balanced

What are electrolytes? These are minerals that contain an electric charge. Common examples of electrolytes are potassium and magnesium. Electrolytes play a crucial role in your body - especially in regulating water balance.

Too many or too few electrolytes can lead to increased water weight. So, balance is key. The best way to ensure a good balance of electrolytes is to tailor it with your water intake. You may need to take more electrolytes if you:

  • Exercise
  • Drink a lot of water
  • Live in hot or humid regions

Too many electrolytes from food and supplements and low water intake can lead to water retention and increased water weight.

Tip #3. Manage your sodium

Sodium is the most common electrolyte in the body. And your primary source of sodium is salt. Like in the previous tip, an imbalance in your body’s sodium levels (too high or too low) can cause fluid shifts which may lead to increased water weight. Avoid high salt diets if you want to stop your body from retaining too much water.

If you are looking for low sodium alternatives, try natural foods like seeds, nuts, and vegetables. Certain foods like avocados, bananas, and leafy vegetables are also known to help reduce sodium levels in the body.

Tip #4. Avoid too many carbs

Did you know that unused carbohydrates are stored in the body as glycogen? And each gram of glycogen contains 3 grams of water! If you want to lose water weight, cutting your carb intake can help. Eating fewer carbohydrates causes your body to use up its glycogen reserves which in turn reduces water weight.

A common source of carbohydrates in our diet include pasta, rice, and bread. Try replacing these with high-protein alternatives like lean meat, soy products, and egg. On average, a normal adult only needs about 130g of carbohydrates to function normally.

Tip #5. Exercise regularly

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of regular exercise when it comes to keeping your body healthy. A good exercise session helps to promote increased blood flow which prevents the buildup of fluids all over your body, particularly in the arms and legs. Exercising also helps reduce water weight by burning your body glycogen reserves.

Tip #6. Drink more water

This may sound counterintuitive but drinking more water can help you lose water weight. Why? Well, let’s just say that your body is wired to survive. If it senses dehydration, it’s immediate action is to hold on to extra water as much as it can. Thus, increasing your water weight.

Proper hydration also improves kidney function which enables your body to flush out excess sodium and water. The best way to lose water weight is to replace sugary drinks with plain water. An average adult needs approximately 2 litres of water every day.

Tip #7. Drink tea and coffee

The caffeine found in coffee and tea is diuretic. This means it makes you pee more often. Studies show that increased urination can help decrease water weight. You can combine caffeine with more water intake to significantly increase the volume of your urine.

Tip #8. Take water pills and weight loss pills

Water pills are designed to treat mild fluid retention. Like caffeine, these pills function as a diuretic that makes you urinate more often. Though not recommended for long-term use, your doctor may prescribe water pills on a case to case basis.

Another great way to lose weight is by taking weight loss pills. Weight loss pills are designed to make it hard for your body to absorb fat. They also make you feel full sooner which decreases the amount of food (especially carbs) that you eat.

Being overweight poses a lot of health risks. And increased water weight is just one of the many causes of weight gain. Losing your water weight is a good first step towards a healthier you!

Understanding the Relationship Between Weight Loss and Calories

Posted Sunday 29 November 2020 11:30 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

For years, fitness experts and nutritionists have been stressing that weight loss is made in the kitchen, as well as the gym. This guide will provide you with a complete understanding of the relationship between weight loss and calories, including how going on a calorie deficit will help you lose weight over time.

What are calories?

A calorie is a unit of energy. It refers to the amount of energy you get from the food you eat and the beverages that you drink. The number of calories you burn each day will depend on several factors:

Your basal metabolic rate - also known as resting energy expenditure, your basal metabolic rate refers to the number of calories your body needs to maintain its functions like breathing and blood circulation. In short, it’s the amount of energy your body burns to keep you alive.

Activity energy expenditure – this refers to the calories you burn when doing physical activities like exercise, moving around, etc.

Thermic effect of food – this refers to the amount of energy expended by digesting and absorbing food.

What causes weight gain?

There are many causes of weight gain, including:

  • Genetic factors
  • Certain medications
  • Overindulgence
  • Sugary or fatty diet
  • Misinformation

The weight loss formula

Your calorie needs will vary from person to person. If you consume fewer calories than what you need for your basal metabolic rate, activity energy expenditure, and thermal effect of food, then you enter a state called a calorie deficit.

Over time, a calorie deficit will lead to weight loss.

Common knowledge shows that a pound of fat (0.45 kg) is more or less equal to 3,500 calories. Cutting your intake by 500 to 1000 calories a day will help you lose approximately 1 to 2 pounds (0.45 to 0.9 kg) a week.

Metabolism, body composition, and activity levels vary from one person to another. If you live a sedentary lifestyle, you are likely to lose less weight than those who are physically active. No matter how small, you will still lose weight as long as you put your body in a calorie deficit.

Eating too many calories makes you gain weight

If you consume more calories than what your basal metabolic rate, activity energy expenditure, and thermic effect of food require, you are most likely to gain weight. Remember that the body stores excess calories as fat.

Losing weight: how to do it right

There are several ways to lose weight safely. Here are some things to keep in mind.

Water loss is just temporary

Remember that when you lose weight, you are not only losing fat. You are also losing muscle and water. So it’s important to not focus on drastically cutting your calorie intake. Instead, eat well-balanced meals. Your type of diet has a direct impact on the speed and composition of your weight loss. For example, people who focus on low-carb diets experience rapid weight loss during the first few weeks of their regimen. While this is good, most of the weight loss is temporary because it is only water loss.

Gradually lower your calories

Drastic reduction of your calorie intake puts the body in a defensive state. This natural reaction causes the body to conserve energy by lowering your metabolism. This in turn makes weight loss harder and slower. The best way to reduce weight without triggering this protective response is by gradually reducing your calorie intake. Spread your calories over a few meals.

Don’t drink your calories

There’s a reason why several soda lovers are obese. Sugar in soda has lots of calories. If you are not careful, it’s so easy to go over your daily calorie needs with just a few cans of soda. Alcoholic beverages also contain lots of calories. If you are serious about losing weight, cut your sugary drinks, and replace it with healthier alternatives like tea or water.

Eat whole foods

Vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and fish are great sources of vitamins and minerals without being too heavy on calories. As much as possible, eat whole foods at home and stay away from highly processed foods. Fast foods, cereals, and processed meat products are highly palatable --- making you more prone to overeating.

Add some light exercise to your routine

While it’s true that most weight loss happens in the kitchen, we still can’t overemphasize enough the importance of exercise. Experts recommend that adults should spend between 150 to 300 minutes of moderate exercise each week. This includes brisk walking. If you are physically active, 150 minutes of vigorous exercises like jogging are recommended each week. Exercise helps to prevent muscle loss and encourages your body to focus on breaking down fats.

Too much weight will have a negative impact on your health and self-esteem. Click here if you want to learn more about how weight gain affects your health.

5 Ways to Lose Weight Safely

Posted Saturday 31 October 2020 11:00 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

In order for your weight loss to be sustainable and long-lasting, it’s important to choose your approach carefully. If you limit your intake of calories too strictly, you’ll find yourself craving food constantly, resulting in overeating and gaining weight. Plus, calorie restrictions can slow your metabolism down over time, so your body will be less prepared to burn the calories you later consume.

For safe and effective weight loss, pay close attention to these five ways to lose weight safely.

1. Boost Your Cardio

Any type of exercise is good for you, but cardio, in particular, is great for shedding the pounds. Three to four sessions of cardio exercise a week should do the trick – this could be anything from brisk walking to a specific cardio class. Studies have shown that evening workouts can be the most beneficial - 30 minutes of aerobic activity before your evening meal could increase your metabolic rate. It can even keep it elevated for several hours after.

2. Opt for Weight Loss Tablets

Pharmacy approved weight loss tablets are designed to help people struggling with obesity and weight loss. There are several types of weight loss pills to choose from, each working in a different way. Some tablets help you lose weight by making it more difficult for the body to absorb fat while others can help you feel fuller after eating less, so you consume fewer calories.

There are also weight loss pills which can help reduce your appetite, acting on how your brain controls food intake and energy expenditure. Weight loss tablets can make losing weight easier and reduce your body fat percentage, while also giving you more energy and curbing hunger pangs.

3. Skip the Sugar

Sugar finds its way into so many of the foods and drinks we eat - we often don't realise just how much we’re consuming on a daily basis.

Sugar makes our hunger cravings fluctuate quickly, meaning we end up consuming even more calories over the course of the day. If you’re trying to lose weight, it’s a good idea to monitor your intake of sugar and refined carbs; you might be surprised to learn just how easy it is for calories to sneak into treats. For example, a glass of juice or sweetened coffee could bump your overall calorie intake by as much as 800 calories. To lose weight safely but quickly, switch to a sugar-free diet.

4. Eat Green

Researchers have found that people who have a diet that is high in fruits and vegetables find it easier to lose weight and keep that weight off, when compared to other diet plans. This is because fibre slows down the digestion process and makes you feel fuller during meal times. However, plants are generally low in calories and fat, meaning that despite helping you feel full and providing plenty of nutrients, they don’t boost your calorie count. With this in mind, make sure your meals are full of other types of protein and vitamins.

5. Lower Stress and Increase Your Sleep

Most people don’t realise that the added stressors that build up in everyday life can actually contribute to weight gain. Chronic stress and a lack of decent sleep can increase the levels of stress hormones in your body, such as cortisol. This can lead to higher levels of hunger which over time can increase the likelihood of weight gain.

If you want to lose weight, getting a good night sleep and reducing stress levels is key. Not only does sleep deprivation cause your hunger levels and sugar cravings to skyrocket, but it can also make self-discipline harder so you’re more likely to give in to temptation. To get a better night’s rest, try to stick to the same bedtime routine and never consume caffeine in the evening. It’s also a good idea to practice calming activities that will lower your stress levels, such as yoga, breathing techniques and meditation.

Final Thoughts

There’s no instant fix when it comes to weight loss, but there are ways to speed up the process and shift the pounds in a safe and healthy way. Whether you choose to increase the amount of exercise you do each week, choose prescription weight loss pills or improve your sleep routine, combine these tips with a balanced diet to help you lose weight.

How Does Weight Gain Affect My Health?

Posted Friday 10 July 2020 15:46 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

Being overweight or obese can bring a lot of problems to the table; from mental health issues related to low confidence right through to serious health problems that can be life-threatening.

It’s extremely important to understand how weight gain will affect your health in order to ensure that you keep up with a healthy lifestyle. Within this guide, we will be taking you through the relationship between health problems and weight gain. We will also explore plans of action for achieving a healthier, happier weight.

The Relationship Between Health Problems and Weight Gain

Unfortunately, being overweight or obese can cause several health problems. While results are likely to vary between individuals, the following health problems are known to be the most common and severe.

Type 2 Diabetes: Type 2 diabetes is diagnosed when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal. Some people suffer from type 2 diabetes as a result of hereditary, but for many people, it occurs as a result of excessive weight around the waist and an unhealthy lifestyle. To put this into perspective, over 85% of adults with diabetes are overweight or obese.

Through losing weight, you are at a better chance of delaying or preventing diabetes altogether. You will gain back control of your body, keeping blood sugar levels at a healthy point and eliminating the risk of a fatal incident from happening.

Cancer: Perhaps one of the scariest parts about weight gain is developing a higher risk rate of getting cancer. It has been found that those who are overweight are more likely to develop breast, colon, gallbladder and kidney cancer in particular. While it is still uncertain as to what exactly encourages the growth of cancer cells, many experts believe that it's due to too many fat cells releasing hormones and affecting cell growth.

High Blood Pressure: High blood pressure occurs when the blood pumping through your arteries pushes too hard against the artery walls. As your body is larger when overweight, your heart needs to work harder to pump blood around, resulting in added pressure.

In a worst-case scenario, high blood pressure can result in heart disease or kidney failure. You may even suffer from a stroke. This is why it is all the more important to maintain - or achieve - a healthy weight to ensure that your heart is never overworking.

One of the easiest ways to reduce blood pressure levels is by monitoring your diet. Cutting out salty foods in conjunction with exercising frequently will be sure to contribute positively.

Heart Disease: Heart disease is an umbrella term for a whole range of issues that can affect your heart. Having high blood pressure and high cholesterol (which are both health issues encouraged by weight gain) can lead to heart disease. If untreated, heart disease can result in a heart attack, heart failure, cardiac arrest and so on. Losing weight will help your body to pump blood more easily, preventing such a disease from occurring.

Fatty Liver Disease: If you can’t tell by the name, fatty liver disease is a problem that occurs when too much fat builds up inside the liver. This type of issue can result in severe liver damage or liver failure. Everyone who is diagnosed with fatty liver disease is encouraged to reduce their body weight in an attempt to lower the quantity of fat in the liver.

What Causes Weight Gain?

So - what causes weight gain? Each body is different, and while some people can eat for England without putting on weight, others have a hard time maintaining a healthy BMI. The main causes of weight gain include:

  • Genetics - this usually determines how easily you gain/maintain weight
  • Medication - some medications (eg: antidepressants) have a side effect of weight gain
  • Poor diet - overeating on fatty and sugary foods
  • Alcohol
  • Misinformation - a lack of understanding surrounding nutritious diets

How To Find Out If You Are Overweight

One of the easiest ways to establish whether you are overweight or not is by measuring your BMI. Your body mass index (BMI) is worked out by taking some basic information about height, weight and age. From here, your BMI is placed onto a chart to establish whether you are underweight, at a healthy weight, overweight or obese. These guidelines are as follows:

  • Healthy weight: BMI ranging from 18.5 to 24.9
  • Overweight: BMI ranging from 25 to 29.9
  • Obese: BMI of 30 and above

You can use a BMI calculator to find out more.

How To Lose Weight: Minimising The Risk Of Developing Health Problems

If you are classified as obese or overweight, it is advised to lose around 5% of your weight to lower your risk of developing health problems.

To lose weight healthily, it is advised to lose around 1-2lbs per week. This can be achieved through a combination of techniques, revolving around:

Eating Healthily: Through eating regular meals, plenty of fruit and vegetables and cutting back on snacking, you’re at a higher chance of experiencing weight loss. Resist junk food and replace it with high fibre alternatives, instead. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water too!

Exercising: Alongside eating healthily, exercising regularly is a huge contributor to healthy weight loss. It is advised to complete around 150 minutes of moderate activity per week to promote weight loss.

Taking Supplements: If you are eating healthily and exercising regularly yet still struggling to shed the pounds, your doctor may recommend weight loss pills. These pills are used alongside the above methods to speed up weight loss and get you back to a healthy weight. However, to ensure that you aren’t harming your body, never take weight loss pills that aren’t supplied by an accredited doctor or pharmacy.

How Does Xenical Help With Weight Loss?

Posted Friday 19 June 2020 12:30 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

How does Xenical help with weight loss? Is it effective? Is it safe? This blog post will answer all the questions you have about Xenical.

What Is Xenical?

Google “weight loss” and you’ll probably see millions of pages dedicated to it. Some resources will teach you fasting techniques, some introduce a new diet, others focus on weight loss exercises, etc. Some may even entice you towards ‘magic weight loss pills’ that do all the work for you.

Xenical (Orlistat) is an over-the-counter tablet that’s designed to help you drop some weight. It is the only drug that’s been proven safe in clinical trials. Along with a balanced diet and proper exercise, Xenical can help you lose weight over time. And no - it’s not a magic pill that you can take and then shed off a few pounds overnight (they don’t exist!). You will still need to watch what you are eating and follow an exercise regime.

How Does Xenical Help You Lose Weight?

Xenical works in your gut. It stops the fat from the food you eat from being absorbed by your body and gets rid of it through your stool. With that said, Xenical is only effective when you take it with the meal plan and exercise program designed by your doctor or nutritionist.

Who Is Xenical For?

Xenical is a weight loss pill that makes it hard for your body to absorb fat. Doctors often use BMI to decide whether you can take weight loss pills or not. Xenical is prescribed to those with a BMI of 27 and above or when you have weight-related illnesses like high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.

Remember that Xenical is not meant to replace a healthy diet and exercise. Rather, it’s a supplement to help you lose weight healthily and effectively.

How Effective Is Xenical?

According to clinical trials, Xenical is more effective in helping you lose weight compared to lifestyle changes alone. Consider this one study from Shire Health International:

The one year study, involving 539 adolescents aged 12 to 16, evaluated the efficacy and safety of Xenical in conjunction with lifestyle changes (a mildly reduced-calorie diet, exercise and behavioural therapy) compared to the efficacy of lifestyle changes alone.

Study results showed that adolescents treated with Xenical had:

  • significantly greater reduction in fat mass (-2.4 kg vs. -0.38kg) (p=0.033).
  • significantly reduced BMI compared with adolescents receiving lifestyle changes alone (-0.67 kg/m2 vs. +0.17 kg/m2) (p=0.001)

In addition:

  • a greater proportion of Xenical treated adolescents achieved a =5% and =10% decrease in BMI (27% vs. 16% and 13.3% vs. 4.5% respectively)
  • Xenical was well tolerated and reported adverse events were similar to those seen in adults.

How Long Does It Take For Xenical To Start Working?

Xenical will start working its wonders after your first dose. But the results will not come overnight. You will start seeing changes within two weeks as long as you follow your meal plan and regular exercise program. Weight loss becomes significant within the first 6 months of using Xenical.

Is Xenical Dangerous?

According to experts, “Xenical has a long-term safety profile unmatched in the field of weight loss”. This weight loss medicine is well-tolerated by the body so your safety is not an issue. However, like all medicines, it does come with some side effects.

Most of the common side effects of Xenical are caused by the retention of oil and fats in your gut. These are normal and temporary. In fact, they are signs that the medicine is working:

  • Oily spotting in your underwear
  • Fatty or oily stools
  • Brown or orange-coloured oil in your stool
  • Rectal pain
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Loose stools or frequent need to go to the bathroom
  • Gas

These side effects may lessen as your body gets used to Xenical.

Although rare, Xenical may also cause severe side effects. If you experience any of these, stop taking the weight loss pill and call your doctor immediately.

  • Liver problems (dark urine, clay-coloured stool, yellowing of the skin, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea)
  • Kidney problems (shortness of breath, tiredness, little to no urge of urinating, swelling in your ankles or feet)
  • Severe lower back pain
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Blood in urine or painful urination

To avoid these side effects, make sure that you follow instructions carefully. In case you missed a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is already more than 1 hour since your last meal, skip the missed dose and take your weight loss medicine at your next schedule. Never take an extra dose to make up for the missed one.

Can I Buy Xenical Over The Counter?

Xenical is a prescription medication. You buy Xenical tablets from Express Pharmacy after you complete a free consultation service. Your weight loss tablets will then be delivered right to your doorstep.

Obesity Awareness Week: What Causes Weight Gain and Obesity?

Posted Monday 13 January 2020 08:40 by Harman Bhamra in Weight loss

Obesity is one of the most common health problems in the world and has been connected with numerous concerns, from high blood sugar to high blood pressure. Collectively, these related conditions are known as metabolic syndrome, and people with metabolic syndrome are more likely to develop heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Much research has been carried out over the last few decades into the causes of obesity and the different ways that it can be prevented and treated. In light of obesity awareness week, we are taking a look at what causes weight gain and obesity, and how you can overcome it.

What is the definition of obesity?

The definition of obesity refers to someone who is very overweight. Obesity is a common global problem, with one in four adults in the UK alone affected.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is the most widely used method to check if someone is overweight; it’s a measure of whether you’re at a healthy weight for your height. A BMI of between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered a healthy weight, while 25 to 29.9 means you’re overweight.

If you have a BMI of between 30 and 39.9, you will be classed as obese. And, if you score over 40, you are considered to be severely obese. However, while BMI is useful in indicating whether you’re at a healthy weight, it’s important to note that it doesn’t take into account other factors such as muscle percentage.

With this in mind, a better measure of excess fat is waist size – men who are obese generally have a waist size of 40 inches or more, while obese women have a waist of 35 inches or more.

What causes weight gain?

Many people believe that those who are overweight simply don’t have the willpower to get healthy, but that isn’t true in the majority of cases. In fact, what causes obesity can vary from genetics right through to medical problems.

The following pointers are the main causes of weight gain, which can lead to obesity:


Genetics play a huge role in obesity and children of obese parents are much more likely to become obese themselves. That’s not to say that obesity is completely predetermined and out of your control, as diet and exercise can still influence your individual weight. But genetic components do affect how susceptible you are to gaining, and holding on to, weight.


Pharmaceutical drugs like antidepressants and diabetes medication cite weight gain as one of the side effects. These medications don’t impact your willpower, but they do affect the functioning of your brain, which reduces your metabolic rate and increases your appetite.

Food Addiction

Fatty foods stimulate reward centres in the brain, leading to an addictive sensation. In fact, these foods have been compared to drugs like cocaine, alcohol and nicotine in terms of how addictive they are.

Addiction is complex and difficult for many people to overcome, as it alters the chemistry of the brain, making it hard to stop. People who are addicted to food lose control of their eating habits and become more likely to gain weight as a result.


The impact sugar has on our health is not new news. One of the ways it harms us is by changing the hormones and biochemistry in our bodies, altering insulin resistance and increasing the chance of gaining weight.


A lack of understanding about health and nutrition is largely to blame for the levels of obesity around the world. From inaccurate information online to magazines and newspapers; many sources quickly become misinterpreted or taken out of context. Food companies also play a role in this, as do diet brands.

What is the best way to lose weight?

The best way to lose weight is by combining a few different lifestyle changes. Firstly, assess your diet and take note of the types of food you are eating; could you switch to healthier alternatives? Make sure you eat three meals a day too - many people believe that skipping breakfast will be beneficial to weight loss, but the opposite is true, and it means you miss out on the necessary nutrients to kickstart your day.

Getting more active is also key to successful weight loss; start walking more when possible or join a fitness class at your local gym.

To give your weight loss journey an extra boost, you can even take effective weight loss pills. Xenical weight loss pills aim to reduce the amount of fat absorbed during digestion. They are an effective weight loss treatment when used alongside a balanced diet and exercise regime, improving your cholesterol, lowering blood pressure and reducing levels of insulin.


Obesity is a global epidemic that poses a significant concern for the health of millions of people. Your weight loss journey will require a lot of determination, but by combining weight loss pills, meal planning and exercise, you’ll begin to notice significant differences to your body image. You’ll even benefit from reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and other diseases.

Get in touch with our experts on 0208 123 0703 for more information regarding effective weight loss.

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There Are 10 Steps to Avoiding Festive Weight Gain, According to Research

Posted Wednesday 18 December 2019 11:55 by Tim Deakin in Weight loss

The study by the Universities of Birmingham and Loughborough advises 10 golden rules

In the UK, obesity is an ongoing issue. The NHS reports that 29% of UK adults are classified as obese, a rise from 26% from 2016. What’s more, in the last year there have been 10,660 hospital admissions in the UK for which obesity was a directly attributable factor.[1]

However, despite being a concern all year round, it seems that weight gain is particularly prevalent during the festive season. One study concluded that weight gain occurs more frequently in November and December. They cited several reasons for this, including denser foods, bigger portions, social gatherings and less physical activity during the winter.[2]

But one study claims to have established the necessary steps to help prevent weight loss over the festive season. Let’s take a closer look at this research, as well as its findings.

The study

Researchers from the University of Birmingham and Loughborough University were supported by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) to carry out a ‘Winter Weight Watch Study’. This was designed as a trial to help participants avoid gaining weight over the festive season.

The study was published in the British Medical Journal, and was carried out in 2016 and 2017. 272 participants were split into two groups: an intervention group who were given tips on diet and exercise over Christmas, and a comparison group who weren’t.

The results show that, on average, participants in the comparison group gained weight over Christmas while those in the intervention group did not. In fact, by the end of the study the intervention group weighed an average of 0.49kg less than the comparison group.[3]

10 top tips for avoiding festive weight gain

As part of the study, the intervention group were provided with 10 top tips for avoiding weight gain. These were adapted from Lally et al’s 2008 tips, published in the International Journal of Obesity.[4]

These are the tips they were given:

1. Stick to your meal routine: Try to eat at roughly the same times every day.

2. Choose reduced fat: Choose low fat spreads, dressings and condiments.

3. Walk off the weight: Aim for 10,000 steps every day.

4. Pack a healthy snack: Choose fruit or low-calorie yoghurts as a snack.

5. Learn the labels: Check the fat and sugar on food labels while shopping.

6. Be cautious with portions: Think twice before second helpings.

7. Get on your feet: stand for at least 10 minutes every hour.

8. Think about your drinks: Check the sugar content of drinks and limit your alcohol intake.

9. Slow down while eating: Eat at the table and actively enjoy your food.

10. Don’t forget your 5 a day: Aim for five pieces of fruit and veg a day.

Controlling your weight over the festive season

Many of these tips revolve around one thing: moderation. By watching your diet and engaging in regular exercise throughout the festive season, you can avoid the regular trap of gaining weight over Christmas.

And this can lead to more benefits than just helping with weight loss. Bupa reports that exercise can help to stimulate muscles, bones and joints, keep organs healthy and improve symptoms of mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.[5]

Find safe and effective weight loss medication right here at Express Pharmacy. Speak to one of our pharmacists today by calling 0208 123 07 03 or by using our discreet online Live Chat service.

[1] NHS UK. Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet, England, 2019

[2] Díaz-Zavala, RG. et al. Effect of the Holiday Season on Weight Gain: A Narrative Review. Journal of Obesity. 2017

[3] Mason et al. Effectiveness of a brief behavioural intervention to prevent weight gain over the Christmas holiday period: randomised controlled trial. The British Medical Journal. 2018

[4] Lally, P. et al. Healthy habits: efficacy of simple advice on weight control based on a habit-formation model. International Journal of Obesity. 2008

[5] Bupa. Benefits of Exercise. 2019

How Is Your Morning Routine Impacting Your Health?

Posted Friday 20 September 2019 14:01 by Tim Deakin in Weight loss

healthy living

A morning routine can be beneficial to your overall health and productivity. Establishing a positive routine can help to alleviate stress, improve sleep quality, improve your diet, encourage fitness and help you utilise your time better.[1]

What’s more, finding your ideal morning routine can positively impact your attitude, energy levels and performance throughout the day, helping to reduce your chances of feeling depleted later in the morning or afternoon.[2]

So how does your morning routine measure up? We’re taking a look at some of the key components of a healthy morning — breakfast, natural light and fitness — to see just how important they really are.


Breakfast is often referred to as the most important meal of the day because it breaks the overnight fasting period, replenishes your glucose supply and provides many other essential nutrients to provide you with energy throughout the day. Eating a high-fibre breakfast reduced fatigue, while skipping breakfast can reduce mental performance during the day.[3]

But despite this, research continually shows that many people go without breakfast in the UK. One study conducted by the British Nutrition Foundation found that 14% of teachers and almost a quarter of secondary school students (24%) did not eat breakfast before attending school.[4]

According to many experts, healthy breakfast can also reduce your risk of experiencing conditions like acid reflux. And they advise that you always make time for a balanced breakfast of fibre, fruit and protein to give you a good base of energy for the day ahead.

However, it is worth bearing in mind that there is a growing belief that skipping breakfast has its own benefits. In particular, fans of intermittent fasting and time-restricted eating believe that there are many benefits to restricting eating hours to just an 8 hour window, suggesting that breakfast may not be all that crucial after all. There is some evidence to suggest that time restricted eating has benefits in relation to weight management, digestion and even immune function.


Natural light exposure is one of the key elements for maintaining your overall health. Sunlight has been shown to boost productivity, promote energy, increase your vitamin D storage and even improve your mood.[5]

In the morning, letting the light into your home can help you feel more awake more swiftly, standing you in good stead for the day ahead. In the long term, bright natural light exposure in the morning has even been shown to be effective against insomnia, premenstrual syndrome and seasonal affective disorder.[6]

Sunlight and fresh air are also often advised in cases of migraines and headaches. So try to get up and out in the light early when you wake up.


There are numerous benefits to a regular fitness regime. Exercise helps to stimulate the development of bones, joints and muscles. It improves heart and lung health, helps you maintain a healthy weight and can even tackle symptoms of mental health disorders like anxiety and depression.[7]

Completing an exercise routine in the morning is an effective way of reducing stress and lowering blood pressure, according to a 2011 study by Appalachian State University.[8] Similarly, researchers at the University of Bristol found that exercising in the morning gives you more energy and a more positive outlook.[9]

Incorporating a fitness regime into your morning routine, even if it’s only 10 or 20 minutes long, can help to lift your mood and help you with weight management.

Find safe and effective treatments for a variety of conditions right here at Express Pharmacy. Explore our site today or get in touch with one of our pharmacists by calling 0208 123 07 03. You can also contact us via our discreet online live chat service.

[1] Northwestern Medicine. Health Benefits of Having a Routine. 2019

[2] Harvard Extension School Professional Development. 3 ways to boost productivity with a morning routine. 2019

[3] Better Health. Breakfast. 2012

[4] British Nutrition Foundation. A quarter of UK secondary school children have no breakfast. 2015

[5] Davies, C. Shining light on what natural light does for your body. NC State University. 2014

[6] Mead, MN. Benefits of Sunlight: A Bright Spot for Human Health. Environmental Health Perspectives. 2008

[7] Raby, A. PhD. Benefits of Exercise. BUPA. 2019

[8] Appalachian State University. Early morning exercise is the best for reducing blood pressure and reducing sleep. 2011

[9] Harvard Extension School Professional Development. 3 ways to boost productivity with a morning routine. 2019

Tags: Weight Loss

How Putting Pen to Paper Can Help You Reach Your Weight Loss Goals

Posted Thursday 29 August 2019 21:26 by Tim Deakin in Weight loss

Carrying excess weight is something many people struggle with. In fact, 28.7% of adults in England alone are obese, and a further 35.6% are overweight.[1]

What’s more, 10,660 hospital admissions a year in England can be directly attributed to obesity, and 20% of children aged 10-11 are classified as obese.[2]

These numbers highlight a serious issue, as obesity can be a significant factor in the onset of many health conditions like cancer. In fact, overweight and obesity causes 13 types of cancer: bowel, breast, gallbladder, kidney, liver, meningioma, myeloma, oesophageal, ovary, pancreas, stomach, thyroid and uterus. Obesity causes 6% of cancer cases in the UK, making it the biggest cause after smoking.[3]

So, effective weight management is key to our overall health, and data shows that keeping a food journal is one way to tackle your excess weight.

Food journals make you more mindful of your meals

Food journals can be a helpful way of being more mindful about what and when you eat. It’s recommended that you make a note of what you’re eating, how much you’re eating and when you’re eating. The more specific you can be, the better, so it’s advised that you make a note soon after eating instead of waiting until the end of the day, and jot down factors like where you are eating and who you are eating with to see if there are any common factors in your snacking.[4]

Research shows that keeping a record of what you’re eating can lead to greater success when it comes to weight management. In one study of almost 1,700 participants, those who kept a food diary lost on average twice as much weight as those who kept no record of their dietary habits.[5]

What else can you do to successfully manage your weight?

Food journals are not the only way to tackle weight management successfully. We often think of weight loss as a near-impossible and often lifelong issue, but finding out what works for you is key to achieving your goals.

It is vital that you aim to lose excess weight in a healthy way. Following a healthy, balanced diet and getting regular exercise are the two key components to managing your weight in the long term.

You can also introduce a few lifestyle changes in order to improve your chances of success, such as setting realistic goals to avoid getting disheartened, e.g. losing 0.5lbs per week. You can also stick to meals you’ve prepared yourself, make the time for a good breakfast and have a break between courses to see whether you’re full enough to do without dessert.[6]

When used alongside a healthy diet and fitness routine, medication can help you achieve your goals effectively. Xenical, for example, has been shown in clinical trials to cause significant reduction in weight, BMI, waist circumference, cholesterol and LDL levels compared to a placebo drug.[7]

Safe and effective weight loss medications like Mysimba, Xenical and Saxenda are all available from Express Pharmacy. Get in touch today to find out more about these treatment options. Simply call one of our pharmacists today on 0208 123 07 03 or use our discreet online Live Chat service.

[1] House of Commons Library. Obesity Statistics. UK Parliament. 2019

[2] NHS England. Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet, England, 2019. 2019

[3] Cancer Research UK. Overweight and obesity statistics. 2015

[4] McManus, KD. Why keep a food diary. Harvard Health Publishing. 2019

[5] Hollis, JF. Weight loss during the intensive intervention phase of weight-loss maintenance trial. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2008

[6] McArdle, P. Losing weight Safely. Bupa UK. 2017

[7] Jain, SS. Et al. Evaluation of efficacy and safety of orlistat in obese patients. Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. 2011

What’s Stopping You From Losing Weight?

Posted Thursday 08 August 2019 10:38 by Tim Deakin in Weight loss

weight loss pitfalls

Obesity is one of the leading preventable causes of ill health and death in the UK. Worldwide, obesity rates have almost tripled since 1975, to the point where more than a third (39%) of adults aged 18 years and over are now overweight.[1]

In the UK alone, 29% of adults are classified as obese, and 20% of children aged 10-11 are also classified as obese.[2] What’s more, 62% of UK adults are classed as overweight.[3]

These are the kinds of numbers which show us just how important weight loss is. Despite often being thought of as an aesthetic pursuit, losing weight is an important health goal when it comes to shedding excess fat and enjoying an all-round healthier lifestyle. So why do so many of us finding losing weight so hard?

The common pitfalls of weight loss

Obesity is the UK’s biggest cause of cancer after smoking.[4] Just some of the health problems associated with obesity include hypertension, type 2 diabetes, heart disease gastroesophageal reflux, degenerative arthritis, skin infections, sleep conditions and infertility.[5]

But there are causes, as well as consequences, of obesity which should be taken into account if you’re hoping to reach a healthier body weight.

The way you choose to tackle weight loss will be a huge factor in the success of your undertaking. While we can often be drawn in by crash diets offering instant results, the best way to achieve long-term health benefits from weight control is through regular exercise and a healthy mixed diet. Not seeing the results of your efforts instantly is one of the most common reasons why we give up on a promise to be healthier. We want to see a fast turnaround, but it’s important to remember that living healthily is a lifelong commitment, and results come with time.

Mental health is another key weight management factor which is often swept under the rug. Not only can conditions like depression and anxiety make weight gain more likely, but they can also make it harder to shed excess weight, due to a lack of motivation and focus. Research has found a strong link between obesity and mental health conditions like depression. In fact, one study by The University of Exeter, King’s College London and the University of South Australia Cancer Research Institute found that obese individuals had a 45% higher chance of having depression.[6] This relationship also works vice versa — those with depression have been found to be more likely of developing obesity.

Your support system, friends and lifestyle are all further factors which can either help or hinder weight management. Without people to rely on, weight loss can become a difficult undertaking. You should also make your environments supportive of your efforts, not detrimental to them. So make sure you remove any temptingly unhealthy food and drink items from your kitchen and work desk.

When tackled from the right perspective, weight loss can be both accessible and enjoyable

Exercise and diet are the twin pillars of successful weight loss, and both can be rewarding and even fun.

Cardio-focused exercises like running, swimming and cycling can help with weight loss, but it’s important not to get stuck in a rut with exercise. Changing things up or finding something you love enough to do regularly will help you stick to your goals and see them through. Similarly, it’s important to keep in mind that a healthy diet doesn’t have to be a boring or an unsatisfactory one. Educate yourself on a range of healthy meals so that you’re not eating the same things day in day out.

Simple lifestyle changes can make a big impact, such as weighing yourself regularly, taking the stairs instead of the lift or switching white bread and rice for wholegrain alternatives.[7] Remember, every little bit of effort helps.

Medications such as Mysimba, Saxenda and Xenical have been tried and tested for their safety and effectiveness, helping to make achieving a healthy bodyweight less of a chore. These weight loss medications are available here at Express Pharmacy. And if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact one of our expert pharmacists using our discreet Live Chat service.

[1] World Health Organisation. Obesity and overweight. 2017.

[2] NHS UK. Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet, England. 2019.

[3] Cancer Research UK. Overweight and obesity statistics. 2019

[4] Cancer Research UK. Overweight and obesity statistics. 2019

[5] Royal College of Nursing. Obesity. 2019.

[6] Tyrrell, J. et al. Using genetics to understand the causal influence of higher BMI on depression. International Journal of Epidemiology. 2018.

[7] Stanford Healthcare. Obesity Prevention. 2019.


health style care on Monday 02 September 2019 14:07

Thank you for the article,you are an inspiration to us all.Here's a great way i found to lose weight.I hope it helps some others: