Alli, weight loss pill, unpopular among students

By Eleanor Nagle

There is nothing easier at McDaniel College than gaining 20 pounds in less than a month.

Just look at the cafeteria whose tastiest foods are pizza and chicken tenders and whose salad bar is often grey instead of green. Enter the allure of the diet pill.

Recently a weight loss pill, Alli was introduced. Instead of being shunned by doctors and the FDA like most other diet pills, Alli is FDA approved.

Alli can help increase weight loss by 50% if you work hard and follow the specific plan designed for users of the drug, according to the official website. When taking Alli you still need to exercise and eat healthy, just as you would without the drug. Alli is just a booster to enhance the weight loss you would experience anyway.

“It’s more than just a pill. It’s an innovative weight loss program,” says the Alli website.

Alli’s active ingredient attaches to natural enzymes in the digestive system and stops the absorption of roughly 25% of the fat you ingest.

The side effects of Alli, however, are pretty big. Because undigested fat cannot be absorbed, it “passes through the body naturally,” says the website. The problem is that ‘passing through’ actually means more frequent bowel movements that may be difficult to control. In other words, you could possible soil yourself if you eat more than the suggested amount of fat, which is 15 grams per meal.

Alli is available over the counter, meaning that a doctor doesn’t need to prescribe it.

“I think it’s something they should discuss with their doctor, rather than just curing it through a fad diet that no one knows the long-term effects of,” said sophomore Liz Eanes.

Though advertising for the pill is everywhere it can be vague. Some people don’t even realize it’s a pill.

“It’s a pill? Oh my God. No,” sophomore Rachel Held replied when asked if she would ever take Alli.

For more information, check out Alli’s website at