TOP-5 appetite suppressants in Australia

Kathryn Bolton

Kathryn Bolton

APD, Anutr, Diabets, IBS

Kathryn Bolton is a dietitian practitioner. She helps people who care about their health and weight to eat better without saving on pleasure! She provides professional advice on healthy eating. The focus is on nutrition for people with diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome and other diseases. Bachelor’s degree from Queensland University of Technology (Nutrition and Dietetics), member of the Society for Australian Independent Dietitian-Nutritionists (AIDNSoc) and the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA).
, reviewed by
– Updated February 21, 2022

Embarking on a weight loss journey often involves navigating through a myriad of dietary choices, fitness routines, and weight management aids. Among the latter, appetite suppressants emerge as a potentially valuable tool, but their range and implications can sometimes be overwhelming. This article aims to shed light on this area by providing detailed reviews of the top appetite suppressants available. We delve into their efficacy, benefits, potential side effects, and user experiences, thereby equipping you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions. Our goal is to support your weight loss journey, making it as effective, safe, and manageable as possible.

1. Phentermine (Duromine, Metermine)

Phentermine is a prescription medication extensively used for short-term weight management in Australia. As an appetite suppressant, Phentermine works by stimulating the release of brain chemicals that manipulate hunger signals, reducing cravings and promoting a feeling of satiety.

According to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), Phentermine is typically reserved for individuals with a BMI over 30, or 27 with comorbidities, and has demonstrated significant weight loss results when combined with lifestyle modifications.

Clinical trials show that individuals using Phentermine can lose up to 10% more weight than those relying on diet and exercise alone. However, it’s crucial to note that Phentermine is a short-term solution and requires medical supervision due to potential side effects.

2. Orlistat (Xenical)

Orlistat, sold under the brand name Xenical, is another effective appetite suppressant. However, unlike others on this list, Orlistat operates in the digestive system, preventing the absorption of approximately one-third of the fat from the food you eat.

In clinical trials, patients taking Orlistat achieved 5-10% weight loss over 12 months compared to those on a placebo. The TGA approves Orlistat for long-term use, and while it’s available over the counter, professional medical advice should be sought for optimal results and management of potential side effects.

3. Liraglutide (Saxenda)

Liraglutide, marketed as Saxenda, is a once-daily injectable medication initially developed for managing type 2 diabetes but has shown effectiveness in weight management. Liraglutide works by mimicking a natural hormone, GLP-1, that controls appetite, resulting in a reduced desire to eat.

Clinical trials demonstrate that Liraglutide, combined with a calorie-controlled diet and increased physical activity, can help people lose 5-10% of their body weight within a year. The TGA notes that Liraglutide should be used under strict medical supervision due to potential side effects.

4. Semaglutide (Ozempic)

Semaglutide, or Ozempic, is another GLP-1 receptor agonist, similar to Liraglutide. It suppresses appetite and slows gastric emptying, which can lead to significant weight loss.

Clinical trials for Semaglutide have shown promising results, with patients experiencing an average weight loss of 5-10% over 52 weeks.

5. Topiramate (Topamax)

Topiramate, or Topamax, is primarily an antiepileptic medication, but it has demonstrated efficacy as an appetite suppressant and weight loss aid. It’s believed to work by enhancing the activity of neurotransmitters in the brain, reducing appetite, and increasing satiety.

While there’s less quantifiable data regarding weight loss percentages with Topiramate, studies have shown it to be effective, particularly in individuals with binge eating disorders or bulimia nervosa. It’s often used off-label for weight loss and should be used under medical supervision due to potential side effects.


Navigating the world of appetite suppressants can be daunting, but understanding key drugs like Phentermine (Duromine, Metermine), Orlistat (Xenical), Liraglutide (Saxenda), Semaglutide (Ozempic), and Topiramate (Topamax) provides insight into how each can benefit weight loss journeys. Though each has distinct advantages, potential side effects also require careful consideration. Ultimately, the right appetite suppressant depends on individual health profiles, lifestyle habits, and weight loss goals, warranting consultation with a healthcare provider.


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