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A breakthrough diet pill that attacks cravings and appetite.

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While most diet pills are a dime a dozen, once in awhile a promising weight loss pill hits the market that causes even the most skeptical of medical professionals to stop and listen. Contrave is one such product.

Developed by Orexigen Therapeutics, Contrave is actually the combination of two different drugs: The antidepressant medication, buproprion, or Wellbutrin, and the drug naltrexone, which is used to treat alcohol and opiate addiction.

Rather than working to block fat or starches like many prescribed diet pills do, Contrave unleashes its power on the brain, where it works to quell cravings in the brain's highly complex behavior-reward center, and also to temper appetite.

In late-stage clinical trials, Contrave has fared much better than the FDA's standards for improving weight loss, exceeding by five percent. Rather, those who took Contrave while also following a diet and exercise program lost between nine and 15 percent of their body weight while those who did not lost just about five percent of their body weight.

Contrave has also shown few side effects and notably absent are mental health and uncomfortable physical side effects that often come from taking weight loss pills. In fact, those studied showed an improved quality of life while taking the pill.

Contrave is being slated as a chronic diet pill; if you take it and lose weight you will have to continue to take it in order to maintain lost weight. One of the downfalls with most of the diet pills on the market, whether or not they require a prescription, is that once you stop taking them, weight is easily regained. Since Contrave specifically acts on the centers of the brain that govern overeating behaviors and craving desires, there is hope that its ability to suppress these processes will lead to long-term weight loss.

As of July 2009, Orexigen Therapeutics is seeking FDA approval. When and if Contrave is approved for consumer use, it will require a prescription from a medical professional.

  • Shows promise in late-stage clinical trials
  • Exceeding FDA standards in trials
  • Cocktail-like therapy may be the benchmark for future diet pills
  • Few side effects
  • Weight loss is greater than placebo alone
  • If approved, requires a prescription
  • May need to take diet pill chronically
  • Weight loss advantage is not that significant
  • Not a magic solution to healthy eating behaviors and to a healthy weight
  • Still awaiting FDA approval

Contrave is a breakthrough weight loss drug because it contains both buproprion and naltrexone.

Buprupion is also known as the branded prescription drug Wellbutrin, a quality anti-depressant.

Naltrexone is a prescription drug used to treat addiction, in cases such as smoking, alcohol or even opiates.


Contrave will likely be taken daily. Since the drug is awaiting FDA approval, precise dosage instructions are not yet available.


A low-fat and low-calorie diet and regular exercise program is followed while taking Contrave. Since this drug does not act on the stomach, there are currently no specific foods that need to be avoided or a particular style of eating that needs to be followed while taking it.


Contrave is a new weight loss pill that shows promise for being able to act on the brain's pathways that control cravings and appetite. This new kind of drug, which combines two different kinds of psychopharmaceuticals, is predicted to be the wave of the future for diet pills.

Contrave is still awaiting FDA approval.

Common Misspellings

contrav, contreve, contrive, contrave diet, contrave diet pill, wellbutrin diet pill, crave diet pills, cuntrave, contreav

Related Diets: Alli, Orlistat, Xenical

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(Page 1 of 6, 112 total comments)


Started taking Contrave a week ago...i have lost 2 pounds...with no exercise...just haven't really wanted to eat...the first couple of days i had really bad headaches but i haven't had any other side effects(thank goodness) i start taking 1:1 so hopefully i don't feel so hungry in the far i have been happy...usually i would have a monster a day to keep me goin...i dont need to drink them anymore taking contrave i have more energy now...have a harder time winding down at night but i don't have bad dreams...all in all not too bad i would recommend contrave....every med has side effects these days you have to try it to know for sure...

posted Nov 19th, 2015 5:19 pm


Has anyone that lost a lot of weight stopped taking Contrave and have kept of the weight lost?

posted Nov 11th, 2015 2:31 pm


I have been on Contrave for 5 weeks. The first week was really bad with wanting to throw up and I could not concentrate at work. I felt like I was high on drugs. I found that I have to eat while taking the pills and I have to eat something throughout the day, even if its a couple grapes or some nuts. But I am eating less and I feel better now. I have lost 10 lbs so far. I only walk right now but plan to increase my exercise. I hope to lose 30 lbs and I have already lost 50 in the past year with diet and exercise and without medication (I just hit a plateau!).

posted Nov 5th, 2015 3:26 pm

J Win

I have been taking Contrave for about 3 months. During the 1st month, I lost 10 lbs. Over the last 2 months I have lost another 15 lbs. I have had very minimal side effects and it was a mild case of constipation. Taking a small serving of yogart really helped solve that. I am very happy with the results and am hoping to loose 10 more lbs over the next 2 months, to be at the weight I was 25 years ago. The best way to take it is early morning and the second dose around 4-5 in the afternoon. It really helps curve your appetite and make you feel less hungry with smaller portions.

posted Oct 30th, 2015 9:28 pm


I have been taking the full dosage two in the am and two in the pm and once I started this dosage I have had horrible nausea and dizziness. Yes it did help with my cravings and I did eat very little but the side effects were not worth the wight loss. It was effective for the 7 weeks I had been taking the pills I lost 20 lbs but always feeling sick was so not worth it.

posted Oct 28th, 2015 9:45 pm


I have been taking for two months and I haven't lost a pound. Does make me not too interested in food and don't eat a lot but no result.

posted Oct 25th, 2015 12:45 am


I was on contrave for 3 weeks. During the 3 weeks I lost 10lbs. I had to stop taking it because I started getting ringing and vibrating in my ears. Once that went away I was told to just try 1 pill a day and see how it works for me, so thats what I am doing now. Love my results so far!

posted Oct 19th, 2015 3:41 pm


I have been on this since December 28, 2014 and have lost 45 lbs. It definitely helps me control what I eat. I used to be hungry all the time. Now I eat regular and healthy and I added 1/2 hr exercise a day.

posted Oct 12th, 2015 1:03 pm


After taking for a week I lost 4 lbs. The following week gained 5 lbs back with no change in diet or food intake from the first week. Have taken it for a month and haven't lose anything. It does make me have bad dreams at night and made me very constipated.

posted Oct 9th, 2015 2:46 pm


I began taking Contrave over a week ago. The first few days I noticed the effects immediately in that I did not want to eat nor finish my meal. However, the side effects began to come on after the third day. Headaches. Dizziness. Constipation. Rash. Irritability etc. I tried to go to the 2nd stage...and realized that the side effects are not worth it. There really is no magic pill. And it's clear that my doctor thought my desire to lose weight overroad my vertigo, my blood pressure and constipation. Thanks but no thanks. I know some people really want this. And if I had a better tolerance I would sing a different tone, but frankly, if the short term is this rough, I can only imagine what the long term damage is going to be to my body. Remember Phen-Phen wasn't connected to PPH until people started dying.

posted Sep 27th, 2015 2:27 pm


Has anyone had itchy painful hands after taking the 2:2 dose? Contravw

posted Sep 25th, 2015 10:51 pm


I have just started this medication Like most in this post the 1st two days I did not like the way the medication made me feel but I was also taking it on an empty stomach. On the 3rd day I took with food & I feel a lot better. This medication is strong & it takes a few days for your body to adjust. I am on day 8 & I generally eat well I also work out 4 days a week 2 days cardio 2 days weights so I mix them up so I do not get bored. I started @ 175 & a week later I am still the same weight. This new week I am increasing the dosage as it says so I will do one in the am & one in the pm I will keep you posted on any results.

posted Sep 20th, 2015 1:11 pm


Did not stop my hunger or cravings, but allowed me to ignore them. I've been on this over 6 weeks and it kicked in about day 9. Since then I've been easily able to stick to a diet. I also do other compulsive behaviors less.

posted Sep 19th, 2015 12:21 am


I just started week 3. 2 pills in the morning 1 at night. No weight loss. Severe constipation. Diminishes my craving for alcohol. If I have only 2 beers Im extremely tired. It also makes me sort of listless and not interested in anything. Definitely no extra energy. Works well to stop cravings. I only have 15-20 lbs to lose. I will try it for a coupke more weeks and see.

posted Sep 16th, 2015 6:23 pm

sheryl walters

I tried for one month. My Humana insurance won't cover and it is $170.00 a month. Lost only about three pounds. Very little published about this. Don't recommend.

posted Sep 13th, 2015 5:14 pm

S. B

I have been on Contrave for 3 months and have lost and gained the same 4 pounds. I have not been able to take more than the 1 in am and 1 in pm dose bc I feel way to sick when I take 2 pills at a time. I even tried spreading 3 pills out a few hours during the day. I get Car sick like nausea with dizziness. And the thing that bothers me is...If you look at the studies, people were on a 500 (!!) calorie diet which is nothing! Of course people will loose weight on nothing. AND the warnings say do not eat high fat or it will increase your risk of seizures...I was on Wellbutrin for years and never decreased my fat intake and never had a problem with any side effects or seizures, maybe it is the Naltrexone that is the problem with fat but there is no real explanation that I can find, so this makes me wonder if that too is just a ploy to get people to lose more weight while on this drug because they are not eating any fat. I really wanted to like this drug but being so sick I cannot even eat and then when the nausea wears off I eat maybe too much because I feel like I have to eat, like my blood sugar is's just not worth it. And the weight loss has been nil.

posted Sep 12th, 2015 1:12 pm


I took it for 6 months and lost 20lbs. I thought it was great, but I lost the majority of the weight in the first 3 months. I would like to see if I can go on it again it=n the future to hopefully lose the rest I was hoping for.

posted Aug 31st, 2015 1:28 am


Day 2 and feeling great! No cravings and not hungry at all. I'm waiting for my scale and will keep you posted on how I do! 👍

posted Aug 30th, 2015 9:58 pm


I started taking Contrave in February of this year 2015. I had reached 212 lbs. and I was concerned regarding my health. I had no medical problems yet, but both of my parents have high blood pressure and diabetes. Contrave for the most part for me curbs my appetite, but you still have to reduce calories and exercise. My weight lose was slow at first as I hit a plato several times. I was walking faithfully but could not get pass my plato mark. I have actually stopped walking and the weight started falling off me. I quit walking in May and I've dropped 12 pounds since but several inches. I went from a size 18/20 to a size12/14. I am pleased with the result and would recommend it to anyone. I did not and I have not set a goal because if I didn't reach it I didnt want to be disappointed and get discourage and give up. Starting out I wanted to at least lose the 30 pounds I had gained, but I have way exceeded that. My goal is pound per pound, one day at a time. Society would say that I'm over weight. But If I don't lose another pound, it's ok because I am perfectly happy right where I am. I would like to lose 40 more pounds, but that is not a goal I'm reaching for. My goal is to look better, feel better and live a healthy life. I no longer break out in a sweat to shower, or to shave my legs. I hope this helps anyone who is tired of the diets and fads. You don't have to starve your self or only eat a spoon of food. Start by reducing your calories, actually put a serving on your plate, when you feel full stop eating and put your food away. Dont pleasure eat, meaning just because it's there dont eat it, just because it's lunch you dont have to eat but opt for a health snack. I like fruit especially at work. On the days that the Contrave doesn't curb your appetite very well eat your meals sensibly, but drink water. If you dont like water add flavoring. Walmart has some really good water flavoring and not expensive. I wish I could post a pic to show the results. If your just starting don't give up. My daughter helped me so much. On days that I want a cookie or several, she would say 210, 211, 212. Which would remind me that what I was going to eat was not healthy and one was plenty but no more than 2. It's good to have support from family, especially if you have that one person that is brave enough to say dont eat that and start counting your weight back up. I had to tell my family that this was important to me, we always sit down together as a family to eat dinner, there are many evenings that I'm not hungry. So I will fix a glass of water and sit and talk. My family has got use to me not always eating dinner. I'm very satisfied with my results!!

posted Aug 20th, 2015 8:50 pm

Callea Farmer

Been on it for two months. I love it. No cravings. Feel full faster. Rarely exceed 1000 calories per day. Taking full dose. Only side effect is increased sweating but that helps weight loss. Increased activity when weight loss slowed down. That really helped. Gotta move your body. Lost 20 lbs and 4 sizes. First pill that's worked for me. Feel confident I will reach my goal over the next 8 months.

posted Aug 15th, 2015 2:29 pm


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