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Orlistat works by blocking the absorption of fats from the meals you consume. The active ingredient in this medicine is orlistat, which inhibits the action of an enzyme called lipase (produced primarily by the pancreas). Lipase breaks down the fats in the food and aids their absorption. So when lipase activity is inhibited, fats cannot be absorbed by the body and are excreted as such in the stools. Orlistat blocks the absorption of fats by as much as 25% fat from the meal. This significantly limits the calorific intake of the body and aids in weight loss.