Manufacturers of "all natural" weight loss pills are secretly lacing them with unsafe prescription drugs, according the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Tainted weight loss products are often labeled as dietary supplements, herbal medicine, alternative medicine, ayurvedic, or homeopathic.
To keep consumers safe from undeclared ingredients, the government agency recently tested various "herbal" dietary supplement pills for weight loss. The agency found some products contained a prescription drug called sibutramine.
In 2010, the FDA found that sibutramine increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Also, sibutramine can cause dangerous side effects when taken simultaneously with common medicine, such as:
- caffeine-containing products including NoDoz, and Vivarin
- medications for depression including Celexa, Lexapro, Prozac, Paxil, Cymbalta, and Effexor
- pain relievers such as aspirin
Sibutramine was subsequently was removed from U.S. market. Unfortunately, some manufacturers of dietary supplements are slipping sibutramine into their products.
"Consumers should avoid products marketed as supplements that claim to have effects similar to prescription drugs," says Michael Levy, director of FDA’s Division of New Drugs and Labeling Compliance. "Consumers should also be wary of products that are marketed through mass e-mails."
Find out which of the latest dietary supplements are laced with potentially life-threatening ingredients. See following photos: