The market for weight loss supplements has exploded over the past couple of decades, as millions of Americans look for an easy fix for poor diet, lack of exercise and other health problems linked to weight problems.
Not all weight loss supplements work for everyone and, while many are useless, some are actually dangerous to your health.
A couple years ago the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued consumer warnings for three brands of weight loss supplements, because they contain an amphetamine-like drug called sibutramine. According to the FDA, sibutramine is an appetite suppressant drug that was withdrawn from the U.S. market several years ago because of dangerous side effects.
Sibutramine is a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, structurally related to amphetamines, which can increase cardiovascular events and strokes. Sibutramine has already been withdrawn from the market in countries all over the world, including Australia, Canada, China, the European Union (EU), Hong Kong, India, Mexico, New Zealand, Thailand and the United Kingdom, as well as here in the United States.
Neverthless, this dangerous drug was still available in weight-loss supplements openly being offered on the Internet. The specific products warned about are Japan Hokkaido Slimming Weight Loss Pills, Beautiful Slim Body, and Best Share Green Coffee: Brazilian Slimming Coffee.
One only has to recall the media storm in the mid-1990s surrounding the weight loss supplements nick-named “fen-phen”, arguably the most dangerous weight loss supplements ever sold as such. Fen-phen, a marketing nickname for supplements containing the drugs fenfluramine and phentermine (both similar to sibutramine) killed numerous people and left hundreds more with damaged heart valves. More than 50,000 law suits and more than $20 billion in legal settlements are still on-going. The good news is that there are numerous weight loss supplements that have been tested and found not only safe but effective. Natural Standard, a group comprised of physicians interested in integrative medicine, has published information about several of these, including mango seed fiber, whey protein, conjugated linolenic acid (CLA), chitosan, hydroxycitric acid (HCA), beta glucan and glucomannan.
No one should rush out and start taking weight loss supplements without first understanding how they work, and what effect they might have on different health situations. Also, weight problems – weight gain and inability to lose weight – can be caused by a number of underlying health problems. Before taking any weight loss supplement, consult your natural health care practitioner for a full evaluation and treatment plan.
Dr. Bradley Shapero has been helping people safely lose weight for over 25 years. We use natural products most of which are naturally grown and organic. Our program safely helps balance body chemistry helping balance blood sugar, cholesterol, blood lipids, etc. Our patients average 7-9 pounds of body fat loss in the first week. If you have a personal goal to lose weight we can help.
Source: Natural Standard, November 2021, http://naturalstandard.com/news/news201211011.asp
Yours for Better Health, Dr. Shapero
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