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FDA: Beware Internet Diet Pills

Quiz: If you want to sell prescription-only weight-loss drugs, but want to avoid scrutiny as an Internet pharmacy, what do you do?

Answer: Claim to only sell “herbal” products…and then spike them with the prescription-only chemicals.

In a troubling new trend, some supposedly “herbal” diet pills, ordered mainly online, actually contain prescription substances, as well as cancer-causing agents, the FDA warned today. The FDA’s press release said:

_An FDA analysis found that the undeclared active pharmaceutical ingredients in some of these products include sibutramine (a controlled substance), rimonabant (a drug not approved for marketing in the United States), phenytoin (an anti-seizure medication), and phenolphthalein (a solution used in chemical experiments and a suspected cancer causing agent). Some of the amounts of active pharmaceutical ingredients far exceeded the FDA-recommended levels, putting consumers’ health at risk._

_The health risks posed by these products can be serious; for example, sibutramine, which was found in many of the products, can cause high blood pressure, seizures, tachycardia, palpitations, heart attack or stroke._

Here’s what’s going on: in order to escape classification and regulation as an online pharmacy, a website claims to sell only herbal or natural non-prescription products. But the pills actually contain the active ingredients from prescription drugs.

The FDA said that use of these products should be discontinued, and users should consult a physician immediately.

The tainted weight-loss pills include:

  • Fatloss Slimming
  • 2 Day Diet
  • 3x Slimming Power
  • Japan Lingzhi
  • 24 Hours Diet
  • 5x Imelda Perfect Slimming
  • 3 Day Diet
  • 7 Day Herbal Slim
  • 8 Factor Diet
  • 7 Diet Day/Night Formula
  • 999 Fitness Essence
  • Extrim Plus
  • GMP
  • Imelda Perfect Slim
  • Lida DaiDaihua
  • Miaozi Slim Capsules
  • Perfect Slim
  • Perfect Slim 5x
  • Phyto Shape
  • ProSlim Plus
  • Royal Slimming Formula
  • Slim 3 in 1
  • Slim Express 360
  • Slimtech
  • Somotrim
  • Superslim
  • TripleSlim
  • Zhen de Shou
  • Venom Hyperdrive 3.0

LegitScript does not currently review websites that only claim to be selling herbal products. In light of this news, we are considering whether to list as “unapproved” and “rogue” websites that offer the above products.