Danger of diet pills

You may have seen the tragic story of a young girl who died following an overdose of diet pills.

The 21 year old had bought the pills containing a toxic ingredient known as DNP online and took eight tablets. Two pills would have been enough to have had a fatal effect according to experts. So are any weight loss pills really safe? And should we ever trust anything we buy online?

Health experts advise that extreme caution should be taken when purchasing any pills or supplements over the internet or even in health food shops without proper medical advice. Nutritionist Ruth Tongue says ‘Many diet pills or weight loss supplements contain ingredients that will speed up the metabolism, block the absorption of fat, or promote a feeling of fullness. Unfortunately, often the side effects of these supplements can be dangerous and even fatal –  including increased heart rate, overheating and liver or kidney failure.’  

Although the sale of weight loss supplements in Australia is regulated, there is little control over supplements sold online and banned substances are often still easily available.

The advice is to avoid buying any weight loss supplements online and seek advice from a regulated health professional when trying to lose weight. Products promising dramatic rapid weight loss results will be at least a waste of money and at worst a risk to your life.



Written by Ruth Tongue
(MSc Nutrition)