'Herbal Slimming Pills' May Contain Banned Substances Warns MHRA
Recently, the government agency the MHRA has received a number of warnings from overseas medicines regulatory agencies about herbal slimming pills and teas, many of which contain undeclared pharmaceuticals such as sibutramine. Sibutramine was a prescription only medicine (POM) previously available in the UK until its marketing authorisation was withdrawn in January 2010 following a warning from the European Medicines Agency that it increased the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
The MHRA regularly investigated cases where unlicensed 'herbal' slimming aids are presented as '100% natural', 'safe with no side effects' and offering an effective method for rapid weight loss. Often these products are found to illegally contain undeclared pharmaceuticals, banned or toxic ingredients and as such pose a serious risk to consumer health. Consumers should always seek medical advice before taking slimming products.