Two OTC Diet Supplements Contain Dangerous Drugs, Says FDA

Two OTC Diet Supplements Contain Dangerous Drugs, Says FDA
Image: Pixabay
July 3, 2015

Two over-the-counter diet supplements contained unapproved prescription medication, says the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Akttive and ZeroXtreme capsules contain medications that can elevate blood pressures to dangerous levels and have been pulled from the market for safety reasons.

The supplements boast natural ingredients like green tea extract, ginseng, and cassia seed, but actually contain sibutramine and desmethylsibutramine. Akttive also contains phenolphthalein.

Sibutramine is a controlled substance that was removed from the market in 2010 because it is known to substantially increase blood pressure and pulse rate in some people. The chemical poses a significant risk for patients who have a history of heart problems and it can have life-threatening interactions with other medications.

Desmethylsibutramine is a substance structurally similar to sibutramine.

Studies have shown that phenolphthalein presents a cancer-causing risk and isn't used in any FDA-approved drug in the United States.

Health care professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of this product to FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program.