FDA recalls herbal weight loss drugs containing banned Meridia ingredient

by Charles Miller

According to the FDA, Bethel Nutritional Consulting, Inc., New York, NY, is voluntarily recalling Quick Thin and Bethel Advance to the consumer level. Bethel 30 green capsules, Quick Thin gold capsules, and Bethel Advance white capsules are marketed as a natural herb for weight loss. The products have been found by the FDA to contain Sibutramine and Phenolphthalein.

Sibutramine—which was marketed under the brand name Meridia—is a controlled substance that was removed from the market in October 2010 for safety reasons. The FDA has not approved Bethel 30, Quick Thin, and Bethel Advance as drugs; therefore the safety and effectiveness of these products are unknown.

These products may pose a threat to consumers because Sibutramine is known to substantially increase blood pressure and/or pulse rate in some patients and may present a significant risk for patients with a history of coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, arrhythmias or stroke. The product may also interact, in life-threatening ways, with other medications a consumer may be taking.

Phenolphthalein may present health risks that could include potentially serious gastrointestinal disturbances, irregular heartbeat, muscle cramps, and cancer with long term use.

Consumers should not consume Bethel 30, Bethel Advance, and Quick Thin Herb Supplements and should return the products immediately to the place of purchase.

In similar news, CTV Best Group has also announced a voluntary nationwide recall of all lots of dietary supplement products distributed by the company under the names BEST SLIM 40 Pills. Testing by the FDA revealed the presence of Sibutramine in Best Slim. As mentioned above, Sibutramine was removed from the U.S. market in October 2010 for safety reasons, making Best Slim an unapproved new drug.

Customers with stock of the recalled product should destroy it or return for a refund. Consumers who have the recalled product in their possession should stop using the products immediately.

More information about both of these recalls can be found in the FDA website.

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Michael Heygood, James Craig Orr, Jr. and Eric Pearson were selected to the Super Lawyers List, a Thomson Reuters publication, for the years 2003 through 2013.