Summer is just around the corner and most people will be looking for ways to look their best for bikini season. But how far would you go? And what dangers would you risk for a killer beach body? There is a growing trend with young women and men who are reaching for diet and slimming aids to help melt away the pounds. But does anyone really know what they are taking? Recently it has come to my attention that the number of people taking slimming aids is on the increase and many have died in the process.
Eloise Parry, a 21-year-old student from Shrewsbury, died after taking an accidental overdose of slimming tablets which contained a banned substance, dinitrophenol or DNP. Dinitrophenol is banned in the UK for human consumption but not illegal. But despite knowing this, many people still take it as part of their fitness routine to burn off fat and speed up their metabolism. Eloise had been taking the slimming tablets for some time and been to her local hospital four times in three weeks. On the day she died, she took 8 tablets and a short time later felt unwell. She took herself to A&E for medical treatment but had no idea that there was no treatment for DNP poisoning. This meant that her death would follow just hours later as her body temperature shot up and she was boiled alive from the inside.
Dangers- DNP Poisoning
This is not an isolated incident with DNP poisoning either. In 2008 a young woman was found dead in a freezing bath in South-London because of DNP. Selena Walrond was 26 years old when she bought the pills online and when she started overheating, she tried to bring her body temperature down with a cold bath. But the trail of death from these tablets doesn’t end there. In 2012 Sean Cleathero died within hours of taking DNP mixed with water in his local gym. In 2013, Sarah Houston, died from taking the pills. And only a few months later DNP claimed it’s youngest victim, 18-year-old Chris Mapletroft. In the aftermath of these deaths, and only a couple of days after Eloise died, other families were told it wasn’t illegal. Because the drugs did not have any psychoactive properties it does not fall under the existing laws.
DNP is a synthetic chemical used in fertilisers and was also used in explosives. Although you can’t legally buy it as a slimming pill in the UK, it can be bought in the UK as a pesticide. One of the problems with trying to prevent people from taking it is not the side effects. This is a very efficient way of losing weight. Some people calm that they have lost between 12lb to 14lb within 8 days of taking them. In the 1930’s it was marketed as a slimming pill but was taken off the market after a string of deaths and illness.
Side effects of DNP poisoning include fever, dehydration, nausea, excessive sweating, dizziness and rapid or irregular heartbeat, this combination of these can lead to coma and death. You can read more about the warning signs on the NHS Choices website. Although this is not sold over the counter in pharmacies it is easily brought over the internet. Many experts are calling for people to stop using the internet and to get their slimming tablets from a pharmacy where the pills are more tightly regulated. But does that make them any safer?
Dangers- Raspberry Ketones
Cara Reynolds was 24 years old when died after taking a fatal dose of Raspberry Ketones. These pills can be brought in any pharmacy in the UK or online from retailers such as Amazon. Each tablet has more caffeine than four tins of Red Bull which can induce heart palpitations and lead to cardiac arrest. Cara had taken the fatal dose after breaking up with her boyfriend of a year and all attempts to revive her failed. The doctors attempted to revive her 44 times before they gave up. Raspberry Ketones are marketed as a “natural” weight loss aid but double-blind studies have failed to back this claim up. In America the pills have not been approved by the FDA for human consumption. there have been a few studies on rats but unless you are a rat wanting to slim down, the studies don’t apply to you. Because there are no studies avaiable, no-one is sure what the safe dose is of raspberry ketones.
Dangers- Killer Slimming Pills
I am no health expert but I know when something should be avoided like the plague. If it seems too good to be true then it probably is and these quick fixes for losing weight are not the way forward. Many are unregulated, untested, and sometimes they contain things that you wouldn’t believe. Some of these pills that can be found online contain talc, cement powder, or rat poison. Plus the levels of the active ingredients are at dangerous levels. Although these ingredients are themselves legal, they are at dangerous levels. This will damage the internal organs and in some circumstances lead to death. My advice, step away from the pills. I want you guys to stay healthy and alive.