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24 slimming products may cause strokes, heart attacks

THE city's food and drug watchdog today banned the sales of 24 diet products as they contain harmful ingredients that could cause heart attacks and strokes.

The Shanghai Food and Drug Administration said the banned products, mostly capsules, were produced by 12 companies, including Guangzhou-based Kangmeiyuan Biological Technology Ltd which used sibutramine and phenolphthalein.

Sibutramine is likely to increase the risk of strokes and heart attacks, while phenolphthalein may raise blood sugar levels. Under the Chinese law, these can only be used under the guidance of doctors.

Although these chemicals can help reduce body fat, they are likely to cause side effects and life-threatening complications in some extreme cases, said officials.

Following the United States, Canada and the European Union, China also banned slimming products containing sibutramine last year.


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