Warning to Hertfordshire people over potentially fatal slimming products

PUBLISHED: 14:23 04 February 2016 | UPDATED: 14:23 04 February 2016

Young girl measuring her waist

Young girl measuring her waist

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People in Hertfordshire have been warned about potentially fatal slimming products.

Hertfordshire Trading Standards has issued the warning to people tempted by so-called quick fixes which can often be bought relatively cheaply online.

Some slimming products can be extremely dangerous to human health, particularly those that contain a highly toxic ‘fat burning’ substance known as DNP which is an industrial chemical that is not fit for human consumption.

“The signs of acute poisoning can include nausea, vomiting, restlessness, flushed skin, sweating, dizziness, headaches, rapid respiration and irregular heartbeat. In the worst case scenario these products could lead to coma or even death.

Slimming products are often bought online and come in the form of pills, creams or powders. Some of these are illegal or unregulated and it is these that may pose a risk.

Richard Thake, cabinet member for community safety, said: “People will often buy slimming products in good faith but have no real knowledge of what’s contained in them.

“Some of these could potentially endanger your life if you take them and I would urge people to only buy them via reputable retailers and not from unknown suppliers or websites.

“Our Trading Standards team will always investigate any reports of illegal products that are reported to them and seek to prosecute whenever possible.”

Jim McManus, Hertfordshire’s director of public health, said: “There are no real quick fixes to losing weight. Healthy weight loss is about an ongoing lifestyle that includes long-term changes in daily eating and physical activity habits.

“Hertfordshire County Council takes the health of its residents extremely seriously and there is a great deal of support available for those looking for help.”

If anyone is concerned about a slimming product they can contact Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer helpline on 03454 040506.

To find out more about how to lose weight and lead a healthy lifestyle please visit www.hertsdirect.org/healthinherts

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