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These Supplements Sold Online Have Dangerous Ingredients, FDA Warns

Be wary of these weight loss and male enhancement supplements sold at retailers like Amazon, eBay, and others.
FACT CHECKED BY Faye Brennan
Dietary supplements, vitamins, plate

If you've been purchasing supplements from Amazon or eBay, you might want to reconsider. The Food and Drug Administration published a release on Dec. 17 warning against buying certain supplements from online retailers as they may contain dangerous ingredients.

After purchasing some weight-loss supplements and male-enhancement supplements from retailers like Amazon and eBay, the FDA found they "contain active pharmaceutical ingredients not listed on their labels," which can be seriously damaging to your health. They added that some of these ingredients are found in prescription drugs, and if you're not careful, ingesting these supplements can have severe side effects. (Related: 4 Best Weight Loss Pills and Diet Supplements of 2020: Reviewed by the Experts)

These supplements with dangerous ingredients have been a hot-button topic among the FDA for years, but they're not seeing them become any less common both online and in stores. The FDA has actually asked retailers to take better care in selecting items to sell to the public, as it's to be expected that if they stop carrying supplements with dangerous ingredients, less people would be at risk of harm.

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After purchasing 26 products from Amazon and 25 products from eBay, the FDA ran tests on all the supplements. Results showed about 80% of what they purchased contained "sildenafil, tadalafil, vardenafil, sibutramine, desmethylsibutramine, phenolphthalein and/or fluoxetine," which are all prescription drugs. A running list of all products deemed problematic by the FDA can be found on their tainted products database.

To avoid any of the issues involved with taking supplements with dangerous ingredients, especially for weight loss, you can instead lean on a healthy lifestyle of moderate eating and exercise. Experts have long been discussing the pros and cons of weight-loss supplements, but the main takeaway for losing weight is to instead change your lifestyle more naturally first.

If you're considering supplements for any reason, it's best to check with your doctor about your concern first. Together you can decide the best course of action that will be both safe and healthy.

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Hedy Phillips
Hedy is a freelance writer with years of experience covering buzzy food trends, wellness, and weight loss. Read more
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