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Dangers of diet pills for teens

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TWC News: Dangers of diet pills for teens
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These days, kids are concerned with their weight at a younger age, and the abundance of over-the-counter diet pills advertising a fast and easy solution to weight loss can be enticing to teens looking to drop weight quickly. These products, however, can have dangerous consequences.

Drugs like Hydroxycut and Xenadrine that advertise rapid weight loss contain caffeine, which can be addictive, and some products labeled "holistic" contain guarana, a substance that mimics the effects of caffeine and can be harmful to the body. Other side effects of these diet pills include rapid heart beat, agitation, sleep disturbances, hair loss and headaches.

Pharmacist Paul Flatley said these products can be abused by kids looking for fast results.

"We're talking about a drug that has an abuse potential because if they're starting to see results, they might want results quicker... the logic of this is that 'If I take more of this, I might see a quicker onset of my weight loss,'" pharmacist Paul Flatley said.

As kids grow older, the issue of dieting follows, and using these products can become costly -- Americans spend more than $40 billion on diet-related products each year.

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