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Ephedra Weight Loss Pills
Health Dangers of Ma Huang
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Ephedra in Weight Loss Pills

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Ephedra, also known as ma huang, is a strong stimulant found in popular "herbal phen-fen" weight loss pills. Ephedra can be very damaging to the body, especially when abused. When taken regularly in weight loss supplements, your body can stay in an unnaturally high gear and there is risk for heart palpitations, heart attacks, and strokes.

FDA Warning About Ephedra Labels and Dosage Levels
The FDA urges everyone to consult with a doctor before trying any ephedra weight loss supplement and experts advise against using any weight-loss pills that contain the herb. If you do, check the labels to make sure you don't get more than 8 milligrams of the drug ephedrine in any 6 hour period, and don't take any ephedra product for more than a week. You should avoid ephedra completely if you have hypertension, heart trouble, kidney disease, neurologic disorders, diabetes, or an overactive thyroid gland, or if you're pregnant or nursing.

Finally, the FDA warns against "herbal" supplements containing caffeine and ephedrine. Any weight loss supplements with these twin ingredients the FDA considers a "deadly combination."

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