U.N. Study: Brazilians Worst Abusers of Diet Pills


BRASILIA - Brazilians are the world's worst abusers of diet pills and the biggest producers of two potentially dangerous weight-loss drugs, according to a study by the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB).

According to the study, the per-capital consumption of anorectics, or diet drugs, is almost forty percent higher in Brazil than in the United States.

Rounding out the top five are: Argentina, South Korea, the United States and Singapore.

According to INCB President, Philip Emafo, "Anorectics are being used indiscriminately to feed the slimming obsession that affects some societies. Effective intervention by local competent authorities is a must."

The INCB study was issued only three months after the death of 21-year-old Brazilian model Ana Carolina Resto, who died of complications from the eating disorder anorexia.  Her death shocked Brazilians and renewed a global debate over the ethics of using super-slim models in the fashion industry.

Super slim is considered to be fashionable in Brazil, which is known for its sexuality and fashionably non-existent swimwear.  Many top models come from Brazil, including super-model Gisele Bundchen, whose international success has inspired many young teens from all classes to be super slim. 
Resto weighed just 88 pounds (40 kg), the normal body weight for a 12-year-old, when she died. Her death followed the collapse and fatal heart failure of Uruguayan supermodel Luisel Ramos during a fashion show in Montevideo.

The INCB said Brazil was the world's largest producer of two of the most widely used anorectics, fenproporex and amfepramone, which are widely used in Brazil. Anorectics can cause panic, aggression, hallucinations, convulsions, coma and death when used to excess.

Last year, the U.S. FDA warned consumers to avoid the Brazilian diet pills Herb thin and Emagrece Sim, after they were found to contain certain controlled substances, including the active ingredient in the anti-depressant Prozac.


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