City Pulse

By Jasmin Guleria

BeautyNews is deeply saddened to hear about the sudden death of Anna Nicole Smith. This article in no way states that her death was caused by diet pills, however it is important to note that the possibility is there. We hope our readers read this article in the spirit in which it was written – as a way to educate, warn, and hopefully prevent severe health complications. Live well.

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39 year old Anna Nicole Smith died Thursday afternoon after being found unresponsive in her Florida hotel room. The cause of her death is still unknown; however a case like this certainly raises the question of whether the use of diet drugs, such as TrimSpa, played a factor in her tragic death.

We live in a society where speed is demanded and the perception of beauty is dangerously skewed. Quick-fixes are our worst enemies, but the results they advertise blind us to the deadly risks they can cause. Tabloid magazines are rampant in the grocery store check-out lines, and many of us rush to them to catch up on what is going on in the lives of Tom, Katie, or Britney. Celebrities are our friends, we know about their professional lives as well as their tumultuous personal lives. We see their weight fluctuations and we wonder how they stay so thin in their fast-paced drama-filled world. So of course, when a celebrity advocates a diet pill, we tend to believe the hype. Why? Because the results are as obvious as oases in a desert.

Diet pills may be some of the more dangerous quick-fix products on the market. Sure, they’re rising in popularity as Paris and Nicole flash their skinny bodies and women want a magic fix to make their bodies thinner than Twiggy’s (ok, well maybe not like Nicole’s, but you get my drift). Some of the many side effects of diet pills are: high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, dizziness, blurred vision, headaches, insomnia, anxiety, depression, and death.

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Earlier this week, the FDA approved the first Over the Counter Diet Drug. The diet pill, which will be sold under the name ‘ALLI’, is a dietary fat blocker which blocks the absorption of one-quarter of any fat consumed. Many patients have already complained of severe side effects. In addition, the pill leads to vitamin deficiencies, which in turn cause dry skin and hair loss.

It is quite bewildering to us that the FDA would approve a drug that puts your body through Chinese water torture. Your body is smarter than you think. Swallowing unnatural substances will shock your body and lead it to a possible meltdown.

TrimSpa, the company that Anna Nicole endorsed, is facing a class-action lawsuit that alleges false claims were made about the pill. In its commercials, TrimSpa claims: “Your high speed dream body diet pill…makes losing 30, 50, even 70 pounds (or however many pounds you need to lose) painless.”

A few years ago in a candid interview, Anna Nicole spoke about how she really lost the weight: “You eat, like, small portions and you do it for, like, two weeks, and also they have a colon cleanser and you’re just, like, on the pot all the time… You lose that weight quickly.”

Treat your body like a temple. It is the only on you have. It is your heart’s home. Weight loss (we’re talking about sustainable, healthy weight loss here) can only be accomplished through hard work and discipline. Go to the gym and get your heart pumping.

Originally published February 2007
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