Joint action is first step in halting sale of the products
Lowcarbfriends, a popular lowcarb bulletin board, established a support forum for the HCG diet about a year ago. This coincided with Netrition, the company that owns Lowcarbfriends, starting to sell the homeopathic hhCG drops and pellets.
Netrition’s response to the FDA/FTC action was to declare:
Netrition has not been contacted by the FDA but will comply with all FDA rules and regulations. Therefore, we are removing all marketing text from all of the HCG products that we sell.
As of this moment, we will continue to sell HCG products but be advised that HCG products could be taken off the market at any time. If this is a concern to you, you may want to stock up as soon as possible.
Now, I’m sure that FDA and FTC know that the actual drops and pellets are harmless as they don’t actually contain any HCG. However,
The labeling for the “homeopathic” HCG products states that each product should be taken in conjunction with a very low calorie diet. There is no substantial evidence HCG increases weight loss beyond that resulting from the recommended caloric restriction. Consumers on a very low calorie diet are at increased risk for side effects including gallstone formation, electrolyte imbalance, and heart arrhythmias.
The prescribed “very low calorie diet” for hhCG consists of 500 calories of low fat and relatively low carb foods. Considering the controversy that surrounded the Kimkins diet, another starvation diet that was initially also sponsored by Lowcarbfriends, you would think that they would know that such a diet is not healthy. In case you don’t recall, you can read about it on Kimkins Survivors.
Following the HCG forum on Lowcarbfriends over some time, there has been many reports of similar adverse effects as previously reported for Kimkins. The non-existent HCG in the homeopathic hhCG will not protect against damage from an extreme low calorie diet, no matter how much you believe in homeopathy. FDA is asking anybody that has suffered adverse affects due to hhCG use to report it on MedWatch.
While I do not believe that the hhCG drops and pellets do any harm, I find it sad to see how people now rush to “stock up” before they are taken off the market, and the suppliers, like Netrition, take advantage of this panic in order to increase sales.