Medway Council’s Trading Standards team are urging local businesses and residents to be extra careful when buying food supplements that claim to burn fat.

Across the country a number of deaths have been connected with the consumption of supplements containing 2,4 Dinitrophenol, sometimes referred to as ‘DNP’. This is a product unfit for human consumption and should not be sold as food.

However, it is available online and has been found being sold under the counter at some gyms in other parts of the UK.

Now, Medway Trading Standards Officers are visiting local gyms to work with those running them – so that they are aware of the dangers – and to make sure this dangerous product isn’t available here. There is no evidence that it is being sold in Medway.

Cllr Peter Hicks, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Customer Contact, said: “People should take care and check the ingredients of any food supplement they might buy before they consume it.

“We are urging all gym owners and food supplement stores to check their product labelling and not to supply imported supplements that may contain DNP.

“Equally, we would like to make sure members of the public are aware of the dangers of buying these supplements on the internet.”
The council is asking residents to come forward with any information about the sale of these products, which may be labelled with an ingredient called DNP or Dinitrophenol.

The products are predominantly aimed at body builders, but are also targeted at those who wish to lose weight.
The Food Standards Agency has already warned that these supplements are harmful and poisoning from Dinitrophenol can cause a number of symptoms. These can include:
• Fever
• Dehydration
• Nausea
• Vomiting
• Flushed skin
• Sweating
• Dizziness
• Headaches
• Rapid respiration/ Irregular heartbeat, possibly leading to coma and death, depending on the amount consumed.
Consuming lower amounts over longer periods of time could also lead to cataracts or skin lesions, and affect the heart, blood and nervous system.
Rod Ainsworth, the Director of Regulatory and Legal Strategy at the Food Standards Agency, said: “It’s really important that people understand quite how dangerous DNP is.

“We have been working hard to raise awareness of the dangers and to encourage people to let us know if they are sold products containing this chemical.

“If anyone is offered DNP they should not take it.”

If you have any information or concerns about these dangerous supplements containing Dinitrophenol please contact the Trading Standards team on 08454 040506.