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Products found to contain undeclared medicines

Singapore: Consumer experienced palpitations and mood swings after taking Bobba Fitz: HSA tested product to contain banned substance sibutramine
The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) is alerting members of the public not to purchase or consume Bobba Fitz and Bobba Toxx, which are marketed as weight loss products. Bobba Fitz is labelled to contain natural ingredients such as whey protein, cocoa powder and Garcinia Cambogia (a fruit-derived ingredient), but HSA tested that it contained the banned substance sibutramine which can cause serious adverse effects. Bobba Fitz is often sold in a set with another product, Bobba Toxx, which was tested by HSA to contain a laxative (sennosides) at about 4 times the usual dose. Both products are packaged in boxes of 10 powder sachets.

The products were sold on local e-commerce and social media platforms. HSA had worked with various platform administrators to promptly remove the affected listings and issue warnings to the respective sellers.

A woman experienced palpitations and mood swings after consuming Bobba Fitz and Bobba Toxx. She has since stopped taking both products and the adverse effects have subsided. If she had continued to consume them, the adverse effects would likely have worsened.

Sibutramine has been banned since 2010 due to an increased risk of heart attack and strokes. It was previously a prescription-only weight loss medicine in Singapore. Other serious adverse effects reported by consumers who took products adulterated with sibutramine include insomnia, hallucinations and hearing voices. In 2019, a consumer experienced extremely fast heart rate and became unconscious. She was resuscitated and suffered debilitating consequences requiring implantation with a defibrillator (a medical device to help her heart to function).

Sennoside is a laxative that is used for the relief of constipation. When consumed at high levels, it can cause adverse effects such as cramping, diarrhoea and excessive loss of water and essential minerals. Prolonged use may cause chronic constipation, fluid and electrolyte abnormalities, bloating and abdominal pain.

Consumers are advised to stop taking Bobba Fitz and Bobba Toxx immediately and consult a doctor if they feel unwell or are concerned about their health.

Please refer to the following website in HSA for details:

In Hong Kong, the above products are not registered pharmaceutical products.

Ends/Tuesday, Mar 2, 2021
Issued at HKT 16:00