Health

Diet Pills Land Woman In Mental Hospital, Suit Claims

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

A New Yorker claims that she suffered insomnia after taking diet pills and eventually found herself committed to a mental hospital.

Queens Army Reservist Sainah Theodore, 26, says she took a drug called Natural Lipo X. Unable to sleep, Theodore believes the pills made her delirious.

Her lawyer Brian Pascale says Theodore stopped her car in the middle of a busy intersection, argued with strangers, tore open a screen door to her home, and also stabbed pillows and pictures.

Theodore, a sociology student and emergency room clerk, had to be hospitalized even though she can’t recall any of her bizarre actions.

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“I couldn't believe all of this happened to me. It was a blur. I had no recollection of my behavior,” she told New York Daily News.

She claims the pills were spiked with illegal stimulants.

She filed a lawsuit in Brooklyn Supreme Court Monday against an East New York distributor, the Natural Health Food Center.

According to court papers, Theodore had used the drug previously with no problem, but this time she descended into six days of insomnia.

She bought the pills from Natural Health Food Center in December 2012. By Dec. 19, she was sending aggressive and irrational text messages to her mother. She also told a friend she was hearing voices.

She spent five days in a mental hospital and missed a deployment to Afghanistan.

“Once I came out of the sedation, it was clear to me it was the pill that caused it,” Theodore said.

Lab tests of the pills allegedly found a number of restricted drugs, included a weight-loss stimulant banned by the Food and Drug Administration in 2010.

“It's a black market product, it's an illegal product,” said Marc Ullman, another attorney, who specializes in food and drug litigation.

As many Americans resolve to lose weight in the new year, the Federal Trade Commission fined four companies this month for “deceptive” weight-loss claims, including Sensa and L’Occitane.

“The claims simply aren’t supported by the evidence,” Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Consumer Protection Bureau, said of the weight-loss ads.

Sources: New York Daily News, ABC News