A young woman from Edinburgh, Scotland, who worked in the health industry reportedly suffered a heart attack and died after overdosing on raspberry ketone diet pills.
Cara Reynolds, 24, who worked as a support nurse, had reportedly just broken up with her fiancé of one year and was broken-hearted when she decided to buy Forza raspberry ketone "natural" supplements through Amazon to help her lose weight, reports the Daily Mail. The product reportedly contains as much caffeine as 225 cans of Red Bull, and Reynolds – who was a size 10 – had taken them before, but had vowed to stop.
“She’s only taken the recommended amount of pills but was scared because her heart was going ten to the dozen,” her father, Michael, said.
After her breakup, however, Reynolds became more concerned with her weight, according to her father, and took more pills. Her parents reportedly found her in her bedroom suffering from a seizure. She died at the hospital from a cardiovascular collapse caused by a massive caffeine overdose, reports news.com.au.
According to a report submitted to the British Medical Journal, raspberry ketones are naturally occurring chemical compounds that are promoted as having "fat-burning" properties, but there is little evidence for this claim.
“Many slimming products have concentrations of up to 250mg of caffeine per tablet which is equivalent to more than four cans of Red Bull or seven cans of Coca Cola,” reads the report. “In Cara’s case, the cause of death was caffeine toxicity with a blood level of caffeine per litre which is within the fatal range.”
A representative for Forza stated the following after the tragedy: “This is a tragic and understandably upsetting situation for her family and friends, but it could have been effected through the misuse of any supplement.
“Forza products meet vigorous health and safety standards and have clear labelling and directions for safe usage. The facts surrounding this incident are not yet wholly clear, but our client entirely rejects any implication that an inherent safety issue with its products is responsible.”