Black women take this dangerous weight gain drug to gain weight (2023)

Jahnelle Owusu, a 24-year-oldA college student from Maryland, she has always had a slim figure, with curves that complement her 5'10, 140-pound frame. She has even been sought out for modeling opportunities in the past.

“Being so tall and so skinny, I think I reached my height, like, I don't know, like 12 or something. They have always praised me. They were always complimented when it came to my figure," she told BuzzFeed News. But in 2017, when she started noticing the popularity of women with voluptuous bodies on Instagram, she thought of taking Apetamin weight-gain syrup for the first time.

Manufactured by the Indian pharmaceutical company TIL Healthcare and marketed as an "appetite stimulant", Apetamin has not been sanctioned for safe consumption by the FDA or the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (the UK equivalent of the FDA). Contains cyproheptadine hydrochloride, a sedative antihistamine used for allergies available in the US and UK by prescription only. The MHRA told BuzzFeed News in a statement that Apetamin is not authorized for sale and supply in the UK and that it is investigating a number of allegations.

Instagram remains the most popular place to buy Apetamine online. Prices for a 200-milliliter (6.8-ounce) bottle range from $25 to $40. In a statement to BuzzFeed News, a Facebook company spokesperson said buying and selling prescription or non-medical drugs is strictly against of their policies: just report it so we can investigate and take action.”

Apetamine is so popular online that there are now even imitations. Some vendors have waiting lists and viral images are circulating online that supposedly help people figure out if their bottle is real or fake. TIL Healthcare never came close to selling the Apetamin imitation, despite the growing market for potentially dangerous copies of its syrup.

Tai Ibitoye, a London-based nutritionist and nutrition researcher, is unwavering in her opinion of Apetamin. "I wouldn't recommend it at all," Ibitoye told BuzzFeed News. She expressed concern about the lack of robust research available to allow users to make informed decisions.

“I know a lot of people who take this and see the benefits they want in terms of weight gain,” Ibitoye said. “However, I tell people it's not always about what's on the outside. It's also about what's going on inside." Side effects of Apetamin consumption include joint swelling, drowsiness, vomiting, and blurred vision.

Still, the ubiquity of social media ads for the syrup among black influencers has made the supplement attractive to black women trying to achieve a curvier figure.To the Shadow Roomsyrup promoted in the past and also influencersaaliyah jaymilala milan. (Representatives for Milan and Jay did not respond to BuzzFeed News' request for comment in time for this article to publish.) The Shade Room removed its post promoting Apetamin after BuzzFeed News reached out for comment. An curvy figure has long been touted as the pinnacle of black femininity. But a relentless search for this pattern can be dangerous. And the lack of proper regulation across multiple platforms means that the companies that sell Apetamin continue to prosper at the expense of Black women who appear to be deliberately targeted by marketing.

Although Owusu wasInitially skeptical of the syrup ("I found it on social media and watched some videos about it and I don't think it seemed like a safe product"), she told BuzzFeed News that her decision to take it was "an impulse." .” She said that gaining weight has always been a personal ambition and her arrival at university made her want a "more mature, more feminine" body.

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He managed to buy a bottle at an African food market, and over an eight-week period, he said, he consumed six bottles in total and gained 60 pounds, going from 140 pounds to 200 pounds. But then her feet and ankles started to swell and she started to feel sleepy. "It's not tired like you're tired, she literally puts you to sleep," she said. Her dermatologist has noted hyperpigmentation due to rapid weight gain on her inner thighs, nape of the neck, and underarms.

on a youtubevideoPosted last year, Owusu gave a candid account of his experience with Apetamin, warning subscribers: “This is not a booty-gaining drug; It is a weight gain medication. He said that he would not take the supplement again. “I think after I did my YouTube video, I didn't expect it to go this far, but some people commented on some of the things I tried and brought up a few things. . I think just a few things made me a little worried about taking it again.

Owusu added that he would caution teenagers and anyone "not fully developed" not to take Apetamine.

Tyler Thompson, a 17-year-old high school student from Georgia, used Apetamine because he was embarrassed to weigh109 poundsand wanted to "shine".

"At school you're always going to have goofy bullies and stuff," Thompson said. But he added that his decision to use the supplement "wasn't necessarily because people made fun of me." Thompson said that he wanted to change his appearance, so he started researching online to find a low-maintenance way to gain weight. “I am the type of person who is very lazy. So working out was not for me, not at all,” she said.

Thompson found videos about Apetamine all over YouTube. They were mainly testimonials from people their age who had had good experiences with the syrup. She said he decided to buy a bottle through an Instagram account linked to a YouTube video because she had heard of people being tricked into trying to buy Apetamine. Thompson summed up his experience with the syrup as "trials and tribulations."

He used Apetamin twice and said he instantly started feeling very hungry and ate a lot of junk food. She said that she saw the increase almost instantly, her weight dropped to around 125-130 pounds after drinkingA bottle. "That's what's crazy," Thompson said. “I really only took it for a week and two days.”

She began to worry about the side effects because the drowsiness from the medicine had affected her. “What worried me was how tired she was,” she said. "I'm very active. So for me being so tired, that really took a toll on me and I was like,Wow.”

And while most people complain of losing weight immediately after stopping Apetamin, Thompson said she didn't lose any weight. He currently weighs around 130 pounds and he plans to get it back. Although Thompson only seemed to have mild side effects, several people have complained of more serious side effects on social media and online forums. A former Apetamin user who had lupus said he washospitalized with kidney problemsand advised people curious about taking Apetamin not to.

Bunsie said she went to the doctor a year after the pain got worse. Her doctor also didn't seem to know much about Apetamine and asked her how she had purchased the syrup. Like many people, Bunsie was under the impression that it was a vitamin supplement. His doctor then did some research on the drug and told Bunsie that the syrup tends to be prescribed to malnourished children for short-term use.

Bunsie told us that she stopped taking Apetamin and her pain has decreased. However, when she lost some of the weight she had gained, she started using it again. She thought if she lowered the amount of Apetamine she was taking, she wouldn't feel pain. “I wasn't gaining weight as fast as I started, but I was gaining a little bit,” said Bunsie, who was 130 pounds at the time but wanted to be 150 pounds. But the pain returned and she was forced to stop again.

and 2020case studyby four physicians from the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences investigated symptoms of fatigue, right-sided abdominal discomfort, and jaundice in a 40-year-old woman caused by apetamine use. Doctors point out that the use of the drug combined with alcohol has led to drug-induced autoimmune hepatitis, a liver disease that can be fatal if not treated early.

“Apetamin is not worth destroying your health,” Bunsie said.

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even with everyoneTroubling side effects, Roxanne Ramsey of Baltimore swears by Apetamin. She acknowledges that this is key to her weight-gain journey and critical to reaching her 115-pound goal. Ramsey uses the supplement as part of a larger fitness regimen that includes working out and consuming protein shakes. Like so many others, she discovered Apetamin online after seeing Instagram accounts promising thicker thighs, wider hips, and an enviable butt.

The 30-year-old said she first came across the drug on Instagram on a page called Apetamin Gains in 2018. “They were posting, you know, the Fashion Nova models and the girls probably having surgery. They would post these types of images and say that Apetamine did this,” she said.

"I've always weighed 87 pounds my whole life," said Ramsey, who is 5'10" tall. "The most I've ever weighed is 102 and that's when I take Apetamine, but it's hard to keep the weight off because my appetite is naturally low. I'm fine being small, but I would like to gain a few kilos.

As an early adopter, Ramsey was able to close a deal with a large quantity of the supplement from an African and Caribbean food market. “I bought a huge box of Apetamin and maybe like 50 of them came in a box and I bought it for $100, which is saying a lot because now they're selling Apetamin for around $30 a bottle,” he said.

An Instagram account called Apetamin_booty_gainz asks followers if they "want to lose weight" and describes the supplement as "magical," ideal for "weight gainers, bodybuilders, hip/butt enhancement, and appetite stimulators."

Despite the big promises and marketing that comes with the drug online, Ramsey has never been under any illusions about what's really possible for her petite physique and knows she needs to exercise to stay in shape. For now, though, her focus is on weight gain, and her supplement has helped maintain her appetite, forcing her body to crave more food than she's normally used to.

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“It takes as much dedication just to gain weight as it takes to lose weight. So I think Apetamine takes away some of that necessary dedication because he does the work for you,” she said.

Ramsey said the drowsiness is a side effect, but added that for her it was a reaction that didn't last long.

“The first few, maybe three or four days, you will be so tired that you will need to sleep,” he said. “Once you get over that, you don't get sleepy so I don't know if your body gets used to it or why you get sleepy because there are no instructions on the bottle, but you definitely get really tired. Knocks you out like NyQuil."

Still, despite the side effects, Ramsey has recommended Apetamin to friends and has seen them experience positive results as well, and continues to use the supplement herself. She acknowledged that it wasn't something she could wear for the rest of her life, but she is still committed to sticking with her regimen to achieve her body goals.

“It's about consistency, dedication, but it's hard. It's really hard to go to the gym and step on the scale one day and I'm 90 pounds. The next day I'm 93 and the next day I'm 92. You get depressed without Apetamine, but it's all about consistency."

before puberty,The 22-year-old content creator, Vanessa Wood, said she had very few concerns about her body image. She enjoyed the benefits of a fast metabolism and regularly enjoyed her favorite foods. But the Londoner said becoming a teenager triggered her insecurities. She was forced to answer questions about her slender figure, which often came in the form of "indirect comments" and joking insults. "It's like, people look at my mom and my mom is really thick, she's curvy and everything, and people look at her daughter and they think,Wait a minute. What's going on?" she said.

In response to the scrutiny, Wood began weighing himself weekly and intentionally wearing extra layers of clothing just to make himself look bigger. "She would wear jeans under school pants to make my legs look a little bigger or wear a sweater under school blazers," she said.

While keeping some of the more critical comments in check, Wood said it was clear that layering would not be a long-term solution, prompting a search for more drastic measures. “I would go online and search for the best thing to eat to gain weight or what I could eat and then Apetamine came up on my search engine. That's when I saw videos on YouTube and people recommended it to me," he said.

When she was 18 years old and weighed 116 pounds, the content creator bought her first bottle of Apetamine. During her first stint with the supplement, Wood said that she was inconsistent in using it due to sleepiness and that she did not want to appear "lazy" as she tried to juggle her college courses. After sporadically consuming two bottles over a two-week period, she said she gained ten pounds, but to her frustration, the weight did not stay off.

The response to his initial weight gain was largely positive, according to Wood. “I would get more compliments. I also felt better in my photos, you definitely notice the difference,” she said. Despite her naturally slender build, Wood defines his ideal body shape as "thick and curvy." She acknowledged that her ideal body is largely influenced by the social media landscape, where she believes women who possess these attributes are often praised and can gain economic opportunity.

“You really can't get away from this. Sometimes you don't even need to be on social media to know what's going on. My mom isn't on social media, but even she knows that if you're thick and curvy, she turns heads, you are,” Wood said.

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As a content creator, Wood said she feels unable to escape the pressure of having a curvaceous body.

“If thickness and curves are what you want these days and that's what you admire, it's like you want to fit into that,” she said. "It's everywhere and people are going to go to extreme lengths to be that image and to be honest I personally think that image is now selling and that's a big part of it, people love a little bit of money. so they will. ”

He stopped taking Apetamin in 2017, but resumed taking it four months ago, a decision he recounted on his YouTube channel. For five weeks, Wood consumed one bottle a week and ate an average of 2,300 calories a day. Even though she's already experienced side effects like swollen feet and swelling, among others, Ella Wood said she was prepared to continue using the supplement as needed.

“I stopped taking it and my weight hasn't come down,” Wood said. “I was still weighing myself to see if I had fallen, because if I fell I would start over. I think if I ever experienced something life threatening, obviously I would have to stop, but I didn't."

Although Apetamine hasused predominantly by the black community since at least 2012, when TIL Healthcare was founded, it now appears to be becoming popular through the social media app TikTok. At the time of writing, there are 5.5 million views on the Apetamin hashtag on TikTok and approximately 1.7 million views on related hashtags. Some of the videos deal with the experiences some people have had with the syrup and other videos advertise the sale of Apetamine. BuzzFeed News contacted TikTok with some examples, and the company removed these videos from its platform, saying that displaying, promoting, or trafficking drugs or other controlled substances is against its Community Guidelines.

Ibitoye, registered dietitian and nutritional researcher, is extremely concerned about the misuse of Apetamin, its promotion and lack of regulation on the Internet.

“Some people have reported serious side effects from taking this supplement, including dizziness and blurred vision. I personally know people who have had nausea and diarrhea,” she said. “There have been reports of people feeling very tired, experiencing loss of energy, and in severe cases, some people have liver problems. So the side effects are very, very dangerous."

Ibitoye also criticizes the marketing of the supplement as a means to achieve a bulkier and curvier figure, which she says is primarily aimed at the black community.

"You wouldn't see this being sold in a traditional retail pharmacy, so it's pretty clear, in terms of the pharmaceutical company, who their target audience is, and even the retailers that carry the supplements, have a very clear agenda." she added. .

In her role, it's not uncommon to find young black women wanting to gain weight for a variety of reasons, which she says should be supported by "evidence-based advice" that focuses primarily on diet.

As a practitioner, Ibitoye cautioned against "dismissing" people's health goals, but defended the need to better question how these ideals are formed. “What I always advise my clients is to find the root cause,” Ibitoye said. “So why do you want to gain weight? Why do you want to be a bigger butt? Why do you want a curvier figure? And what is it about these things that you think would make you happy? Or does that make you more successful?

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Ibitoye also criticized social media platforms such as Instagram, which was identified as one of theworseapps for mental health and self esteem. The triggering effect of opening the app and constantly seeing a beefy body type "has distorted some people's perception of what the ideal body size is," she said.

The nutritionist urged people to take steps to "protect" themselves rather than opt for quick fixes. “The more you delve into what is presented on social media and diet culture, the more you will find yourself being consumed and thinking that your current body size or shape is not ideal or desirable. That's where self-love comes in." ●


What is in weight gain pills for females Apetamin? ›

Apetamin is a vitamin syrup that's claimed to aid weight gain. It contains cyproheptadine hydrochloride, a prescription-only antihistamine that may increase appetite. It's illegal to sell Apetamin in the United States and elsewhere. Plus, the FDA does not regulate it and has issued seizure notices and import warnings.

Why is Apetamin dangerous? ›

In addition, the weight gain associated with Apetamin use also presents a risk of developing obesity, which is in itself a risk factor for a range of health conditions including hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney disease, and osteoarthritis.

Which medicine is best for weight gain for female? ›

  • Testo Prime. This supplement has many natural ingredients that work well to increase your health and muscle growth. ...
  • GenF20 Plus. This is a natural growth hormone booster, and it helps people who want to gain weight and muscle. ...
  • D-Bal Max. ...
  • Trenorol. ...
  • HGH-X2.
May 6, 2022

Is Apetamin illegal? ›

Is it legal? As Apetamin contains the prescription drug cyproheptadine, it is illegal for someone without the appropriate license to sell it within the U.S. People who purchase Apetamin buy the product from potentially unsafe websites and social media outlets.

Which is the best tablet for weight gain? ›

  • Testo Prime. This supplement has many natural ingredients that work well to increase your health and muscle growth. ...
  • GenF20 Plus. This is a natural growth hormone booster, and it helps people who want to gain weight and muscle. ...
  • D-Bal Max. ...
  • Trenorol. ...
  • HGH-X2.
May 6, 2022

What drugs can I take to gain weight? ›

Some steroid, cannabis, and hormone-based prescriptions can help you gain weight if you lost weight due to a serious illness or are underweight despite other diet and lifestyle modifications.

What side effects does Apetamin have? ›

WHAT ARE THE SIDE-EFFECTS? According to Dr Halim the side effects of Apetamin include: drowsiness, tremors, irritability, blurred vision, nausea, diarrhea, joint pain, joint swelling, liver toxicity, and liver failure.

Does Apetamin syrup cause liver problems? ›

Severe Side Effects of Apetamin

In the worst-case scenario, using apetamin or unprescribed cyproheptadine hydrochloride can lead to liver toxicity and liver failure. 1 Excessive weight gain or obesity is also a risk for those who overuse apetamin.

What is the fastest way for a woman to gain weight? ›

8 Healthy Weight Gain Methods for Females
  1. Increase Your Calorie Intake.
  2. Eat More Frequently.
  3. Try Smoothies and Shakes.
  4. Make Every Bite Calorie-Dense.
  5. Top Off Your Meals With Extras.
  6. Don't Fill Up On Fluids.
  7. Add Dessert.
  8. Exercise.
Oct 19, 2022

What is the main ingredient in Apetamin? ›

It is a syrup containing cyproheptadine, the amino acid lysine, and some vitamins. Cyproheptadine, the active ingredient, is an antihistamine and a hepatotoxin that has many effects on the body, including increased appetite, fatigue, and drowsiness.

What is Apetito pills for? ›

The article turned out to be about the allure and dangers of pills like Apetito tablets, appetite stimulants that claim to enhance the hips and butt, and cause general weight gain.

What is the other name for Apetamin? ›

We report Apetamin (cyproheptadine lysine and vitamin syrup), a non-US Food and Drug Administration-approved weight gain supplement, causing drug-induced autoimmune hepatitis.

What is the active ingredient in Apetamin? ›

It is a syrup containing cyproheptadine, the amino acid lysine, and some vitamins. Cyproheptadine, the active ingredient, is an antihistamine and a hepatotoxin that has many effects on the body, including increased appetite, fatigue, and drowsiness.

Is Apetamin good for liver? ›

Severe Side Effects of Apetamin

In the worst-case scenario, using apetamin or unprescribed cyproheptadine hydrochloride can lead to liver toxicity and liver failure. 1 Excessive weight gain or obesity is also a risk for those who overuse apetamin.

How can I gain weight in 7 days? ›

Consume high-calorie foods -‍ Eat high-calorie, high-nutrient foods like bananas, avocados, and full-fat milk to gain weight in a healthy way. A calorie-dense diet is required to gain the appropriate amount of weight for your body type.

How long does it take to gain weight on cyproheptadine? ›

Considerable weight gain occurred within 2 weeks in the study by Rerksuppaphol et al.

How to gain weight quickly? ›

  1. Eating more frequently. Slowly begin to eat 5 to 6 smaller meals during the day. ...
  2. Choosing food with lots of nutrients. Set up a routine to eat and drink things you like and that have a lot of nutrients as well as calories. ...
  3. Top it off. ...
  4. Try smoothies and shakes. ...
  5. But watch what and when you drink. ...
  6. Exercise.

Can I drink alcohol with Apetamin? ›

Avoid consumption of alcohol with Apetamin Syrup 200 ml as it may increase the risk of adverse effects such as drowsiness, dizziness or difficulty in concentrating.

What vitamins increase appetite? ›

Certain vitamins and minerals, including zinc and vitamin B-1, can increase appetite. However, these usually only work if the person has deficiencies in these nutrients. Other supplements, such as omega-3 fatty acids, may boost appetite.

Can Apetamin cause hepatitis? ›

We report Apetamin (cyproheptadine lysine and vitamin syrup), a non-US Food and Drug Administration-approved weight gain supplement, causing drug-induced autoimmune hepatitis.

How do I gain 5 lbs in one day? ›

It's impossible to gain five pounds of fat in a day – to do this, you'd have to eat over 20,000 calories in 24 hours. When your scale shows a higher number, it's usually water weight. Here are 10 reasons why you might be surprised by the number on your scale in the morning.

How is it possible to gain 10 pounds in a week? ›

Why did I gain 10 pounds in a week? Possibly it's because you are stressed, have underlying medical conditions, insomnia, slow metabolism, or water retention. It could also be because you are skipping breakfast and are not practicing portion control.

How could I gain 5 lbs in a week? ›

In order for you to gain 5lbs in one week you would have to have eaten 13,300 calories + 17,500 extra calories and somehow not burned a single additional calorie. It's not impossible to gain 5lbs of fat in a week.

How much weight will I gain on cyproheptadine? ›

For example, a randomized controlled trial by Couluris et al. of the effect of Cyproheptadine hydrochloride on weight in children with cancer/treatment-related cachexia found a mean weight gain of 2.6 Kg after 4 weeks of treatment with Cyproheptadine among patients with cachexia [18].

Where can I get cyproheptadine over the counter? ›

You can buy cyproheptadine tablets without a prescription at a pharmacy. Exposure to substances such as pollen, pet fur, house dust or insect bites can cause some people to produce an excess of a chemical called histamine.

Is cyproheptadine hard on the liver? ›

Unlike most first generation antihistamines, cyproheptadine has been associated with several instances of clinically apparent liver injury. The few cases that have been described had a time to onset of 1 to 6 weeks and a cholestatic or mixed pattern of liver enzyme elevations.


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