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Feds crack down on 4 bogus weight-loss aids

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WASHINGTON — Makers of a weight-loss additive called Sensa will return more than $26 million to consumers to settle federal charges that the company used deceptive advertising claiming that consumers could lose weight by simply sprinkling the powder on their food.

Federal Trade Commission officials said Tuesday the company used bogus clinical studies and paid endorsements to rack up more than $364 million in sales between 2008 and 2012.

The FTC will also collect $7.3 million from LeanSpa, a company that promotes acai berry and ‘‘colon cleanse’’ weight loss supplements through fake news websites. Also swept up in Tuesday’s action are skin cream maker L’Occitane and HCG Diet Direct. The companies will together return about $34 million to consumers to settle the federal charges.

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