The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently warned consumers about the risks of weight loss supplements adulterated with multiple pharmaceutical agents. Some of these supplements combine potent anorectics, such as amphetamines derivatives, with benzodiazepines, beta-blockers, and other medications to suppress the anorectics' adverse effects. These weight loss supplements represent the most recent generation of rainbow diet pills, named for their bright and varied colors, which date back more than 70 years. Beginning in the 1940s, several US pharmaceutical firms aggressively promoted rainbow pills to physicians and patients. By the 1960s the pills had caused dozens of deaths before the FDA began removing them from the US market. We used a variety of original resources to trace these deadly pills from their origins in the United States to their popularity in Spain and Brazil to their reintroduction to the United States as weight loss dietary supplements.