It's not worth the risk. Find out how to say no if you're feeling pressured to take steroids, and how you can improve your sport skills the natural way. Head back to the Choices for Life campaign page. Athletes Banned for Steroid Use.
Marion Jones The American track and field athlete won 3 gold medals and 2 bronze medals at the Olympics but was later stripped of the titles after admitting to steroid use. Lance Armstrong The Tour de France cyclist won the race seven years in a row - but had those victories stripped from him after it was found he had been taking drugs to help his performance during this time.
Justin Gatlin The American sprinter, who won the and m at Helsinki in , was banned for 4 years after he had been tested positive for testosterone. He previously had been give a one-year ban for testing positive for amphetamines. Anabolic steroids are sometimes accessed by athletes and bodybuilders for non-medical purposes to build muscle, endurance, and strength. Use of this sort is illegal and banned by most sports organizations.
Still, there are athletes who continue to use them illegally despite evidence that they can cause serious health problems. In January , the Anabolic Steroid Control Act was amended alongside the Controlled Substance Act, adding anabolic steroids to the list of controlled substances and making their possession a federal crime.
The term "anabolic" is used to describe the process wherein smaller molecules bind together to build bigger ones. The term "androgenic" refers to male hormones, known as androgens. Anabolic steroids should not be confused with corticosteroids, such as cortisone or prednisone.
These are drugs used by doctors to treat acute and chronic inflammation. Anabolic-androgenic drugs work by increasing protein within cells, most especially skeletal muscles. The elevated testosterone levels can also increase endurance capacity and delay on the onset of fatigue, enhancing the overall performance of athletes.
When used for this athletic or muscle-building purposes, anabolic steroids are considered performance-enhancing drugs PEDs , while their illegal use is referred to as "doping. Steroids are taken either orally in pill form or via intramuscular injections. Dosing is commonly done in cycles of weeks or months, with a short break in between.
The practice is referred to as "cycling. While dopers will readily share tips on what the "optimal" or "peak" dose is—asserting that such levels are safe—most of the information is simply made up. When used outside of a prescribed medical treatment, no dose can be considered safe. It is not uncommon for athletes to use 10 to times the dose prescribed for legitimate medical use with little consideration as to the long-term consequences.
There are a number of banned steroids with varying degrees of effectiveness. In addition, there are substances known as prohormones that the body uses to synthesize testosterone when ingested or injected. Among some of the more commonly used substances are:. Also known as "Andro," androstenedione is a designer steroid that was widely abused by athletes in the s, despite there being little scientific evidence to support its effectiveness.
In , the U. Food and Drug Administration banned the sale of androstenedione due to increasing evidence of serious health risks. Primobolan methenolone is a banned steroid has been linked to several major league baseball players, including Alex Rodriguez. It can be injected or taken in a tablet form. Primobolan has long been popular among athletes because it can build strength without muscle bulk or many of the negative side effects of other steroids.
Tetrahydrogestrinone THG is another designer steroid that was specifically manufactured so it would not be detected in doping tests. The U. Also know as "Clen," clenbuterol is a bronchodilator approved of the treatment of asthma. Like anabolic steroids, it can increase lean muscle mass while burning fat, making it attractive to bodybuilders who want "cut" muscle definition before a competition.
DHEA, an acronym for dehydroepiandrosterone, is a natural steroid prohormone produced by the adrenal glands. Once ingested, the body converts DHEA to estrogen and testosterone. Despite being available online and in supplement stores, DHEA is still considered a banned substance by many sports organizations.
There are many health risks associated with anabolic steroid abuse. Some are androgenic, in which the increased testosterone levels can induce secondary male characteristics in both men and women. There are also metabolic side effects, most commonly linked to ongoing abuse, as well as both short- and long-term psychiatric effects.
Athletes who use steroids can experience withdrawal symptoms when they quit. The symptoms include mood swings, depression, fatigue, irritability, loss of appetite, insomnia, and violent outbursts.
Other banned androgenic agents include bambuterol , clenbuterol , salbutamol , tibolone , zeranol , zilpaterol , and selective androgen receptor modulators. While a few of the banned drugs are endogenous, that is they are normally produced in the human body, most of the banned drug are exogenous drugs chemically produced. These types of drugs were used extensively in Major League Baseball in the s and early s. This is the complete list of exogenous non-natural androgenic agents banned as of January 1, Drugs with similar structures and biological activity are also banned because new designer drugs of this sort are always being developed in order to beat the drug tests.
The following substances, ordinarily produced naturally in the body, are prohibited when administered from outside the body. Certain peptide hormones increase bulk, strength, and oxygen-carrying red blood cells. All beta-2 agonists and their D - and L - isomers , are banned. However, formoterol , salbutamol , salmeterol , and terbutaline may be used with a "therapeutic use exemption", only in the inhaled form.
Hormone levels of a particular hormone, like testosterone, can be changed not only by administering it, but also by altering related hormones. Likewise, interfering with a hormone's receptor leads to similar effects. Because of these natural hormone-hormone interdependent biosynthetic pathways and hormone-receptor interactions, all aromatase inhibitors , including anastrozole , letrozole , aminoglutethimide , exemestane , formestane , and testolactone are banned.
Selective estrogen receptor modulators , including raloxifene , tamoxifen and toremifene are banned. Clomiphene , cyclofenil , fulvestrant , and all other anti-estrogenic substances are banned. Myostatin inhibitors are banned. AICAR are also banned. Meldonium was banned on 1 January , which was often used during the Russian doping scandal.
Stimulants directly affect the central nervous system, increasing blood flow and heart rate. These drugs primarily help athletes in complex team sports like basketball and association football as well as choreographed sports like figure skating and artistic gymnastics. Stimulants that are banned include amphetamines , beta-2 agonists , ephedrine , pseudoephedrine , fencamfamine , cocaine , methamphetamines , mesocarb , and other substances with similar chemical structures and biological effects, including the following:.
Diuretics , which increase the production of urine , and masking agents, chemical compounds which interfere with drug tests, are banned for two reasons. First, by decreasing water retention and thus decreasing an athlete's weight, an important consideration in many speed sports e. Secondly, increased urine production depletes the concentration of both the banned drugs and their metabolites, making their detection more difficult.
Masking agents, on the other hand, work by making drug tests ineffective, leading to false-negative results. Desmopressin , plasma expanders such as glycerol ; intravenous administration of albumin , dextran , hydroxyethyl starch and mannitol , probenecid , and other substances with similar biological effects are also banned. Local application of felypressin in dental anesthesia is not prohibited.
Narcotic analgesics decrease the painful sensations of serious injuries, potentially allowing athletes to continue training for competition after an injury. While some painkillers are allowed, including codeine , the following are banned:.
The following are banned for in-competition use only, with the exception of cannabidiol CBD which is not banned for any use. Glucocorticoids are a class of corticosteroids that affect the metabolism of carbohydrates , fat , and proteins , and regulate glycogen and blood pressure levels.
They possess pronounced anti-inflammatory activity and cause alteration of connective tissue in response to injuries. She was also given a two-year ban from track and field competitions by the United States Anti-Doping Agency. The Tour de France cyclist won the race seven years in a row - but had those victories stripped from him after it was found he had been taking drugs to help his performance during this time. He also received a lifetime ban from competing in all sports which follow the Word Anti-Doping code.
The American sprinter, who won the and m at Helsinki in , was banned for 4 years after he had been tested positive for testosterone. All of these athletes are prime examples of the risks associated with taking steroids, not only for your health but also your sporting career.
It's not worth the risk. Find out how to say no if you're feeling pressured to take steroids, and how you can improve your sport skills the natural way. Head back to the Choices for Life campaign page.
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