Definition[ edit ] The classifications of substances as performance-enhancing substances are not entirely clear-cut and objective. As in other types of categorizationcertain prototype performance enhancers are universally classified as such like anabolic steroidswhereas other substances like vitamins and protein supplements are virtually never classified as performance enhancers despite their effects on performance. As is usual with categorization, there are borderline cases; caffeinefor example, is considered a performance enhancer by some but not others.
These include equipment tweaks, psychological programs visualization techniques, hypnosis, even psychotherapypharmacological manipulation erythropoietin and all the hoopla with Lance Armstrong are a case in point and nutritional additives creatine phosphate, vitamins, minerals for example.
The use of performance enhancing dietary supplements can be traced back as the Romans who reportedly drank lion's blood to improve their strength and courage. Unfortunately nutritional supplements are frequently promoted with unsubstantiated claims - in magazine advertisements and health food stores, by coaches, and by entrepreneurs who stand to gain financially from their use.
And in many cases potential harmful effects have not been studied or are not pointed out. I couldn't have said it better - "As an amateur athlete I realize how powerful that urge is to want to take something that promises to help improve your performance without having to practice harder.
Of these, 54 contained claims that the product enhanced performance, but only three offered references. The 53 Web sites for these sports products contained an additional references. Further analysis found only three studies that were offered by the manufacturers were of high quality and at low risk of bias Two were studies of the effect of linoleic acid supplementation, and the other was a controlled trial of magnesium citrate in the treatment of leg cramps.
Following are six common errors in researching performance boosting claims in advertisements and personal stories.
The placebo effect A placebo effect is evident when an inert compound produces results similar to those of the a prove active agent.
It results from our optimism and belief that a medication, supplement, or training program will be beneficial, biasing us toward a positive impression of the results. This is what often occurs when a sugar pill a placebo is used in studying disease treatment. When told that the placebo will help, a large percentage of subjects report significant benefits.
However this beneficial effect usually lasts for only a few doses and then rapidly wears off. We can avoid confusing a placebo effect with the real, reproducible benefit of a supplement by comparing two groups of athletes in carefully monitored or "controlled" studies - one group being given the active ingredient being investigated and the other group given an inactive or sham agent, and not telling either group which agent they are receiving.
This type of study is considered double blinded as neither group knows what they are receiving. Only if we as individuals are" blinded" i. Anecdotes The placebo effect also points out the risks of using anecdotal information personal testimonials to make decisions on training programs and products.
Use of statistics and data A third error results from a misunderstanding of the fact that random positive results can occur when studying supplements, even when they may be of no physiologic benefit. Clinical studies use statistical methods to minimize the chance of interpreting random success as a reproducible effect both positive or negative of a supplement.
So if you find several studies on a training aid, but only one supports a positive or beneficial effect, be skeptical that the single positive outcome may have been by chance alone and thus not reproducible. Likewise, be wary of the single, often quoted study, with results which no one else can duplicate.
Misinterpretation of valid data And of course you might have a valid scientific study, but the results are taken out of context. The article I am going to discuss is a great example of the way valid scientific results can be mis interpreted leading to the abuse of supplements - as well as exposing users to potential toxicity along the way elemental iron is not a benign supplement.
First, the original article which, I feel, misrepresents the conclusions of the referenced study: Iron Levels and Altitude.
Taking supplements may increase the benefits of thin-air training. Which it was then reprinted for cyclists in Bicycling: They need iron even at sea level as they are iron deficientso given iron plus the stimulus of altitude, it is only reasonable to assume that they will absorb more of it.
And as iron is in many enzymes along with iron in blood cellsone might also expect some performance improvement non heme level related in the iron deficient athletes as well. And of course there is no evidence that the iron deficient group actually improved performance - only that the blood cell mass increased and thus it was assumed they would perform better as well.
So in my reading, this is a great example of an unfounded interpretation in the lay press that will lead to iron supplementation abuses by athletes who have adequate iron stores, and expose those looking for that performance edge to the toxicity of iron supplements.
Forgetting the study parameters And finally, try to put the claims proven of course in perspective.What are Anabolic Steroids?
Androgens and anabolic steroids include the endogenous male sex hormone testosterone and dihydrotestosterone, and other agents that behave like these sex hormones. Androgens stimulate the development of male sexual characteristics (such as deepening of the voice and beard growth) and development of male sex organs.
Athletes use diuretics in the hopes that they will help dilute performance-enhancing drugs.
Diuretics can cause a variety of harmful side effects such as cramping, dizziness, blood pressure drops. Apr 24, · Types of drugs Body modification. There are several types of drug that an athlete can use to enhance his or her performance. Some of these drugs . (1) EFFECTS OF PERFORMANCE ENHANCING DRUGS ON THE HEALTH OF ATHLETES AND ATHLETIC COMPETITION WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 20, U.S.
SENATE, COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION, Washington, DC. The committee met, pursuant to notice, at a.m., in room. Most steroid users are not athletes. In the United States, between 1 million and 3 million people (1% of the population) are thought to have used AAS.
Studies in the United States have shown that AAS users tend to be mostly middle-class heterosexual men with a median age of about 25 who are noncompetitive bodybuilders and non-athletes and use the drugs for cosmetic purposes.
". Performance-enhancing substances, also known as performance-enhancing drugs (PED), are substances that are used to improve any form of activity performance in humans. A well-known example involves doping in sport, where banned physical performance–enhancing drugs are used by athletes and bodybuilders.