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Health Education > Current Topics > Ephedra

Ephedra containing Supplements are Dangerous!
    

At least 124 people have died and thousands have been to the emergency room as a result of taking ephedra-containing supplements.  Most "fat burners", "metabolism boosters", "energy boosters", and weight loss supplements contain ephedra, caffeine, and sometimes aspirin.

Caffeine and aspirin potentiate the effects of ephedra AND the combination of ephedra and caffeine and/or aspirin can be lethal or life threatening.
Look for these ingredients on the label:
  • Ephedra     (ma huang, epitonin, ephedrine)
  • Caffeine     (guarana, kola nut)
  • Aspirin       (willow bark, salicylates, salicylic acid)

DO NOT USE THESE SUPPLEMENTS:
Here is a list of some of the most popular ephedra-containing supplements and drinks:   

Hydroxy-Cut
Diet Fuel Ripped Fuel        
Metabolife 356
Shape-Fast Plus        Ripped Force
Metabolite  Ultimate Orange
Yellow Jackets 
Xenadrine    
 Stackers I, II, III       
Many others
 

Serious side effects: 
  • Death
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • High blood pressure
  • Seizures
  • Fast heartbeat (tachycardia)
  • Nervousness
  • Insomnia
  • Panic attack or psychoses

The FDA would like to ban ephedra from the US market.
.    The main problem with ephedra is that safe levels are unknown.
.    People have died or had seizures and strokes at relatively low dosages (12-36 mg.).
.    Most deaths, seizures and strokes have occurred during or right after exercise.
.    Studies show that ephedra is not uniformly and explicitly labeled on supplements.
.    Most ephedra-containing supplements have 12 mg or more ephedra alkaloids per dose and recommend 100-300+ mg in 24 hours.

This level clearly raises the risk of the most serious side effects, including death.

Good web sites for additional information on supplements:
http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/ds-savvy.html
http://hcrc.org/
http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/ds-ephed.html
KNOW WHAT YOU PUT IN YOUR BODY!!!
 


 

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February 7, 2011