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When I wrote about Methylhexaneamine and Supplement Contamination last fall, I didn’t expect death.
Getting banned from your sport is one thing… dying trying is another!
In a recent article from the NY Times (if it’s the in the NY Times, it must be true, right? heh heh), they reported the United States Army is investigating whether certain “dietary supplements” for athletes may have played a role in the deaths of two soldiers.
Methylhexaneamine (also known as DMAA or 1,3-Dimethylamylamine) was available over the counter until recently at stores on military bases across the United States.
But is DMAA really a “dietary supplement”? Some medical experts said it should be classified as a “drug”, which would require approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before it can be sold in the marketplace.
“Dietary supplements” are defined as products containing only supplemental dietary ingredients, like vitamins or minerals.
Here is a snippet from the NY Times.
“How is this possibly being legally sold under the current rules for dietary supplements?” said Travis Tygart, the chief executive of the United States Anti-Doping Agency and an advocate for tighter regulation of supplements.
Last summer, a 22-year-old soldier collapsed at an Army base in the Southwest during a training run with his unit. Last fall, a 32-year-old soldier at the same base also collapsed after taking a physical fitness test. DMAA was identified in both soldiers’ toxicology reports, the Army spokesman said, but he declined to identify them.
Mr. Tygart said the issues raised by DMAA reminded him of the case of ephedra, another stimulant. The F.D.A. banned ephedra as a dietary supplement in 2004 after the deaths of several prominent athletes, including Steven S. Bechler, a pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles, who had used the substance.
Many fitness enthusiasts remain devoted to Jack3d, which, according to a widely disseminated online product description, “gives you the mad aggressive desire and ability to lift more weight, pump out more reps and have crazy lasting energy.”
Some of its users raved about the product last week on Twitter. “Jack3d got me feeling beastly! Gym time!! #beastmode,” Luis Vasquez wrote.