Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "
DMBA: unknown amphetamine-like substance found in 13 supplements
Researchers at Harvard Medical School have found a stimulant that is related to DMAA in a dozen supplements. The stuff is called 1,3-dimethylbutylamine and was also found in Dedicated's sports supplement Unstoppable by the Dutch RIVM research institute. [eigenkracht.nl 18 augustus 2014] How safe the substance is has never been examined.
What is it?
We, the humble makers of this free web magazine, stick to DMBA.
DMBA is a stripped down version of DMAA, a substance that has amphetamine effects without the amphetamine structure. DMAA has now been banned by governments all over the world. DMBA seems to be a replacement that supplement manufacturers have found.
But, if the Chinese analysis is correct, you'd need 100 kg Pouchong tea to obtain 12 mg DMBA. That means that DMBA found in supplements doesn't come from tea - and that the label on the Unstoppable, the Dedicated supplement, falls into the category consumer fraud.
RIVM, a Dutch governmental research institute, found DMBA in Unstoppable this summer, after a bodybuilder reported serious health problems. The label didn't list DMBA, but did say that Unstoppable contained Ampheta Tea – a natural extract from tea with a strong resemblance to... Ok, you get it.
Another possible source – also according to another obscure Chinese study – is Coreopsis tinctoria. [Shipin Yu Fajiao Gongye 2013, 39, 170] but this study has some methodological problems too. Ergo: the DMBA in the supplements that Cohen and Venhuis analysed comes out of a factory, not out of a plant.
Unstoppable is not one of the supplements they analysed. The researchers confined themselves to supplements that mentioned DMBA on the label.
Two products – Hybrid's PreAmp and Genomyx' AMP Citrate – contained no DMBA, although the manufacturers claimed they did. The strongest concentration of DMBA was found in Lecheek Nutrition's AMPitropin.
How dangerous is DMBA?
The side effects of DMBA that have been reported seem to resemble those of other stimulants. "So far, three cases of adverse effects were reported for this supplement", the researchers write. "The symptoms were similar and included the feeling of rushing, difficulty sitting still, a sense of motion and increased focus."
Right now DMBA is not on the doping list, but you can bet your bottom dollar the WADA will be changing this soon. Athletes who are tested risk being banned from competitions if they consume DMBA.
"Given the potential health risks of untested pharmacologic stimulants, we strongly recommend that manufactures immediately recall all DMBA containing supplements. The FDA and other regulatory bodies should, without delay, warn consumers about the presence of DMBA in dietary supplements and clarify the legal status of DMBA. Until consumers can be assured that sports, weight loss and mind enhancing supplements do not contain untested pharmaceutical drugs, these products should be avoided."