Many people have heard of ephedra as an ingredient that can help you slim down. Unfortunately, this product has been deemed too dangerous, and it has been banned as a result. Why did this all happen? What should you know about ephedra? And, is it really dangerous? Check out the information below to get the answers to all of these questions.
A Little Bit of Background on Ephedra
First off, let’s start with some background information on ephedra so that you can get to know it better.
- Ephedra has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 5,000 years. It has been used to treat asthma, hay fever and also contains ingredients that offer remedy to the side effects of the common cold.
- There are over 40 species of Ephedra, but the most common for comes from a plant known as Ephedra Sinica, and has also been used in herbal teas dating back to the 1400s by Native Americans and Pioneers.
- Ephedra’s popularity comes from two alkaloids, ephedrine and pseudoephedrine which have been known to stimulate the central nervous system along with bronchodilation and vasoconstriction. It has also been used in conjunction with caffeine to elicit weight loss.
- Effects of the misuse of Ephedra have raised concerns regarding the safety of the substance. As a result Ephedra has also been banned by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in February of 2004.
How Has Ephedra Been Used?
Some of the most common uses of Ephedra have been for:
- increasing alertness
- preventing and treating severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis)
- treating arthritis
- increasing athletic performance
- suppressing appetites
- relieving symptoms of the common cold, flu and fevers
- upper respiratory infections
What Are the Dangerous Side Effects of Ephedra?
Although there are several benefits of using Ephedra, the drug does come with side effects which can be dangerous if the drug is misused.
Some of these side effects include:
- mild skin reactions
Also, when misused, it has been reported that Ephedra can lead to irregular heartbeats, seizures, heart attack, stroke, and death.
How Did Experts Realize the Dangers of This Herbal Supplement?
Reports have indicated that over a 25-year period there have been just over 100 deaths recorded as a result of people consuming unregulated, dangerous doses of Ephedra.
Escalating concerns led to an investigation that eventually ended the legal sale of supplements that contained Ephedra. As expected, the Ephedra Education Council along with the support of manufacturers challenged the ban which did overturn the initial decision to ban the drug. The council has a scientific review performed which proved the drug was safe. However, this did not last long because Ephedra was later banned again when the drug contributed to the death of two athletes using irresponsibly to enhance their athletic performance.
Many believe that the decision to ban Ephedra was a political one demanded by congress when it became a headline in the media. It is argued that any drug can be misused and/or deadly when used misused. According to health sources, there are thousands of legal products which can be deemed fatal if misused such as tobacco, prescriptions and alcohol. Moreover, pseudoephedrine is still being distributed by pharmaceutical companies in decongestants in the form of nasal sprays and cough syrups. Buy Safe Diet Pills Online
Despite all of that, though, according to Harvard Health, experts had very good reasons to deem this substance dangerous. They conducted many studies, and they discovered that the side effects can be serious, and the product can lead to death. Therefore, the decision to ban this ingredient was not taken lightly, and it was based on research. In fact, the research was so extensive that it involved more than 16,000 reports about the effects that people experienced after taking products that contained this ingredient. The verdict was clear: this product is dangerous.
There Are Better Ways to Slim Down
If you want to lose weight more easily, there are other products that you can choose from. In fact, these days, the market for weight management products is pretty saturated, so you have loads of options to choose from.
Thinking about taking a strong diet pill? Perhaps you should talk to your doctor about taking a prescription diet pill that will support your efforts by doing things like suppressing your appetite and giving you more energy.
Would you prefer taking a diet pill that you can buy over the counter? There are plenty of options if you choose to follow that route. The key is to find a high-quality pill that contains ingredients that have been clinically researched. Then, just take the product as directed to ensure the best and safest results.
The bottom line is this: in addition to diet and exercise, you can certainly take a supplement to support your slim-down efforts, but you should not be turning to any product that contains ephedra because it is dangerous. With so many other great products, there is no reason to put your health at risk just because you want to hit your target weight.