Saturday 15 August 2020

Dr Amin Hussain Al Amiri

UAE warns on dangers of some bodybuilding products

DUBAI, September 11, 2017

The UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention (Mohap) has issued a warning to the public regarding the dangers of using some bodybuilding products that are sold online.

It stated that many of these unregulated health stimulants may contain toxic energisers or synthetic male hormone boosters that may cause serious health risks, including fatal injury to the liver and kidney and threaten the user’s life.

Dr Amin Hussain Al Amiri, assistant undersecretary of public health policy & licensing, Mohap, said the ministry released a circular to the directors of medical zones and public and private hospitals, as well as to doctors and pharmacists to alert them against the indiscriminate use of bodybuilding products following a recent alert from the US Food and Drug Administration.

The circular noted that many products have been found to contain toxic substances or steroid-like substances as well as artificial male hormones. Continued use of these substances may be hazardous and could cause serious health risks, including liver injuries, threatening people’s lives, it said.

Al Amiri said that apart from liver injury, absorption of steroids has unhealthy side effects such as severe acne, hair loss, increased aggression and depression, and life-threatening reactions such as kidney damage, heart attacks, stroke and pulmonary embolism (a blockage of a major blood vessel in the lungs) and coagulation in deep veins. Specialist physicians should always be consulted before using such substances.

Al Amiri added: "The US Food and Drug Administration has warned that many of these products are promoted for bodybuilding, and muscles development, whereas they contain synthetic steroids or and hormones related to testosterone."

Al Amiri explained that the consumption of these energising products and hormones without referring to a doctor has become prevalent worldwide among young people in their desire to increase the size of their muscles to build an attractive body. He added that the growth of this phenomenon has been alarming in the lack of statistics regarding the number of users; especially that continuous usage without medical supervision has a disastrous health impact. He further suggested that special medical examinations must be done for the liver and kidneys periodically to avoid complications.

He highlighted that most of these products enter the country illegally, coming from companies that have not been licensed to sell in the country, nor are they in compliance with international standards. He emphasized that Mohap’s strict regulation requires a physician prescription for the dispensing of such products, especially the injectable ones, which makes some users buy them outside the country through travellers coming from countries that allow the purchase of these products without prescription.

Dr. Al Amiri said that the absence of parental control and the lack of awareness among family members regarding the risks of hormones and sports steroids contributes to the increase of young people buying them in gyms and other bodybuilding clubs, noting that most young people may not be aware of the health hazards of these hormones, for fear of being ridiculed for using these hormones instead of exerting physical efforts to develop them.

He urged parents to inform the ministry or health authorities or the municipality when they come to know of these hormones being sold without medical prescription in clubs frequented by their children. He highlighted the media’s role in spreading awareness and guidance for young people in universities and schools, especially as it is difficult to treat the health consequences of these hormones, such as cancer and kidney failure.

He advised the youth to consult with a nutrition specialist when taking any hormones or stimulants and to perform periodic medical examinations because the long-term use of muscle-building products has negative effects such as hormonal imbalance in the body.

Dr Al Amiri also said these products are usually sold on the internet in the form of food supplements. However, most of these are not nutritional supplements at all and are marketed illegally. Some are also promoted as new medicines not yet approved globally. He added that the US FDA has not approved these products for safety and effectiveness before they are marketed. – TradeArabia News Service

Tags: UAE | bodybuilding | supplements |

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