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The ingredients, apparently new, were popping up on the labels of dietary supplements marketed for weight loss and workouts. Sometimes the label said DMHA. Sometimes, Aconitum kusnezoffii. Or other, even harder-to-parse names.

But what were they, really?


Dr. Pieter Cohen, the Harvard internist and noted supplement detective, took the case. He and his collaborators purchased and analyzed six supplements marked as containing one of the mystery ingredients. They expected that, however they were listed, all the ingredients would turn out to be a stimulant known as octodrine, which the Food and Drug Administration approved decades ago, in inhaled form, as a treatment for bronchitis, laryngitis, and other conditions.

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  • “Public health priorities” …really? …I can list a slew of FDA approved drugs which didn’t seem to have the public’s interest in mind – so please let’s just knock off the self-righteous brouhaha. …many of the nutrional supplements that proved effective by empiricism have been snatched off the market because of the idiocy of users who have pre-existing conditions yet CHOSE, that’s VOLITION, to take the supplement any way …

  • With freedom comes personal responsibility. What I put into my body is my business. Whether it be a big Mac, a scoop of preworkout or a salad, I assume the risk when I put it in my mouth. Stop trying to use fear tactics to scare us out of our rights and site quack doctors it attempt to prove a point. The only person you’re reaching with an article like this is not someone using the product but an individual who has no knowledge on the subject.

    • Yes! Stop trying to regulate everything! If someone wants to take ephedrine BECAUSE IT ACTUALLY WORKS then that should be their business!! Why aren’t cigarettes outlawed?!? Oh, that’s right. Because you make too much money off of them. Similar to why they would rather take products that help weight-loss off the market because they make more money giving pharmaceutical medicine to fat people. Quit pretending that you care and that it’s not all about money for you people. Selfish.

  • Well what do you expect? Since the day of banning ephedrine everyone want something similar, so when a product comes out with similar effects, that gets banned too. Now the industry needs to mix and match rare/unknown ingredients to try to come close. Each time am ingredient gets banned that worked, the next down the line come in. Hey FDA just let people use what they want while knowing the effects/side effects. Maybe just allow the age old used ephedrine back, and call it a day.

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