What was ephedra used for?
Ephedra (Ephedra sinica), also called ma huang, is an herb that has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for more than 5,000 years, primarily to treat asthma, bronchitis, and hay fever. Ephedra is also prescribed for symptoms of cold and flu, including nasal congestion, cough, fever, and chills.
What is the difference between ephedra and ephedrine?
Ephedrine is a chemical contained in the ephedra herb. Ephedrine has medical uses, mostly in operating rooms and intensive care units. Its chemical properties raise blood pressure and heart rate and open up the large air passages in the lungs.
What are the effects of ephedra?
Ephedra can cause a quickened heartbeat and elevated blood pressure. Side effects include heart palpitations, nausea, and vomiting. More than 800 dangerous reactions have been reported with use of the herb. These include heart attacks, strokes, seizures, and sudden deaths.
Where is ephedrine legal?
As a pure herb or tea, má huáng, containing ephedrine, is still sold legally in the USA. The law restricts/prohibits its being sold as a dietary supplement (pill) or as an ingredient/additive to other products, like diet pills.
Is ephedrine bad for your kidneys?
You should avoid ephedrine because it pushes up your heart rate and blood pressure, possibly damaging your kidneys and increasing your risk of heart disease and strokes.
Why do athletes take ephedrine?
Because ephedrine is a sympathomimetic and a central nervous system stimulant, it is commonly used as an energy enhancer. Ma huang-containing products are marketed and used to improve aerobic performance and endurance, reduce fatigue, increase alertness, improve reaction time, and even increase strength.
What is equivalent to ephedrine?
In an ironic twist, amphetamine was actually first used in the early 1930s as a replacement for ephedrine.
Does Ephedra Sinica contain ephedrine?
Ephedra sinica, a Chinese species of ephedra (ma huang), contains the alkaloids ephedrine and pseudoephedrine. Ephedrine is an amphetamine-like compound that can powerfully stimulate the nervous system and heart.
What are the long term effects of ephedrine?
Ephedra can cause severe life-threatening or disabling conditions in some people. Ephedra use is linked to high blood pressure, heart attacks, muscle disorders, seizures, strokes, irregular heartbeat, loss of consciousness, and death.
Can I buy ephedrine over the counter?
Ephedrine is available over-the-counter (OTC) as an oral medication in combination with the expectorant guaifenesin, and comes in the form of tablets, caplets, or syrup. It is not a replacement for prescription asthma treatments.
What is the price of ephedrine?
Earlier, the per kg price of ephedrine was only about Rs. 75,000; now it is nearly Rs. 1 lakh, he said.
What sport uses ephedrine the most?
The most common sports among ephedra users were football, track and field, and weightlifting. This study suggests that Ephedra use was infrequent among the young athletes in this population.