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Illegal supplements

             What's wrong with wanting to be the fastest, most muscular kid on the team? Or what's wrong with using protein powder, energy bars, or androstenedione, if they enhance performance and they"re legal? Studies show that supplement usage can improve muscle mass and strength, but they can also have a devastating effect on the body. Scientists and drug testers need to find new methods to testing because their perfunctory methods are not working. Parents, coaches, and the athletes need to find out the benefits and risks from using supplements ( Hewett). .
             Recently many star athletes have been called to answer questions about illegal supplements. Many fans have wondered "how rampant is this stuff?" We need to quell this problem before it becomes an even bigger problem. Since illegal supplements have become a major problem in athletics, athletes that use them should be heavily fined and suspended for their athletic season.
             Extent .
             Supplement use has become a major problem today because athletes want to find an easy way to be the best at what they do. A 2001 NCAA study of 21,225 student-athletes showed that over 29% currently use some type of supplements. At least 5% use banned supplements. You may ask why they would want to use something that is illegal. The major reasons are to improve athletic performance, improve physical appearance and for weight loss and weight gain (Mazur). The concern of supplement use is safety, but many coaches and athletes are more concerned about getting bigger, stronger and faster. A recent study of creatine use in US high schools showed that 44% of athletes had taken creatine. Creatine is becoming one of the most popular supplements among athletes. Creatine plays a big role in the production of energy for activities that rely on sudden bursts of energy (Cumming, Bartee).
             Effects .
             The use of illegal supplements in sports has become very widespread. The sale of supplements has become a multibillion dollar industry in the United States.

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