Ephedrine is a sympathomimetic amine that is widely used as a stimulant. It is an alpha – and beta-adrenergic agonist. Ephedrine has different medical applications and it is sometimes used by athletes of all levels.

In medicine ephedrine is mainly used to relieve symptoms of bronchial asthma. It is also capable of squeezing blood vessels in the nasal passages and widening the airways of the lungs, making breathing easier. Another medical application for ephedrine is the treatment of hypotension.

The action of ephedrine enhances the release of noradrenaline. This process is similar to the natural release of adrenaline by the body. When taken ephedrine increases the activity of the central nervous system (CNS) and stimulates other cells that help reduce fat loss by increasing metabolism.

Ephedrine in sports and prohibitions

Ephedrine is not permitted in the US, nor in most countries. It falls under the prohibition of narcotic drugs. You should also note that it is popular among weight loss supplements. Ephedrine has the first place. According to the legislation, ephedrine as a part of preparations it is not allowed to sell, make handicraft, transport and store. All this may entail criminal liability.

In fact, ephedrine can be produced exclusively legally, not in a handicraft way. The example of legal drugs bronholitin, where the concentration does not exceed 10% of the ephedrine. Legally can’t be manufactured the drug with a concentration of ephedrine of more than 10%.

Ephedrine is a sympathomimetic, which means the realization of the action in the release of noradrenaline from the nerve endings. Its action is manifested through the activation of the sympathetic nervous system. However, ephedrine action on the central nervous system is limited, as it does not penetrate well enough through the hemato-encephalic barrier.

What is ephedrine, we have already figured out. And now we will list further potential effects of its use in sports:

  • Fat burning;
  • Obvious appetite reduction;
  • Heart rate acceleration;
  • Acceleration of your metabolism;
  • Improving performance in training;
  • Not an obvious diuretic effect.

The combination of ephedrine for weight loss

Ephedrine is often combined with aspirin and caffeine (ECA – ephedrine, caffeine, aspirin). There are cases when aspirin is replaced with salicin, which also acts as aspirin. Until to the ban on ephedrine, many manufacturers produced fat burning supplements based on ECA. Now ephedrine is banned in almost the entire civilized world, but its manufacture is still not disdain in China, India, and some other countries.

In combination with caffeine, ephedrine causes appetite suppression and increases metabolic rate. Both of these effects can be useful for temporary weight loss. Understanding the risks and benefits of using ephedrine and caffeine for weight loss can help prevent adverse outcomes by enabling you to make informed choices.

Caffeine and ephedrine are stimulants. Like other stimulants, ephedrine can cause appetite suppression in some people, making it potentially beneficial for weight loss. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), short-term use of ephedrine can lead to a statistically significant weight loss in some people. The combination of caffeine with ephedrine can be even more effective due to the combined effects of stimulants of both drugs.

Side effects of ephedrine

Nausea and vomiting. Upset stomach, such as nausea or vomiting, may occur in those who take ephedrine. These side effects can occur in combination with decreased appetite, constipation or diarrhea. These negative effects can be exacerbated by the use of ephedrine on an empty stomach.

Anxiety or sleep problems. Ephedrine stimulates central nervous system and can lead to side effects associated with emotions and sleep. But in order to confront with these troubles, you should drink plenty of water and do not take the drug in the second half of the day

Headache or dizziness. Vertigo episodes can make it difficult to stand or walk, and can also cause additional side effects such as confusion or weakness. Side effects of headache associated with ephedrine can be from mild to severe and can be repeated after administration of subsequent doses of this supplement.

Chest pain or cardiac arrhythmias. Ephedra extract can damage the heart muscle, which can lead to heart rhythm disturbances, inflammation of the heart muscle, increased blood pressure, heart attack or cardiac arrest.

These potentially life-threatening side effects of ephedrine can also occur in combination with severe breathing difficulties or fluid retention in the lungs. Beta-blockers can relieve the cardiovascular system. To normalize blood pressure and eliminate the pain in your chest we recommend metoprolol (50-100 mg 1-2 times a day).

Stroke. As a central nervous system stimulant, ephedrine can overload muscle cells, leading to involuntary muscle tremors, spasms or seizures. Ephedrine hydrochloride can also affect blood flow to the brain, which can cause the development of stroke symptoms. In this case, immediate medical attention is required to prevent the development of life-threatening complications.

The website of iron-set.com provides information only for informational purposes. "IronSet" does not sell and does not call for use of potent substances, including anabolic steroids. This information is collected from public sources and can not serve as a basis for deciding on the use of certain drugs. The information presented on the website does not call for the use or distribution of potent substances.


Andrey is a coach, sports writer and editor. He is mainly involved in weightlifting. He also edits and writes articles for the IronSet blog where he shares his experiences. Andrey knows everything from warm-up to hard workout.

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