German Scientists Say Spinach Should Be Banned In Sports

Thelasko quotes a surprising CNN story about spinach: A study released by Freie Universitat Berlin suggests that ecdysterone, a chemical found in the leafy green vegetable, has a similar effect to steroids and should be added to the list of substances banned in sport, CNN affiliate RTL reported. The researchers ran a study involving 46 athletes who trained three times per week for 10 weeks. Some were given ecdysterone and others a placebo. Those who took ecdysterone saw their performance improve by three times as much as those who did not…

Co-author Francesco Botre, director of the Italian anti-doping agency (FMSI), told CNN that the team are now investigating ways to test for ecdysterone. Anti-doping agencies are currently not allowed to test for ecdysterone because it isn’t on the list of banned substances, he explained. This, combined with its greater than expected effect on performance, is a worry. “It’s very powerful because it’s invisible,” said Botre. “It’s not on the list.”

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