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The Use of Performance Enhancing Drugs Among Athletes

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The use of performance-enhancing drugs by professional and amateur athletes has been recognized as a problem since at least the 1960s. These three drugs include anabolic steroids, stimulants and diuretics. There are a couple of issues related to the use of performance enhancing drugs. These issues contain safety, cheating/unfairness and legality.


Anabolic steroids are one of the most common performance enhancing drugs. Anabolic steroids are a common drug used by many athletes across the world, as it promotes the growth of muscle. Anabolic steroids benefits people by helping the growth of muscle and help repairing muscle tissue. As well as doing good for people it can trigger many negative impacts such as, severe acne, hair loss, liver disease, kidney disease heart attacks, strokes just to name a few. Some athletes that have used steroids consist of Dwain Chambers and Justin Gatling who both were sprinters. Marion Jones who was an American track and field athlete and had won 3 gold medals and 2 bronze medals in the 2000 Olympics and Lance Armstrong, a cyclist that competed in the tour de France. It can in this manner be said that anabolic steroids influence athletic execution, yet the advantage includes some significant downfall to the user.

Stimulants is another performance enhancing drug popular amongst most athletes in the world. Stimulants are a drug which consists of speeding up the messages between the brain and the body. It tends to make the person feel more awake, confident, energetic or alert. Stimulants tend to benefit many people that suffer from ADHD as it causes the person to increase focus and attention. As well as having benefits it also has many negative effects that consist of loss of appetite, increased heart rate, elevated blood and body temperature and many more. Many years ago, 2 Jamaican men by the names of Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell had failed their drug tests after showing positive for the use of stimulants in a 100m sprint in the Olympics. This drug may improve athletic performance, but the side-effects can be dangerous from multiple points of view.

A third example of a performance enhancing drug used by some athletes is diuretics which are also called water pills and are designed to increase the amount of water and salt ejected from the body as urine. Diuretics are usually given out to help treat high blood pressure which is also the most common condition treated with diuretics. When taken as prescribed, diuretics are generally well tolerated. However, they can still cause some side effects such as thirst, dizziness, increased blood sugar, muscle cramps, headaches, skin rash, increased cholesterol but some of the more serious side effects consist of allergic reactions, irregular heartbeat and sometimes kidney failures. In 2008 six NFL players were suspended after being tested positive for the use of diuretics. The players were allowed to return to play if their team made the playoffs. This drug, unlike the others discussed comes with more negative effects than positive.


To conclude in can be said that all three drugs can have many good effects as well as negative effects towards the athletes. It has been shown and proven that many athletes use all these drugs to enhance sporting performance all over the world for things such as fame, more money and generally just to be better at what their doing. On the other hand using these drugs can come with many consequences for the athletes and many negative effects physically for their body and well-being.  

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The Use Of Performance Enhancing Drugs Among Athletes. (2021, October 25). GradesFixer. Retrieved December 3, 2021, from
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