Undeclared Doping Substances are Highly Prevalent in Commercial Sports Nutrition Supplements

Undeclared Doping Substances are Highly Prevalent in Commercial Sports Nutrition Supplements / Erik Duiven, Luc J.C. van Loon, Laila Spruijt, Willem Koert, Olivier M. de Hon. - 
(Journal of Sports Science and Medicine 20 (2021); p. 328-338)

  • DOI: 10.52082/jssm.2021.328


Sports nutrition supplements have previously been reported to contain undeclared doping substances. The use of such supplements can lead to general health risks and may give rise to unintentional doping violations in elite sports. To assess the prevalence of doping substances in a range of high-risk sports nutrition supplements available from Dutch web shops. A total of 66 sports nutrition supplements - identified as potentially high-risk products claiming to modulate hormone regulation, stimulate muscle mass gain, increase fat loss, and/or boost energy - were selected from 21 different brands and purchased from 17 web shops. All products were analyzed for doping substances by the UK life sciences testing company LGC, formerly known as the Laboratory of the Government Chemist, using an extended version of their ISO17025 accredited nutritional supplement screen. A total of 25 out of the 66 products (38%) contained undeclared doping substances, which included high levels of the stimulants oxilofrine, β-methylphenethylamine (BMPEA) and N,β-dimethylphenethylamine (NBDMPEA), the stimulant 4-methylhexan-2-amine (methylhexaneamine, 1,3-dimethylamylamine, DMAA), the anabolic steroids boldione (1,4-androstadiene-3,17-dione) and 5-androstene-3β,17α-diol (17α-AED), the beta-2 agonist higenamine and the beta-blocker bisoprolol. Based upon the recommended dose and the potential variability of analyte concentration, the ingestion of some products identified within this study could pose a significant risk of unintentional doping violations. In addition to inadvertent doping risks, the prescribed use of 3 products (4.5%) could likely impose general health risks.

Original document


22 March 2021
Duiven, Erik
Hon, Olivier de
Koert, Willem
Spruijt, Laila
Van Loon, Lucas J.C. van
Other organisations
Dopingautoriteit - Doping Authority Netherlands
Maastricht Universitair Medisch Centrum Plus (Maastricht UMC+) - Maastricht University Medical Center+
Analytical aspects
Mass spectrometry analysis
Doping classes
P1. Beta-Blockers
S1. Anabolic Agents
S3. Beta-2 Agonists
S6. Stimulants
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Health effects
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Scientific article
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Date generated
31 March 2021
Date of last modification
8 April 2021
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