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Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sports Essay

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Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sports


When involved in sports, you have to be competitive. You need to win more than anybody else. However, athletes are taking winning to the extreme.

As the use of performance enhancing drugs is becoming more popular amongst athletes, many of them do not understand the risks involved in taking these drugs. Many people are looking for a quick way to build muscles, or to get stronger the fastest way possible. Using these performance aids may very well be a quick fix for many athletes, but taking the drugs is unethical and dangerous. Using special drugs to boost an athlete’s performance is degrading to sports and to the athlete, but after they stop using the drugs and lose some strength, you become trapped in the steroid cycle.

Steroids were developed in Europe around 1930 to treat undernourished and healing patients after surgery. Steroids are a synthetic version of the human hormone called testosterone. It stimulates development of bones and muscles. Competitive weightlifters began using these steroids around the 1950s as a way to increase their athletic performance and gain an upper hand on the rest of their competitors. After its initial use in bodybuilding, the drug spread like fire through the rest of the sports world, ranging from sports in high school to professional athlete in the Olympic Games. Steroids may be taken by injection or orally.

Steroids can be divided into two types: anabolic and androgenic, but the distinction in some ways is artificial. Anabolic steroids mainly affect the metabolism, immunity and muscle, while androgenic steroids have strong masculinisation effects on women and sometimes feminisation on men.

Athletes should not take steroids or supplements as they can lead to addiction and severe health problems and other side effects. Some of the health problems include sterility, heart or liver disease, kidney damage, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure and cancer in males and females. Other common side effects are increased aggressiveness and paranoia. The list can go on and on. Female users face even more problems than male users. In females, many physical changes may occur such as growth of facial and body hair, deepening of the voice, diminished breasts, and abnormal menstrual cycles. If taken by to early, anabolic steroids may stunt growth, by fusing the growth plates. ...


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...ce today, but the laws against steroids should be enforced more often. While users believe it is their decision to use drugs to gain strength, their friends and family will have to deal with the consequences as well as the user because of the side effects and possible death of the user. A person can use steroids just one time, but that one time can kill him twenty years down the road.

References

American Fitness Magazine. (2004, September/October). Out of Control. Retrieved February 10, 2005, from EBSCOhost database. [Journal article]

Leshner, A.I. (n.d.) Anabolic Steroid Abuse, National Institute on Drug Abuse. http://www.drugabuse.gov/ResearchReports/Steroids/Anabolicsteroids.html [Online]

Mishra, R. (June 1, 1995). Steroids and Sports Are a Losing Combination, US Food and Drug Administration. Retrieved February 10, 2005, from http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/CONSUMER/CON00107.html [Online]

National Institute on Drug Abuse. Anabolic Steroid Abuse. (n.d.). Retrieved February 10, 2005 from http://www.steroidabuse.org [Online]

“Steroids.” http://www.whitehousedrugpolicy.gov/drugfact/steroids/index.html [Online]

“Steroids.” Britannica Online Encyclopaedia [Online]


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