Fitness gyms warned on selling, promoting steroids

By DG Staff

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DUBAI 12 December 2019: The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP), has issued a statement noting that several fitness centres are promoting and selling unlicensed and unreliable hormones and steroids for gym-goers, and warned of confiscating all prohibited products and those dangerous to public health.

After being notified that some fitness instructors and trainers are directing gym-goers to use oral or injectable steroids to enhance their performance or their physical appearance, the ministry intensified its monitoring and control procedures.

The banned products were seized for examination at the MoHAP’s Quality Control and Research Laboratory for Medical Products, to identify their ingredients and impact on public health, said Wam.

MoHAP underlined the integrated coordination with municipalities and health authorities in the country to ensure unlicenced performance-enhancing drugs are not sold.

“These fitness centres or gyms are unaware or pretending to be inattentive to the negative impacts of these drugs on the health of young people, especially in light of the tough competition between fitness and bodybuilding centres to attract the largest number of members. They tend to use illegal methods such as promoting banned steroids to increase the muscle mass of their members to earn more money,” the ministry explained.

Dangerous substances

Dr. Hessa Mubarak, Director of Health Empowerment and Compliance Department at the MoHAP, said, “These substances can be dangerous and cause serious health risks, including serious liver and kidney diseases, especially since there is no control over their storage conditions, which leads to their damage.

“Besides, they cause side effects such as severe acne, hair loss, increased aggressiveness and depression, and cause life-threatening reactions such as kidney damage, heart attacks, stroke and pulmonary embolism (blockage of one of the central blood vessels in the lungs), and deep vein thrombosis.”

“Most of these synthetic hormones enter the country illegally and are from unlicensed companies and do not conform to international standards. To take hormones, especially an injectable one, a prescription is needed from a licenced doctor and specialist and should be based on medical tests, to make sure there are no birth defects or malfunction of some organs of the body and to avoid dire health consequences,” she added.

Using synthetic hormones leads to the disruption and atrophy of the glands producing these hormones, especially testosterone, which causes erectile dysfunction and infertility, the MoHAP statement concluded.

Dubai Gazette