Peptides for enhanced sports performances has become a huge topic in the Australian media of late especially with AFL teams and one in particular. But what are they really? and what does the average person think they are? We think most people would get this wrong and uneducated opinions are like mobile phones, almost everyone has one.
Are Peptides Steriods? – Regardless of what you may have heard, peptides are not steroids. Peptides are made up of amino acids just like any other protein. Steroids (anabolic/contraceptive/anti-inflammatory) are hormones too but it’s practically just a coincidence that a very small group of peptides causes anabolic effects like “steroids” do.
Are Peptides Illegal? – Up until early February this year, peptide hormones and other performance-enhancing drugs were freely available to anyone with an internet connection and a credit card. The TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) has now moved to try and prevent the supply of these hormones online without a prescription. Although you won’t find many peptide hormones on the TGA’s current Poisons Schedule (where steroids and other illicit drugs of abuse are listed) peptides are slowly being added to this growing list with each periodical instalment.
Are all peptides performance-enhancing drugs? – Not all peptide hormones interact with muscles or metabolism in a way that would improve athletic performance. Some peptide hormones can improve athletic performance. Performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) can take many forms. Any substance or compound which unquestionably improves an athlete’s ability to outperform his or her competitors in an unfair manner technically falls under this umbrella term.
So you see there is a rather grey area here about Peptides and their use. What will be revealed from the AFL investigations into the Essendon Football Teams alleged use of peptides will reveal the final outcome for peptides use in sport in Australia.