Published October 14, 2013
The popular body-building supplement Craze contains a stimulant similar to methamphetamine, according to Consumer Reports.
In a study published in the journal Drug Testing and Analysis, researchers tested containers of Craze purchased from an American and European online retailer, as well as containers from a major U.S. chain store. Two labs independently identified the supplement as containing the unlisted ingredient N,alpha-DEPEA, which has never before been studied in humans.
“What’s particularly alarming about finding a completely new drug, in this case a close cousin of methamphetamine, is that we have no idea how it will affect the body,” said lead study author Dr. Pieter Cohen, of the Harvard Medical School. “Will it be addictive? Will it stimulate the heart and increase the risk of heart attacks? It has never been studied in humans, so we don’t know.”
Manufactured by Driven Sports Inc., Craze claims to contain the extract of a plant known as a dendrobium orchid, according to Consumer Reports. Cohen suggested that other products claiming to use this same plant may actually contain N,alpha-DEPEA as well.
Based on Craze’s dosage recommendations, users could consume up to 35 milligrams of the stimulant, leading researchers to suspect that this was not a minor contaminant or undiscovered trace component of the supplement.
Cohen said that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was informed of these findings in May but has taken no action to date. Craze can still be purchased at GNC stores across the country, according to Cohen.