When you're competing at the very top level in athletics, you have to be forensic in terms of watching out for what you put in your body, and that's putting it mildly by the wqay. The UK Anti-doping (UKAD) regularly tests athletes across more than 40 sports. A newspaper has claimed that double Olympic champion Mo Farah missed two drug tests before the London 2012 games. Athletes who miss three tests in a year can be banned for four years. Whether athletes know what the banned substances are or not, accidents can, and have happened. According to the World Anti-Doping code, lets have a look at what sportspeople should just stay clear of. It bans substances and methods which could enhance performance, put an athlete at harm, or damage the spirit of sport. Anabolic steroids, sounds obvious, but anabolic steroids are a group of hormones found naturally in our bodies, but are often taken by athletes wanting to build muscle. They are involved in growth, physical development and the function of the reproductive organs. They come as pills or capsules and are usually taken by mouth, but can be injected. Anabolics can stunt your growth if you are young. Heavy, regular use could shrink your testicles, raise your blood pressure and damage your liver, kidneys and heart. Girls can end up with more body hair, smaller breasts and a deeper voice.
Inhalers, these are often used by asthma sufferers to help with breathing. The drugs (salbutamol, formoterol and salmeterol) used to be banned completely, but were downgraded over questions whether they'd give an athlete an unfair advantage. Now athletes can only take a small amount and if they go over a certain limit, they'd test positive in a doping test. Recreational drugs, goes without saying right but aside from damaging the spirit of sport, some recreational drugs can help performance as well. Cocaine, for example, can give short term benefits if it's used as a stimulant. BETA- Blockers, these are prescribed by a doctor to treat someone for heart disease or high blood pressure. But they're banned in a number of sports, including motor racing, archery and golf as it can help calm a competitor's nerves. Alcohol is also banned in five sports during competition, they are air sports, archery, motorsports, motorcycling and power boating.