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ACBA joins other institutions in the fight against doping. We are in favor of clean sport, sporting truth, fair play, and above all we are concerned with protecting the health of athletes.

Here you can find more information about banned substances and their risks to your health.


​ADOP - Anti-Doping Authority


WADA - World Antidoping agency

Prohibited substances:
- Diuretics, what are they?
- Anabolic Agents, what are they?
- Anabolic Agents B, what are they?
- Glycoproteins, Peptide Hormones and Related Substances, what are they?
- Blood Doping, what is it?
- Pharmacological, Chemical and Physical Manipulation, what is it?
- Beta blockers, what are they?
- Corticosteroids, what are they?


​           Nandrolone is a derivative of testosterone - a hormone produced by the testicles and responsible for a man's secondary sexual characteristics, such as a deeper voice, facial design, more aggressive tendencies, erection of the sexual organ, among others. It is a highly anabolic steroid, which favors the transformation of nutritional materials into living tissues. The application of one ampoule is enough for the athlete to exceed the limit established by the International Olympic Committee (IOC): two nanograms per milliliter of urine, in men, and five nanograms in women. Only in cycling is the rate common for both sexes: five nanograms.



​           Stimulants are substances that have a direct effect on the Central Nervous System, because they increase the stimulation of the cardiac and metabolic system. The most widespread stimulants in sport are: amphetamines, cocaine, ephedrine and caffeine.

Why are they used by athletes?

Stimulants are used to achieve the same effects as adrenaline, a substance that is naturally secreted by the body. They can produce excitement, improve reflexes and the ability to concentrate. They can also increase the ability to tolerate physical effort and lower the pain threshold.

Potentially harmful side effects.

Stimulants are responsible for the death of some athletes. If an athlete has to compete in unfavorable conditions, for example for long periods of time, with high temperatures and humidity levels, the body temperature rises easily. Due to stimulants it becomes difficult for the body to trigger the refrigeration process. Thus, the heart and other organs, such as the liver and kidneys, suffer, which can cause death.


Other side effects:

- Lack of appetite

- Insomnia

- Decrease the feeling of fatigue, which leads to exhaustion

- Euphoria

- Hallucinations/tremor

- Unrest

- Arterial hypertension

- Palpitations and heart arrhythmias

- Decreased motor coordination, critical sense and motor coordination

- Increased body temperature

- Physical and psychological dependence (habituation)


What you should still know.

Some cold and flu medicines contain stimulants, such as "nose drops". One group of stimulants is the sympathomimetic amines, of which ephedrine is a member.

In low doses, these substances are also part of anti-allergy medicines. This reinforces the concept that no medication should be taken without being prescribed by a specialist doctor.


NOTE: Some natural products, such as the Ma Huang plant or Ginseng preparations, may contain doping substances.

Analgésicos Narcóticos

Narcotic analgesics

Narcotic analgesics prohibited in Sport are represented by morphine and similar chemical and pharmacological compounds. They are derived from opium, which in turn is extracted from the poppy (papaver somniferum). They act on the central nervous system, reducing the sensation of pain.

Why are they used by athletes?

They can be taken to mask the sensation of pain. Furthermore, they are used as antitussives.


Potentially harmful side effects.

The use of narcotic analgesics can be a public health problem. The absence or reduction of painful sensation can lead an athlete to underestimate a potentially dangerous injury, leading to its worsening.



Other side effects:

- Physical and psychological dependence (habituation)

- Loss of balance and coordination

- Nausea and vomiting

- Insomnia and depression

- Low heart rate

- Lower respiratory rate

- Low ability to concentrate

- Constipation



​          Diuretics are drugs that increase the formation and excretion of urine. They normally act at the level of the renal tubules to achieve the desired effect. In Medicine, they are used as drugs to control high blood pressure, reduce edema (swelling) or to combat congestive heart failure (a disease caused by heart failure).

Why are they used by athletes?

Typically these substances are used for two reasons:

1st. - To quickly reduce body weight in sports where there are weight categories. Boxing, judo, weightlifting and rowing are examples of these sports. In bodybuilding, diuretics are used as a way to "dry" the muscles, which will then look better.
2nd. - In an attempt to increase urinary excretion and thus eliminate any doping substances more quickly.

Potentially harmful side effects:

- Dehydration (decrease in body water)

- Muscle cramp

- Decrease in blood volume

- Kidney diseases

- Ostostatic hypotension (dizziness when standing)

- Heart rhythm changes

- Marked loss of mineral salts


What you should still know.:

The use of diuretics is prohibited in sport. Its uncontrolled use can be extremely dangerous. Deaths have been recorded in athletes who, taking diuretics, had heart and kidney problems. Furthermore, a dehydrated athlete sees their abilities diminished and risks injury.

Agentes Anabolizantes

Anabolic agents

Anabolic steroids


What are they?


Anabolic steroids are derived from a male hormone, testosterone. The term anabolic means that it causes tissue hypertrophy (increase), particularly muscle. They can be taken orally or by injection. After its administration, there is an increase in protein synthesis, particularly in the genitals, bones, skin and muscle tissue. In Medicine, this substance is often used to treat anemia, osteoporosis (decrease in bone density), gynecological diseases or growth disorders.


Why are they used by athletes?


Anabolic steroids are often taken (in large doses) by throwers, weightlifters and eventually by athletes in all types of sports that involve explosive strength.

They are also used by people who want to improve their appearance by obtaining a more muscular body. They seem to be responsible for increasing muscle mass and strength when the individual in question has adequate training and nutrition.


Potentially harmful side effects.


Side effects can be serious and can be divided into general and specific for men and women:

General side effects:

- Oily skin/acne (pimples on the skin)

- Injuries to the reproductive system, leading to infertility

- Arterial hypertension

- Liver (liver) diseases

- Increased aggressiveness

- Appearance of malignant tumors (cancers)


- Side effects, male specific:

- Development of the mammary glands

- Infertility

- Testicular atrophy

- Decreased production of male hormone (testosterone)

- Decreased sperm production

- Sexual impotence

- Loss of hair

- Prostate cancer



Female-specific side effects:

- Hair loss and hair growth in male areas (beard)

- Menstrual cycle changes

- Decrease in the size of the mammary glands

- Voice change

- Male body morphology (broad shoulders and very developed torso).

Agentes Anabolizantes B

Anabolic Agents b

B. Other non-steroidal anabolic agents


What are they?


Other anabolic agents are chemical compounds that are not related to anabolic steroids and may have a similar anabolic effect. This new class of banned substances was introduced due to the use of the B2 - Clenbuterol Agonist. B2 Agonists actually belong to the class of stimulants and can be used to treat asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis.


Why are they used by athletes?


The use of clenbuterol in calves was found to reduce fat mass and increase muscle mass. It is believed that it was due to this fact that they began to be administered to athletes.

Potentially harmful side effects:

- Tremor

- Unrest

- Anxiety

- Changes in heart rhythm (arrhythmias)

- Muscle cramp


- What you should still know.



Clenbuterol is prohibited, as are other substances in the same pharmacological group as B2 Agonists. However, there are exceptions, such as salbutamol and terbutaline, used in aerosols.

Glicoproteínas, Hormonas Peptídicas e Substâncias Aparentadas

Glycoproteins, Peptide Hormones and Related Substances

These types of substances act in the body as messengers that lead to the production of other endogenous hormones, such as testosterone and corticosteroids. They accelerate body growth and reduce the sensation of pain. As similar, there are synthetic substances that have effects similar to peptide hormones. HCG, HGH, ACTH and EPO belong to this class.


Why are they used by athletes?

- Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG).


This hormone increases the production of endogenous steroids and has an effect similar to testosterone. The use of HCG appears to increase muscle volume and power in athletes who do strength training and who are otherwise well nourished.

- Growth Hormone (HGH).

This hormone increases linearly until the end of puberty (when there is a stabilization of bone growth that stops growth). The use of HGH serves to increase muscle mass. When using it, athletes run enormous risks.


- Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)

This hormone increases the endogenous level of corticosteroids. It is used for the purpose of tissue recovery. If used for prolonged periods, it causes marked muscle weakening.

- Erythropoietin (EPO)

This hormone increases the number of red blood cells (erythrocytes) in the blood and thus increases its oxygen transport capacity. It is used in endurance sports. As the increase in red blood cells also increases blood viscosity, athletes risk suffering embolisms (diseases caused by the occlusion of blood vessels by clots).

Potentially harmful side effects:


Gynecomastia (enlarged mammary glands in men)

Menstrual changes in women


Excessive growth of the hands, feet and face (acromegaly)


Growth of some internal organs, such as the liver

Joint diseases




Arterial hypertension


Gastric ulcer

Loss of bone mass

Difficulty in wound healing



Increased blood viscosity


Myocardial infarction

Cerebral infarction

Pulmonary embolism



What you should still know:

In sport, the use of peptide hormones, glycoproteins and related substances is prohibited.

In some countries, possession of this type of substance can lead to imprisonment.

Dopagem Sanguinea

​Blood doping

Blood doping consists of administering blood or blood products to an athlete without being for medical reasons. Administration can be autologous (the extraction of the athlete's own blood, its conservation and subsequent reintroduction, days before a competition), or homologous (coming from donors).

Why do athletes use it?

It has been proven that blood doping can increase the aerobic capacity of athletes.

They may be interested in endurance sports, such as long-distance athletics, cycling and swimming.


Potentially harmful side effects:


- Pulmonary or cerebral embolism

- Anaphylactic shock and other transfusion reactions, which can be fatal

- Hepatitis and AIDS (when blood from infected donors is used)

- Allergic reactions


- What you should still know.


Blood doping and administration of erythropoietin are prohibited in sport.

Manipulação Farmacológica, Química e Física

Pharmacological, Chemical and Physical Manipulation

​         Pharmacological, chemical and physical manipulation consists of the use of substances or methods that interfere with the integrity or validity of urine samples obtained in anti-doping controls. Catheterization, urine substitution or adulteration are examples of manipulation. The use of probenecid or similar compounds, as well as the use of epitestosterone, can also fall within the scope of manipulation.

Why is it used by athletes?

This type of procedure aims to prevent the identification of doping substances in urine.

Therefore, a doped athlete may try to use these methods so that his analysis does not come back positive.

Potentially harmful side effects.

Some of the procedures described may have highly harmful side effects:


- Headache

- ​Intestinal problems

- Dizziness and feeling hot

- Kidney calculi (stones)

- Distillation

- Urinary infection

- Inflammation of the urinary tract, leading to serious injuries



Beta-blockers are a pharmacological group used to essentially treat high blood pressure, angina pectoris, migraines and certain changes in heart rhythm.

Why do athletes use them?

They can be used to reduce competitive anxiety, to control or lower the heart rate and to reduce tremors. Sports that benefit from these substances are shooting, archery, diving and motor sports, among others.

Potentially harmful side effects.

They have an adverse effect on athletes who undertake prolonged efforts, as they reduce endurance capacity.


It should also be noted that they cause:

- Arterial hypotension

- Bradycardia (low heart rate)

- Heart failure

- Insomnia

- Sexual impotence

- Changes in blood circulation


- What you should still know.

Its use is restricted in sport. Due to its indiscriminate use in certain sports and the fact that there are therapeutic alternatives, the competent authorities may require its research in anti-doping controls.



Corticosteroids are synthetic or natural compounds related to hormones produced in the cortex of the adrenal glands. They are used for therapeutic purposes to suppress inflammation, asthma and pain. Due to their side effects, they should only be administered under medical supervision.

Due to its indiscriminate use, it was restricted by the competent authorities.

Why do athletes use them?

They are normally used as anti-inflammatories or analgesics, but also because they provide a certain euphoric effect.

Potentially harmful side effects:

- Insomnia

- Arterial hypertension

- Delay in wound healing

- Diabetes

- Heartburn

- Osteoporosis (decrease in bone mass)



What you should still know:

Its use in athletes is prohibited except for its topical application (ocular, in otorhinolaryngology and dermatology) its application and aerosols (in asthma and allergic rhinitis) and in local or intra-articular injections. Its use must be notified to the competent authorities, stating the reason for its use.



Marijuana and hashish are derived from an Indian plant, Cannabis Sativa. More than 400 compounds from this plant have been identified, of which 61 belong to the group of cannabinoids. The term Marijuana is used for preparations derived from the dried leaves, seeds and sometimes flowers of the plant. Hashishe is extracted from the resin or part of the flowering plant.

Why is it used by athletes?

Marijuana or hashish can be taken as a way to relax before a competition.


Potentially harmful side effects.

There is no doubt that its prolonged use is harmful to the athlete's health on several levels, including the heart, lungs and central nervous system. On the other hand, marijuana can have serious effects on the sexual system.



- Increases heart rate

- Causes high blood pressure


- Inflammation of lung tissue


- Malignant tumors (cancer) caused by simultaneous tobacco smoking


- Central nervous system


- Memory loss

- Loss of balance and ability to concentrate

- Hallucinations

- Change in body temperature


- Sexual apparatus


- Ovulation changes

- Decrease in the number of sperm and their motility



What you should still know:

Marijuana is prohibited in sport. Controls can be carried out on athletes researching this type of substances at the request of the Federations. In some countries, possession and use of these products can be punished by law, leading to prison sentences.



​           Alcohols are a pharmacological group, the most common of which is ethanol or ethyl alcohol, obtained through the fermentation of sugar. It is only toxic after a certain dosage, and has been used as a drink since ancient times. Alcohol depresses the central nervous system. After ingestion, it is quickly disseminated throughout the body, including the brain.

Why is it used by athletes?

If taken in small doses, it reduces tremors, improves the feeling of self-confidence and is relaxing. It is used in sports where it is necessary to be calm, such as billiards, archery, shooting, among others.

Potentially harmful side effects.

Drinking alcoholic beverages can have certain side effects, which depend on the quantity ingested:

Habituation, with physical and psychological dependence

Decrease in motor reflexes and neuro-muscular coordination

Increased aggressiveness, which can be harmful to opponents or the athlete's colleagues

Deadly diseases of the liver (cirrhosis) and heart (heart failure).


What you should still know.

The use of alcoholic beverages may be prohibited in certain sports. If requested by a Federation, the athlete may be subjected to the "balloon test".

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