What is the WADA Prohibited List?
The List of Prohibited Substances and Methods (WADA Prohibited List) defines which substances are prohibited in and out-of-competition. The WADA Prohibited List also indicates whether particular substances are banned in particular sports, i.e. alcohol or beta-blocker. Substances and methods on the WADA Prohibited List are classified by categories (e.g. steroids, stimulants). Certain recreational drugs, including Cocaine and Cannabinoids, are also included in the WADA Prohibited List.
The Prohibited List is updated annually, published by 1 October, and comes into effect on 1 January of the following year.
How to check medications?
Since an Athlete is held responsible for what he/she ingests, checking medications will ultimately also be the responsibility of the Athlete. Therefore, always inform doctors and pharmacists that you are an Athlete, subject to doping control. Check that all the ingredients of your medication are permitted for use in sport. Be aware that checking only the brand name of the product can lead to error: in different countries, or even at different times in your own country, a product known under one same brand-name can contain different substances, one or several of which may be prohibited.
Several National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs) offer an information service (telephone hotline, electronic mail, Internet database, mobile apps etc.) to help Athletes check the status of medications sold in their respective countries. NADOs might further establish a list of medication for prevalent medical conditions, which are free of Prohibited Substances. For example, the NADOs of the United States, Canada, Great Britain and Japan have established a combined Internet database named GlobalDro, Global Drug Reference Online. Other countries have established similar information services.
Further information on Athletes and Medications can also be found on the Q&A Leaflet by WADA, which is available in several languages.
What are the health consequences of doping?
All medications/substances have side-effects. Taking medications/substances when a body does not need them can cause serious damage to a body, and even destroy athletic careers. The “Dangers of Doping” Leaflet by WADA explains known side-effects of the various Prohibited Substances.
What are the risks of nutritional supplements?
Nutritional supplements cover a broad range of products including vitamins, minerals, herbs, meal supplements, sports nutrition products, natural food supplements, and other related products used to boost the nutritional content of the diet. Some of these consist of high-protein products, such as amino acid supplements, while other products contain nutrients that support metabolism, energy, and athletic performance and recovery. Nutritional supplements can be found in pill, tablet, capsule, powder or liquid form.
Athletes who take nutritional supplements are at risk of committing an ADRV because Prohibited Substances may be added deliberately during the supplement manufacturing process, or included inadvertently through contamination. These Prohibited Substances are not always listed on the supplement’s ingredient label.
For these reasons, some NADOs have specific programs to warn Athletes and Athlete Support Personnel of the risk of supplement use (e.g. the NADO of the United States - USADA – http://www.usada.org/supplement411).