Should you use DMAA?
DMAA, or 1,3 dimethylamylamine is a popular ingredient in energy drinks and supplements. It’s believed to be highly effective in muscle building and weight loss formulas since 2007. Several supplement products have been developed around DMAA, and some became widely popular, such as Jack3d, a performance-enhancing supplement, and OxyElite Pro fat burning supplement. Today, questions surround DMAA and its use in supplements because of safety issues and several regulations set by the FDA concerning DMAA.
The history of DMAA
DMAA was created six decades ago, in 1948 by Eli Lilly, an American Soldier and Pharmaceutical Chemist. Its initial intended purpose is as a nasal decongestant for people suffering from allergic rhinitis. DMAA was initially trademarked as Forthane, and sold in 1971 as a drug for allergic rhinitis, but was later withdrawn in 1983 because of numerous reported side effects that include headaches, tremors, and hypertension.
How DMAA works
The main function of DMAA is vasoconstriction – an opposite action to vasodilators like L-Arginine and Yohimbe. In its Forthane formula, DMAA constricts the blood vessels in the nose to promote less blood flow, and thus less nasal discharge. This function is still being used today in nasal sprays containing oxymetazoline, and it’s one of the most effective nasal decongestant solutions available today. However, DMAA did not stay long as a nasal decongestant drug given its numerous side effects, but it found its place in supplements, where it gained popularity because of its fat-burning and muscle-building properties.
DMAA in supplements
DMAA can appear in a number of forms in supplements. In the supplement fact sheet, DMAA appears as DMAA, 1,3 dimethylamylamine, methylhexanamine, and methylhexamine. It also appears in so-called natural sources like geranamine, geranamine extract, geranium, and geranium extract. Supplements have to make the case that the product is sourced from an all-natural source in order to pass as a supplement and not a drug, in which cases geranamine and geranium are considered sources of DMAA.
It has a two-pronged effect involving a quick energy boost and a surge of mental focus which is a characteristic of a nootropic. DMAA is a sympathomimetic drug that emulates the effects of dopamine, adrenaline, and noradrenaline functions to promote a sudden release of energy combined with a faster metabolism caused by the increased blood pressure. It also has some stimulant properties caused by its effect on the central nervous system that promotes alertness and focus as well as an increased airflow to the lungs which systematically improves stamina.
Controversies surrounding DMAA
In a recent study about DMAA, it was revealed that geranium does not contain any form of DMAA, but supplements that supposedly claim that its DMAA content is sourced from geranium still have an ample amount of chemical DMAA included in the formula. This is potentially dangerous since DMAA is considered as a sympathomimetic drug which puts it in the same class as cocaine. In fact, the distribution of DMAA needs to be closely monitored given that it is structurally similar to amphetamine which gives DMAA its effect on the central nervous system.
As a result, DMAA was banned in several sporting organizations citing its threat to the user. Worldwide, many countries have banned the sale of DMAA including New Zealand, Australia, Sweden, and Canada. In the United States, the FDA has issued an advisory for manufacturers to remove DMAA from all of their products. It’s reported that USP Labs, the creators of Jack3d and OxyElite Pro has released another version of Jack3d without DMAA in it.
Today, the FDA has not issued a total ban on DMAA, and marketers are still open to sell DMAA in the United States.
Deaths caused by DMAA
DMAA has gained a negative reputation when it was revealed that DMAA caused the deaths of at least 5 people and 86 other adverse effect reports that were submitted to the FDA. In one particular case, two marines died, and an investigation dragged the manufacturers of Jack3d after traces of the supplement were found on the soldiers who died.
Alternatives to DMAA
While DMAA is undoubtedly effective for fat burning and muscle building, it’s far from being considered the best supplement for fat burning. As an alternative, you should look for the best fat burning supplements that contain Synephrine (LipoGenix Elite) instead. Synephrine creates the same conditions as DMAA without the dangerous side effects.