General information

Ephedrine is used in many medicines to treat colds and asthma. There have been many cases of unintentional doping, in which the active ingredient ephedrine has been found in athletes who have actually caught a cold. Thus, ephedrine, similar to caffeine, is tolerated at a limit concentration.

The limit is 10 μg/ml urine. Ephedrine is produced from plants of the genus Ephedra. It causes the release of adrenalin and noradrenalin.

Ephedrine was available in pharmacies until 2001, but since it was misused in the majority of cases, public access has been stopped. The effect of ephedrine can be compared to adrenaline. However, the effect is weaker, but lasts longer.

Similar to caffeine, ephedrine has a stimulating effect. High blood pressure, increased heart rate, dilatation of the bronchi are typical symptoms of ephedrine intake. Ephedrine is also used as an appetite suppressant to lose weight. The increase in body temperature is believed to increase protein biosynthesis and active fat burning.


The daily dose of ephedrine is between 20 and 50 mg per day. An overdose can lead to unpleasant side effects. Typical side effects are:

  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety states and
  • Nausea.