Banned Stimulants for Drug-Tested Athletes Part 2

Posted by Derek Charlebois on

In part 1 of this series, the banned stimulant DMAA and other prohibited aliphatic alkylamines were highlighted. In this article, we will examine four additional stimulant compounds that are currently being used in many dietary supplements but are banned from drug-tested competitions:

  1. Eria Jarensis Extract AKA N-Phenylethyl Dimethylamine Citrate
  2. Higenamine AKA Norcoclaurine
  3. N-Methyl Tyramine AKA 4-hydroxy-N-methylphenethylamine (NMT)
  4. Oxilofrine AKA Methyl-Synephrine

This article is especially important to USAPL powerlifters and other athletes who are tested in accordance to WADA guidelines.


Eria Jarensis Extract AKA N-Phenylethyl Dimethylamine Citrate

An ingredient I’ve recently seen popping up on pre-workout supplement labels is “Eria Jarensis Extract”, also listed as “N-Phenylethyl Dimethylamine Citrate”. Before researching this ingredient for this article, I was not very familiar with it. Searching for “N-Phenylethyl Dimethylamine” on PUBMED resulted in ZERO studies found…

Eria Jarensis is a plant in the orchid family said to supply N-methyl-phenethylamine and N,N-Dimethylphenethylamine. These compounds have a similar molecular structure as Phenylethylamine (PEA). PEA (and its derivatives) is listed on the WADA banned substance list banned substance list under section “S6 Stimulants”. 

I can’t say for certain taking a supplement with “Eria Jarensis Extract” on the label will cause you to fail a drug test, but given that plant contains multiple PEA-like compounds and N,N-Dimethylphenethylamine is indeed prohibited in competition, I wouldn’t chance taking the supplement.


Higenamine AKA Norcoclaurine

HIgenamine can be found in various plants/fruit. The higenamine used in supplements is the synthetic version, listed as higenamine hydrochloride or higenamie HCL. Higenamine might also be labeled as Nelumbo Nucifera Extract.

Higenamine was added to the WADA prohibited list this year (2017) under section “S3- Beta-2 Agonists”. Higenamine is still used in pre-workouts and fat-burners, so steer clear of supplements containing it.


N-Methyl Tyramine AKA 4-hydroxy-N-methylphenethylamine (NMT)

Tyramine is an “indirect sympathomimetic” that doesn’t directly activate adrenergic receptors but can prolong the actions of adrenergic transmitters. NMT, as the name implies, is the methylated version of L-Tyramine.

NMT is prohibited in competition, so any supplement that contains it can cause you to fail a drug test. Tyramine itself did not pop up on the banned substance list, but the tyramine metabolite Octopamine is banned and listed under section “S6 Stimulants”.


Oxilofrine AKA Methyl-Synephrine

Methylsynephrine is an adrenergic receptor agonist. In April of 2016, the FDA issued warning letters to multiple companies using methylsynephrine in supplements stating that the ingredient does not meet the statutory definition of a dietary ingredient and they must stop selling it. Despite this, products that contain methylsynephrine are still being sold. Methylsynephrine is listed on the WADA prohibited under Stimulants (S6) and therefore supplements containing it should be avoided.

Note Synephrine, included in supplements as a Citrus aurantium/Bitter orange extract or Synephrine HCL, is not listed on the prohibited.



The purpose of this article is to help educate and inform drug tested athletes and hopefully prevent failed tested. The following stimulants are banned and should be avoided by drug-tested athletes: 

  1. Eria Jarensis Extract AKA N-Phenylethyl Dimethylamine Citrate
  2. Higenamine AKA Norcoclaurine
  3. N-Methyl Tyramine AKA 4-hydroxy-N-methylphenethylamine (NMT)
  4. Oxilofrine AKA Methyl-Synephrine

USA Powerlifting has seen in rise in failed tests and my hope is that this article will help prevent future failed tests. If I find additional banned compounds being used in supplements I will write a future article to keep you informed.  

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  • So, as a collegiate football player, this product contains no substances banned by the NCAA?

    Josh on

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