NBC News Rock Center (4/12, Williams, 4.13M) reported, “The FDA wants fitness centers across the country to stop using popular dietary supplements containing an ingredient called DMAA [1,3 dimethylamylamine]. The agency says the substance is illegal and brings with it the risk of heart attack or worse. The question, of course, why isn’t the substance banned and why are stores still able to sell it?” NBC (Snyderman) talked with the Sparling family, whose son Mike died of cardiac arrest at the age of 21, after using the drug “jack 3-d or jacked as it is called,” which contains DMAA and has gained popularity among some fitness enthusiasts.
On the front page of its Business Day section, the New York Times (4/13, B1, Singer, Lattman, Subscription Publication, 1.68M) noted that although “health regulators in at least seven countries, including Canada, have effectively banned supplements containing DMAA, the products have remained widely available at supplement stores in the United States. Some medical researchers say federal health regulators should have warned American consumers much earlier.”
The Boston Globe (4/15, Kotz, 250K) adds that DMAA is “just the tip of the iceberg: Emergency room visits related to energy drinks doubled from 10,000 to 20,000 between 2007 and 2011, often because of heart problems linked to a caffeine overdose.” And those who are at biggest risk are adolescents and “young adults who are targets of marketing efforts by energy drink makers, according to a federal investigation released Wednesday by Massachusetts Representative Edward Markey and two US senators.”