While pseudoephedrine is a common ingredient in over the counter (OTC) sinus and nasal decongestant formulas, ephedrine HCL has typically been used as a bronchodilator and an inducer of thermogensis (the liberation of adipose tissue for oxidation into heat - fat burning). Both pseudoephedrine and ephedrine HCL are central nervous system stimulants.
Of the two alkaloids, ephedrine HCL has been the most popular, and has been used by those looking to enhance focus, increase feelings of well being, enhance sexual abilities, lose fat, and increase training effect. It is, chemically, an amphetamine-like substance, making its abilities to enhance focus, thinking and training unsurprising.
Unfortunately, several high-profile deaths have been associated with ephedrine HCL misuse (consumers exceeding recommended dosages, or using the drug when suffering from a dangerous medical condition). The association of ephedrine HCL to these high-profile deaths does not show causation - (i.e. that ephedrine HCL caused the reported deaths - only that its use was correlated with the deaths - i.e. it was present in the deceased persons at time of death.)
Statistically, however, and irrespective of whether ephedrine HCL actually caused these deaths, the deaths associated with ephedrine HCL use are insignificant when compared against the annual death figures resulting from medical malpractice, prescription drug over-use, drug prescription error, and deaths related to cigarette and alcohol abuse.
Nevertheless, the United Stated Food and Drug Administration, under public pressure fueled by media sensationalism, irresponsible reporting and special interest groups (multi-national pharmaceutical cartels), moved to ban the use, possession and sale of ephedrine HCL for uses other than bronchiodilation.
In other words: ephedrine HCL could no longer be sold as a means of effective, safe and economical weight reduction - even with the rising tide of the obesity epidemic that threatens the health of millions.
Not surprisingly, FDA action banning the sale of ephedrine HCL outraged many natural health practitioners, health enthusiasts, and freedom loving citizens.
It Made Them Ask Fundamental Questions:
- By what right does the government tell free citizens, who are protected by the rights enshrined in the Constitution of the United States of America, what medical and health decisions they are to make?
- By what right does the government tell free persons who can think and act for themselves, in the pursuit of liberty and happiness, what they can purchase in a free market place?
- By what right does the government come into the closets, bedrooms, cupboards and medicine cabinets of the free citizens of the United States of America and force those citizens to give up health enhancing, and potentially life saving, nutritional supplements?
- And, perhaps most important of all, critics and dissenters of the ephedrine HCL ban were asking: If ephedrine HCL is banned now, what's next? When will the removal of health rights finally end? When will free choice be gone? And, what rights will we have left, if any, to make our own health choices?
In a society that is truly free and democratic - a society that functions according to a strong and living constitution that clearly outlines the rights and protections afforded to the individual against government power - the answer is clear: The government does not have rights - only individual citizens can and do!
Nevertheless, the USFDA declared the sale of ephedrine HCL illegal for the purposes of fat loss and weight maintenance. No scientific reviews took place, and the public's voice was silenced.
The ban went into effect under pressure from irresponsible and inaccurate media reports and pressures from special interest lobby groups (mostly multinational pharmaceutical cartels).
Thankfully, a Utah judge struck down the FDA's unilateral ban on ephedrine HCL, and reminded the FDA that it bears the burden to prove ephedrine HCL unsafe, rather than forcing the manufacturers to prove it safe before they can bring it to market. But, this does not mean that ephedrine HCL will be appearing in thermogenic products any time soon.
The FDA is now "evaluating the decision" and considering its options. So, while ephedrine HCL has been resuscitated, the FDA and the pharmaceutical lobby may attempt to once again bury ephedrine HCL via the legal system. For now, it's a game of wait-and-see.
The Larger Issue...
Ideally, nutritional supplements would be evaluated according to solid, unbiased scientific research. Unfortunately, today's society is fueled by the politics of greed, and this style of politics has made fair and scientifically accurate evaluation impossible.
The larger issue that underlies the ephedrine HCL case - the reason why this issue is vitally important - is the right to exercise freedom of choice. It is unimportant whether you exercise your right to choose to use nutritional supplements - freedom simply means that you have the option to use them should you decide to do so. You aren't forced to use them, and you aren't forced to not use them. Freedom means: it is up to you; you, and not the government, decide what you put in your body.
Unfortunately, your freedom of choice to use or to not use nutritional supplements is under attack from bureaucrats and special interest lobby groups. Most of these groups are controlled by multi-national pharmaceutical cartels, most of them are controlled by foreign governments and corporations, and their effects have already been seen in several European countries (France, Germany - there are others).
The office of the Codex Alimentarius (and the European Union, World Health Organization and the World Trade Organization) has succeeded in eliminating the rights of Europeans to exercise their freedom of choice regarding nutritional supplements. Simply, all vitamins and supplements in Europe that meet the RDA's (the minimum amounts of vitamins and minerals needed to prevent disease), are now classified as drugs and are illegal for sale without a physicians' prescription.
At present, the amounts of vitamins and minerals that are "permitted" under these regulations for public sale and consumption without a prescription are simply insufficient to prevent disease - scurvy and rickets may make a comeback under these new regulations.
Some will be quick to point out that the adoption of these new Codex Alimentarius guidelines are voluntary - that no country can be forced into accepting them. While this is technically true, reality is another matter.
The United States is a member of the World Trade Organization, and while the United States can not be forced to adopt these rules, the pharmaceutical industry can lobby for their adoption (under the regulations only pharmaceutical companies will be allowed to market vitamins and minerals as drugs - and at inflated prices), and the World Trade Organization can "encourage" compliance through punitive economic and trade sanctions. To complicate matters further, many scientists employed by the FDA go to work for large multinational pharmaceutical companies when they retire.
So, as you can see, The FDA ban on ephedrine HCL, though overturned, is only the beginning of a campaign - fueled by the pharmaceutical industry - to eliminate your freedom of choice regarding nutritional supplements.
A Word On Your Rights To Choose...
And A Call To Action!
As improbable as this scenario seems, it is happening, right now, around the world. It is already a reality for many in Europe - and the picture for America, a nation once proud and once the sole decider of her laws and sovereignty - is dim.
Not only is pressure to conform being exerted from the World Trade Organization, but, as recent events show (the Vioxx scandal, the prohormone ban - there are others), the FDA is hardly on the side of consumers and citizens.
Earlier, in response to the four questions asked, I said:
"In a society that is truly free and democratic - a society that functions according to a strong and living constitution that clearly outlines the rights and protections afforded to the individual against government power - the answer is clear: The government does not have rights - only individual citizens can and do!"
An elaboration on that point is this: the phrase "individual rights" is a redundancy because no rights can exist without the individual. Without one person - even the least of persons in society - being afforded rights, all are denied rights and are vulnerable to government oppression at any time.
When the founding fathers of America escaped the oppressive systems of Feudalism and escaped the absolute monarchies that were oppressing Europe, they went on to draft Americas constitution, and then fought, and died, for the freedom and liberty of each man, woman and child.
No longer would each person be compelled by force to act. Each man, woman and child was no longer a bondservant to their bother, mother, father, King, OR government, and they could finally make their own decisions which, for the first time in human history, were made freely.
History demonstrates clearly the consequences that result when the State eliminates individual rights and appropriates those rights to the government - a tyranny of the minority results, and abuses occur. Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany, and various dictatorships on the African Continent (Zimbabwe, Congo, Rwanda, etc) are all tragic and vivid demonstrations of these abuses.
The government and the current Bush Administration have repeatedly lashed out against what it calls "activist judges" - judges that rule against government actions in favor of individual rights.
The administration claims that these judges do not have the right or authority to set policy - that their only function is to be "strict constructionists" that interpret and enforce the law, rather than protecting citizens.
But, make no mistake: your only protector - the only check you have to balance overpowering government force and action - is the courts! If the judiciary is removed, the government becomes above the law - the governments will BECOMES the law, and your voice is silenced.
Politics and corruption - the politics of greed - go beyond simple capitalism and simple monopolies. When the politics of greed emerge, and when coercive monopolies result, abuses occur. Abuses are compounded when the government, and former government officials (i.e. retired FDA scientists), get into bed with crooks.
Consider what Abraham Lincoln - the Freedom President - prophesized almost 150 years ago:
"I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. . . . corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed."
- U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864
(letter to Col. William F. Elkins)
Ref: The Lincoln Encyclopedia, Archer H. Shaw (Macmillan, 1950, NY)
When the most fundamental rights are trampled - when the freedom of a person to control and maintain their health and the ultimate destiny of their body is taken away - they are a slave to the state. When vitamins and minerals - essential for basic health and disease prevention - are withheld because of greed and corruption, only evil can result.
What greater evil, other than death, can be forced upon a man than to deprive him of even the basics of what he needs to stay healthy? Is even minimal health - the thin line between mere survival and death - now for sale? Big pharmacy, and the government, say yes.
But, it doesn't have to be this way - you can make a difference.
Contact your local Senator, your Mayor, and your Congressman. You can make your voice heard by telling them you oppose this assault on your right to choose health over disease. You can tell everyone you know who values their freedom to take action and do the same. (contact them below)
English philosopher Edmund Burke said, "The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing." Your action is needed now. Let them know that individual rights still exist - and matter.
What It's All About...
Whether or not ephedrine HCL returns to the shelf in fat burners isn't really the issue. Ephedrine may return and it may not. In either case, the real war on nutritional supplements and the impending ban on all vitamins and minerals is about freedom of choice, and about the freedom to control your health.
In the end, most of us want health, happiness, life, and as many days as possible with those we love. Most importantly, we want those days not to be long, but good - we don't just want simple quantity of days, but we want quality of days.
We want to be as healthy as we can be - and for as long as we can be - so that we may live a long and good life, rich with memories of loved ones. Basic health is the starting point that makes these things possible - but basic health is no longer guaranteed. It's under assault.
The assault on ephedrine HCL and other nutritional supplements is only a smaller battle in the bigger picture - a bigger war - aimed at controlling your health and taking your money. Big drug companies don't make money when you're well - only when you're sick and need a prescription!
These big companies don't need your money - they simply want it - and they are now doing what they can to take it - without your consent.
Now is the time to do your part if you're a freedom loving person - protect your right to use nutritional supplements. You won't save the world alone - but change happens only when each person - one person at a time - takes a stand and refuses to give up even the smallest of rights. You alone will make the difference. Change can't happen any other way.
Stand up for your freedom! Go to the following links to make your voice heard!
- Contact your President
[ Online ]
- Contact your Senator
- Contact your Congressman
- Contact your member of the House of Representatives
- For more information on Codex Alimentarius and the threat to your rights to use nutritional supplements, go to the following links:
Health Movement Against Codex
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Copyright ? Clayton South, 2005 All rights reserved.
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