Proven for Professional Athletes. Proven For You.

Recognizing Red Flags As A Clean Sport Athlete (Part Three)

Once you recognize the red flags of sports products with potentially banned substances, you can better protect your health and reputation as an athlete.


In part two, we began our exploration into the red flags that can come up as we navigate sports products that support our athletic endeavors. 


At Proven4, all of our sports products are NSF Certified For Sport™ to take the guesswork out of banned substances for athletes. Follow along in the conclusion in this series and get more red flags and to better understand why the NSF Certified For Sport™ label is so critical to athletes. 

Additional Red Flags To Avoid 


We know from part two that it’s important to look for companies that use banned substances and also ones that put it right on the label. Below are additional red flags to help you remain a clean athlete. 


Red Flag #3: Avoid products that are commonly known for using prohibited substances.


The FDA found that there are common supplements which continue to test positive for prohibited substances and they include:


  • Muscle-building products
  • Weight/fat-loss products
  • Sexual-enhancement products


Why are these supplements commonly flagged? Muscle-building products beyond protein tend to contain anabolic agents, hormones, and aromatase inhibitors (testosterone-blocking agents) or other compounds such as peptide hormones that don’t have much scientific backing. 


Weight- and fat loss products often contain unregulated stimulants and diuretics. 


Sexual-enhancement products are known to be laden with questionable ingredients in addition to ingredients that aren’t always labeled. They also contain a wide variety of stimulants and chemicals.   


Since we know that these supplements test positive for banned ingredients, it’s safe to steer clear of them unless they are third-party tested and carry the NSF Certified For Sport™ label. 


Red Flag #4: Products that end in -ol, -diol, and -stene


It is commonly found that stimulants, steroids, and other compounds that are banned tend to end in these suffixes. And while best practices in the supplement industry are to list ingredients by their common name, many use cryptic names to seem exotic or unique. 


Red Flag #5: Watch how the product is marketed.


Steer clear of products that use marketing verbiage that uses terms such as “secret formula,” “what the industry doesn’t want you to know,” and “new scientific research.” Anything that feels or sounds a little off, probably is. 


Companies who also use words such as “all-natural” or “herbal” are also products to look into. While herbs are extremely beneficial, it’s important to know how they may interact with other supplements you’re taking and if a specific compound has been isolated. It has also been found that companies will list an herbal extraction, but instead use a man-made form that is similar, yet untested and potentially sets you up for the risk of testing positive for a banned substance. 


Transparency is key, so if you’re curious about what they’re claiming do a little more research or call them up and ask them more about their product! 


The Importance of NSF Certified For Sport™ Products


If you want to take the guesswork out, use NSF Certified For Sport™ products. Companies who carry this label follow strict standards to give athletes the reassurance that they won’t test positive for a banned substance. 


The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) recognizes the NSF Certified For Sport™ as one of the best labels to ensure the safety of supplements for athletes that adhere to anti-doping policies and procedures. 


Don’t take a chance on a new and exciting sports product or one that may seem slightly questionable and ensure your health and reputation by staying educated about the banned substances provided by the USADA. 

For premium sports products that support the clean athletes, connect with us today! 





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