HGH is a drug kids, and drugs are bad… well not really

In the last few years, and even more-so right now in dealing with the aftermath of the Mitchell report, the media has brought a crisis to our attention- players are using HGH and we do not have a good test to detect it. Now obviously this is a huge problem as now players can take performance enhancing drugs, get huge, and dominate like they were in the 90’s.  If we don’t develop a test for HGH soon I wouldn’t be surprised to see the home record get shattered over and over again.

 Also, Marijuana is a drug, and like all drugs it can kill you. Overdosing on drugs is a serious problem for our children. Additionally people robbing stores and killing for drugs is a huge problem in America. The gang wars fought over drugs are a big problem. We need to crack down on Marijuana to fight the societal cost of drugs on America.

 If you agree with that last paragraph, please don’t read this blog anymore. If you don’t then maybe you are smart enough to consider that a member of a group may be arbitrarily placed in that group and may not exhibit the characteristics generally associated with that group. Such is the case with HGH.

Some links on HGH:

http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/348/9/779

http://www.alwaysyoung.com/hgh/clinicals/clinicals.html

http://www.physorg.com/news88140162.html

 HGH has not been shown to be a true performance enhancing drug. At best it has a very modest effect on lean body mass (although legal creatine almost certainly has a larger effect) and at worst it does absolutely nothing. The problem is the media portrays it as a performance enhancing drug like anabolic steroids, and it has no where near that same effect.  But players seem to understand it’s not a steroid, they instead think it heals injuries faster. Does it?

No, there is sufficient evidence to believe that HGH does not heal injuries faster. Clinical studies have not shown any effects and while the other side will mention a 1990 study, that study did not use a placebo (or good scientific methods) and the results have not been reproduced. So what the hell is going on?

In a deeply ironic pattern the media portraying HGH as a huge performance enhancer has likely had the effect of players using HGH to enhance performance. Keeping in mind that most MLB and NFL players do not have an education to sort though scientific data and clinical studies, they likely are unable to distinguish between the designation of a drug as performance enhancing and it’s actual effects. The dealers of HGH keep extolling it’s virtues and the players keep buying in. But should we care?

If we can’t test for HGH and it really doesn’t affect performance much then why are the air-waves full of warnings about the effect it will have on the game? Two reasons, first the media doesn’t bother doing it’s job to research what they report, and when a reporter actually does report the truth he is drowned out by all the reporters fear-mongering HGH because of reason 2…

In the 24-hour sports news cycle there is a lack of stuff to talk about. Just like the 24-hour regular news cycle research has shown fear-mongering and negative reporting to be an effective technique to get ratings. That’s why the nba is full of thugs and we can’t trust baseball’s numbers. That’s why the Patriots taping scandal is a huge deal and Vick’s dogfighting trial was the biggest story of the year.  (Well that and the fact that there is  there is also underlying racism to the stories, almost like a racist sociology project telling us: “you see the dangers of giving all of these poor black kids money? Isn’t it appalling how they spend it?”)

 Here’s how you combat it. Do your own research and look for facts rather than opinions. 90% of sports journalism is opinions shouting at you as loudly as possible to try and get your attention. They are trying to shock you and scare you and occasionally even trying to uplift you (Rick Reilly). Furthermore, they are trying to appeal to your moral outrage at these athletes not knowing how lucky they are to be living your dream and instead acting like spoiled brats. What they aren’t doing? Good research, unbiased reporting, and proportionate response.

T

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3 Responses to HGH is a drug kids, and drugs are bad… well not really

  1. Mitchell. George J. says:

    You forgot about more popular and faster acting drugs:

    INSULIN and glucose
    IGF-1
    and Androgel

  2. joseffreedom says:

    I agree there are powerful undetectable drugs, IGF-1 for one both intrigues me and scares the shit out of me, but the point of the post was the HGH hysteria was made by ESPN and has not been shown to be a real performance enhancer. It’s less about whether or not performance enhancing drugs are going to affect the games and more about how the fan will be informed of them affecting the game. I should have mentioned that there are dangerous PED’s out there that we can’t detect though.

    T

  3. i think you have discussed really well this is something really good !
    i like the marijuna ‘s information !

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