Ephedrine is still available to buy in 2013. It's important to note that ephedrine is not actually a banned product, despite misinformation that is currently out there. If ephedrine products are sold out or currently unavailable, suitable replacements are PURE Synephrine HCL or PURE Dendrobium Extract 600mg. Typically 600mg of Dendrobium or 30mg of Synephrine HCL is equivalent to 24mg of Ephedrine HCL when used for energy or Fat Loss.
Ephedrine is a super awesome product, it has many uses! First off, it is a very effective nasal decongestant. Ephedrine works by expanding the nasal pathways causing increased airflow. It is a popular product used by those affected by the flu, hay fever, and even the common cold. Some fitness enthusiasts and bodybuilders use ephedrine for fat loss as well. Ephedrine was the primary ingredient in many diet pills before 2005 when the FDA banned it for usage in supplements. People still purchase ephedrine and caffeine to create their own version of the old diet pills, this is commonly referred to as the EC stack.
Most people became aware of ephedrine through the rise and fall of ephedra diet pills. These ephedra fat burning products sold like hot cakes, mainly because of the secret weapon contained in them: ephedrine alkaloids. Ephedrine alkaloids are the active alkaloids from the ephedra extract that create the thermogenic or "fat burning" effects. These alkaloids are very effective because they have the ability to increase metabolism, increase thermogenesis, and suppress appetite. The popular fat-burning pills often also contained caffeine, because it just so happens that ephedrine and caffeine create the ultimate fat loss stack. When combined together the effects of each ingredient compliment each other, turning the body into nothing short of a fat loss furnace.
Rewinding back even farther than the modern day, ephedrine was still a very popular product with many uses. The Chinese first began using ephedrine way back in 3,000 B.C; they used it as an asthma relief aid, and a flue medicine. This is fairly funny because the product is sold in present day as a nasal decongestant. Fast forward to the 1930's and the medicinal effects of ephedrine were finally recognized by the western world and western medicine. It was 1954 that it first became available as an oral therapy for asthma. In the early 1990's ephedrine finally started to be marketed as a weight-loss supplement, and many weight-loss products began popping up on the shelves of supplement stores around North America. It only took 5 years for the FDA to begin the crack down on these weight-loss products, until finally the products were banned in 2004. This decision was not taken lightly by a large portion of the general public. Many people argue that pharmaceutical companies played a big role in the ban, and that the decision was not a well thought out one. Millions of people report using ephedra safely and effectively. Luckily, ephedrine is still available to purchase legally, although it isn't allowed to be marketed as a weight-loss supplement, and many companies have restrictions on how much a customer can purchase in a period of time.
Ephedrine Usage in Modern Day:
Present day ephedrine products are required to be marketed as a nasal decongestant. It is a very popular nasal decongestant product, and a very effective one, however most people still purchase ephedrine with the intention of using it as a fat-loss product. Users often purchase caffeine and ephedrine together in what is referred to as the EC stack. The EC stack is basically an ephedra diet product without the added "fluff", the core two ingredients of 99% of ephedra products were ephedrine and caffeine.
Ephedrine & Caffeine (EC stack) typical dosing plan:
Week 1: Eight milligrams of ephedrine hcl (Kaizen or Synergenex brand, one tablet) and two hundred milligrams of caffeine, taken orally three times per day (Morning, Mid-Day, Late-day)
Week 2: Sixteen milligrams of ephedrine and two hundred milligrams of caffeine, consumed three times per day.
Week 3: Twenty four milligrams of ephedrine and two hundred milligrams of caffeine, consumed three times per day.
Weeks 4 to 6 are dosed the same as week 3, with usually at least six weeks off immediately following completion.
Often times the EC stack is referred to as the ECA stack which includes the addition of aspirin (ephedrine, caffeine, and aspirin). Most would agree that the addition of aspirin is not needed and does not produce a greater benefit. It is important to note that the ephedrine serving can be substituted with synephrine.
The two most popular brands of ephedrine products on the market these days are Kaizen and Synergenex. Both of these brands are Canadian based companies and all of their products are produced in GMP facilities under strict manufacturing guidelines. These are two very reputable companies with a solid track record and high quality product lines. When shopping online for ephedrine it is important to weed out most of the products that you may stumble upon, especially any ephedra products (Ephedra products that are sold online are usually products without real ephedra or complete scams). Stick to the Kaizen and Synergenex brand products and only buy from reputable retailers (Check out the link to the right for a great source).
The difference between ephedrine and ephedra:
The simple answer to this popular question is that ephedrine (usually ephedrine hcl) is the synthetic version of ephedra. Ephedra is a plant (Ephedra Sinica) and many ephedra diet pills utilized a direct plant extract that contained active ephedrine alkaloids. The product that people purchase in the present day and know as "ephedrine" is simply a synthetic version (engineered in a lab to ensure purity and stability) of the active ephedra alkaloids. Ephedrine is a safer product because it is produced in a lab under strict regulations to ensure purity and accuracy of the dosage. The big problem with herbal ephedra extracts is that it is difficult to tell how much active ephedrine is in the extract, which could turn out to be dangerous.
Additional studies and information on ephedrine:
"The effect and safety of an ephedrine/caffeine compound compared to ephedrine, caffeine and placebo in obese subjects on an energy restricted diet. A double blind trial.":