The Honorable __________________________:
I am writing to urge you to vote AGAINST any legislation that would restrict my free access to a dietary supplement called dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA).
Senate bill 762 (S.762) and House Resolution 1249 (H.R. 1249) seek to classify DHEA as a controlled substance under the anabolic steroid category, something that this over-the-counter dietary supplement is not.
DHEA has been freely sold to Americans for over 10 years and can provide aging Americans with a safe alternative to expensive prescription drugs.
According to the United States government’s Medline Medical Dictionary, an “anabolic steroid” is defined as “any of a group of usually synthetic hormones that are derivatives of testosterone, are used medically especially to promote tissue growth, and are sometimes abused by athletes to increase the size and strength of their muscles and improve endurance.”
(Reference: Medline Medical Dictionary-March 12, 2007)
Based on the government’s own definition of “anabolic steroid,” DHEA does not fit into this category. DHEA is produced mainly in the adrenal glands and serves as a natural precursor and balancer to many hormones in the body. Controlled clinical trials indicate that its use in young men does not result in performance-related gains, and it is not associated with the myriad side effects that accompany anabolic steroid abuse. Anabolic steroid drug abuse is purported to result in cardiovascular conditions such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, and blood clotting, liver conditions such as jaundice and hepatic carcinoma, tendon damage, reduced fertility and breast enlargement (in males), and adverse psychological and behavioral effects. DHEA does not exert such effects.
Moreover, surveys of weightlifters and other athletes conducted by researchers at Harvard University show that DHEA is rarely used to increase muscle size/strength or to improve endurance. Therefore, the notion that DHEA is in any way comparable to controlled anabolic steroid drugs is scientifically unfounded and legally invalid.
I ask that you vote NO on S.762 and H.R. 1249 and any other bills that contain language that would in any way restrict my free access to DHEA. Please write me to let me know your position on this critically important issue.
P.S. Please refer to the back of this letter for a brief rebuttal to a questionable study circulating in Congress about DHEA.