Caffeine lovers, you may want to read on about caffeine’s future with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited substance list. This isn’t the first time caffeine has found itself in question, or even on the WADA’s list for that matter.
In 2003 caffeine was on the prohibited list, but was taken off to allow athlete’s who enjoy soda and coffee no issues when testing. Will it make it back to the list soon? It’s unlikely, but a possibility as WADA performs more research throughout 2017.
Vladimir Uiba – the Russian Federal Microbiological Agency chief – hinted that caffeine was back on WADA’s waiting list a few days for prohibited substances. Uiba originally dropped this hint to the Russian news outlet TASS.
We could see caffeine make a return to the prohibited list as early as this year. From the original TASS article Uiba suggested, “This substance has not yet been approved for the list of banned substances, but theoretically it can happen this year.”
In theory caffeine could find itself back on the in-competition banned substance list as soon as this year. Although, for those who enjoy regular soda, coffee, and other naturally occurring forms of caffeine, then it might not be a worry. An article written by The Washington Post quoted Maggie Durand, a WADA spokewoman saying, “Generally speaking, WADA is extremely careful that normal food consumption does not interfere with anti-doping tests.”
The previous caffeine threshold was 12 micrograms per milliliter (no updated threshold has been discussed/released yet), which amounts to around 5-8 cups of coffee consumed within 1-1.5 hours of competition. It’s hard to estimate an athlete’s threshold due to differences in weight, tolerance, digestion rate, and caffeine amounts, but 5-8 cups is generally a good rule of thumb. This would also include stimulants, pre-workouts, and other forms of caffeine that athletes regularly ingest.
WADA added caffeine to its monitoring list for 2017 so they could study the substance further. If they choose to place caffeine back on the prohibited list, then we’ll see the announcement released in September as WADA puts out their updated list. At that time, sports agencies will have a 3-month clearance to adjust for the newly updated list.
Every year WADA takes a list of possible substances in question for further monitoring to ensure they don’t enhance performance. Their purpose is to create a list that limits performance enhancing substances to ensure the spirit of sport isn’t diminished.
Feature image from @tonycline Instagram page.