Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "

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Stanozolol in tap water

Water from some taps in the Hungarian capital Budapest contains detectable amounts of the anabolic steroid stanozolol, write chemists at the British Kingston University in Chemistry Central Journal.

The researchers have published other studies in which they showed evidence of steroids use in athletes' hair. [PLoS One. 2010 May 5; 5(5):e10457.] The researchers suggest that their method shows that athletes use far larger quantities of steroids than they admit to in interviews.

That many steroids users don't shout about their steroids use from the rooftops is not news. They often have good reasons for keeping quiet. But in theory the amounts of stanozolol in head hair could also be the result of pollution. Chemical athletes and hormone-mafia cows consume stanozolol anyway and eliminate the steroid [structural formula 1 below] and its metabolites [structural formulas 2-5] via the urine. Stanozolol may enter the environment in this way, ending up in the drinking water supply.

Stanozolol in tap water

To test this theory the researchers analyzed the water in the river Danube, which flows through Budapest, and tap water in Budapest too. They also analyzed bottled mineral water.

The table below summarises the researchers' findings. The researchers found no traces of stanozolol in the bottled water, but did detect traces in some of the tap water samples, and some of the samples from the Danube. This occurred during a period in which the water in the river was at a low level, as a result of which the stanozolol concentration was probably higher than normal.

The concentration in the drinking water was so low that the inhabitants of Budapest did not become noticeably more muscular or masculine in December 2009, when the measurements were carried out. If they had drunk 1.2 l tap water every day, they would have consumed 1.43 nanograms stanozolol daily.

There are 1000 nanograms in 1 microgram, and 1000 micrograms in 1 mg. Guides for steroids users advise men to take a daily dose of 50-100 mg stanozolol. For women the recommended doses are 2.5-10 mg/day. It's impossible to consume these amounts by drinking tap water.

Stanozolol in tap water

The researchers suspect that the concentrations they measured are no longer likely to be found in Budapest's drinking water supply. "A new biological sewage treatment plant opened in July 2010 in Budapest in order to treat most of the water supplied to the city - in contrast to only 30-40 percent water being treated in the past", they write. "This environmental protection investment will contribute to a decrease in levels of stanozolol."

Chem Cent J. 2011 Oct 14;5(1):63.