Scientists from the Freie Universität Berlin have advised that ecdysterone, a chemical found in spinach, can have steroid-like effects.
The university recommended that spinach be added to the World Anti-Doping Authority’s (WADA) list of banned substances. So yeah, Popeye was about 90 years ahead of science.
Researchers from a German university have confirmed Popeye’s hypothesis that spinach contains a steroid-like chemical called ecdysterone.
Cartoon sailor hunk Popeye was way ahead of his time when he guzzled cans of spinach before routinely rescuing Olive Oyl from impending doom.
Researchers at Freie Universität in Berlin held a 10-week test on 50 athletes and found that those who took capsules containing ecdysterone increased their performance by up to three times. They were surprised by the extent of the improvement.
Each capsule contains ecdysterone equivalent to almost five kilograms of spinach, a little more than your average side of the wilted green stuff.
The study observed “significantly higher increases in muscle mass were observed in those participants that were dosed with ecdysterone.”
“Even more relevant with respect to sports performance, significantly more pronounced increases in one-repetition bench press performance were observed,” added researchers from Freie Universität.
Ecdysterone is currently available for purchase as a dietary supplement. It’s invisible to testing, and perfectly legal across the globe.
An official committee of WADA experts must make any future decisions on a ban of ecdysterone.
One thing’s for sure; spinach is a gateway drug, and Popeye is solely responsible. Cancelled.