SAIDS Advisory on the herbal supplement ‘BIOGEN TESTOFORTE’

Posted 07 July 2017

An advisory from the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS), released yesterday.

[Response from Dischem/Biogen in a Times Live article]

Independent laboratory [1] analysis of the herbal supplement ‘BIOGEN TESTOFORTE’ revealed the presence of the following anabolic steroids, not listed on the product label: 4-Androstene-3,17-dione, 5alpha-Androstanedione and 5beta-Androstanedione.

The following herbal ingredients are indicated on the product label for alleged testosterone stimulating and performance enhancement effects: Tribulus terrestris, Eurycoma longfolia, Epimedium grandiflorum (Horny Goat Weed), Trigonella foenum-graecum (Fenugreek), Serenoa repens (Saw Palmetto), Vitex agnus-castus (Chaste tree), Chrysin, Avena Sativa (Oats), Panax Ginseng and ‘BioPerineTM’ (undisclosed mix of ingredients).

Consumers and athletes alike are cautioned on the use of dietary supplements, including herbal formulations, and products claiming to have testosterone stimulating capacity or other hormone-like effects, even if it claims to do so “naturally” and “safely” i.e. without side- effects. The formulations in these types of products have not been clinically tested to prove its claims of efficacy or safety / side-effects. [2] ‘Biogen Testoforte’ has in the past been subject to an Advertising Standards Authority SA ruling [3] on the making of false claims, including its alleged testosterone-support effects.

  1. SA Doping Control Laboratory: University of the Free State.
  2. Product label indicates that the product has not been evaluated by the Medicine Controls Council of SA.
  3.;; -asa-ruling/

Anabolic agents are also on the World Anti–‐Doping Agency (WADA) List of Prohibited (banned) substances. So, apart from the known or unknown health risks, athletes face the further risk of testing positive for these prohibited substances and getting banned from sport. A substance makes it onto the list of prohibited substances if it fulfils at least two of these three conditions: it poses an unfair advantage to performance, it poses a health risk and/or it violates the spirit of sport. Protecting clean athletes as well as the health and well–‐being of our athletes, especially our youth and next generation of athletes, are of the utmost importance to WADA and the SA Institute for Drug–‐Free Sport (SAIDS).

For more information on the risks of dietary and sport supplements the following resources are available:

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