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Aldactone (spironolactone) is a mild-acting diuretic, available in many countries around the world. In medicine, such drugs are used to treat hypertension, as they effectively reduce the retention of fluid and salts in the body. Aldactone reduces the amount of aldosterone (a hormone responsible for the balance of fluid in the body) produced by the adrenal glands. This effect is actively used by bodybuilders, who, for example, need to reduce the amount of subcutaneous fluid during the competition.
What is Diuretic
For simplicity, a diuretic can be defined as any product that increases the amount of urine (urine) released by the body. Under this definition, a large number of different products come in, ranging from soft and moderate herbal teas and decoctions, down to strong chemical agents that pump fluid and mineral components out of the body.
The most common clinical use of diuretics is the treatment of hypertension (high blood pressure). They are also included in the medical indications for people suffering from edema (increased water retention in the body). In the past, many athletes who underwent a test for the use of illicit medicines previously used diuretics, trying to dilute their urine samples so that undesirable traces of forbidden compounds (such as anabolic steroids) became undetectable. This method really proved to be very effective in terms of doping control, but after a while, the vast majority of athletic organizations and federations added diuretics to the list of prohibited medicines for athletes. This circumstance practically excluded the practice described above from use. Moreover, some of the federations practicing testing for the use of illicit drugs add to the previous regulations the requirement that the water content in the urine sample for analysis does not exceed a certain level established by the test rules.
Another popular way of using diuretics in sports over the years has been to use these drugs in order to best pass the weight classification before competitions in such types as wrestling, weightlifting, boxing, etc. Indeed, the use of diuretics remains common in junior teams. It should be noted that most of the abusing diuretics are bodybuilders who use these medicines in an attempt to reduce the amount of water trapped under the skin.
Diuretics are used in courses in the pre-competition period, their constant reception is not appropriate and dangerous. Prolonged reception is accompanied by complications and, in addition, protein decay increases, which leads to a decrease in muscle mass.
Plant diuretics have a weakly expressed main effect and are therefore not used in sports, in medicine their use is also limited.
Mechanism of action of diuretics
To understand the mechanism of action of diuretics, knowledge in the anatomy and physiology of the kidneys is required, but we will try to do this in a simple language sufficient to assess their effectiveness and the risk of side effects.
Kidneys filter unnecessary substances from the blood and, in particular, purify it from the excess of certain ions that form electrolytes. Electrolytes are internal fluids of the body (cells, intercellular spaces), which ensure the flow of biochemical reactions in the body at the cellular level, thanks to which the organism lives.
It is the kidneys that function normally (ie, ensuring the correct balance of ions in the blood and cells), ensure the maintenance of normal blood pressure. Ions can be released into the urine from the blood as a result of filtration in the kidneys or, conversely, return to the blood, depending on blood pressure. If it is high, more ions are removed. This leads to a decrease in blood pressure, since more water is removed to the urine together with ions.
Where does the water come from?
The water that is removed in the urine is taken from the blood plasma (its water part), and into the plasma it comes from the space between the cells. It is this intercellular fluid that erases the muscle relief, giving the muscles a flat look. What do diuretics do? They remove it. The mechanism of action of almost all diuretics is the same: they stimulate the excretion of sodium.
A teaspoon of salt, which is known to contain sodium, retains approximately 2 liters of water in the body. If you remove sodium from the body, then along with it will take a significant amount of fluid.
This is how diuretics act: they prevent the passage of sodium through the filtering elements of the kidneys, it remains in the urine and is excreted when urinating. This is the reason for the colossal harm of diuretics.
Spironolactone was developed in the late 1950s and was first widely used in the 1960s. He filled an important niche of potassium-sparing diuretics, which less affect the electrolyte balance of the body. In many respects, it is regarded as safe and mild, compared with loop diuretics or thiazides. Spironolactone is now very common in the world, sold under different brands and also is part of the combined preparations with other diuretics.
Spironolactone is available in the form of tablets of 25 mg.
Spironolactone is an aldosterone antagonist and diuretic. Its chemical formula is 17-hydroxy-7alpha-mercapto-3oxo-17alpha-pregn-4-ene-21-carboxylic acid, y-lactone acetate.
Safety of Aldactone
The abuse of diuretics for the purpose of forming a physique has a high degree of risk. Diuretics can cause a life-threatening level of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance in appointments without proper medical supervision. Many deaths are associated with the abuse of these drugs. It is important to note that potassium supplements or a diet rich in potassium are not recommended when taking potassium-sparing diuretics such as spironolactone. Excessive intake of potassium can lead to hyperkalemia, impaired cardiac function and death.
This tool is considered one of the safest, so it is very suitable for use by novice athletes. Acquainted with the action of Aldactone and planning to achieve more significant results, you can additionally use thiazide or furosemide (Lasix). In this case, it is possible to avoid an overdose, in contrast to the cases of taking one of these means.
This combination will provide a faster fluid withdrawal with less loss of calcium or potassium. In combination with hydrochlorothiazide, we can reduce the dose of Aldactone by half (from 100 mg) and add the same amount of thiazide. The combination of 50 mg per 50 mg will greatly accelerate the withdrawal of fluid without the appearance of side effects. Thiazide balances the absorption of potassium, so this dosage will not affect the level of potassium in the body. On the other hand, Lasix (furosemide) is a more effective component in combination with Aldactone.
A very popular approach in this case, to start taking, lowering the dose of Aldactone to 50 mg and by adding 20 mg of Lasix orally, which will ensure fluid withdrawal as in the case of taking the Lasix 40 mg tablet. The destructive effect of Lasix on potassium is neutralized by Aldactone, so there is no need to take any additional funds. In Europe, this combination of diuretics is always on sale and very popular among athletes.
Side effects of Aldactone
Side effects include: gynecomastia , spasms, diarrhea, drowsiness, headache, skin irritation, rash, confusion, impotence, loss of coordination, menstrual irregularities, virilization. It can also have some anti-androgenic properties.
When used for sporting purposes, the usual dosage is 100mg in the morning for 3-5 days before the competition. In women, it can be used as an anti-androgen in a dose of 25-75 mg per day for 1-2 weeks. When combined with other diuretics, the dose of both drugs should be reduced by half.
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