Next to the recent buzz about approved bills that will restrict the sale of ephedrine as cold and allergy medicine in some American states, we received a lot of comments and questions about sales of ephedrine online, asking us if there was a different legal status between sales online and sales behind the counter for the USA, if it was legal to buy ephedrine depending on the usage (cold medicine or weight loss), also many questions about the legality of ephedrine in Canada, and at last the frequent question about the differences between ephedrine, ephedrine HCL and pseudoephedrine, how to identify real ephedrine in the web catalogs, is ephedra extract real ephedrine?
Instead of individual emails, we take this opportunity to answer these questions in a post.
Difference of legal status for sales of ephedrine online and sales over/behind the counter in the USA?
No, there is no difference between purchasing ephedrine in a pharmacy and buying it online with shipping to your home address. Law is law, not depending on sales channels, and legal requirements apply in all cases, see our article about legality of ephedrine in the USA for more information.
Is it legal to buy ephedrine depending on the usage?
This question comes probably from the confusion created by the initial FDA ban and amplified by the above mentioned recent bills, in Alabama for instance. Clearly, it is legal to buy ephedrine in all states of America, if it is for cold or allergy treatment and under conditions, the total purchased quantity is limited but it is totally legal. This is due to the fact that ephedrine is so useful, inexpensive, natural (no patent) that substitution products would be a poor choice; limiting access to ephedrine when controlling national health costs at the same time would have little sense. This is why ephedrine has been legally restricted to cold and allergy, but has not been totally forbidden by law. The aim of the FDA ban was to top the increasing success of ephedrine for weight loss due to its amazing combined effects (fat burn due to thermogenic effect, energy level, appetite suppression, lean muscle mass retention) explaining why it was used by more than 12 million Americans. It became urgent to regulate the sale of ephedrine because it is a precursor of methamphetamine but for political reasons it has been presented as a concern about health issue, in spite of international medical studies attesting that ephedrine was a natural blessing for weight loss, and first of all, without risk if taken at proper dosage. You can refer to our detailed pages on that subject, including links to medical studies. Doctors who had to deal with serious weight issues for their patients have found it hard to accept, considering the epidemic growth of overweight and obesity in the American society. But again, law is law, we don’t have to judge American political representatives when they made their choice between the health of millions of people and the fight against meth labs.
Difference between ephedrine HCL and pseudoephedrine?
You can find all answers on our dedicated page What is ephedrine, but in 2 words, ephedrine HCL is the synthetic form of ephedrine produced by pharmaceutical companies and not the natural extract from the herbal form called Ma Huang. It is the pure alkaloid form which has the best effects and thus the most desired one. Pseudoephedrine and ephedrine are close in their chemical structure but different in their effects: ephedrine has much more fat burning power and pseudoephedrine is a better treatment for treat nasal and sinus congestion.
Legality of ephedrine in Canada?
Of course there is a need of convergence between American and Canadian health policies when it impacts drugs regulation. That’s why Canada started also to control the sales of ephedrine when targeted at weight loss, but in a less strict way than in the USA. Ephedrine is sold over the counter as an oral decongestant with limit of 8 mg ephedrine per single dose or 32 mg ephedrine per day.
How to identify real ephedrine in the web catalogs?
We understand this question very well because we review most websites which sell real ephedrine online, and honestly it’s not easy: due to the “grey zone” we mentioned before, depending on the legality of ephedrine in their country, some sites are not very keen on transparency about the composition of their products. Furthermore, in many cases they are just reselling products that they don’t know very well themselves, and when we contact them for further information we can see immediately what is their real knowledge of the products they sell and if they really know the origin and composition. One notable exception is the company Schwartz Labs, a real producer who of course knows everything about ephedrine, thus no risk to buy fake copies of their famous Green Stinger.
Is ephedra extract real ephedrine?
This is an old story… The important point is to have the right concentration of alkaloids to get the milligrams of ephedrine you need. It could be 25 milligrams of ephedrine coming from ephedra extract (Ephedra sinica or Sida Cordifolia) or from the synthetic form HCL, who cares? The effects will be the same because you get the same quantity of alkaloids in the end. Use your discernment when buying ephedrine online, or just follow our recommendation in our review.
People focus currently on the legality of ephedrine in the USA and Canada, which is understandable for Americans and Canadians but we are also in touch with many people from other countries where ephedrine for sale is legal and safely used for weight loss. Same ephedrine, same effects, but other countries and other laws.
By Mike Budd