While the benefits of AICA ribonucleotide (and GW1516) have made it a “miracle drug” of sorts, especially for patients with obesity, the benefits itself can be a potential target for abuse.
Since AICAR can be considered as a performance-enhancing drug, any side effects that can occur when taking anabolic steroids may also be applied to AICAR itself, especially when taken in more than the recommended dosage. Unfortunately, there aren’t any concrete evidence that taking AICAR can have diverse effects on the human body, since as of today, it’s still in its testing phases.
The following are general symptoms for taking anabolic symptoms, though any of it may be applied to AICAR:
- Liver Damage – This is probably the symptom that is fairly common among any kind of steroids, AICAR included. Since the steroids are being metabolized in the human body upon taking it, the toxins that are included in the steroid will affect the liver, greatly damaging it and impairing its functions.
- Cholesterol Imbalance – While AICAR may induce a kind of weight loss to those who take it, there are some risks that it may drastically alter the balance of cholesterol levels in the body. For instance, it may reduce the levels of HDL “good” cholesterol, all while increasing the risk of higher HDL “bad” cholesterol levels. And in turn, higher bad cholesterol levels may result in the risks of heart attacks and stroke.
- Psychiatric Effects – This is the most notable symptom that can be occurred when taking any steroid, and can apply to AICAR as well. Because of the inherent wondrous effects of this so-called “miracle drug”, people are prone to addiction to this drug. And just like any drug, when taken in excess, this can cause some withdrawal symptoms when one tries to stop taking the drug. Furthermore, there are cases on when users of steroids are more prone to depression attacks, which may even lead to suicidal tendencies, as well as increasingly violent and aggressive behaviour. In extreme cases, it can even lead to increased psychosis or manic attacks.
- Abnormal Blood Sugar Levels – AICAR may also affect glucose levels in the body, and could cause disruptions in fasting blood sugar and glucose tests. It may even elevate or greatly reduce glucose levels in the body, increasing the risk of diabetes and hypoglycaemia, respectively.
Most of these symptoms are common in most steroids, but it’s still not sure if any of these could be present when taking AICAR, though medical expert believe that taking AICAR in increased levels could make the user susceptible to “doping” it. It’s for this very reason that, even before the drug got past the testing stages, the World Anti-Doping Agency, or WADA, has immediately banned the use of this drug in Olympic-level competition.
Before, detecting AICAR levels in the human body has become difficult, since AICAR’s components resemble the common proteins that humans take on a regular basis. Today, however, advanced instruments that are able to detect AICAR through the urine are now available. However, the technology isn’t widely adopted as of now, since the instruments used are very advanced, and can be very costly. Therefore, as of today, only Olympic-level competitions are able to provide this kind of AICAR testing.
Find out more about AICAR’s potential side effects in this article.