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The Truth Regarding Deer Antler Velvet and Synthetic IGF-1 in the NFL

Paul Morave 2013-01-30 15:43:40

Velvet antler extract (VAE) is all over the news currently with the allegations that Ray Lewis may have taken it to help recover from an injury.  There is quite a bit of speculation regarding VAE, Performance Enhancing Drugs, IGF-1 and the Banned Substance list in the NFL, but not a true breakdown or explanation of VAE.   

What is VAE?  VAE is made from the tips of deer or elk antlers, which regenerate every year.  The antlers are clipped while in the cartilaginous state.  They provide a more extensive collection of nutritional components than any other single source used to provide raw materials for dietary supplements.  The biochemical matrix found in the live, growing velvet antler contains a complete range of beneficial growth factors, saturated fatty acid molecules, phospholipids, minerals, glycosaminoglycans, extracellular matrix components and the complete array of amino acids.

VAE has been used for over two thousand years in ancient Eastern medicine and is only second to ginseng in importance for the mainstay of Traditional Chinese Medicine.  It is considered one of the world’s oldest raw superfoods because of its nutritional density and lack of caloric impact.  Velvet antler has uses ranging from safe anti-aging solutions to enhancing the performance and recovery of many elite athletes.  Thousands of papers have been published on the composition and biochemical effects of velvet antler and its constituents.  This research has consistently revealed a host of health benefits to enhance immune and neurological health as well as metabolic efficiency.

If VAE is a superfood with 2000 years of successful and effective use, why are there all the references to Performance Enhancing Drugs and the issues with the NFL?  Velvet Antler Extract is not a banned substance in the NFL.  The issue comes from one of its many constituents, IGF-1.  VAE contains a natural metabolite form of IGF-1.  IGF-1 is the master growth factor for every cell in the body.  It helps the body to better utilize its own hormones and growth factors, but does not create an unnatural spike of IGF-1 levels, nor does it cause an unnatural or overly enhanced effect on the body.  The banned substance in the NFL is Synthetic IGF-1.  Synthetic IGF-1 is created in a lab and has a different molecular structure than the IGF-1 found in nature or created naturally in our bodies.  It creates an unnatural spike in the body’s IGF-1 level if taken, and has negative side effects as well as enhances athletic performance unnaturally.  It can also slow or shut down the body’s natural growth factor production.  The IGF-1 in VAE is natural, and exists in the same biological structure as the IGF-1 our body creates.  It benefits the body without harm or unnatural levels created by the synthetic version.  VAE does not put the body in an unnatural state and is not banned by the NFL. 

Why would Ray Lewis take velvet antler extract?  There have been hundreds of studies that show the therapeutic effects of VAE on injuries.  There are studies that have shown VAE to reduce or eliminate joint swelling and distortion, and significantly increase fracture-healing rates, and increase the rate of wound healing.  VAE can help the body to heal faster, increasing recovery time after an injury.  It helps the body heal.

VAE is a safe and effective dietary supplement and there is nothing in it’s constituents that is banned by the NFL or harmful.  Please take a few minutes and go through the research and information on our site, I am certain you will gain a new found respect and interest, in the world’s most unique superfood.