T Nation


I was curious if anyone out there has been on thermogenics(containing ephedra, caffeine, etc.) for extended periods of time and have noticed negative effects on mood or personality. I know that they can increase irritability, but I’m talking about serious mood swings, depression, anger, etc. I’ve been taking some form of thermo for probably 8 years with occasional breaks, but not nearly enough. I’m trying to determine if this could contribute to negative moods and attitude. Thanks for any input.


I came off of ephedrine January 1 after being on it for close to 5 years. I didn’t really notice mood swings, but I did notice that I crashed about every four hours and NEEDED another stack to function at all. I’ve cut down from 5 diet cokes and 3 ephedrine/viavrin stacks a day to just 2 diet cokes. The first 3 weeks were pretty brutal, but after that things have been great. I have much more energy than I did while on the ephedrine. I feel almost euphoric 90% of the time recently, and I know I’m nicer to be around. I guess I had mood swings and irrability, but I didn’t notice until after I cleaned up.

Taking it for 8 years with occasional breaks? I don’t know, but I’m guessing it’s time to put down the bottle for awhile, let your system get back to normal, and see what it does for your mood swings.

Ive used them for a few monthes at a time, 3 at the most. But my biggest complaint is horrible caffiene withdrawal headaches for like 2 weeks afterwards thye are a bitch royally.


mrcold, some people are more sensitive to ECA stacks than others. It can seriously/negatively effect brain chemistry in some individuals, especially those who suffer from depression or anxiety. And it’s NOT just the ephedrine. Caffeine all by itself can negatively effect mood.

If you want to get off of ephedrine and caffeine for a while to evaluate the absence of those substances in your nutritional regimen, I might suggest that you try supplementing with L-Tyrosine. Tyrosine provides the building blocks for the same neurotransmitters caffeine causes the release of. However caffeine is best considered as a “borrower” of energy, where L-Tyrosine provides the substrates for energy (i.e., increased rate of transmission / electrical activity).

If you’re still experiencing mood swings, there are other things that you should look at, and I would recommend your working with a nutritionally savy DO, DC or nutritionist. Good luck to you!

Thanks for the input, everyone. It’s sure going to make it a real bitch to go lift at 5 am without my “coffee”, though.