"exercise pill" and speed/amphetamines

The news yesterday intimated that reseachers may someday come up with “exercise in a pill.”

Got me thinking:

I’ve always heard that speed and other stimulants damage the heart.

My question is, if the whole point of exercise is to get the heart pumping at a higher rate and giving it a solid work-out, why do stimulants harm, instead of help the heart?

Why don’t stimulants act as “exercise in a pill?”

Stimulants work on the brain. The pill that is in the news today would act on the muscles themselves (from this story ):

Well, yes, stimulants do work on the brain, but they also rev up the sympathetic nervous system, causing the heart to pump much faster.

I’m just wondering why the heart benefits from increased activity from exercise, but suffers from similar increased activity from stimulants.

During exercise and as a result of being exercised, the heart and cardiovascular system are given demands, and to meet those demands over a long period of time, the whole system becomes more efficient. Heart: ‘Body says we need blood, we nee oxygen, we need to keep up…we become more efficient and stronger in response to the need…this repeated need for more/faster/better service’. The heart and cardio system over time react and respond to this LEGITIMATE need.

Stimulants tell the heart: go faster, go faster. Heart goes faster, but there is no apparent need to be more efficient, or to carry more oxygen faster/better/healthier. Stimulant is just a demand for speed…so BP goes up too. Heart just races for racings sake. No benefit there.

Um, this doesn’t answer the question.

BTW, BP increases with increased cardiovascular load when exercising.



The master speaks.