Study finds Student Usage of Steroids May Be Increasing reports e-Steroid

San Francisco, CA ( November 28, 2012 -- Middle school and high school use of steroids is on the rise, according to a new study published in Pediatrics. The report shows around 6% of boys and 4.6% of girls nationwide are using or have used steroids in the past.

According to the study, which was conducted using results from more than 2,700 middle and high school students the Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn., area, use was fairly common in both male and female subjects. The study reported that about 35% of male subjects reported using protein shakes and powders to gain muscle mass, compared to about 20% of female test subjects.

Additionally more than 10% of males and 5% of females reported using non-steroid muscle enhancers to build muscle. Non-steroid muscle enhances include products such as creatine.

The researchers noted that as a result of their findings, hey believe that the use of muscle-enhancing drugs among adolescents is "substantially higher than has been previously reported and is cause for concern."

Issues that contributed to use of steroids body mass index (BMI), grade level, and sports participation. Students engaged in sports team activities on a regular basis were more likely to participated in muscle-enhancing activities. Among female students, overweight or obese students had "significantly" higher incidences of protein shake or powder usage than girls with a normal BMI.

Researchers encouraged physicians to discuss and other healthcare providers to talk about muscle-enhancing behavior with their adolescent patients.

The study used data from a diverse population-based sample of students from 20 schools in the Twin Cities area.

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