NFL and NFLPA no longer certify supplements, per report

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

NFL players have struggled with determining what substances are OK to take and that process has only become more difficult in recent years.

With dozens of ingredients, not all of which are always listed on the label, it can be hard for NFL players to know which supplements are OK for them to take. It's become an even bigger challenge recently as the NFL and the NFLPA no longer maintain an approved list of supplements, according to a report from Pro Football Talk.

The league and the NFLPA previously created the Sports Nutrition Label Certification Program, which gave players an approved list of companies which do not manufacture products that contain banned substances. According to Pro Football Talk's report, that program expired in 2011. Players must now determine if a substance is all right to take on their own. That doesn't always work, as evidenced by Jarvis Jenkins' recent suspension.

Jenkins was recently suspended for four games for a violation of the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances. He said he was "shocked and confused" by the suspension and guessed the suspension was a result of unknowingly taking a supplement containing a banned substance.

"It's an obscure substance that I've never even heard of, and I still don't know how it got into my body," Jenkins said, via NFL.com. "My only guess is that it came from one of the supplements I was taking around the time of the test, even though none of them listed anything banned."

Although the certification program no longer exists, the NFLPA is working on a cell phone application that will scan ingredient lists to check for banned substances, according to the report. That, however, will only work if all ingredients are listed on the label, which apparently wasn't the case in Jenkins' situation.

The list of approved substances didn't stop all inadvertent suspensions. Several players claimed to have unknowingly taken banned substances even with the program. Still, the lack of a guide could lead to even more suspensions as players attempt to utilize legal supplements to become bigger, faster and stronger.

More from SB Nation:

Debrief: What happened to the AFC?

The greatest backup of them all, NFC edition

Bears HC Marc Trestman keeps it weird

Roth: What we have in common with Tim Tebow

Complete NFL training camp coverage

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.