A balanced diet that considers the principles of sports nutrition along with proper training and recovery practices is essential in supporting a player in their cricket performance. Supplements cannot replace these concepts and will have little effect if these are not first in place.
There is evidence to support the effectiveness of some supplements but equally there are many for which there is no evidence that they provide any actual benefit.
Crucially there can be no guarantee that any supplement product is free of prohibited substances, be that through unknown contamination or due to listed ingredients.
Due to differing regulatory requirements involved in their production Global DRO cannot provide information on the status of nutritional supplements.
Before using any nutritional supplement a player should seek the advice of a suitably qualified and experienced member of medical or coaching staff to assess the need to use a supplement and the risk associated, not only in relation to the prohibited list but also possible effects to health.
Under the WADA Code, the principle of strict liability dictates that a player is solely responsible for any prohibited substance found to be present in his or her body. Consuming a contaminated supplement, or one containing a prohibited substance not mentioned on the label, is not a defence to testing positive for a prohibited substance.
Batch testing can reduce the risk of contamination and Informed Sport programme provides the best way of reducing the risks associated with supplement use but even with batch testing there is still no guarantee that a supplement is completely safe to use.
The ICC has issued a position statement on nutritional supplements which provides further guidance.