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What is deer antler spray, exactly?

  • Ravens' Ray Lewis accused of using the performance-enhancing spray
  • The spray contains ingredients that are banned by the NCAA, pro sports
Ray Lewis

If you have no idea what deer antler spray is, you wouldn't be alone. In fact, before Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis was accused of using it, most people had never even heard of it. 

Sports Illustrated reports that Lewis was using deer antler spray to speed recovery from a torn right tricep earlier in the season. The product, manufactured by a small company called Sports With Alternatives to Steroids (SWATS), contains IGF-1, which is an anabolic hormone that stimulates muscle growth. The substance is also banned in the NCAA and all major pro sports.

The mysterious deer antler spray isn't used all on its own, though. It's accompanied by a host of hokey-sounding accessories, such as holographic stickers which players must wear on their elbows, sleeping in front of a special beam-ray light that supposedly is programmed with frequencies that will regenerate tissue and relieve pain and drinking negatively charged water.

Lewis denied the allegations at Tuesday's Super Bowl media day in New Orleans, saying, "That was a two-year-old story that you want me to refresh ... so I won't even speak about it."

Have we mentioned that it's a terrible time to talk about sports with your kids?

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