Anabolic steroids are powerful substances that can have far-reaching effects on your body. With the right routine and diet, these effects can optimize your gains drastically. But the darker side of this equation is steroid side effects.
We’ve all seen pictures that are testament to the fact that the positive effects of steroids can be amazing. But the long-term damage can be pretty nasty—especially if you don’t know what you’re doing.
If you’re considering investing in some anabolics, we’re not saying they can’t be helpful. But you should familiarize yourself with the risks and dosages before you jump into a routine.
Steroid Side Effects
Steroid side effects are a given in the world of anabolic performance enhancers. In fact, some bodybuilders see the strain and adverse effects on their body as testament to their commitment to the sport.
Common anabolic steroid side effects include:
- Acne, oily hair and skin
- Excess facial or body hair
- Hair loss
- Altered mood, depression, suicidal tendencies
- Shrinking testicles
- Stunted growth
- Kidney disease
- Heart disease
A quick glance at the list above should be enough show you the range of side effects of anabolic steroids in bodybuilding.
Another thing to bear in mind is that the side effects of oral steroids stem more from liver strain since they must bypass the liver. This can lead to liver damage that causes a plethora of adverse effects, such as aminotransferases leaking from liver cells into your blood.
Short-Term Effects of Steroids
A common short-term effect of steroid use is testosterone suppression. With regular steroid use, you are flooding your system with exogenous (originating from outside the body) testosterone. In turn, your body compensates by decreasing its natural production.
This is called testosterone suppression.
What’s the solution? Many bodybuilders use post-cycle therapy (PCT) to get their endogenous testosterone levels back up to speed and rebalance their hormone levels. But bear in mind that most PCT routines utilize synthetic chemicals—at the end of the day, you’re substituting drugs for more drugs.
Long-Term Effects of Steroid Use
When it comes to the long-term effects of steroids, there are plenty. Liver damage is something we touched on earlier, and a particularly nasty risk with oral steroids. The reason lies in the fact that they must pass through the liver untouched, which is pretty rough.
Although oral steroids are broken down by various enzymes once they make it through the liver, they are still fairly rough on the body. This is even more true for higher doses and longer cycles.
There are some supplements out there that can help ease strain on your liver, such as milk thistle, but even when using these products damage from long-term use is pretty much unavoidable.
Another adverse effect of steroid use can be observed in cholesterol levels. In particular, steroids decrease levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL), which is the “good” cholesterol.
Low density cholesterol (LDL) doesn’t provide artery protection, which is a problem when you consider the strain that steroids can put on your heart.
Ultimately, consuming steroids puts your arteries at risk and also throw off your cholesterol levels. For this reason, it’s highly recommended to supplement with PCT in order to maintain your body’s equilibrium.
What are steroids used for? Improving your physique is the obvious answer.
But there are many dangers that come from using them, so don’t jump into a stack without knowing the risks to your body and the methods of minimizing them.
But isn’t testosterone good?
It can be. But estrogen is actually created from testosterone through a process called aromatization. And during intense workouts, when testosterone levels are sky-high, this process can form more estrogen. From here, estrogen can make its way to breast tissue receptors.
Of course, this is one of the reasons that PCT supplements and chest fat burners like Gynectrol are becoming popular.
One of the most common adverse effects of steroid use is acne. Take a look at any steroid side effects pictures and you’ll probably see some pimple-laden faces along with some man-tits.
Here’s why it happens:
The skin’s subcutaneous glands have a higher affinity to the chemical called Dyhydrotestosterone, which is an androgen that is created naturally in the body. And it’s made from testosterone via an enzyme called 5-alpha Reductase.
With high subcutaneous gland activity, oily skin develops, which can in turn mix with bacteria and dead skin. And without the proper safety precautions, your pores can get clogged. Ultimately, the key is cleaning your pores before they start clogging at a faster rate than your body cleans them.
Here are the best solutions:
- Regular skin cleaning
- Using natural steroid alternatives
- Topical anti-androgen products
Natural Steroid Alternatives
Aside from running PCT routines and adhering to safety precautions, the only way to rid yourself of steroid side effects is to avoid anabolics altogether. Luckily, there are lots of companies offering supplements that are designed to bolster your gains using safe, legal, and natural ingredients.
Here are some legal steroid alternatives:
Each product is guaranteed to have no side effects, provide results within 30 days, and ship free anywhere in the world.
And that’s not all:
They don’t require prescriptions or injections.
Adverse steroid effects can be nasty. Sure, the benefits can be massive, but in the long-term it’s much safer to invest in natural products that bolster your routine and diet.
Using the path of natural supplements, you don’t have to worry about damaging your body. Instead, you can focus your energy completely toward improving it.
2019. NHS. Anabolic Steroid Misuse.