What exactly are steroids?
Steroids (also known as “roids” or “juice”) are hormones that are the same as, or very similar to, certain hormones produced by the body. Natural steroid production occurs in the body to support functions such as stress reduction and growth and development promotion, among others.
Those who use steroid pills, gels, creams, or injections, however, do so because they believe steroids will improve their athletic performance or the way they look in general.
The dangers of using steroids
Anabolic steroids can cause a wide range of different health problems. The following are some of the most common side effects:
- Balding or hair loss that occurs prematurely
- Gaining in weight
- Mood swings are a common occurrence.
- Having difficulty sleeping
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Muscles and tendons are more susceptible to injury
- Jaundice (a yellowing of the skin) and liver damage are two conditions that can occur.
- Growth that has been stunted
- Heart disease, blood clots, stroke, and certain types of cancer are all at increased risk because of this.
Women face a number of risks
The following are some of the specific risks for girls associated with anabolic steroids:
- Increased hair growth on the face and on the body
- It is possible to develop masculine characteristics, such as a deeper voice, while simultaneously losing feminine body characteristics, such as a reduction in breast size.
- Climatization (expansion of the terrain)
- Changes in the menstrual cycle
Men are exposed to certain risks
Men are particularly vulnerable to the following risks:
- shrinkage of the testicles
- when urinating there is discomfort
- a lack of sexual desire (inability to get an erection)
- Infertility is associated with a decreased sperm count.
Steroids can also have negative psychological effects that can be life-threatening. Some users may become aggressive or combative, believe things that are not true (delusions), or experience extreme feelings of mistrust or fear as a result of their use of the medication (paranoia). Furthermore, people who use steroids appear to be at greater risk of using other drugs, such as alcohol or cocaine, to counteract some of the negative effects of steroids, which is consistent with previous research.
It is possible for people who use steroids to inject the drugs to become infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS if they share needles with other people who are also using steroids at the same time. People who inject drugs with dirty needles are also at risk of contracting hepatitis, a liver disease, and bacterial endocarditis, an infection of the inner lining of the heart, among other diseases.
Artificially produced hormones known as anabolic steroids are the same as (or very similar to) testosterone androgens, which are the male-type sex hormones found in the body. Anabolic steroids are available in more than 100 different formulations. Testosterone is the androgen with the greatest potency (pronounced: tess-TOSS-tuh-rone). Despite the fact that testosterone is primarily a mature male hormone, female bodies produce significantly less of it. Testosterone aids in the development of muscle and the enhancement of masculine characteristics that develop in young men during puberty, such as the deepening of the voice and the growth of body hair. Testosterone levels can also have an impact on a person’s aggressiveness.
Athletes occasionally use anabolic steroids because of the testosterone-like effects they have on the body.
The hormones dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and/or androstenedione are found in other steroids, which are sometimes referred to as steroidal supplements (also known as andro). The majority of steroidal supplements, which were previously available at health food stores or gyms, are now illegal and must be obtained through a prescription. DHEA is one of the few exceptions, and it can still be purchased over-the-counter in some countries.
Steroid supplements are less potent androgens than natural testosterone. Although their effects are not fully understood, it is believed that when taken in large doses, they have effects that are similar to those of other androgens such as testosterone. However, research studies have found that they have little to no effect on athletic performance and may even be detrimental.
The following is what is currently known about steroidal supplements: The companies that manufacture them frequently make false claims, and little is known about the long-term effects that some of these substances have on the body, particularly when it comes to estrogen. That is one of the reasons why the government took action to protect citizens by passing legislation regulating the distribution of steroids.
How do anabolic steroids work?
When used in conjunction with training, anabolic steroids cause muscle tissue to grow and “bulk up” by mimicking the effects of naturally produced testosterone on the body. Anabolic steroids can remain in the body for a period ranging from a few days to approximately a year. Steroids have gained popularity because they have the potential to increase endurance, strength, and muscle mass. However, there has been no evidence to suggest that steroids improve athletic ability, agility, or performance.
See also Steroids for Pneumonia
Steroid stacking and addiction
It is common for some people to “cycle” their steroid doses. This means that they take multiple doses of steroids over a period of time, stop for a period of time, and then start up again. “Stacking” refers to the use of two or more different anabolic steroids at the same time. Other steroid users may “pyramid” their steroids, beginning with a low dose and gradually increasing the dose, frequency, or amount of anabolic steroids taken, before tapering off to complete a cycle. Pyramiding allows the body to become acclimated to high doses of steroids, and steroid-free periods allow the body to recover from the effects of the drugs, according to users. These assertions are not supported by scientific evidence.
Numerous people make the decision to use steroids for a season or for a school year and then discontinue use. Unfortunately, steroids can become addictive, making it difficult to discontinue use.
Additionally, once users stop taking steroids, they may experience withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, fatigue, restlessness, insomnia, mood swings, and depression.
What are some of the ways anabolic steroids are abused?
In many cases, recreational users of anabolic steroids are taking much higher doses than those who are taking them for medical reasons. This is especially true if the steroids are contained in a supplement or injection that contains high concentrations of the substance.
They can also be hazardous if they are used incorrectly:
Cycling refers to the process of taking a large amount of steroids and then stopping for a period of time before taking them again.
Stacking refers to the use of multiple types of steroids at the same time, or the use of different delivery forms (like injections and supplements together)
Pyramiding is the process of starting with small doses and gradually increasing the amount taken, followed by a reduction in the amount taken again.
Plateauing is the process of switching to another steroid suddenly in order to prevent the current steroid from becoming ineffective and then switching back.
Some people can become accustomed to the sensation of increased strength or endurance that steroids provide them, and they can develop a dangerous addiction to them.
Are there any safe alternatives to anabolic steroids that are effective?
There are a variety of safe and natural methods for achieving the performance, strength, and bulk you desire:
Consume a nutritious, well-balanced diet that is high in protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Include foods such as eggs, fish, Greek yogurt, and grains such as quinoa in your diet.
Work on different muscle groups in close proximity to one another. During a single workout, concentrate on specific muscle groups such as the biceps, triceps, or quads. In order to achieve the best long-term results, alternate between muscle groups during your workout.
Make a commitment to a regular exercise program. Whether you are trying to lose weight, get in shape, compete, or bulk up, a fitness app or working with a personal trainer can help you stay on track and hold yourself accountable.
Dianabol and Deca Durabolin
Using Dianabol and Deca Durabolin together in the off-season to pack on as much muscle as possible is a popular bulking stack, with many bodybuilders from Arnold Schwarzenegger’s era utilizing this stack to maximize their gains.
Dianabol is an oral anabolic steroid, whereas Deca Durabolin is an injectable anabolic steroid. Deca Durabolin does not increase liver stress, which is important given that Dianabol is a particularly hepatotoxic anabolic agent to consider.
It is only recommended for users who have previously taken Dianabol and tolerated it well to use this stack. Deca will elevate your size and strength gains to an entirely new level, while simultaneously suppressing your testosterone levels and contributing to increased water retention.
This stack is effective for minimizing hair loss during a cycle, as far as steroids are concerned. This is due to the fact that neither compound is particularly androgenic, and as a result, DHT levels will not soar to dangerous levels.
- Liver strain
- Low testosterone
- Water retention
Those who use this stack will want to take the following supplements in order to reduce the likelihood of side effects:
- 4 g of fish oil per day
- TUDCA – 500mg twice a day
- If you choose to take letrozole, take 1.25mg every other day.
- Dostinex — 0.5-1mg once or twice a week
It is necessary to take these for the entire duration of the cycle.
Fish oil will aid in the regulation of blood pressure levels, which will unavoidably arise as a result of the use of this stack (Dbol being the main culprit). The fact that Dianabol is a toxic oral steroid can be attributed to the increased cardiovascular strain. When taken orally, many oral steroids stimulate the production of hepatic lipase as they pass through the liver. The bad news is that this enzyme has been shown to significantly lower HDL levels (the good type of cholesterol).
It is possible that water retention caused by Dianabol will have a negative impact on blood pressure, as the heart will have to work harder than usual to pump blood throughout the body. This is due to increased blood viscosity, which is a byproduct of having more water in the bloodstream.
TUDCA (Tauroursodeoxycholic acid) is a naturally-occurring bile acid that aids in the repair of the liver after it has been subjected to excessive stress. Steroid users who take this natural liver-protecting substance in supplement form receive higher doses of the substance.
Because it is c17 alpha-alkylated, Dianabol is one of the most harmful anabolic steroids for the liver, and thus TUDCA supplementation is required.
When you take Dianabol and Deca Durabolin, you run the risk of developing gynecomastia. Due to the high aromatizing properties of Dbol, it has the potential to cause male breast development. In other words, a significant portion of the exogenous testosterone will be converted into the female hormone estrogen.
Anti-estrogen or SERM therapy is the most effective way to deal with this and prevent gyno from occurring (selective estrogen receptor modulator). SERMs are generally considered to be preferable because they do not worsen cholesterol levels and, as a result, do not cause blood pressure to rise even further. SERMS, such as Nolvadex or Clomid, on the other hand, can exacerbate progesterone-related side effects. Deca Durabolin has the potential to cause gyno as a result of an increase in progesterone levels (which can act similarly to estrogen).
In order to avoid this, users should keep an eye on their nipples while taking this stack. If they begin to swell or breast tissue begins to enlarge, it is time to consider taking an anti-estrogen (to prevent further problems). Letrozole is a potent anti-estrogen that works by inhibiting the conversion of testosterone into estrogen in the body.
A SERM should not be used in order to reduce the likelihood of it causing progesterone-induced gynecomastia (from Deca Durabolin).
Deca Durabolin has the potential to cause impotence during a cycle, which can have a negative impact on users’ sexual performance. This is due to the fact that it significantly raises prolactin levels. Using Dostinex (Cabergoline), which inhibits prolactin production, users can keep their sex drive and performance high and maintain their sexual drive and performance for longer periods of time.
Dianabol and Testosterone
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Dr. John Ziegler was tasked with developing a steroid that was more potent than testosterone in order to aid the United States Olympic team in their victory over the Soviet Union in the 1950s. Dianabol and Testosterone were once bitter rivals.
As a result, Dr. Ziegler developed Methandrostenolone (Dianabol), which was superior to testosterone in terms of anabolic rating while having fewer androgenic side effects than testosterone. Dianabol is still in use today.
As a result, Dianabol and Testosterone function in a similar manner. When it comes to muscle growth, Dianabol has the upper hand, whereas testosterone has the upper hand when it comes to fat loss (due to a higher level of androgenicity).
Among the most significant differences between the two is that Dianabol is an oral steroid, whereas testosterone is administered intramuscularly. Due to the fact that users are essentially stacking another form of exogenous testosterone with no additional liver toxicity, this is considered to be a complementary duo.
This is widely regarded as one of the most effective stacks available for gaining raw muscle mass and strength at a fast rate.
Any ester of Testosterone may be used in this stack; however, the most popular forms are Enanthate and Cypionate, which are both available in large quantities.
In terms of side effects, testosterone suppression will be more pronounced post-cycle, necessitating the use of a powerful post-cycle therapy (PCT) in order to avoid long-term low testosterone levels.
However, taking Dianabol alone will cause cholesterol levels to rise significantly more than they would otherwise. The good news is that Testosterone is arguably the most cardiovascular-friendly of all the anabolic steroids available. The cholesterol levels will not rise exponentially higher than they would if Dianabol were taken alone.
Because both of these steroids are estrogenic in nature, the likelihood of developing gynecomastia increases significantly when using this stack. As a result, an effective SERM (such as Nolvadex) is required from the very beginning of a cycle.
Additionally, some androgenic side effects are possible, with users reporting oily skin/acne, hair loss, and increased difficulty urinating.
4 g of fish oil per day
TUDCA – 500mg twice a day
Nolvadex – 30 milligrams per day
It is necessary to take these for the entire duration of the cycle.
Dianabol and Trenbolone
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Rather than being viewed as a more powerful and harsher stack than Dianabol and Testosterone, Dianabol and Trenbolone should be considered a more powerful and harsher stack.
Trenbolone is an injectable anabolic steroid that is similar to Testosterone. Trenbolone differs from Dianabol in that it does not aromatize and does not cause water retention like the latter. As a result, weight gain is typically less; however, its ability to add quality lean muscle is on par with or even better than that of Dianabol.
Trenbolone has an androgenic rating of 500, which is approximately ten times higher than that of Dianabol. As a result, trenbolone can result in significant fat loss due to the ability of AR (androgen receptors) to stimulate lipolysis, as well as the development of significant amounts of lean muscle mass.
Some people may wonder why Trenbolone should be combined with Dianabol. (If tren is considered a dry steroid and Dbol is considered a wet steroid.)
Because of this, this stack is ideal for use during the off-season when attempting to gain as much lean mass as possible. Using this stack in the summer, on the other hand, may be counterproductive because Dianabol will help to mitigate the drying effects of Trenbolone (temporarily reducing muscle definition).
Users will gain a significant amount of muscle regardless of when they use this stack.
The toxicity of Dianabol alone will be significant, and Trenbolone will not add any additional hepatic strain to the equation.
Gynecomastia is a distinct possibility with this stack, as Dianabol raises estrogen levels while Trenbolone raises progesterone levels, respectively. When combined with an aromatizing steroid such as Dianabol, progesterone-induced gyno is more likely to occur than when used alone. The most effective method of preventing gyno with this stack would be to take an anti-estrogen; however, doing so will increase blood pressure levels significantly (and thus is not recommended). The following stack is not recommended for those who are concerned about gyno.
Because of tren’s high androgenicity, hair loss, oily skin, and acne are all possible side effects of this combination. These are usually only temporary side effects, with acne clearing up after the cycle and hair follicles becoming thicker again after the cycle is completed. Long-term use of androgenic steroids, on the other hand, may result in more permanent side effects.
Because of the severity of the testosterone suppression associated with this cycle, it is likely that users’ natural testosterone levels will not recover for several weeks or months following the cycle (even with an effective PCT).
- Four grams of fish oil per day
- 500 milligrams of TUDCA per day
- 1.225mg every other day of letrozole (optional if blood pressure is within normal ranges).
It is necessary to take these for the entire duration of the cycle.