It is not clear if Arnold Schwarzenegger has confused the public as to whether steroids are safe or not. He is the most popular muscle man of the 21st century. On one hand, you can see his huge muscles which have taken him to great heights. But just how safe are steroids?
The Steroid Controversy
So, the steroid controversy, which was only confined to the scientific and body building community, inevitably reached the general public. Many people are not sure whether steroids are safe to take or not. This is a question that needs to be resolved.
Facts About Steroids
Here are some solid steroid facts you should know:
- Steroids are synthetic derivatives of the hormone, testosterone. This substance is responsible for the development of the male physique.
- Steroids encourage metabolism in your body. They also help in the formation of certain vitamins and other essential nutrients that your body needs to maintain health and energy.
- These chemical compounds are important and play a major role in bodily processes. They are actually produced naturally in animals and synthetically produced in laboratories. There are several types of steroids and each type has a distinct chemical composition.
- Medical authorities believe that repetitive and excessive use of synthetic steroids may lead to certain health issues such as high blood pressure, liver damage and the development of aggressive behavior. Women are prone to manifest male physical characteristics if they insist on using steroids repeatedly and excessively.
Types of Steroids
There are three main types of steroids:
- Androgens – these are responsible for the development of the male characteristics and the male reproductive system.
- Cortico – these are connected with the Adrenal Cortex which is responsible for bodily processes such as metabolism, skeletal and kidney functions and so forth.
- Estrogen and Protestrogen – these are responsible for the female characteristics and the female reproduction system.
There are at least 18 different types of steroids used in bodybuilding. Some of the most commonly used steroids are:
- hGH or Human Growth Hormone – it is naturally produced in the brain, but is taken as a supplement by bodybuilders. Originally it was used to increase the height of short children. In bodybuilding, it is used to increase muscle mass, enhances fat breakdown, conserves blood glucose, increases size of hands, feet and jaw, and improves healing of musculoskeletal injuries.
- Erythropoietin – this is used by endurance athletes to improve performance. It is also used in treating a number of diseases of the blood. This chemical substance increases the red blood cell by encouraging red blood cell production and speeding their release from the bone marrow to the blood stream. More red blood cells means more oxygen, hence your stamina and endurance are enhanced.
- Clenbuterol – this is originally used by veterinarians to increase the muscle mass in livestock. However, the increase in the size of the muscles does not necessarily mean a corresponding increase in strength.
Are Steroids Safe to Use?
Anabolic steroids increase protein synthesis in muscle tissue. Androgens also help the process and increase the training intensity at the same time. However, some medical authorities believe that your normal production of testosterone may shut down if there is an abundant amount of testosterone in your bloodstream. This will happen if you will take too much steroids.
If your testosterone production shuts down, it may not return even after taking additional steroids. The process becomes a vicious and dangerous cycle.
Benefits of Using Steroids
John Hansen, the famous two-time Mr. Universe title holder says that by using steroids, you can train six days a week and still grow, but you would quickly end up over trained if you do it naturally without using any steroid-like supplements. It allows you to retain greater amounts of nitrogen than your body is designed to handle.
Steroids help you absorb protein more and the side effects seem to vary according to the way they are used. Natural body building methods without using supplements is still the safest method.
However, if you really want to have that Schwarzenegger body, you can enhance your muscle development with the help of steroids. But you need to do it with the help of a professional trainer in gyms like Bally Total Fitness. You should also seek the advice of a medical professional. This will ensure that you will not take excessive amounts of steroids that will produce adverse results.