Anabolic Effects of Estrogen for Muscle Gain

September 6th, 2007 by Paul Johnson

Estrogen is considered a dirty word among bodybuilders, especially those looking for chemical enhancement with steroids. Estrogen is considered a “female hormone” and therefore is thought that it should be reduced dramatically. Bodybuilders will often take aromotose inhibitors or SERMs in order to reduce the effect of estrogen in the body while taking testosterone.

While reducing estrogen can help against prostate problems, bloat, gyno risk, and female fat pattern gain, it also plays a role in your muscle gains. For this reason, one must be careful to not reduce it too low.

Estrogen effects on muscle gain:

So how can a female hormone help muscle gain? It does it through a variety of ways. Research has shown that it increases the mitogen activated protein kinase cascade, localized IGF-1, and an increase in system growth hormone levels.

The protein kinase cascade is an important reaction for IGF-1 and insulin to cause their anabolic effect. The raising of Growth hormone as a result of estrogen, also plays a synergistic role with testosterone and other anabolic hormones. Estrogen also helps in the process of retaining water, which can help cell volumization and ultimately leads to increased protein synthesis.

Does this mean then that increasing estrogen levels is a good thing for bodybuilders? Absolutely not. High levels of estrogen has a variety of negative health effects on males and will actually reduce muscle gains, if the ratio of estrogen to testosterone is high. What we are saying is that estrogen does help muscle gains, provided it's in a near balanced ratio with testosterone(not very low or too high).

  1. pearl uk on April 10th, 2008

    i am 25years old female and not really skinny,but then i have very prominent veins that gets me terribly depressed.i need to know if estrogen intake can help solve my problem.if not what do i need to do?
    this is really urgent. your article is nice

  2. admin on April 11th, 2008

    Hi pearl. That really is a whole different issue from this article. I don’t think veins has anything to do with Estrogen either, it is mainly genetics as my mother got that problem from her mother.

  3. ray on December 15th, 2008

    hey. i have used alot of cycles, and i have gyno. i am 20 years old. does nolvadex really work

  4. admin on December 26th, 2008

    I’ve seen studies where nolvadex reduced gyno lumps in chest. It doesn’t always work. It never got rid of my gyno lumps.

  5. FatAdvocate on January 16th, 2009

    Pearl, hope you read this site from time to time… Don’t like your veins are so visible? Gain fat! That would definitely solve the problem. And don’t listen to those morons who say fat is the enemy – 25%bodyfat is just seXXXy 😉

  6. Vitamins and minerals on February 13th, 2010

    To get rid of estrogen in our system eat less fat and lay off from junk foods. If it doesn’t work take nolvadex it will help a lot.

  7. Zinghera on January 13th, 2011

    I TOTALY agree. I get those veins too but only when i drop below 25% body fat. I’ve been at several bodyfat percentages and 25% is DEFINITELY SEXXY ….and less veiny.