Steroid Facts and Myths

May 29th, 2007 by Paul Johnson

Steroids are probably one of the most misunderstood drugs around, full of many misconceptions and exaggerations. Most have not tried it or even know anyone (at least to their knowledge) that has tried them. People fear more what they do not know or understand and the media and politicians, have taken advantage of that for their own gains.

Steroids are much more prevalent than people are aware. They think they will be able to “tell”, but unless you done steroids yourself, it is unlikely you will know for sure if someone else around you is doing it. Usually people who are around someone a lot, won’t notice rapid weight gains as someone who hasn’t seen you in weeks.

The media plays into this hype because they love manipulating the “ignorant masses” and sensationalizing things. Having some past experience with various steroid compounds and spent years studying them, I can help answer some some common questions.

1) Steroids will turn you into a raving lunatic A.K.A “Roid Rage”

This is mostly false. The longer the cycle and the type of drugs used, such as tren or high doses of testosterone, can make this more likely. In general, Steroids will make you slightly more agressive and more confident. They give you a sense of well being and confidence. However, they will not make you an unprovoked angry psycopath that is classic of media propoganda called “roid rage”. I have previously written an article on Roid Rage: Real or Myth?, citing research on the issue to help back my arguments.

2) It causes Suicide/Depression and Sexual problems

When you go on long steroid cycles and your body comes off it, it has completely stopped producing testosterone. You have a hormonal imbalance of low testosterone and high estrogen. This hormone change, causes depression and moodiness postcycle. Men will essentially feel like a 10 year old depressed girl scout off a long steroid cycle. Over multiple steroid cycles, you get used to coming off, but psychology it is hard to deal. When you get off steroids you will feel weaker and less confident. To make matters worse you will probably will have, erectile or libido problems temporarily.

With all these things going on, it is obvious that they could increase the likelihood of suicide or depression, in susceptible individuals. What usually happens though, is people just tough it out for a few weeks and then jump on another cycle. In other words, it becomes a roller coaster of addiction. It is psychological addiction though and not physical. But you can get psychologically addicted to lots of things such as junk food, porn, etc.

Yes, your testes will definitely shrink within a few weeks of cycle. If you were using testosterone steroid, once you get off you will lose your sex drive. In rare cases some people lose their sex drive for many months after a steroid cycle. They have to resort to HCG, in order to “jumpstart” the bodies natural testosterone production.

In the world of performance enhancing drugs, hCG is increasingly used in combination with various Anabolic Androgenic Steroid (AAS) cycles.

When AAS are put into a male body, the body's natural negative feedback loops cause the body to shut down its own production of testosterone via shutdown of the HPTA (hypothalamic pituitary-testicular axis). High levels of AASs that mimic the body's natural testosterone trigger the hypothalamus to shut down its production of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) from the hypothalamus. Without GnRH the pituitary gland stops releasing luteinizing hormone (LH). LH normally travels from the pituitary via the blood stream to the testes where it triggers the production and release of testosterone. Without LH, the testes shut down their production of testosterone, causing testicular atrophy ("shrunken balls").

In males, hCG mimics LH and helps restore / maintain testosterone production in the testes. As such, hCG is commonly used during and after steroid cycles to maintain and restore testicular size as well as endogenous testosterone production. However, if hCG is used for too long and in too high a dose, the resulting rise in natural testosterone will eventually inhibit its own production via negative feedback on the hypothalamus and pituitary.

Source: Wikipedia

3) Steroids are bad for your heart

This is true. Steroids decrease your HDL while increasing your LDL. HDL is the “good cholesterol” which acts like draino on your arteries for cleaning up plaque buildup. LDL is the “bad cholesterol” which puts cholesterol on your artery. So as you can see long term use of steroids is not a good idea. Short cycles and infrequent use would be best for your health if you choose to use them. The massive weight and water gain also puts pressure on the heart and is not a good thing to be doing frequently over your lifetime. Steroids also increase the harmful protein homocysteine according to this study

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - A new study provides more evidence that long-term use of anabolic steroids can cause heart and blood vessel disease, and may even boost the risk of sudden death.

UK researchers found that bodybuilders who used the muscle-building steroids had increased levels of homocysteine, a protein tied to increased mortality, heart disease risk and blood vessel damage, compared with bodybuilders who didn't use the performance-enhancing drugs.

Three steroid users died suddenly during the course of the study, and all had homocysteine levels that were higher than the average for steroid-using study participants.

"The findings of this study suggest that anabolic-androgenic steroids are detrimental to cardiovascular health and appear to be implicated in cardiovascular mortality in long-term anabolic-androgenic steroid abuse," Dr. Michael R. Graham of the University Glamorgan in Pontypridd, Wales and colleagues conclude.

There have been reports suggesting that steroid users face an increased risk of sudden death as well as acute clotting-related health problems such as stroke and heart attack, Graham and his team note.

To determine whether steroid users might have increased homocysteine levels, which could contribute to the risk of heart and blood vessel problems, the researchers measured levels of homocysteine and several other substances in the blood in bodybuilders who had been using steroids for more than 20 years.

They were compared to steroid-using bodybuilders who had abstained from the drugs for three months, bodybuilders who had never used steroids, and sedentary, non-steroid-using men.

Current and past steroid users had higher homocysteine levels than other study participants, as well as "dramatically elevated" levels of hematocrit.

As mentioned, three of the steroid-using bodybuilders died during the study period and all of them had significantly higher levels of homocysteine than the average for the steroid-using group.

Sudden death and acute clotting events "may represent under-appreciated risks" of anabolic steroid use, the team warns.

Source: British Journal Sports Medicine

However Folic Acid and Vitamin B break down homocysteine protein in the body so a simple diet change could help offset that.

Homocysteine levels are strongly influenced by diet, as well as by genetic factors. The dietary components with the greatest effects are folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12. Folic acid and other B vitamins help break down homocysteine in the body. Several studies have found that higher blood levels of B vitamins are related, at least partly, to lower concentrations of homocysteine. Other recent evidence shows that low blood levels of folic acid are linked with a higher risk of fatal coronary heart disease and stroke.

Source: Ammerican Hear Assoc.

There have also been studies showing the permanent thickening of the ventricular wall in steroid users vs natural powerlifters. Although there are questions about that study as it has obvious flaws.

4) Steroids are bad for your liver.

This is true. There is a definite scientific link between steroids and liver damage or liver cancer. However, it is usually exaggerated. First off alchohol or many prescription drugs, are probably just as toxic, if not more, to the liver. It is hard to determine what is caused by a person using alchohol and/or other drugs compared to steroid use in their life.

Secondly, it depends on what type of steroids you use. In the bodybuilding community it is also recommended not to focus on “oral” cycles which use the more dangerous methylated compounds and are much more hard on the liver. Injectables do not use methylated steroids and are taught among reputable bodybuilders to be not only the best mass builders among bodybuilders, but also the safest on your liver.

5) Steroids cause bad acne and hair loss

This is true. Your acne will increase especially cystic acne in your back and chest and face. Acne is related to your hormones and the androgenic nature of steroids cause your cystic acne to increase. If you are really susceptible to cystic acne, you will get many large acne cysts.

Steroids will increase hair loss. The thinning and receding is mainly permanent, so it is best to help prevent it while on cycle. As with acne, the severity of your hair loss will depend on your genetics. Nizoral shampoo 2%, anti dandruff shampoo (with zinc), rogaine, Spiro, are all easy to get and proven to help combat/prevent against thinning “alopecia” for MPB (Male pattern baldness). Prescription drugs such as propecia and duasteride also help against the androgenic side effects, but will only help against testosterone, so it won’t help if your taking Tren and dianabol for example. Propecia and duasteride will also reduce the effectiveness of testosterone since it works on the body’s conversion to DHT, which is very anabolic too

Steroids cause prostate cancer

This is so complex of a topic, that it inspired me to write an indepth article on the issue seperately here. You do not want to miss reading it.

Conclusion

I hope that clears up the many myths about steroids and sets some of the facts. There may be new studies over time that show new evidence contrary to what is said here, but this is what we know today.

  1. Jason on October 19th, 2007

    Hello webmaster thanks for sharing these experiences with us.

  2. daniel beard on May 25th, 2008

    hello i recently read your article on anabolic steroids and i feel i need to clear some issues that you have touched upon. first of all i am a bodybuilder and an ex- user of anabolic steroids, i will agree on some of the so called facts that you brought up but im afraid you look like you’ve read a doctors report and gone with what they say. i would be more than happy to do an in depth real experiment on using an andregic anabolic steriod cycle just show people how to use these so called dangerous drugs safely and so people could learn how these drugs really work, whats real and whats not with steriods, hairloss acene prostate gland damage the speeding up of certain cancers heart issues and the dangerous effects of the electric impluses on the brain(this is reason behind roid rage as the hypumlous gland is slightly defected allowing the brain to send the signals out on mood control, ie. roid rage) and general andregenic side effects are real they are really real and i have seen this all before my very eyes to most of my friends and associates in the past and i know some others are heading down this dangerous road. the reason this happens is a lack of education and a total mis conception of what they are inducing their bodies, i know through personal experience that steriod cycles can and would be safe as houses if people knew what they were doing i would to do an experiment show people this and help people become educated on just how powerful and how they can be safe if not abused would you be interested in this? maybe we could get blood tests from doctors and x rays and other scanns to show what really happens when you use and not abuse steroids?

  3. darren gamesby on June 12th, 2008

    hello im 40 year sof age and never been a body builder am i too old to start…thanks

  4. admin on June 19th, 2008

    Darren, you might want to talk to the other 40 year olds at our forum.

    http://www.bodybuildingweb.net/forum/

  5. Andre Vachon on July 31st, 2008

    I suggest you add a few items to your list. I would love to hear your point of view on them.

    6) Steroids are illegal and therefore, users are breaking the law.

    7) Steroids are addictive – not the substance itself but the effects it produces. People who develop a persona as a “big guy” with huge lifts may find it hard to quit using and to become a “regular guy” again.

    8) Like it is the case for all illegal substances, users have no way of checking the quality of the steroids they use. They put their faith in criminals who are dealing an illegal substance for profits.

    9) Steroids take away from your achievements. I am proud to say that I am a natural athlete, a black belt in karate who practices several sport, including bodybuilding. At 5’11”, my 45 inch chest and 16 inch arms are laughable by steroid users’ standard, but unlike steroid users, hypocrites that defend the use of an illegal substance but will not admit being users themselves, I can say that my achievements belong to me. I don’t owe them to a steroids, which is the case for users, no matter how much work they put into their physique. Without steroids, they would not be as strong or as big, period.

  6. tim boudreau on March 4th, 2009

    is it ok to take high levales of tess for a long period I have been taking 1000mg for 3 months know

  7. robert on August 19th, 2009

    hello

    i have been taking “omnadren 250” for over 10 weeks now and have recently had a huge break out of acne over my face and back…

    when i come off the cycle, will the acne go? i plan to take hcg also after my course.

    thanks

  8. admin on October 21st, 2009

    If you didn’t have acne before it should go away afterwards.

  9. boldenone genesis on December 4th, 2009

    ye it will be gone for sure..nothing to worry about..do the right pct..

  10. Donny on December 15th, 2009

    While I realize what we’re told about steroids through the news isn’t entirely true, I still do not have the desire to take steroids.

  11. Dylan on February 3rd, 2010

    ddo steriods, mainly deca and other low androgenic steriods increase the amount of body hair? not head hair

  12. vvfvf ffv on February 22nd, 2010

    poo

  13. brooke ramsey on March 24th, 2010

    send me some steroids

  14. nick on April 28th, 2010

    you guys are losers

  15. Alex on July 24th, 2010

    hello

    I am new very new to the use of steriods and have been using for 11 weeks. I am male 24 and was 110 lbs and now weigh 125 lbs. I use them because no matter what I did… ie: gym, ate like a horse, shakes etc. I never gained a pound. I was tired of looking like a toothpick and always avoided the beach or pool in the summers because I couldnt bare taking off my shirt. OK…. Question: I mix 0.5mL of testosterone and 0.5mL of Primobolan and inject twice a week Wendsdays and Sundays. Am I doing enough? I hear the Primobolan is the weakest on the market yet comes with the least side effects which is why i chose this type. Should I be injecting more? How long does 1 dose last? and if I take more will I gain mass faster? PS. I go to the gym everyday for at least 1hr – 1 1/2hrs. Please help!

  16. daniel on July 28th, 2010

    im thinking of taking roids just to help put on some size, when i finish my cycle will i lose all the the size i got from roids or will i still keep it?

  17. Charlie Brown on November 22nd, 2010

    i like cheese

  18. joseph on November 24th, 2010

    i need roids asap

  19. hi on January 4th, 2011

    i tookkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk leggggggaaaaal steeeeeroiids.

  20. Sammington on January 12th, 2011

    What is DHEA.I have been told that it’s the best steroid ever.How true is this?How safe is this product?

  21. David on January 14th, 2011

    if you take steriods for a short period of time will it prevent being able to have kids in the future?

  22. Rob on February 8th, 2011

    Your acne will get worse post cycle.. It wont be permanent only for few weeks this is due to the sudden drop of having alot of testosterone in your body to then having non this creates your hormones to fluctuate lile crazy but will stable in time. I have just come off my cycle and experiencing what i have just mentioned