Body Building: The Shocking Truth Behind Steroids

Body Building: The Shocking Truth Behind Steroids

Steroids have been on the forefront of bodybuilding debates. Some say that maximum gains are impossible without them, while others say that the side effects are not worth the gains one gets from steroids.

Steroids are popular because they allow athletes and bodybuilders to train longer and more intensely. It also allows for faster recovery from fatigue. Steroids can be taken orally, can be injected, and can even be applied using dermal patches, gels, and nasal sprays. Many of those that take steroids do so to gain an advantage over other athletes in their sport. This has led many of the sports sanctioning bodies to declare these substances illegal for use in sports. Many athletes have been stripped of their awards and have been given stiff penalties for infractions of this rule.  Unfortunately, the use of steroids is not without its ill effects. The improper use – usually the overuse – of steroids has led to many instances of liver failure – even liver tumors. This plus a host of other side effects has put a question mark on the use and abuse of this substance.

ANABOLIC STEROIDS: the evil side

When steroids are abused – and sometimes even when they are not – they can cause a host of adverse effects. Hormonal imbalance: Steroids affect your body in a way that short circuits your hormonal system. If your hormones go bonkers you could become infertile. And that’s still just touching the tip of the iceberg. Your hormones govern a lot of your body’s function. During puberty the reaction of your hormones both trigger and end the growth spurt. It also triggers the formation of opposite sexes’ distinguishing characteristics such as pubic hair, deepening of the voice, enlarging of breasts and testicles, and even skin conditions. Steroids increase the amount of sex hormones in your body. This spurs muscle growth. Unfortunately it also spurs a host of other bodily changes. It is not uncommon to find men growing breasts or losing hair because of the use of anabolic steroids. Some men have experienced the shrinking of their testicles, and the onset of skin cysts and pimples. Women, on the other hand, have not been spared the damage steroids can do. They have experienced deepening of voices, the development of masculine features, stronger facial and structural features, and others. Some have even reported the growth of facial hair – and that can be pretty embarrassing to most women.

The premature use of steroids can also cause the stunting of one’s growth. Since steroids increase the amount of sex hormones in the body, and since it is these hormones that govern the start and end of the growth spurt the use of steroids can cause the premature stop of one’s growth. This is why steroids are not recommended to those that have not yet stopped growing. Steroids can also adversely affect the cardiovascular system. They have been known to cause the enlargement of the heart and contribute to cardiovascular disease. They also cause blood clots that can lead to cerebral hemorrhage. This is why if you have a history of heart disease, or if you are genetically predisposed to heart disease, you are best advised to forego steroid use. As mentioned earlier, the liver also suffers greatly from the processing of steroids in the body. The liver can grow tumors or can be damaged to the point that they bleed. Excessive use of steroids can cause jaundice and permanent liver damage. To top it all, steroids can also affect your mood and temperament. There are those that have reported increased irritability and tension due to the use of anabolic steroids. Even naturally calm people have been known to exhibit aggressive behavior as a result of such usage.

Proper Use: the Key?

Given all the disheartening downside steroid use brings, there will always be those that will testify to its potency in improving one’s performance. Deciding whether steroids are your way of bodybuilding is your decision. However, at least you are now more aware of the effects of such substances on the body. When you make your decision on its use, keep them in mind. And in any case, if you decide to use steroids, make sure that you use it properly. Do not misuse or abuse it, as that could lead to the ill effects outlined above. Take great care when training with such substances and you will at least decrease the chances that you harm yourself.

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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our blood alcohol, body fat and calories burned calculators.

The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

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Our high quality content has been featured in a number of leading websites, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Live Strong, GQ, and many more.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our blood alcohol, body fat and calories burned calculators.The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.Our team of health professionals, and researchers use peer reviewed studies as source elements in our articles.Our high quality content has been featured in a number of leading websites, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Live Strong, GQ, and many more.

2 Comments

  1. homer Reply

    Good article, but I would like to point out a few things.

    First off, “roid rage” is a myth. As a steroid user I can attest to this. Also, there is no evidence that definitively shows that steroids cause increased agression in normal people. You may want to see the following video, it explains the myth better than I can-

    http://www.politics.com/video/yG89XmCCaw4/the-roid-rage-myth/

    Secondly, the liver problems can only be caused by certain steroids. Most injectable steroids have almost no effect on the liver, certainly less than some legal substances like alcohol. Only a few oral steroids can potentially effect the liver, and even this is questionable (see following reference)

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10336050

    Thirdly, I believe it would have been proper to note that the reason the testicles MAY TEMPORARILY shrink (never happened to me) with high dosages, is because the testicles may stop producing hormone until normal levels of the hormone return. Only overuse for long periods of time could cause any permanent shrinkage. I am yet to see anything in the news or on the internet about some steroid user griping about testicular issues, it is really quite overstated (but the media loves to jump on that kind of stuff, it sells).

    I do not advocate steroid use, especially where children are concerned. I certainly would not want my son to take them, or feel like he has to take them to fit in. However, I firmly believe that we need to get past the media generated hyperbole and state the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth when it comes to steroids.

    Instead of demonizing steroids, which build up ones body, why don’t we focus our attention on tobacco, alcohol and other drugs that actually kill people?

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