This is a post about using artificial means to improve your look and whilst Health Form does NOT condone it, this article is written for educational purposes for readers to make up their own minds.
We thank William for writing a fair and balanced article about the pros and cons of prohormone's.
If you are looking to increase your muscle mass, the writer of this article also has protein powders available that you can find here.
If natural lifting isn’t giving you the gains you’ve been hoping for, it might be time to kick things up a few notches.
Yes, hard work and perseverance are the keys to achieving your fitness goals and maintaining the results for the long haul, but sometimes that’s just not good enough.
When you really want to see results you can take to the bank, you may want to look into prohormones.
Prohormones Are Similar to Steroids
Let’s not beat around the bush here. Prohormones ARE virtually the same as anabolic steroids, with a few key differences that make them a much better choice.
If you’re not ready to take steroids – and there are plenty of reasons not to – you may want to look into other softer supplements like creatine to get that extra oomph.
However, if you’re looking to take your bodybuilding regimen to the next level, prohormones might just be your new best friend.
Let’s take a look at how prohormones differ from anabolic steroids, how they work, what they can do for you, and steps you can take to minimize the negative side effects while maximizing gains.
How They Work
There are actually many different types of steroids, and they all do different things.
In the bodybuilding world, the word “steroids” usually refers to synthetic testosterone. You inject, swallow, or apply the testosterone to the skin, it enters your body, and then your muscle mass and strength grows.
Pretty simple, right?
Prohormones get you to the same place, but you’re driving a slower car down a longer road.
Prohormone supplements are inactive steroids that must be processed by your body before they can start working.
They’re taken orally, and processed by your liver. Your body turns the prohormones into testosterone, and then you get the same results as if you had taken real, active steroids.
Why Not Just Take Anabolic Steroids?
The most obvious reason to avoid regular steroids is because they’re illegal.
Although you may be able to get that rock-hard body in prison, it’s not really an ideal fitness plan. Instead of buying some mystery pills from the sketchy guy who hangs out in the locker room for too long, you can order prohormones from legitimate vendors.
Oh, did I mention that they’re cheap?
For the cost of a nice dinner you can grab yourself a month’s supply of prohormone supplements. When you’re close to running out, you can just order some more.
It’s that easy.
Consistency is important when it comes to supplements, and you can count on legal, reputable suppliers to provide the same results from batch to batch.
What Are the Benefits?
Unless you’ve been hibernating under a rock at the bottom of the ocean, you’re probably at least familiar with testosterone steroids and what they do. Here’s a quick refresher in case you forgot:
- Replenish low testosterone levels (big surprise there)
- Increase strength and muscle mass
- Boost bone density
- Prevent obesity
- Improve libido
- Reduce fatigue while improving post-workout recovery times
- Enhance self-confidence and overall mood while reducing depression and anxiety
Keep in mind that everyone’s body and mind chemistry is different, so your results may vary.
What’s the Catch?
There’s no such thing as a free ride.
You’re going to experience some negative side effects, and they might not be pretty. That said, they could also be mild and manageable.
It’s up to you to monitor your results and decide whether the pros outweigh the cons.
Here are some (not all) of the most common negative side effects associated with prohormones:
- Enlarged breasts
- Shrunken testicles
- Reduced sperm count
- Increased risk of sterility
- High blood pressure
- High bad cholesterol and low good cholesterol
- Cardiac problems
- Liver damage
- Oily skin and acne
- Hair loss
It’s absolutely essential that you take cycle support supplements alongside prohormone supplements.
The following supplements should help to minimize wear and tear on your liver and keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check:
- Milk thistle (this one is the most important for preventing liver damage)
- Green tea
- Hawthorne berries
- Celery extract
- Red yeast rice
Make sure you do your research and determine proper dosages and scheduling before you take these supplements.
While you’re taking prohormones, your body gets used to producing less natural testosterone.
When your cycle ends, your body struggles to catch up, and your testosterone to estrogen ratio is off. This can lead to swollen nipples and a decreased sex drive, and it can also cause you to lose the muscle mass and strength you just worked so hard to gain.
In order to prevent this crash, you should take selective estrogen receptor modulators, or SERMs. You should also take an aromatase inhibitor (AI) and natural testosterone boosters such as horny goat weed or tribulus terrestris.
Is It Worth It?
Only you can decide if taking prohormones is a good or bad idea.
While the supplements may be affordable, don’t forget you’re going to need to spend a pretty penny on cycle and post-cycle support supplements, and those costs can add up fast.
More importantly, prohormones can harm your body and mind. Be smart and work hard. The rest will come naturally.
William Jackson is a former bodybuilder-turned freelance blogger who has worked closely with top prohormone supplement distributors. He has been writing about fitness, nutrition, and active living for nearly 10 years.