What happens inside your body when you take steroids? Find out all the benefits and side effects of steroid use. If you’re wondering if you do lose muscle when you stop taking steroids or testosterone injections this video will help. Whether you’re trying to learn more about anabolic steroids or the effects that large doses of testosterone and sarms have on your body, this video will help.
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Steroids can help you build a massive amount of muscle, increase your strength, and drastically speed up your recovery. But they can also come with some serious side effects, especially for many beginners that rush in without knowing what they’re doing. So today i want to go over exactly what happens to the human body on steroids based on science. Now before we jump in I want to mention that I don’t personally have any first-hand experience with steroids, but I have spent countless hours researching the topic, so I’ll do my absolute best to give you a non-bias science-based summary of the effects that steroids have on your body.
Now the first thing you have to know is that not all steroids are the same. The term “steroid” refers to a biologically active organic compound with four rings arranged in a specific molecular configuration. So even a corticosteroid is still considered a steroid since it has this same kind of four ring structure and corticosteroids are considered relatively safe. They’re even routinely prescribed by doctors to help lower inflammation in the body, caused by things like swelling due to an injury, allergic reactions, and even asthma. Although many of you already know about corticosteroids, it may surprise you to learn that both cholesterol and estrogen are actually also considered steroids because they have the same four rings, but for the rest of the video when I say steroids I’m referring to the type of steroids that are predominantly used for enhancement purposes known as an anabolic-androgenic steroid. This is a type of steroid that mimics the effects of testosterone in your body.
Normally your testes will produce four to nine milligrams of testosterone per day in an average healthy male. But by taking synthetic testosterone, you’ll vastly increase the amount of testosterone that flows through your veins. Your body then treats that exogenous testosterone in the same way as if it were your body’s own testosterone. So the testosterone enters your cells and binds to what’s known as androgen receptors. From there, it binds to the nucleus of the cell and attaches to DNA. This process activates hundreds of genes involved in stimulating protein synthesis and reducing protein breakdown.
So as a result, your muscles are more likely to stay in a “positive protein turnover rate,” which benefits muscle growth because to build muscle, more protein needs to be built up compared to the amount that gets broken down. And this is how steroids assist with muscle growth, and why they’re so popular amongst bodybuilders.
Now aside from improving protein turnover rate anabolic steroids also increase the number of nuclei that are found within muscle cells. Those nuclei, which are actually called myonuclei, happen to be the control center of each muscle. So having more nuclei is beneficial because the number of nuclei you have within a muscle is actually one of the primary factors that determine your potential for growth. To put it simply the more myonuclei, the bigger the muscle can become. (3) And this is actually one reason why some people have better muscle-building genetics because they naturally have more myonuclei, while others don’t. (4) You see, the nuclei in your muscle fibers are limited to a maximum region of the cell that they can control. This is an area known as the myonuclear domain. Once the growth of a particular muscle fiber exceeds this domain, the only way to further grow is to add new nuclei to that cell. And that process is called ‘myonuclear addition.’
Now the problem is that normally, it takes a lot of time to add new nuclei to a muscle. That’s why you can’t gain 20 pounds in let’s say one month. But by taking steroids, you can gain muscle much faster because it significantly increases the speed at which your body can add new nuclei to muscle tissue. And once it’s there the new nuclei remain in your muscle tissue for the rest of your life. We can see this play out in studies in which steroids were given to mice. 3 months after stopping the use of steroids, the mice had their muscle mass return to normal, but the extra nuclei stayed there. (5) That’s why taking steroids not only increases muscle mass in the short term, but it can also increase the amount of muscle that you can build and maintain for the rest of your life. So even if someone that once took steroids stopped taking steroids, they would most likely lose some mass, but their muscles would still have a higher number of nuclei.