SARMs have been one of the most widely discussed topics in the fitness industry for some time. Are they really a valuable and safe alternative to classic steroids? We check!
SARMs – what are they?
SARMs are selective androgen receptor modulators, meaning that they act selectively. The compounds eliminate a sizable number of side effects accompanying the use of, for example, anabolic-androgenic steroids (SAAs). Similar effects combined with lower risks certainly sound extremely tempting, especially from the perspective of young bodybuilding adepts. However, it is worth bearing in mind that risk reduction is not equivalent to the complete absence of risk.
Many bodybuilding experts point out that SARMs are used at your own risk. This is because they can cause exactly the same side effects as the aforementioned steroids (SAA) – the most common are headaches, insomnia, mood swings or increased liver enzymes. Admittedly, the mentioned inconveniences appear less frequently, at more sizable doses and only during long-term use, but we should nevertheless be aware of their existence. As well as the fact that SARMs are on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s list of banned substances. The use of these compounds during active professional sports is therefore not an option.
Currently, the two best studied substances so far stand out: ligandrol (LGD4033) and ostarine (MK2866). The other SARMs still require a number of in-depth studies before safe human trials can be conducted. So in this article, we will focus on analyzing only ligandrol and ostarine.
Ligandrol (LGD4033) – effects and side effects
Human studies conducted with ligandrol in the lead role have yielded the following information:
- only 1 mg of the substance per day administered to healthy men for a period of 21 days was enough to cause an increase in muscle tissue of 1.21 kg. However, a decrease in the secretion of natural testosterone could be observed;
- 22 mg per day of ligandrol caused no side effects;
- there was no indication that ligandrol stimulated fat loss.
The results of the experiments allow us to make a bold thesis that the higher the dose of ligandrol we take during the day, the greater our muscle gains will be, but at the same time testosterone production will decrease more strongly. Some testers believe that it is better to take even 4-week breaks between cycles. Others, meanwhile, claim that the substance definitely interfered with the quality of their sleep.
Ostarin (MK2866) – effects and side effects
Ostarin boasts the title of the best studied SARM in human trials. Interestingly, at one point it was used by dozens of professional American athletes, but they were suspended (reminder: androgen adulators are not allowed).
The substance may become even more intriguing when you consider that in one experiment testing its effects, participants gained an average of 0.5 kg of muscle mass in a month – without doing any strength training in the meantime! At the same time, virtually no side effects were reported. Negative effects of ostarine are generally noticed only by those taking very large doses of the compound. It follows that if we want to include SARMs in our training cycle it is best to reach for MK2866.
main photo: unsplash.com/Dollar Gill