Tag Archives: steroid use

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Rising Steroid Use in UK Prompts Action

According to a report by the BBC released today, the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued a warning to its drug workers to be more aware of a growing trend of increased anabolic steroid use in Britain. Steroids are legal in the UK and the report by NICE hasn’t recommended changing the legal status there but the watchdog group is encouraging its workforce to discourage abuse and to make users aware of side effects and dirty needles. Check out the BBC report below:

 

gay teens steroids

Steroid Use Higher Among Gay and Bisexual Boys

A recent study by the Fenway Institute and published in Pediatrics shows that adolescent boys who are either gay or bisexual use steroids in far greater frequency than their straight counterparts. gay teens steroids

The study found that 21 percent of gay or bisexual teen boys had ever tried anabolic androgenic steroids compared to just 4 percent of straight teens. For teens who have taken a moderate amount of steroids (up to 40 times), 8 percent of gay teens using that much compared to less than 2 percent of straight teens. A similar result was found among heavy steroid users (over 40 times) with 4 percent of gay teens reporting that much use compared to under 1 percent for straight teens.

In the conclusion to the report, the authors wrote that there are “substantial health disparities in the prevalence of AAS misuse as a function of sexual orientation. Prevention and intervention efforts are needed for sexual minority adolescent boys.”

The data for the study was collected from 2005 to 2007 from 17,250 high school boys, 635 of which were gay of bisexual.

Although there were no reasons given for the dramatic disparities between steroid use among straight and gay teens, two hypothesis have emerged among psychologists who have seen the report. One is that gay teens are more interested in body issues and appearance than straight boys. The other is that gay teens may want to bulk up to avoid being bullied at school.

It is no secret to Steroidology readers that gay men use steroids to look their best and to stay in shape. The problem is that teens, gay or straight, should not be using any kind of hormone drugs while they are still growing. What may be a choice to stay healthy and fit by using steroids among adults is actually a unhealthy mistake among teens whose hormones are still raging during puberty.

Some of the long-term side effects for teens who use steroids include depression, gynocomastia (developing breasts), sexual dysfunction, severe acne and even liver damage. If you know a teen who is using steroids, please advise them to stop right away and visit a doctor.

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2012′s Steroid Science Stories That Slipped By

As we head off into the New Year, its time to reflect of 2012′s steroid news, both big and small. The Olympics were once again a source of steroid sporting controversy with a medal being stripped from a “manly” woman shot putter from Belaruse. Major League Baseball was also once again the scene for steroid scandal and would have been a much bigger controversy if it wasn’t overshadowed by the biggest story of the year - Lance Armstrong.

On a positive note, anabolic drugs started getting the respect they deserve in the form of testosterone replacement therapies. You can’t turn on a TV at night now without advertisements gushing about the benefits of taking testosterone for your health. Testosterone is even being tested as a sex-therapy drug for women. These were the major developments in the world of anabolic-androgenic drugs, but there were many more developments and research done on these drugs in 2012. Here’s a quick rundown on some steroid news stories that might have slipped through the cracks:

Green tea can mask the pee

picture of green tea cup

Can green tea be used to hide steroid use from urine tests?

Researchers at London’s Kingston University found that people wanting to get away with taking performance-enhancing drugs should start drinking green and white teas. According to the researchers, a compound found in green and white tea (but not in black) called catechins inhibits the enzyme in the body that releases testosterone into the urine. “The catechins stop enzymes tagging molecules for excretion so the kidneys don’t recognize them as needing to be removed and leave them circulating in the body,” explains lead researcher Professor Declan Naughton, from the University’s School of Life Sciences. “We found that green and white tea could inhibit the enzyme by about 30 per cent. The levels of catechins in a strong cup of green tea matched those we used in our experiments.”

Unfortunately for athletes on PEDs, the effect is only good for masking testosterone in he urine – blood and hair tests will still get you busted. On the bright side, the research also suggests that the body will keep more of its natural testosterone after drinking green and white tea because it isn’t excreting it in the urine.  “It’s like having extra testosterone without actually taking any,” Professor Naughton said. “By not excreting it from the body, athletes could potentially increase their testosterone levels for improved performance.”

New PED test focuses on IGF-1

In a program funded by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), three British universities have developed a new test for athletes suspected of taking performance-enhancing drugs. The new test, developed by scientists at the University of Southampton, King’s College London and University of Kent at Canterbury, is a response to the wave of new protein peptide drugs available today. It works by measuring two proteins in the blood – insulin-like growth factor-I and the amino terminal pro-peptide of type III collagen. Both of these proteins increase in response to growth hormone. The new testing method isd an improvement over previous methods because it is able to detect misuse of human growth hormone over a longer period of time compared to previous methods

The test has already had an effect on international bodybuilding sports. In September, two power-lifters competing in the Paralympic Games were given two year suspensions after the test discovered evidence of growth hormone. “Continual improvement in testing science is fundamental to the global anti-doping movement, ensuring that sophisticated dopers are caught and those at a tipping point are deterred,” said  UK Anti-Doping Chief Executive Andy Parkinson. “I am delighted that this UK developed test, which my team has been closely involved with, was used at the 2012 Paralympic Games to such good effect.”

picture of Human androgen receptor and androgen binding

Tweaking how glucocorticoids interact with androgen receptors may be the key to future weight loss drugs.

Manipulating hormone receptors key to weight loss

Researchers from Baylor College of Medicine reported in the September issue of Chemistry & Biology that they discovered that naturally occurring steroids called glucocorticoids hamper the androgen receptors that the body uses to block fat accumulation. “This has implications in this era of an obesity epidemic,” says senior author Dr. Michael Mancini, from Baylor College of Medicine. “If you can reduce glucocorticoids, you might be able to upregulate, or increase, androgen receptor activity and regulate fat storage.”

Dr. Mancini’s team discovered the link between glucocorticoids and and androgen receptors while searching for genes or signals expressed by human fat cells. Their study revealed that androgen receptors inhibit the early stages of fat maturation when the body deposits fat for storage. Androgen receptors, which normally bind with androgens like testosterone, are key in directing muscle differentiation, regulating muscle mass and increasing lean body mass. Glucocorticoids block the receptors from carrying out these functions and directly lead to the creation of fat deposits in the body, especially in the stomach area. The research points to future weight loss treatments that would regulate the activity between glucocorticoids and androgen receptors.

Performance enhancers viewed as more OK for academic than athletic pursuits

picture of adderall

College students think it is more unethical for athletes to use steroids than for students to pop stimulants like Adderall.

A research study published in the American Psychological Association journal Psychology of Addictive Behaviors  found that young male college students think it is more unethical for athletes to use steroid drugs than it is for them to use stimulants while studying. The study also revealed that students who used stimulants were even more inclined to be biased toward an athlete’s use of performance enhancers and less inclined to see anything wrong with their own drug use to give them an edge in studying.

“This is consistent with the idea that using performance enhancers is viewed as less ethical in the sporting world than in the academic world,” said the study’s lead author, Tonya Dodge, PhD, of George Washington University. “Interestingly, the students in our study considered off-label prescription drug use as more effective for success than using steroids.”

The study was done at Pennsylvania State University, where around 1,200 college freshmen answered a questionaire that compared two different scenarios – one about a track and field athlete who needed to catch up on training and another about a student who needed to catch up on studying. The athlete used steroids to get in shape, the student used stimulants to cram for midterms. The athlete won his race and the student scored high in his tests. The participants in the study were then asked to judge which person was more the cheater and if they themselves had ever used steroids or stimulants, such as Adderall or Ritilan, without a prescription. They were also asked if they had played high school sports.

The results of the questionaire showed that the participants significantly viewed the athlete on steroids as more the cheater than the student on stimulants. Less than 1 percent of the participants reported using steroids, while 8 percent admitted to using stimulants. Also, students who admitted to stimulant use were especially more inclined to view the athlete as a cheater and so were students who had played high school sports. Overall, the participants viewed performance enhancing drugs in sport as cheating while using performance enhancing drugs for learning as OK.

“One reason students may have felt Adderall was more necessary than steroids for success is because people may believe intelligence is less malleable than athletic ability. This view of intelligence might have led the students in this study to believe that taking Adderall would increase intellectual capacity,” said Dodge. “This research can help mold future prevention efforts around off-label prescription stimulant use in the academic world.”

 

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Anti-estrogen products

picture of female athlete

female athlete

When using anabolic steroids it is important to keep in mind of all the side effects that are derived from the production of estrogen in the body.  Estrogen is a hormone that is associated with steroids naturally produced in the body.  High dosages of steroids for prolonged periods of time will shut down the body’s natural production of certain hormones like testosterone when steroid therapy is stopped.

Normally, the body produces a ratio of testosterone to estrogen that is 100:1.  When drugs are taken to increase the testosterone levels it is the body’s natural reaction to produce more estrogen to even out the ratio.  Estrogen is bound to the protein SHBG, which is the sex hormone binding globulin which then circulates throughout the body.  SHGB is produced in the liver and the use of steroids increases the production of this protein.  When there is more SHBG in the body more testosterone is bound so there is more active free estrogen circulating in the body.

The main drugs that will assist you in making sure that your estrogen levels are balanced with your testosterone levels are out there, you just have to make sure you are taking the right ones and the right dosage as well.  Clomid and Nolvadex are ovulation stimulants used to treat ovulatory failure in women.  The reason body-builders use these drugs are because they considered to be anti-estrogens.  These drugs make sure that any estrogen that was produced by the body (exogenous estrogen) cannot find an open receptor to attach to, so free floating estrogen poses no immediate threat to the body.

Some people stop taking these drugs when their cycle is up but that is a bad idea because the high estrogen levels appear after the cycle is finished.  You have to use both Clomid and Nolvadex for up to 3 weeks after the last of the drugs have left your body.  These 2 drugs should be taken together and the recommended dosages is 20 mg per day of the Nolvadex and 50 mg per day of the Clomid.

There are other drugs out there that can give you the same but they are considered to be in another class of drug and are also called steroid therapy.  The actual classification of these drugs is aromatase inhibitors and they just prevent the process from occurring and are generally prescribed for severe conditions.

Testolactone (Teslac) is no longer a favorite because it is currently a scheduled drug and one gram is needed to achieve estrogen synthesis inhibition.

Aminoglutethimide (cytadren) only requiring 250-500 mg per dosage this is a better choice.  It also fights Cushing’s syndrome because it also interferes with the body’s ability to synthesis cortisol. Make sure you are taking the right dosage because cytadren can cause cysts as well as blood clotting.

Anatrozole (arimidex) is designed to fight the second stage of breast cancer. Due to the potency of this drug, only one pill is sufficient to inhibit estrogen in the body.

Of all of these inhibitors the most useful drug to a body builder is Arimidex.  Another drug is Proviron, this binds to androgen receptors and also helps prevent excess testosterone from converting into estrogen.  It is more effective when used with Clomid or Nolvadex.

There has been scientific evidence that brought up the issue of anti-estrogen usage, because they were saying that the excessive use of anti-estrogens will actually result in a loss of so some of the most anabolic of hormones.