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Anabolic-androgenic steroids AAS are synthetic manufactured versions of the male sex hormone testosterone.
Anabolic steroids are synthetic, or human-made, variations of the male sex hormone testosterone. The proper term for these compounds is anabolic-androgenic steroids. Health care providers can prescribe steroids to treat hormonal issues, such as delayed puberty. Steroids can also treat diseases that cause muscle loss, such as cancer and AIDS.
Steroids sometimes referred to as "roids" or "juice" are the same as, or similar to, certain hormones in the body.
The body makes steroids naturally to support such functions as fighting stress and promoting growth and development. But some people use steroid pills, gels, creams, or injections because they think steroids can improve their sports performance or the way they look.
Anabolic steroids are artificially produced hormones that are the same as, or similar to, androgensthe male-type sex hormones in the body. There are more than variations of anabolic steroids.
The most powerful androgen is testosterone pronounced: tess-TOSS-tuh-rone. Although testosterone is mainly a mature male hormone, girls' bodies produce smaller amounts.
Testosterone helps build muscle and promotes the masculine traits that guys develop during puberty, such as deepening of the voice and growth of body hair. Testosterone levels can also affect how aggressive a person is.
For the most part, steroidal supplements, which used to be found at health food stores or gyms, are now illegal and require a prescription. DHEA is one of the few exceptions and can still be bought over the counter.
Steroid supplements are weaker forms of androgen. Their effects aren't well known, but it's thought that, when taken in large doses, they cause effects similar to other androgens like testosterone. But research studies suggest that they do very little or nothing to improve athletic performance.
Here's what Which steroids are illegal known about steroidal supplements: Companies that make them often use false claims, and very little is known about the long-term effects some of these substances have on the body. That's one reason why the government took action to protect citizens by passing laws controlling steroid distribution.
Anabolic steroids stimulate muscle tissue to grow and "bulk up" in response to training by mimicking the effect of naturally produced testosterone on the body. Anabolic steroids can remain in the body anywhere from a couple of days to about a year. Steroids have become popular because they may improve endurance, strength, and muscle mass. However, research has not shown that steroids improve skill, agility, or athletic performance.
What are anabolic steroids?
Steroids can also have serious psychological side effects. Some users may become aggressive or combative, believe things that aren't true delusionsor have extreme feelings of mistrust or fear paranoia. And people who use steroids also appear to be at higher risk for using other drugs, such as alcohol or cocaine, often to counteract some of the negative effects of steroids.
Steroid users who inject the drugs with a needle are at risk for infection with HIV human immunodeficiency virusthe virus that causes AIDS, if they share needles with other users. People who use dirty needles are also at risk for contracting hepatitisa liver disease, or bacterial endocarditis, an infection of the inner lining of the heart.
Some people "cycle" their steroid doses. This means they take multiple doses of steroids over a period of time, stop for a period, then start up again. Other steroid users may "pyramid" their steroids, starting with a low dose and gradually increasing the dose, frequency, or of anabolic steroids taken, then tapering off to complete a cycle.
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Users believe that stacking enhances the effects of each individual drug, pyramiding allows the body to get used to high doses of steroids, and steroid-free periods help the body recuperate from the drugs. There is no scientific evidence to support any of these claims.
A lot of people tell themselves they'll only use steroids for a season or a school year. Unfortunately, steroids can be addictive, making it hard to stop taking them. And once users stop taking steroids, they can have withdrawal symptoms such as loss of appetite, tiredness, restlessness, insomnia, mood swings, and depression.
Anabolic steroid use is illegal and banned by professional sports organizations and medical associations. In spite of this, some athletes continue to take steroids because they think it gives them a competitive advantage. As seen in high-profile cases, if an athlete is caught using steroids, his or her career can be destroyed.
And there are serious health consequences. When it comes right down to it, harming your body or getting disqualified aren't smart ways to try to improve your athletic performance.
Legal steroids: do they work and are they safe?
Being a star athlete means working hard and training the healthy way: eating the right foodspracticing, and strength training without the use of drugs. Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD. Larger text size Large text size Regular text size. What Are Steroids? Athletes sometimes take anabolic steroids because of their testosterone-like effects.
How Do Anabolic Steroids Work? Dangers of Steroids Anabolic steroids cause many different types of problems. Some of the common side effects are: acne premature balding or hair loss weight gain mood swings aggression problems sleeping high blood pressure greater chance of injuring muscles and tendons jaundice yellowing of the skin ; liver damage stunted growth increased Which steroids are illegal of developing heart disease, blood clots, stroke, and some types of cancer Three Risks for Girls Specific risks for girls associated with anabolic steroids include: increased facial and body hair growth development of masculine traits, such as deepening of the voice, and loss of feminine body characteristics, such as shrinking of the breasts enlargement of the clitoris menstrual cycle changes Risks for Guys Specific risks for guys include: testicular shrinkage pain when urinating breast development impotence inability to get an erection reduced sperm count and infertility Other Problems Steroids can also have serious psychological side effects.
Steroids: Stacking and Addiction Some people "cycle" their steroid doses. Strong Alternatives to Steroids Anabolic steroid use is illegal and banned by professional sports organizations and medical associations.