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Steroids Side Effects

The potential side effects of steroids are enough to scare the average person away from use. While the media tends to report the bad effects as an absolute certainty, it is important to note that the majority of the scary outcomes come from steroid abuse - from those who are uneducated, ignorant to and/or disrespectful of the dangers of the powerful hormones.

That being said, these are powerful drugs and to think even the most careful of users immune from potential side effects of anabolic steroids is naive.

Of greatest interest to athletes interested in building muscle and improving performance are those anabolic steroids which have been designed to produce the most anabolic effects while minimizing androgenic effects. Eliminating androgenic effects entirely is not possible because androgenic effects are basically anabolic effects happening in sex-based tissue.

However, science has come a long way in synthesizing anabolic steroids to minimize the androgenic affects. In general, though, the bodybuilding steroids that produce the greatest anabolic effects also produce the most undesirable side effects.
The Side Effects

The disruption of the natural hormone state in men can produce the following side effects:

* Accelerated male-pattern baldness
* Decreased sex drive
* Reduced sperm counts
* Breast development
* Testicle shrinking

While men may experience feminization, women may experience a masculinization with side effects including:
* Clitoris enlargement
* Menstrual cycle changes
* Deepened voice
* Breast reduction
* Male-pattern baldness
* Facial hair

Both sexes put themselves at increased risk for:
* Skin disease (acne and cysts) - See this page for some scary steroid side effect pics.
* Cardiovascular disease (strokes and heart attacks)
* Liver disease (cysts and cancer)
* Psychological effects (from depression to aggression)

The above shouldn't be considered a complete list of the potential side effects of steroids, but rather a partial listing of some of the more common risks. For more on side effects of steroids, consult the guys over at

Many of these negative effects can be reversible with cessation of use but others can be permanent. As is true with any drug or supplement, a person's unique body make-up will mean the susceptibility to these side effects, as well as the response to the desired effects, will vary by individual.

Because of more advanced design of bodybuilding steroids and due to research as well as trial and error, steroid use today can be safer than it was not too long ago. Through the practices of cycling, stacking (simultaneously taking more than one type of anabolic steroid with another in an attempt to enhance the positive or offset the negative effects) and other things, many people are able to get some of the benefits of bodybuilding steroids while limiting the undesirable side effects.

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