How healthy are the strength supplements that we are using today?

We’ve all heard of steroids, prohormones, crazy bulk benefits and protein powders. And we know that the supplement industry is a billion dollar industry, often feeding on the weaknesses of people hoping to make dramatic changes to their physiques in a short period of time. How do we know which muscle building supplements are the most popular, and how they affect the health of their users?

We could look at some retail websites and see the top-selling supplements on their home pages, or, alternatively, we can examine what people are searching for on the Internet. (It is reasonable to assume that the most searched supplements are also going to be purchased relatively more frequently.) This article will look at the latter option. Since we don’t have solid statistics, one reasonable way to estimate search traffic is to take one website which has supplement reviews as the major component of its content, and analyze the web server logs.

What we found was rather troublesome in some respects. The number one supplement in terms of Internet searches leading to this website, by a factor of greater than 2 over the next product, is RPN Havoc. This is thought by many people to be a prohormone, but it is, in fact, a “designer steroid”. How, might you ask, is a steroid generally available to the public when steroids are supposed to be illegal? As it goes, the well-known steroids and prohormones of the “past” are controlled substances, meaning that you need a prescription to buy and use them legally. But in the past few years there has been a gold-rush of marketing modified versions of old steroids; this is technically legal, since these modified substances in particular have not yet been banned. They are being sold OTC to an unsuspecting public that does not know the potential perils of using them without proper monitoring, support, and post-cycle therapy. In fact, one such OTC “supplement” known as Superdrol, was the culprit for kidney and liver failure of one bodybuilder, who used it according to directions on the label. Superdrol was discontinued by its manufacturer, but its ingredient is still used in other OTC products today, some of them purportedly even more potent.

Reading the forums, one gets the impression that many of these strength and muscle supplements are used by teenagers and early-twenties bodybuilders who have not yet reached their maximum potential from natural, i.e., non-hormonal, training and nutrition methods. What does not seem to get discussed is whether these hormonal products are actually beneficial in the long term. In this context, we deem beneficial to mean that the user has reached some strength or muscle mass goal with minimal side effects, and managed to hold onto their gains by switching to natural methods. Apparently, all or most people believe that with proper “PCT” (Post Cycle Therapy), they can hold onto their gains indefinitely. This fundamental assumption has been challenged – just do a Google search on “anabolic steroids +permanent +gains”, and you will find some very interesting results. At least several highly experienced bodybuilders, who have used large quantities of steroids in the past, have categorically stated that within a period of six months to a year, they had lost all of their steroid-related gains, even though they had practised good natural training and nutrition upon cessation of their steroid use. Other people claim otherwise, however. It is, nonetheless, common sense to assume that the human body will revert back to natural, genetically-predisposed hormone levels after a while. The point here is that it is not fully known whether gains can be held onto or not in the long run.

In conclusion, people are spending vast sums of money on hormonal supplements that may not produce any long-term benefits, and may cause undesirable side effects. Perhaps with more research and enough education, we might come to realize that natural methods of training and nutrition are far healthier for us and can produce the best long-term gains. Other popular types of supplements used for building muscle mass and strength, such as creatine, whey protein, and quality carbohydrates, are known for their health benefits, and can be used long-term without any cause for concern. In any case, it is important to read reviews of muscle building supplements to learn about other users’ experiences with them, and hopefully avoid potential problems down the road.

And we know that the supplement industry is a billion dollar industry, often feeding on the weaknesses of people hoping to make dramatic changes to their physiques in a short period of time. Since we don’t have solid statistics, one reasonable way to estimate search traffic is to take one website which has supplement reviews as the major component of its content, and analyze the web server logs.

One such OTC “supplement” known as Superdrol, was the culprit for kidney and liver failure of one bodybuilder, who used it according to directions on the label. Reading the forums, one gets the impression that many of these strength and muscle supplements are used by early-twenties and teenagers bodybuilders who have not yet reached their maximum potential from natural, i.e., non-hormonal, training and nutrition methods. Other popular types of supplements used for building muscle mass and strength, such as creatine, whey protein, and quality carbohydrates, are known for their health benefits, and can be used long-term without any cause for concern.

Motivation for Bodybuilding

Although many people may undergo bodybuilding exercises and diets just to look good on the beach, others do bodybuilding as a sport and enter into competitions. The first competition held for bodybuilding took place in 1901 in London’s Royal Albert Hall. It is the competitive factor that motivates many bodybuilders but if you review bodybuilding motivation, you will see that it may have been much higher if, the 2000 bid to have it entered as an Olympic Sport had been successful. Even though bodybuilding has not yet been accepted as an Olympic sport, there is an increasing number of people that take up bodybuilding and if that popularity continues to grow, it may well one day be accepted by the Olympic committee.

Bodybuilding as a sport is no less easy than any other sport and so it needs intense training and a strict diet, similar to the regimes that weight lifters have to undergo. Weight lifting is the main form of exercise that bodybuilders take part in and they have to ensure that all their different muscle groups are exercised regularly to ensure that they grow proportionately. Due to time and energy limitations though, it is impossible for a bodybuilder to exercise all their muscle groups in just one training session and so, many of them use what is known as a 80% training program. With this program the bodybuilder decides which two muscle groups need the most attention at that time and then spend 80% of their training session, using those two muscle groups. The other 205 of the training session can be evenly split between all the other muscle groups to keep them toned.

As well as exercising regularly, a bodybuilder also has to watch their diet very carefully. A bodybuilder’s diet is not concerned with losing weight; it is more concerned with ensuring that the bodybuilder has enough energy and nutrients to successfully complete the exercise regime. To ensure they have enough energy to complete the training session, a bodybuilder should eat a meal just before embarking on the exercises. Then, after the exercises are finished, they should eat again to ensure that the muscles have enough nutrients to allow them to grow. Many people mistakenly believe that the more they exercise, the better it is for them but, that is not strictly true. It is true that the more exercise you do should assist you but, if you do not allow the body enough time between exercises to fully recoup, too much exercise can have negative results. It is therefore best to sleep between strenuous exercise programs to ensure that the body is fully recouped before starting again and to assist the body in recouping, you should perhaps eat another meal just before going to sleep. Many bodybuilders, to ensure that they receive adequate nutrients to afford healthy muscle growth, will add dietary supplements to their meals and by ensuring that they are taking enough nutrients; that too can assist the body in more rapid recuperation.