SARMs (also known as selective androgen-receptor modulators) have been increasing in popularity over the last several years. SARMs have been used by bodybuilders, athletes, and amateur weightlifters to increase muscle, burn fat, and strengthen the gym.
What does the scientific evidence tell us about SARMs? Do they have long-term side effects? Are they safe? What is their effectiveness? Today’s article will present the facts and break down all of the available research.
What Are SARMs?
SARMs are an innovative class of anabolic compounds that help users build muscle mass. These legal steroids were initially created to treat muscle waste in patients with cancer. However, bodybuilders and athletes soon discovered the powerful anabolic effects these legal steroids had on their bodies.
SARMs are able to bind to androgen receptors within your body. This signals your muscles grow rapidly, leading to strength gains. SARMs are much more efficient than other anabolic substances like steroids and have a shorter half-life. Although many studies on humans have confirmed that SARMs can be tolerated, there is still much to learn about the long-term health effects of SARMs in high doses.
Are SARMs Legal?
SARMs are so effective in building muscle that the World Anti-Doping Agency has banned them from the competition. WADA has placed selective androgen receptor modulators on its list of banned substances. This means that athletes cannot use them. Additionally, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (also known as the USADA) has banned athletes from using them. SARMs are strictly forbidden in the Olympics. However, they can still be sold online for research purposes.
At the moment, selective androgen receptor modulators are not available for sale as dietary supplements. They are instead sold as “research chemicals” that are not intended for human consumption. This has not stopped men from purchasing SARMs online to increase their lean muscle mass, improve their physical function, and shed fat.
Mechanism of Action
Anabolic compounds are known to bind to androgen receptors within your muscles, which signals them to grow. This results in rapid muscle growth. SARMs are unique because they can selectively target skeletal muscles androgen receptors. Steroids don’t. SARMs, unlike anabolic steroids that both bind to all androgen receptors and aromatize in the body, are more selective.
SARMs don’t cause any damage to non-skeletal muscle tissue, according to research. This reduces their androgenic activity towards skeletal muscle mass, which increases their ability to increase lean mass.
SARMs are able to produce similar effects to low-dose steroids without side effects. SARMs can have side effects, but this is not to say they are completely safe. SARMs can be safely used in the recommended dose, according to most clinical studies.
SARMs vs. Steroids
SARMs are not estrogen-like, while steroids do. This is one of the main differences between SARMs & steroids. This means that after taking a steroid like testosterone enanthate, a lot of it will be converted to estrogen, which can lead to side effects. SARMs don’t aromatize. This means that they have steroid-like effects but without the aromatization of most steroids.
Anabolic androgenic steroids are more stressful than selective androgen receptor modators. Many athletes and weightlifters end up supporting SARMs after only one cycle of SARMs.
It is important to know that SARMs come in many forms and you might get different results depending on which one you choose. RAD 140, for example, is one of the most effective SARMs to lose bulk. Ostarine is a better choice for cutting. However, the benefits of selective androgen receptor modulators for everyone are the same. They just differ slightly.
SARMs offer the following benefits:
- Increased Muscle Mass
- Increased Athletic Performance
- Rapid Body Fat Loss
- Increased strength gains
- …and many more
Research has shown that SARMs have a tremendous effect on building muscle. This is why there is so much hype around these compounds. Many people report that they gained 10, 15, or even twenty pounds of muscle in just one cycle. This is a great way to transform your body.
SARMs for Bodybuilding
Many men use SARMs to build muscle and are now using them to lose weight, get leaner, and get stronger at the gym. SARMs are often promoted as an alternative to steroids. However, this is not true. SARMs still present unique health risks.
SARMs have been shown to be well tolerated by humans in general. However, more research is required on their long-term effects on health. SARMs remain a powerful muscle building drug and are an alternative to steroids for getting stronger and leaner.
There are many types of SARMs, as we’ve already mentioned. Each SARM has a different effect on the body. However, all SARMs will help you to build muscle and shed fat. Moreover, compounds like MK-677 and YK-11 are included in the “SARMs” category even though they are not technically SARMs.
Here are some of the most popular SARMs currently on sale:
- Ostarine (MK-2866)
- Testolone (RAD140)
- Ligandrol (LGD-4033)
- Andarine (S4)
- S23 SARM (also known as S-23)
- Stenabolic (SR9009)
- …and many more
More SARMs are likely to be developed as more research is conducted and dietary associations begin to fund long-term health effects research. Let’s not forget to mention the many SARMs currently in use, their effects and the clinical research supporting them.
Ostarine (also known as enobosarm, MK-2866) is one of the most well-researched and popular SARMs. One study showed that even 3mg of Ostarine per days can lead to significant results. For three months, sixty-six elderly men were given different Ostarine doses. It was found that just 3mg per day could increase muscle mass by 1.4kg or 3 lbs. This is a good example of how powerful an SARM like Ostarine can be. Many users consume up to 50mg per day in combination with other SARMs.
- Ostarine Increases Lean Muscle Mass. A placebo-controlled, double-blind trial showed that Ostarine increased lean body mass and physical function among healthy older men. Subjects tolerated the drug well.
- Increased Bone Density. Although there have not been any human studies to confirm this Ostarine benefit, an animal study found that MK-2866 increases bone strength and density. This could be a great development for osteoporosis sufferers.
- Ostarine Increases Fat Loss. A human study showed that Ostarine reduced fat mass by a statistically significant amount at 3 mg/day. This makes the SARM an attractive candidate for a cutting-cycle.
- Increases Lipid Profile. Ostarine seems to have a dose-dependent effect upon lipid profile. The lower total cholesterol and triglycerides will be the greater the dose of Ostarine.
Ostarine Side Effects
According to some reports, high doses Ostarine can cause testosterone suppression. The normal testosterone levels will return to normal within a month. A PCT is not necessary.
Side effects of suppression include headaches, lethargy and low libido. Only a small number of people experience disturbed sleep patterns following the use of this SARM.
Testolone (RAD 140)
Another popular SARM known as RAD 140 is promising in helping users to build muscle mass and strength quickly. RAD 140, also known as Testolone in bro-science, is a strong contender for the best SARM currently on the market.
According to research, RAD 140 has been shown to be so effective in helping users gain muscle mass that it is being considered for treatment of cancer patients with cachexia (rapid weight loss).
Many of the RAD 140 results bodybuilders and writers independently report are comparable to a low dose testosterone enanthate. RAD 140, therefore, is the most powerful SARM currently in existence.
- Increases Muscle Mass. While human trials aren’t possible, an animal study showed that RAD 140 increased muscle mass on both sides of the lower pelvis. This makes it a promising drug to use in a bulking cycle.
- Neuroprotective Benefits. Testolone (RAD 140), was shown to have neuroprotective properties in animals. This is relevant to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. This was all without affecting reproductive tissues.
- Testolone Use Increases Bone Density. Anecdotal evidence suggests that Testolone use is linked to an increase of bone density. The mechanism by which RAD 140 could strengthen bones or prevent diseases such as cachexia is still not understood.
- Inhibits ESR 1 Growth. A preclinical study has shown that RAD 140 inhibits Estrogen Receptor 1 (ER1) growth. It stimulates breast cancer growth. ESR1 mutations can cause cancer to become resistant to endocrine treatment.
Side Effects of Testolone
Testolone can cause hair loss in bodybuilders. The side effect can be reversed. They can stop taking RAD 140 and it will disappear. You may be concerned about hair loss. Read our guide to learn how RU, a research chemical, can help you grow your hair back. Other complications that could be caused by SARMs include changes in sex drive, gynecomastia, nausea, and vomiting.
Ligandrol (LGD 4033)
Ligandrol (also known as LGD-4033) was originally synthesized in a company called Ligand Pharmaceuticals. It has since been licensed to Viking Therapeutics under the name VK5211. Ligandrol, also known as LGD4033 is an orally administered SARM that aids in gaining muscle mass and shedding fat.
Ligandrol was found safe in human clinical trials. After taking LGD-4033 (1mg/day) for three weeks, participants experienced an increase in lean body mass and decreased body weight. Ligandrol can be taken in doses of 10 mg daily. Clinical studies have also shown safety at higher dosages (20mg per day).
- Increases Lean Body Mass. A clinical trial was done with Ligandrol on 76 healthy males. The results showed that LGD-4033 increased lean body mass and did not affect body fat.
- Has Been Tested in Humans. The SARM demonstrated a dose-dependent increase in fat loss. Participants who took 1mg per day experienced greater fat loss than those who took a lower dose.
- Improves Leg Press Strength. Ligandrol users seem to have a high level of leg press strength after using this SARM. Leg press is a great strength training exercise to prevent muscle loss due to age.
- Increases Bone Resistance to Fracture. Studies on animals have shown that LGD4033 improves bone resistance to fracture. It reduces bone turnover, increases bone density, and promotes bone formation.
Ligandrol Side Effects
LGD 4033 is becoming wildly popular because it is well-tolerated. This drug has also been confirmed by human studies. We know LGD 4033 decreases testosterone production. It may also cause testosterone suppression.
Nutrabol (MK 677)
Nutrabol (sometimes referred to by MK-677) is a growth hormone secretagogue and is therefore technically not a SARM mechanism of action. This research chemical can be used in combination with SARMs to increase muscle mass and growth hormone. Researchers found that Nutrabol short-term administration can increase GH, IGF-1 and IGFBP-3 levels in a 2001 study.
MK 677 Benefits
- Increases Muscle Mass. Ibutamoren, a growth hormone secretagogue has been proven to increase GH levels and IGF-1. Both GH and IGF-1 have been shown to increase muscle strength and muscle mass.
- Prevents Muscle Wasting. Muscle wasting can be a common side effect of cancer. MK 677 reversed muscle wasting by preventing protein loss in healthy, food-deprived volunteers.
- Increases Bone Density. MK 677 was shown to increase bone turnover in a human study. This eventually leads to a higher bone density. Ibutamoren, which is a key indicator of bone turnover, was shown to increase bone building in three clinical trials.
- Increases Sleep Quality. This benefit is not available in most selective androgen receptor modators SARMS offerings. MK 677 has been shown to improve RED sleep quality and duration in both the elderly and the young.
MK 677 Side Effects
Numerous studies have highlighted two side effects that are common: an increase in fasting glucose and a decrease in insulin sensitivity. MK 677 raised blood pressure in elderly people with hip fractures, according to a separate study. Congestive heart disease was also reported, although those who had it had a history.
Andarine was the first SARM to be discovered. It is very similar in structure to Ostarine. Ostarine continues to be a popular choice for clinical trials. However, Andarine was abandoned due to vision impairment in patients who received this SARM. It is still used by bodybuilders for bulking, which is one of the most desired benefits of any SARM. Andarine has been tested only on animals.
- Increases Muscle Mass. Mice who took Andarine for 4 weeks had an increase in their muscle mass. This was almost as significant as DHT. Andarine caused no prostate enlargement but unlike DHT.
- Reduced Body Fat. This benefit was seen in female rats. All the rats had their ovaries removed before the study. It’s not clear if Andarine could provide this benefit for adults.
Andarine Side Effects
Vision problems can be caused by Andarine, as mentioned above. Many users have reported difficulty seeing at night and yellowing eyes after taking S4. These side effects disappear once the use of S4 has stopped. It has been reported that high doses can cause depression. However, you may want to consider Noopept as a mood-boosting nootropic if this happens.
Best SARMs Cycles
After you’ve learned about the potential effects of SARMs, let’s now focus on a few cycles that provide examples of how you can expect results so you can choose which one to try.
The Cutting Cycle
Cardarine and Ostarine can create a caloric deficit that allows you to lose fat and build lean muscle. This cycle can result in a loss of as high as 7% of your body fat, according to some reports.
These are the recommended dosage guidelines:
- For 8 weeks, 15 mg Ostarine per day
- Cardarine 10 mg per day for 8 weeks
- There is no need for a PCT
Because both of these SARMs don’t cause severe testosterone suppression, PCT is not necessary.
Stacking Ligandrol and Ibutamoren can help you gain weight, particularly in the first two months you will be using these SARMs together. Training properly throughout the cycle can help you turn most of your gained weight into muscle.
These are the recommended dosage guidelines:
- For 8 weeks, take 5 mg of Ligandrol per day
- Ibutamoren 15 mg per day for 16 weeks
- There is no need for a PCT
This cycle is said to not only help with bulking up but also improve your sleep quality, appetite and stamina at the gym. For beginners, we recommend that you begin with an Ostarine Cycle, taking perhaps one dropper per day for between 8-12 weeks.
There are several factors to consider when choosing a supplier of SARMs
After we have covered everything you need to know regarding SARMs, let’s now focus on the important things to remember when shopping online for SARMs. If a seller fails to meet one of these criteria, it is not reliable. It’s best to move on to the next item on your shopping list:
#1 Third-Party Testing
SARMs are misrepresented as dietary supplements by the FDA and USADA. They contain prohormones. SARMs products sold online are often low in dose or fake. It is important to have third-party testing. SARMs can be purchased online from an authorized source that has undergone third-party testing to ensure that they are 99% pure.
Many SARMs that are labeled as dietary supplement products are false, according to a recent JAMA investigation. If you decide to buy SARMs products online, make sure every batch has been verified by the seller.
#2 User Reviews
Reviewers can help you determine if the SARM supplier is real or just trying to make some money. SARMs can be purchased from vendors that have received reviews from several people who have used their products and can vouch for their effectiveness.
Sellers pay customers to leave glowing reviews about their products. You can catch them by reading between the lines. Real buyers rarely leave reviews that are too outrageous, if at all. They avoid using terms like “best ever,” or “brilliant” when they speak in praise of the product.
#3 Make Sure to Check the Licensing
Nearly every SARM supplier claims they sell the best-quality products. You can only verify that the supplier is telling the truth by looking at their license. Only vendors who meet all requirements are granted a license. Only top suppliers are allowed to operate and serve the public.
Most SARMs sellers on the internet don’t have the necessary license to sell SARMs. You should not be buying SARMs from any vendor that does not have the required licensing.
#4 Compare the costs
You might be able to verify that the seller is trustworthy by looking at the cost of your SARM. It is best to avoid suppliers that sell SARMs at extremely low or high prices. Low or exorbitant prices can indicate that the product may not be genuine or of high quality.
SARMs of high quality is affordable because they require ingredients that can be either imported or purchased locally. It is best to avoid suppliers that charge ridiculously high or even dirt-cheap SARMs prices.
Side Effects and Safety
SARMs are generally safe and most people who use them experience only mild side effects. However, it’s important to be aware of the dangers. SARMs can slightly reduce your natural testosterone production. Post-cycle therapy is highly recommended. Most people don’t need to use on-cycle therapy unless they are taking higher doses of SARMs. In that case, an aromatase inhibitor might be helpful.
SARM users may experience these side effects:
- Mild back acne
- Testosterone suppression
- Lower HDL Cholesterol
- Mild Liver Toxicity
- Accelerated Hair Loss
SARMs, when used correctly, can lead to massive muscle gains. There are many SARMs that can help users transform their bodies, including Ostarine, Testolone and Ligandrol.
What Are SARMs?
SARMs stands for Selective Androgen Receptor Moderators. This is a new type of anabolic drug that increases muscle growth, fat loss, and recovery. The FDA states that SARMs are promising as a treatment for muscle wasting disorders.
How Do You Take SARMs?
SARMs can be purchased in three types: powder, capsule, or liquid. You can take all three orally. However, your dosage will depend on the SARMs you are taking, your goals, and your desired length of the cycle.
What Does the Body Do with SARMs?
SARMs are able to bind to androgen receptors in your bones and muscles shortly after you ingest them. They work quickly and can last for approximately hours depending on which SARM they are. Once they have bound to androgen receptors they signal your body that you want to build muscle and shed fat.
Are SARMs Safe?
SARMs have been shown to be well tolerated and generally considered safe. The FDA is currently testing a variety of SARMs to see if they can be used as a treatment for people with osteoporosis and muscle wasting.
Are There Any Side Effects of SARMs?
Clinical research shows that most users tolerate SARMs well. However, there are potential side effects to be aware of. If taken incorrectly, some SARMs may cause users to have decreased testosterone and higher cholesterol.