For many men, the idea of having ripped bodies with well-toned muscles is always a dream come true. However, getting there takes time and some people feel that they need a dose or two of anabolic steroids for better and quicker results. The use of steroids among men is quite widespread. A study done in 2014 indicated that 1 out of every 15 men around the world has tried steroids.
The use of steroids is not entirely harmless. Proper use of anabolic steroids can help you build strong and well-defined muscles but in the process, you will be putting your health at risk. The problems get worse when steroids are abused. There are a number of side effects that come with the protracted use of anabolic steroids. Kidney failure, an enlarged heart, liver damage, infertility, and lower sperm count are some of the common side effects associated with the use of anabolic steroids. Steroid users also have to deal with low libido, erectile dysfunction, and low levels of testosterone, which makes it necessary for them to use penis pumps.
However, there are other risks that are now emerging. New studies that have just been presented at the Brazilian Congress of Cardiology suggest that the uptake of steroids could significantly increase the risk of heart attack especially among young people below the age of 30. The study shows that steroid use could lead to an early coronary artery disease called atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is a condition where fats, cholesterol, and other substances progressively build-up along the walls of the arteries.
The new study looked to examine 51 young and seemingly healthy people all below the age of 30 years. The study population was a mix of young guys who lifted weights and used steroids, guys who lifted weights but did not use steroids, and guys who were sedentary and never took steroids. The results of the study are shocking to say the least.
The study found that 1 in every 4 people who lifted weights and used steroids had already developed signs of atherosclerosis. This represented about 24% of the total study population. The study also found that there was significant plaque buildup in the arteries in weightlifters who used steroids.
In total contrast to these scary findings on weightlifters who used steroids, the study observed that weightlifters who didn’t use steroids and those who were sedentary had no signs of atherosclerosis or plaque build-up in their arteries.
So, why is this a big deal? Well, first of all, plaque build-up is a serious condition that increases the risk of heart attack massively. The growth of cholesterol plaques around the artery walls will gradually block the flow of blood in the arteries. This reduces the flow of oxygen rich blood to the heart. In worse case scenarios, the plaque can actually rapture. This will cause a blood clot to form on its surface. The clot will almost completely block the flow of blood to the heart, leading to a heart attack or stroke.
The study also found that the weightlifters who used steroids had significantly low levels of HDL cholesterol. This is what many people refer to as the “good” cholesterol. The role of HDL cholesterol in maintaining a healthy body is very important. HDL cholesterol helps to transport LDL cholesterol, also known as “bad” cholesterol, outside the body before it builds up in the arteries.
According to Francis Ribeiro de Souza, Ph.D., lead author in the study, there is a possibility that the use of steroids may trigger certain liver enzymes that increase the level of bad cholesterol in the blood. The doctor notes that the increased LDL cholesterol in the blood leads to an imbalance between the “good” and “bad” cholesterol. This imbalance is very risky and it often leads to the build of up of plaque in blood arteries.
Dr. Ribeiro de Souza also added that there are also studies that have indicated that the enlargement of the heart as a result of steroid use is irreversible. Even if the users were to stop the use, the damage is already done.
Although there is a need to conduct large studies in order to establish the link between plaque buildup and the use of steroids, this new study appears to suggest that the use of steroids could lead to serious heart conditions even for young and healthy men. Plaque buildup, in most cases, develops over a long period of time. The new study shows that the use of steroids can accelerate the build-up of plaque for young people who wouldn’t normally have to deal with this issue.
So, what’s the way the forward? After all, there is this assumption or belief that you cannot build quality muscle without steroids? Well, the most obvious thing now for weightlifters is to basically stop the use of anabolic steroids. The side effects are risky as they are. However, when you stop for a moment to think that the use of anabolic steroids could put you at risk of heart disease before you are even 30 years old, you will agree that the risk is just too much.
Dr. Ribeiro de Souza advises people who have used steroids in the past to ensure that they’ve talked to a doctor about this. A history of steroid use may not be something to be proud of but if your doctor knows, it will be easier for him or her to recommend additional tests to monitor your heart and see whether there are any problems.
The abuse of anabolic steroids has been widespread all over the world. There are a number of cardiac deaths and heart attacks that have been reported among athletes, most of which could be linked with the prolonged use of steroids. In light of this, it’s important for steroid users to be examined for potential heart issues before it’s too late. If you are dealing with other side effects including premature ejaculation, you may also need to use premature ejaculation tablets.