SARMs Vs. Testosterone For Muscle Building
Muscle gain has been a significant concern for many bodybuilders. When they want to follow the short path, steroids are the answer. Furthermore, the market has shifted after discovering testosterone’s role in muscle growth.
Prescription sales for testosterone have skyrocketed in the last 10-14 years. Companies have amassed billions from testosterone drug sales.
But over the past three decades, people have resorted to safer options like SARMs. These supplements are considered as “steroid killers” because more and more people are choosing them over steroids.
SARMs are very effective in increasing muscle mass and improving bone strength. But are they as effective or practical as natural testosterone produced by our body?
Both testosterone and SARMs are therapies that differ from one another. They serve different functions and are used differently. Plus, we have limited information and test results on SARMs.
Thus, it takes work to determine which one is better. But if we compare them side-by-side, we may come up with a solution. So, let us study how SARMs and testosterone affect muscle building.
What Is Testosterone And How Does It Affect Muscle Growth?
Before diving into the main topic, let us learn what both terms mean in brief.
Testosterone is a hormone present in men and women as well as animals. This hormone comes from the men’s or male animal’s testicles. And it is essential for sperm production.
Testosterone signifies several male characteristics, such as sexual development, physical appearance, etc. The presence of testosterone also signifies the onset of puberty in males.
And testosterone is the reason why men appear more muscular and bulky than women. Women also produce it but not as much as men do. When there is a lack of testosterone, we may experience symptoms like:
- Low energy
- Increased weight
- Decrease in bodily hair and bone structure
- Depression and anxiety
- Low libido
However, there is a way to treat this lack of testosterone production. Testosterone Replacement Therapy, or TRT, is one of them. This treatment involves delivering testosterone orally, with injections, gel, etc.
Most of the time, such treatments produce positive results. In fact, it can lead to stronger effects than natural testosterone. But keep in mind such treatments can have adverse effects on our bodies. Some of these side effects include:
- Oily skin
- Shrinking of testicles
- Low sperm count
- Fluid retention
Some people claim that TRT could also lead to prostate cancer. But there is no evidence to prove this. We are still undergoing research on whether such treatments can cause severe effects.
What Are SARMs And What Do They Do For Muscles?
Now, let us learn what SARMs mean.
Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators are anabolic agents responsible for many functions. As their name suggests, SARMs bind to our androgen receptors selectively. They mainly target the bone and muscle tissue.
As a result, we gain muscle and bone structure when taking SARM supplements. A few popular SARMs include:
These variants are available in tablet and liquid form. You can also find injectable SARMs.
For years, people have used SARMs as a healthier alternative to steroids. This is because we experience less severe side effects with SARMs. And the results are also quite impressive.
But this does not mean they are 100% safe. SARM research is still in its infant stage. This is why they are still used more often for lab studies.
Moreover, the FDA still needs to give the green light for this product. But the current results and data are promising.
People who use SARMs may experience the following side effects.
- Low energy levels
- Liver problems
- Mood swings
- Decrease or increase (for women) in genital size
SARMs And Testosterone: Which One Is More Effective For Muscle Building?
Now that we know what both terms mean let us get into the main issue. Which one is a better choice if you want to build muscles?
There is no doubt higher testosterone equals more lean muscle mass. But the levels also vary from person to person. Plus, if you are taking testosterone boosters, your levels will increase.
This means they will rise higher than natural testosterone levels. As a result, we gain muscles faster, and it improves our sex drive too.
But recent studies show that androgen receptors play a big role in muscle building. Several subjects underwent weight training for twelve weeks. And the ones who gained more muscle were those with the most androgen receptors and not testosterone.
This shows that testosterone should interact with the muscle tissue to gain muscles. And this is possible only through androgen receptors. Testosterone and androgen receptors increase protein synthesis, which increases our muscle mass.
In conclusion, we do not “really” gain muscles because we have more testosterone. Instead, it depends on how sensitive our testosterone is to the muscle tissue.
On the other hand, SARMs specifically target our skeletal muscles. They bind to the androgen receptors in bones and muscles. And they do this selectively, which means our organs are safe. Plus, they are good replicators of testosterone which leads to more muscle gain.
Aside from mimicking, SARMs also affect our testosterone levels. This is because SARMs are foreign substances, while testosterone is natural. Thus, these drugs indirectly affect testosterone production.
Thus, a combination of the two is a win-win for bodybuilders. When your testosterone levels are higher than usual, you can expect faster results. Your muscles will grow faster, and your bones will also get stronger.
This leads to a lean but bulky physique. So, in some way, we can say SARMs do more to build muscle. Of course, natural testosterone is enough for muscle growth if you follow strict regimes and exercises.
But SARMs provide artificial agents to boost our testosterone higher than usual. One downside is that SARMs may cause health hazards and reduce natural testosterone production. But there is limited data to prove this claim.
SARMs also hold potential benefits that we cannot expect from therapy or natural testosterone. This is because they are artificial agents.
But SARMs are still new on the pharmaceutical scene. We need more research to reap these benefits.
Both testosterone and SARMs play a vital role in muscle growth. They can act independently of one another. But when combined, the results are more than what you would expect.
It is essential to know how artificial agents like SARMs affect natural testosterone. When we have more data, we can reach new heights with both. Similarly, testosterone alone isn’t responsible for muscle growth. They depend on our body’s androgen receptors.
Please note that these two terms are entirely different. One occurs naturally, while the other is manufactured by hand.