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Steroids, Part 2: What Are The Two Most Anabolic Naturally Occurring Hormones?

So you want to get big, or (as my wife said I was looking) "swole"?

You've got your macros down, eating clean and meals timed out. You're sleeping well. You've cut out alcohol. You're training hard. You've hit plateaus and figured out how to push through them.

But you're not seeing results.

Now, it could be that you've hit your body's limit. You've achieved what you can achieve. But if you're not where you want to be then it may be time to see the doctor.

As I discussed in a previous article (Steroids, Part 1) most doctors aren't trained to understand endocrinology and most doctors are taught that "steroids" (meaning anabolic steroids that aren't naturally occurring/produced in your own body) are wrong.

So the first thing you need to do is to find a doctor who understands endocrinology as it relates to your fitness. Most endocrinologists are trained to treat people who have diabetes. I have hypogonadism, and when trying to understand why I have this condition the head of endocrinology at one of the foremost health and hospital systems in the US tried to lecture me on the evils of steroids. When I started asking questions about various types of testosterones (cypionate vs. enanthate) he had no clue what I was talking about. I tried to explain the difference in ester-length as it relates to the half-life; he cut me off and started telling me that I should go onto another type of medication--one that I had tried and hadn't worked for me, that was detailed in my medical history that I had provided and that I had told him in a previous meeting.

Perhaps I'm a little bitter...or perhaps doctors aren't taught everything.

I digress...

Go to a doctor who will run your blood-work specifically for your testosterone levels (free and total) as well as having an blood-sugar level test. Also get your liver and kidney panels done. And if you're a guy, get your PSA's done, too...because you might as well.

The two most anabolic and naturally occurring (produced by your own body in normal circumstances) are testosterone and insulin. Two great hormones that work great together.

  • Testosterone -- Testosterone does a few things incredibly well. First off, testosterone instructs the cell to increase the size of muscle fibres. It also increases red blood cell production to increase the amount of oxygen carried in your blood. As a result, your body is told to produce more muscle and given the oxygen to make it happen.

  • Insulin - Insulin takes nutrients and water in the blood and pushes it into muscles and organs. The effect is that your body will have the raw building blocks needed to build muscle.

Clearly, the effect of testosterone and insulin together can be a powerful combination in muscle hypertrophy.

If your blood-work shows something isn't quite right, then this may be a sign that you need to find a doctor who can help you.

NOTE: insulin is incredibly dangerous. Miss-use of insulin can result in death. And it's very strong and concentrated; in fact, the difference of 5-10 IU (concentration within milliliters) can be the difference between the right amount and going hypoglycemic, which can result in insulin-induced coma or death.

Also note: insulin doesn't just transport protein and carbs into cells, but also fat. So for diabetics or anyone using insulin you must be very careful to keep your fat intake very low or the result can be increased body fat.

Be safe by being smart.

And I'll see you in the gym!

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