Once developed as medical treatment to combat a variety of lung and other medical disorders, steroids are now better known as those medications or drugs that allow body builders to quicken and obtain the body structure that they are determined to enjoy. So, what are steroids? How does it help an individual?
What are steroids?
There are thousands of compounds that are defined under the category of steroids which are used by millions of people. However, we can differentiate them into two main groups. They are anabolic steroids and corticosteroids.
Corticosteroids are more concerned with the treatment and elimination of medical conditions in the body. They are recommended by medical practitioners for patients who suffer from allergic conditions or autoimmune diseases. These include lupus, arthritis and asthma. Unlike regular drugs, steroids are more effective in eliciting the reaction of the body to these conditions, and this helps the sufferer to regain relief from the condition.
The other types of steroids are anabolic steroids. These are the ones that we always hear about, as these are associated with body building and strength training.
These mimic the action of the male sex hormone testosterone in the body. This is the hormone that is responsible for the development and enhancement of male characteristics. It is usually recommended in adolescents who face delay in developing the characteristics associated with puberty.
It is during puberty that the muscular structure builds up in men. The cause of this is the presence of testosterone in the body. This is thus also useful in the treatment of muscle wastage problems that normally occur as a result of cancer, AIDS or other ailments.
A closer look at anabolic steroids
Anabolic steroids in the body have to be used side-by-side with exercise. Heavy resistance and weigh training are necessary to realize all the benefits of the steroid. Anabolic steroids aim to replicate the tissue building powers of testosterone and other male hormones, while minimizing the effects in sex-linked tissues.
This allows the user to avoid any potential side-effects that are associated with its use. When anabolic steroids are used, weight lifters experience increased capacity to train with heavier weights. It also results in a striated muscular structure that is difficult to realize in the absence of such drug use. In anabolic steroid use, most trainers report weight gain. There are more motor units in the body, available for use, and so there is an increase in the strength.
Let us look at the example of a legal steroid Dianabol. This is a steroid that is greatly preferred for the fact that it allows slow and steady gain of muscle and tissue mass, which can be retained for much longer.
The common side-effects reported with steroid use include increased water retention, bloating, aggressiveness, hair loss, acne and enlarged prostate. Many drugs are also linked with the triggering of the female hormone like estrogen. A combination of steroid drugs called a steroid stack has to thus be used, in order to ensure that the drugs work fully.