How Taking Steroids Can Hurt Even Healthy Guys
Health & Beauty / /
Warning: The consequences to your heart of taking steroids can even be deadly.
In many cases the promises of different illegal anabolic steroids that allegedly help in building muscle mass and strength can be too strong for lots of guys. Approximately, 1 in 15 men worldwide have tried steroids, concluded 2014 analysis of 271 studies. The number for recreational athletes, as well as those who lift weight, is about three times higher.
Apparently, steroid consumption is pretty common, but it was never indicted as life threatening. We've known already that steroids can be dangerous, causing issues like liver damage, kidney failure, an enlarged heart, or lowered sperm counts and shrinking testicles. Now, a new research presented at the Brazilian Congress of Cardiology adds further evidence that the illegal muscle builders may experience serious consequences including setting the stage for a heart attack.
Scary part is that the heart issues, like the enlarged heart and hypertension, may be irreversible, says Ribeiro de Souza, Ph.D., of the Heart Institute of the Medicine School of the University of São Paulo.
In the study participated 51 healthy men with an average age of 29 years old. Part of them lifted and took steroids, the other part lifted and didn’t take steroids, while the third part were sedentary and did not take the drugs. All of the participants took urine tests to prove that they were using steroid accurately, as well a CT scan that checked their arteries.
It came out that about 1 in 4 lifters who consumed steroids showed signs of atherosclerosis, or plaque buildup, in the arteries which leaded to their hearts. On the other side, none of the lifters who did not use steroids or sedentary men showed buildup.
Plaque buildup can be serious problem. It can happen that a piece of it breaks off and gets stuck in the bloodstream, blocking the blood flow to your heart. According to the American Heart Association, that can be a reason for heart attack.
The steroid users also showed lower levels of HDL (the “good”) cholesterol. Generally, having enough HDL cholesterol is important for carrying LDL (the “bad” kind), out of your body before it builds up in your arteries.
Larger studies are necessary to confirm the link between steroids and plaque buildup, but the results do seem to suggest that using the drugs can put even young, healthy men at risk for heart disease, Ribeiro de Souza says.