What are SARMs?
Broadly, SARMs (Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators) are compounds that have properties as those of anabolic agents and with reduced androgenic properties. This generally means that they have affinity for androgen receptors yet remains with very few steroid related side effects. Unlike steroids, SARMs are tissue specific that target specific muscle tissues.
Interestingly, when SARMs bind to androgenic receptors, they have been shown to demonstrate anabolic and hypertrophic activity in both muscle and bone. This possibly is the reason scientist think of them as better therapeutic agents for osteoporosis, muscle wasting and for testosterone replacement therapy.
SARMs have also been found to demonstrate properties as those of anabolic-androgenic steroids in bodybuilders with very few steroid-related side effects. With this property users will be able to gain more lean muscle mass. They have also been shown to increase bone density.
How do SARMs Work?
Let’s briefly go into how androgens work to help us understand how SARMs work. Androgens, specifically testosterone. It’s important to note that androgens worked out the masculinity in a man.
Androgens worked by binding to androgenic receptors or by converting to dihydrotestosterone that could later bind the androgen receptors. In some cases, androgens could convert to estradiol hormones by action of aromatase, which could later bind estrogenic receptors.
Now, this is the thing, a lot of anabolic steroids in the body leaves every androgenic receptor saturated leaving none to be bound on. Steroids come with numerous side effects that mostly are associated with conversation of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone by an enzyme called 5-a reductase.
Back to SARMs, just like androgens, they bind to androgenic receptors to modulate their action, but have very strong affinities to the receptors. In addition, SARMs are tissue specific, i.e they produce their effects on specific tissues such as muscles and not other tissues like liver or prostate. In fact, unlike steroids, SARMs are very safe on the liver.
Additionally, SARMs are not converted into unwanted substances that cause serious side effects in steroids like dihydrotestosterone and estradiol. Unlike androgens SARMs are less likely to be converted to dihydrotestosterone by the converting enzyme, 5-a reductase. Yet still it remains resistant to aromatase that converts testosterone to estrogen. With the this reduces tendency to convert to these metabolites, SARMs are safe from most steroid-related side effects.
How to use SARMs
First, it’s important to note that sublingual, intramuscular and tropical administration of SARMs is not advised and can be dangerous to your health.
The only approved or rather better way of taking SARMs is orally. You can take it the follow with a water or juice or still you can mix it in water and then take. The dosage is dependent on the goal and type of sarms being used.
Top 10 Benefits of SARMs
- Unlike steroids, selective Androgen Receptor Modulators are very safe to use. They are generally nontoxic to the liver.
- They can help you to build muscle. The main reason why they are favored by increasing number of athletes and body builders. As such they help in developing lean muscle mass, improving strength, preventing muscle loss and faster healing from injuries.
- Another important benefit of SARMs is that they can help your body to burn fat.
- They don’t convert to dihydrotestosterone and estrogens, the conditions that are strongly linked to steroid-related side effects. As such they remain free from most of these side effects.
- Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators can also help in improving your bone density
- Unlike steroids, they lead to little to none water retention.
- Most importantly, they don’t cause ever-troubling prostate problems that are always associated with other anabolic steroids.
- Helps in treating osteoporosis. Additionally it speeds up healing of fractured bones.
- SARMs might also improve heart health.
- Some SARMs can assist in promoting healthy skin
SARMs are mostly sold online and they are legal for research purposes only. There is no legislation relating to SARMs at the moment. However, it’s important to note that the world antidoping agency has banned certain types of SARMs. It’s not hard to imaging that selling sarms online falls into grey area at this point. One thing is for sure: SARMs have not been approved for medicinal use. Nonetheless users all over the bodybuilding world are finding them to hard to resist! Let’s take a closer look at some of the more popular SARMs out there.
Types of SARMs
GW-501516 (also called Cardarine)
Unlike other SARMs, Cardarine is actually a PPAR agonist but work in a similar manner to SARMs. They target androgen receptors that controls glucose uptake in muscles. Generally speaking GW-501516 has been shown to increase the expression of genes involved in the expenditure of energy.
In other experiments, scientist have also argued that Cardarine increases fatty acid metabolism, which could be important in managing different health conditions. In a few rat experiments, Cardarine has been shown to increase the levels of high density lipoproteins while reducing the levels of low density lipoproteins. This makes it very essential for the health of the heart.
GW-501516 has several uses: helps in burning body fat, maintaining a healthy heart, managing obesity and above all reducing the bad cholesterol, maintaining a low density lipoprotein from the body.
GW-501516 is non toxic to the liver. It has also been found to be non suppressive (doesn’t suppress users’ natural testosterone production.
S-4 (Also called Andarine)
This is an interesting SARM. The idea was to make a male contraceptive when s-4 was discovered. It showed improved muscle growth and bone density in mice and then the idea to try it on humans came to life.
s-4 works by binding to androgen receptors. Unlike other SARMs, s-4 interacts with the androgen receptors together with other regular androgens. Nonetheless, it produces selective anabolic activity. It’s the binding with androgen receptors and the interactions with testosterone bring about the improved muscle strength and size.
Generally, s-4 doesn’t affect the low density lipoprotein to high density lipoprotein ratio so users don’t need to be worried about serious cardiovascular effects. S-4 also causes very minimal effects on the prostate and other sex organs as most anabolic steroids. Additionally, s-4 does not cause development of male characteristics in females.
S-4 also is not associated with the aromatization of testosterone to estrogens. Therefore, there is little to no chance of developing Gynaecomastia in men (man boobs).
LGD-4033 is popularly known as Anabolicum. Like androgens, this non-steroidal SARM binds androgen receptors to produce effects similar to those of steroids. Like other SARMs, they are tissue selective and have high affinity to androgen receptors. They are used to treat osteoporosis, age related muscle loss and have shown progress in managing cancer. Additionally, LGD-4033 is tissue specific, nontoxic to the liver and above all administered orally.
MK2866 or Ostarine is also a selective Androgen Receptor Modulator which binds to androgen receptors and is specific to tissues. Tissue specificity makes it nontoxic to the liver and safe for the heart. In fact, it might even improve heart health. Its actions are similar to those of anabolic steroids yet it has very few side effects compared to steroids.
This SARM helps in increasing muscle mass, speeding up joint healing and improving strength and endurance.
MK-677 produces its effects by selectively binding to specific androgen receptors on specific tissues. This helps in reducing steroid-related side effects. Specifically,mk677 has been shown to stimulate pituitary gland to release growth hormones. This contributes directly or indirectly to inhibition of somatostatin receptors and also slowing down the activity of stomastostatin hormones. It also adds to the functions of growth hormone releasing hormone to release more growth hormones.
MK 677 has several benefits among others: Fat burning, muscle mass gain, tumor growth prevention and joint healing.
This is yet another non-steroidal Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator with oral bioavailability. Like other SARMs, it binds to androgen receptors to bring about increased in lean muscle muscle and improves on the effects of testosterone with very few side effects due to its tissue specificity. This allows it to selectively activate androgen receptors to bring the desired effects. Mostly what it does is to activate androgen receptors in the muscle and bone cells. This brings about several benefits like burning fat, increasing muscle mass, boosting testosterone levels among other functions. Unlike other steroids, rad140 has no association in prostate enlargement or testicular shrinkage like it is with other steroids.
- They have been linked to reduction in the size of the male reproductive organs and testicular atrophy.
- Females using SARMs might develop male characteristics. (A condition called virilization).
- SARMs have been shown to increase the chances of developing baldness in those who are prone to it.
- Although very rare, it has also been linked to Gynaecomastia.
- SARMs such as ostarine have also been shown to suppress natural testosterone.
- SARMs, S-4 in particular, have also been linked to temporary blurred vision.