What is Human Growth Hormone?
HGH (a.k.a. somatropin or GH) is created by the pituitary gland, and its primary function is to help our bones, muscles, organs, and tissues properly grow during our early years. And it’s important that, during childhood and teenage years, your HGH levels remain balanced so that you don’t become a dwarf or eight feet tall. HGH benefits don’t stop when you’re young, though, because you also need plenty of this hormone to keep your muscles full and strong, regulate metabolic functions, have a healthy immune system and repair your skin.
HGH Results and Benefits:
Given all the bad things that happen when our bodies produce less HGH, one huge benefit of this drug is that it can reverse or at least improve aging. Now this isn’t to say that you’re going to live to 120 just because you take HGH injections, but you should start to look and feel more youthful by using this drug. HGH can also help build lean mass. Notice I said “lean” (fat-free) mass because studies have shown that HGH may have little to no impact on muscle growth. Even research performed on athletes in training have yielded no proven muscle-building results. However, this isn’t to say that HGH has absolutely no place in the bodybuilding community because, as I’ll later discuss, you can combine it with anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) for really powerful results. This may be especially true in the fat-loss department, where one study revealed that HGH is better than testosterone for melting body fat.
The research showed that older men who received HGH injections lost 13% body fat, as compared to the 5.8% fat reduction in the testosterone group. Perhaps even more interesting is that those using testosterone and HGH together lost 21% of their body fat. Another bonus to Human Growth Hormone is that it helps you recover from both workouts and heal from injuries faster. The latter is great for anybody who’s dealt with nagging injuries for years that they want to heal finally. As for the faster workout recovery time, well, any athlete can appreciate being able to train harder and more frequently. Imagine how much more muscle you could gain if you worked each muscle group twice every 10 days, rather than the standard of once per week.
HGH for Bodybuilding:
Because HGH was and is widely used by bodybuilders and athletes over the years, it’s assumed that it has incredible muscle-building and strength-boosting benefits. However, as discussed before, research has yet to conclude that you’ll gain any significant muscle mass through HGH. But then again, bodybuilders don’t take HGH because they’ve been fooled by public opinion. This drug has some good effects on fat loss and workout recovery – two huge qualities that bodybuilders benefit from HGH. And these effects are only enhanced when you include GH in an anabolic steroid cycle.
Think of AAS as regular-grade gasoline, adding HGH would turn them into higher, premium-grade fuel. You can get better results from anabolic steroids, and use less of them just by incorporating HGH. So how does HGH work? As mentioned before, GH is secreted by the pituitary gland, usually when you’re sleeping or during high-intensity workouts. Once secreted, the activity of HGH normally only lasts for around 10-20 minutes. During this short duration, it binds to fat cells, causing them to break down into triglycerides and preventing these fat cells from uptaking lipids. HGH also binds to muscle cells, leading to the release of growth factors and multiplication of the cells.
Another bodybuilding benefit of HGH is that it travels to the liver and induces the secretion of Insulin-like Growth Factor One (IGF-1). When IGF-1 is released, it stimulates protein synthesis in muscles and encourages amino acid uptake. Research suggests that these actions help to create a moderate anabolic effect that GH lacks on its own. IGF-1 also acts very much like insulin and can increase the metabolism of carbohydrates. Higher IGF-1 levels lead to carbs being converted to glucose and used as energy, rather than being stored as fat. From an overall standpoint, HGH isn’t magic for bodybuilders that will help them build pounds of muscle and rapidly drop their body fat into the single digits.
However, GH does provide some quality benefits in the way of protein synthesis, nutrient shuttling, and fat loss – all helping you attain a better physique, especially when combined with anabolic steroids.
HGH for Women:
Given that most anabolic steroids cause virilization (development of male sexual characteristics) in women, there’s a common stereotype that ladies shouldn’t use Human Growth Hormone either. But did you know that women actually produce more HGH in their bodies than men? HGH is safe for women at lower dosages, and they can see some nice results concerning increased energy levels, fat loss, healthier skin and wrinkle reduction. A good HGH dosage for women without major side effects ranges from 0.5 – 1.5IU’s per day.
HGH Side Effects:
As if I haven’t already discussed enough great things about HGH, yet another is that you shouldn’t experience many side effects with it. Contrast this to AAS, which can have severe side effects depending upon the dosage. Water retention and joint pain are probably the worst side effects of HGH that you’ll experience. Luckily, the joint pain shouldn’t be unbearable in most cases, and the water retention will subside when your HGH cycle is over. Some minor problems that you could experience include cold-like symptoms, fatigue, and headaches when using this drug. One serious issue that you should consider is if your family has a history of cancer. If so, you should definitely visit a doctor and get checked out for cancer because, while GH isn’t proven to cause tumors, it can accelerate the growth rate of existing tumors.
Another serious issue is acromegaly, or the thickening of your jaw, fingers, and toes. Acromegaly can lead to the lengthening of your fingers and toes, and cause you to develop the dreaded “square jaw” appearance that many HGH users have – making you look like a hairless Neanderthal However, it should be mentioned that this is normally only a problem in those who abuse high dosages of GH for long periods of time. By keeping dosages reasonable, you should keep your normal human appearance too. HGH has somewhat of a mixed effect on your cholesterol levels. A study performed on older men and women showed that their LDL (bad) cholesterol levels decreased; however, their triglyceride levels increased. One more concern worth mentioning is that those using this drug are also at more risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.