Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

So, you’ve been working out for some time and seeing modest results.

You know that you can massively increase your gains with steroids but you’re also aware that there are huge health risks involved in going down that route.

What you need is an unbiased source of detailed information that presents you with the crucial facts about the best steroids for bodybuilding.

That way you can make an informed decision about what you want to do.

That’s precisely what you’ll find in this article. I’ve been in the muscle building industry for 40 years and have researched every anabolic compound that has ever been invented. In this guide I tell you what you need to know to make an informed choice about your muscle building future.

Bulking is an exciting phase for a bodybuilder; where they pack on muscle faster than you can blink…whilst sneaking in a few junk foods here and there to bump up their calories…happy days!

What are Steroids?

Steroids refer to exogenous hormones people take in the pursuit of reaching a certain goal. Medically, that could be management of pain, or decreasing muscle wastage from illnesses like AIDS. For performance driven folk, this refers to hormones or drugs taken in the pursuit of gaining muscle, losing fat and/or increasing recovery. 

Steroids are either taken orally or injected into the body. They then usually bind to Androgen receptors, and force a change onto the body that is beneficial for performance. This is exactly the same way SARMs work, but SARMs only bind the receptors in muscle and bone tissue. Steroids have a nasty affinity to bind to all the Androgen receptors in the body. This is not a great thing as it causes side effects we wish to avoid, such as Prostate growth. 

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7 Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

1) Testosterone

Testosterone

Testosterone is the natural male sex hormone, and various athletes take exogenous Testosterone to improve muscle hypertrophy, recovery, and fat loss to an extent. Testosterone is going to help primarily for muscle growth in a caloric surplus, and muscle retention in a caloric deficit. 

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 100:100

Testosterone has a perfect Anabolic Androgenic ratio, and thus the side effects are very predictable. This also makes Testosterone really mediocre at Anabolism (Muscle Growth) and getting you stage ready (Androgenicity). 

Side Effects from Testosterone are an increase in Blood Pressure, Cholesterol Issues, Endogenous Testosterone shutdown, and potential hair loss. 

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2) Deca-Durabolin

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

Deca Durabolin (or Deca) is another steroid that you will easily find on any top best anabolic steroids for men lists, and rightfully so. Deca is popular because it provides powerful Anabolic effects on the body, making it a wonderful little muscle builder, while simultaneously keeping Androgenic side effects to a minimum.

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 125:37

Basically, if you want a steroid that will make you big, lean, powerful, and masculine, without having to worry about Gynecomastia, and other Androgenic side effects, Deca could be your drug of choice.

Side Effects from Deca include increase in Blood Pressure, Cholesterol Issues, Endogenous Testosterone shutdown, and Prolactin issues. 

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  • Noticeably increases strength and power, massive muscle gains
  • Greatly increases recovery times after workouts
  • Reduction of body fat without losing muscle, tendon and joint pain relief

3) Trenbolone

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

Don’t get me wrong. On its own, there is nothing inherently good about Trenbolone. It is a brutal drug, absolutely brutal. Horrific side effects that can extend way past its usage. That being said, nothing can do what Trenbolone does. 

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 500:500

Tren come in Acetate form, or Enanthate and it is exceptional at improving a physique, stripping fat aggressively and giving you an extremely dry physique. Commonly known to be 5 times stronger than Testosterone. 

As it is so powerful, it must be respected, the PCT must be used, and if you notice any adverse side effects, experts recommend that you stop using it ASAP. 

Side Effects from Trenbolone include Blood Pressure, Cholesterol Issues, Liver Toxicity, Downregulation of Thyroid Hormones, increased Hunger, Mentality Issues, and Hot Flashes or Night Sweats. 

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4) Primobolan

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

Primobolan (or Primo) is a steroid that works very well due to the fact that side effects are relatively low. Primo is great because it presents no liver toxicity whatsoever, does not convert to Estrogen, making it much nifty for bodybuilding.

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 88:44-57

A great additive to stacks that you could utilize for muscle growth, and also for a cutting period. Due to its low side effect profile, you could run quite a bit of it before starting to see diminishing returns. 

Side Effects of Primobolan include Liver Toxicity (oral version), and Testosterone Suppression.

5) Dianabol

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding
Dianabol (Metandienone) Chemical Structure

Dianabol, or D-bol, is another popular Anabolic Steroid used by bodybuilders worldwide. It is popular because it provides noticeable results in a short space of time.

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 90-210:40-60

Great as a cheap and effective bulking agent, and that’s the reason it’s on this list. Not as taxing as Anadrol, and definitely more oftenly used as an Anabolic.

Side Effects of Dianabol include Liver Toxicity (oral version), Testosterone Suppression, Water Retention, Blood Pressure and Estrogenic Side Effects. 

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6) Anadrol

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

Anadrol (Oxymetholone) is popular amongst bodybuilders looking to bulk up because it provides many bulking benefits, with the added bonus of being cheaper than many other steroids.

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 320:45 

A successful Anadrol cycle, however, can potentially result in gains of as much as 10 – 15 pounds of muscle, which is certainly very noticeable. Anadrol does not convert into Estrogen but does work on the Progesteron axis, and you could expect side effects of that nature. 

Side Effects of Anadrol include Great Liver Toxicity, Prolactin Issues, Water Retention, Aggression and Testosterone Shutdown.

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7) Anavar 

Best Steroids for Bodybuilding

Anavar is a steroid that can be injected, or administered orally in tablet form. Also known as Oxandrolone, Anavar is a great steroid for cutting fat and increasing energy and strength levels in the gym.

Anabolic Androgenic Ratio – 322-630:24 

Anavar works well as a stand-alone Steroid, although it is also great when used in conjunction with other steroids, including Winstrol, and Testosterone Propionate. Anavar is quite mild, so if you’re looking at just starting out with a steroid cycle, this is perhaps a great steroid to experiment with.

Side Effects of Anavar include Liver and Kidney Toxicity, Testosterone – and Estrogen Suppression.

This list is just that, a list. Most users will give you a poly hormone protocol for their goals, as the synergy between some Steroids can be extremely beneficial to hypertrophy or fat loss. That being said, using more than one drug at a time is a sure fire way of increasing the side effects as well. 

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  • Significantly increased power and strength during workouts
  • A capability to exercise for longer and at a higher intensity
  • Cut calories and fat while still preserving lean muscle and without retaining water
  • Enhance the appearance of veins

Best Steroids for Cutting

Cutting is a phase that can be grueling but very rewarding for a bodybuilder. It requires strict dieting to get all the fat off, but as you get leaner; muscle definition increases and you become more vascular. Cutting steroids can be important when on lower calories because they speed up fat burning helping you get ripped quicker and can prevent any muscle loss.

  • Testosterone
  • Masteron 
  • Anavar 
  • Winstrol 
  • Trenbolone 
  • Clenbuterol

A cutting Steroid protocol will be structured in a way to aid the training, cardio, and diet you’re already doing. Orals can be of greater use as they tend to wreck hunger – which is a good thing if you’re calorically restricted. 

Options like Clenbuterol and T3 (not Steroids) could increase fat loss significantly, the former even being anti catabolic. 

Drugs like Trenbolone, Masteron and Winstrol are known to actually have an aesthetic impact, making you look leaner and drier. 

Other additives like Estrogen controllers, ECA (Ephedrine Caffeine Aspirin), and Yohimbine could further contribute to a fat loss phase. 

Best Steroids for Bulking

The world is currently split into two groups when it comes to “bulking Steroids”. One group can (and are willing) to handle the bloat, Estrogen and blood pressure side effects, the other group does not want all that extra junk in the trunk. 

Group 1: The High Testosterone Group 

There’s no denying that Testosterone is a great drug for muscle building. It provides decent Anabolism, converts to DHT (increase in strength) as well as converts into Estrogen. High(er) Estrogen is always a good thing, up until the point you see feminizing side effects (Breast Tissue Development). Estrogen is cardio protective, and also quite anabolic. 

Group 1 sits with the idea that they make use of aromatizing compounds (high Testosterone as a base), stacking that with other compounds to really lay on the pounds (rather quickly) and see Anabolism take place this way. 

  • Testosterone
  • Deca Durabolin
  • Anadrol 
  • Dianabol

The benefit of this is that over time you might have slightly more leverage in the gym to move heavier loads, which with time will cause a greater muscular adaptation. The drawback is higher blood pressure, higher fat gain, poor life quality and difficulty breathing. 

You will need to keep an AI (Aromatase Inhibitor) at hand for if Estrogen levels get out of range and cause problems.

Group 2: The Lower & Slower Group

Contrary to the first group, the Lower & Slower choose to run compounds that don’t Aromatise at all, or very weakly at least. This includes running Testosterone fairly low (or lower compared to the first group) and also means you’ll have to take more of the Anabolic Steroids (technically Testosterone isn’t a Steroid). 

  • Testosterone (Low Dose)
  • Primobolan 
  • Masteron
  • Anavar 
  • Winstrol 

This group has the benefit of running into very little problems when it comes to Estrogenic side effects, which also means less water retention, and possibly less blood pressure issues down the line. Your gains will be a lot drier, and weight gain (not muscle gain) will be quite a lot slower. The drawback of this type of protocol is that it can be extremely costly, and you tend to gain slower compared to the first group.

Best Steroids for Strength 

Force Production (strength) comes predominantly from DHT – Dihydrogentestosterone. DHT increases the phosphorylation (the chemical addition of a phosphoryl group (PO3-) to an organic molecule) of proteins of the contractile tissue (muscle) such as troponin I and myosin binding protein C. This can increase force production.

Lo and behold most strength athletes increase DHT derivative Steroids ridiculously closing in to a contest. Thus, for the sole goal of strength, you have a need for DHT – predominantly. Steroids for strength are (increasing severity of Side Effects): 

  • Testosterone (to a degree)
  • Winstrol 
  • Primobolan
  • Trenbolone
  • Halotestin
  • DHB (Dihydroboldenone)

Testosterone, Winstrol, and Primobolan are relatively easy to manage compared to the rest on this list. 

Trenbolone is great for strength, will drive aggression through the roof, and you might be able to cut some fat as well. Might mess with appetite, which is not great for strength. Other side effects have been discussed earlier in the article. 

Halotestin will do very little for Anabolism. This drug has the primary goal of driving aggression and strength through the roof. This is not a drug to run for a long time, partly because it is extremely toxic, and partly because your aggression might actually hurt those around you. 

DHB (Dihydroboldenone) is the 5-Alpha Reduced version of Boldenone (Equipoise), some would call it “The DHT of Boldenone”. Understand this though, DHB is massively different to Boldenone. Understand this, DHB is not for the faint of heart. 

DHB is extremely anabolic (5x that of Testosterone), and tremendous for strength. DHB does not Aromatise into Estrogen, but then again it holds hepatotoxic qualities (liver toxicity) even in injectable form. Other side effects of DHB are apparently similar to those of Trenbolone.

Best Steroid Cycle for Beginners

Beginning bodybuilders who choose to go the steroid route should select a synthetic testosterone steroid such as:

  • Testosterone Enanthate
  • Testosterone Propionate
  • Testosterone Cypionate

Begin with the lowest recommended dosages. As a beginner, you are first and foremost seeing how well your body is able to tolerate the steroid so don’t expect amazing results right out of the gate.

Remember that steroids do not act in isolation. You need to be following a bulking diet that is high in lean protein and that provides your body with about 500 calories per day in excess of its maintenance level. You also need to be training hard in the gym.

How to Design a Steroid Cycle

As much as needed, but as little as possible. There is no reason to run 5 grams of AAS if you’ve only been in the gym for less than 5 years. You’ll run into a great amount of side effects, you’ll waste your money, and you’ll be too sick to do anything. Well done, you idiot. 

Designing a cycle starts with one phrase: “What problems am I looking to solve?” (Shoutout to Broderick Chavez on this). 

“I have trouble gaining weight” – Right, you can probably benefit from “wetter” compounds, such as Testosterone, Deca-Durabolin, and Dianabol. 

“I gain weight easily, but I get fat super fast” – You can probably benefit from “drier” compounds, such as Primobolan, Masteron, and Anavar. 

“I have trouble managing Estrogen” – Choose drugs that are low Aromatising compounds to begin with! Primobolan, Masteron and Anavar. 

The less drugs you use the better.  

How to Use Steroids Safely for Bodybuilding

All steroids carry risks to your health. The safest way to use steroids is under the supervision of a medical professional. Of, course, no ethical doctor will prescribe steroids purely for the purposes of bodybuilding. There are, however, some important safety measures that all bodybuilders should follow when taking steroids.

Make sure that you are confident that what you are buying is the actual steroid that you think it is. The steroid market is notorious for pumping all sorts of crazy compounds into bottles and then labeling them as something completely different. So, if you are not 100% confident that the product is genuine, do not put it in your body.

You should also stick to the conservative dosages for the steroid you are using. One of the main reasons that bodybuilders end up with health problems from steroid use is that they massively overdose on the quantities. Nowadays the average guy on the street takes their steroids in amounts that the Pros of ten years would never have dreamed of taking! You need to be smarter than that.

You should also have your bloodwork done every six months or so, preferably more. This will allow you to monitor whether your enzyme, hormone and lipid levels are within normal ranges.

5 Supplements for Steroids 

The main goal of Supplements whilst on cycle is going to be for the pursuit of health management, and perhaps amplifying the effects of the cycle in and of itself. 

1) Zinc

The research is hard to understand, and even harder to find, but it is somewhat apparent that exogenous Testosterone seems to lower bodily levels of Zinc significantly. Zinc can therefore maybe (really maybe) slightly amplify the benefits of Steroids. Although, this is me just running my mind, and an opinion. 

2) Omega 3

Most people in general do not get Omega 3 in their diet, and I can guarantee you the average gym goer gets even less. Omega 3 can help with fighting inflammation, insulin resistance, reducing fatty liver, and reduces liver enzymes. Especially if you’re running orals, Omega 3 supplementation could help. 

3) Liver & Kidney Support 

The two main organs to support and look after while on cycle are the kidneys and the liver. These will be placed under great stress, and while the liver is quite robust and may recover under, the kidneys will not. If your kidneys fail, you’re done – ask Bostin Loyd. Milk Thistle, Citrus Bergamot, TUDCA, IP6, and Vitamin B’s can all be extremely beneficial to organ health. 

4) A Fiber Supplement

I read a study that 90 – 95% of Americans get enough dietary fiber. Looking at the amount of fast food restaurants, it’s not hard to imagine. Fiber has been shown to significantly improve insulin sensitivity, improve cholesterol markers, and can perhaps help with blood pressure as well. Either eat more whole foods, or just get a supplement. Your body will thank you. And so will your toilet. 

5) Cardio

Alright this isn’t a Supplement, I know I’m cheating, but cardio is free! Cardio can do everything, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, improve insulin sensitivity, reduce inflammation, and (from personal experience) helps your breath better! Better breathing means better sleep which… nah you know how important that is (hopefully). 

SARMs to Replace Steroids? 

SARMs (Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators) were originally developed to replace Steroids in the medical field. I don’t know about your grandma, but mine doesn’t need the sick pump from EQ, bro! She just might need some more red blood cells, and probably can do without the side effects of EQ anyway. 

SARMs perform the exact same task as Steroids, by binding to the Androgen receptor by which a long chain of events take place and you end up with increased muscle and increased bone density. Steroids have this nasty habit of binding to all the Androgen receptors in the body, even the ones we don’t want to activate. 

SARMs (hence the name) are selective in their nature, and do not bind to all the Androgen receptors. They typically have less side effects, and most of the time do not cause Testosterone shutdown either. SARMs can be used for: 

  • Increased Hypertrophy 
  • Increased Strength
  • Increased Hunger 
  • Increased Fat Loss 
  • Increased Endurance

They also don’t have the ethical issue of being illegal, and may be sold as Research Chemicals, not for human use. 

Conclusion

Steroids work. They did 50 years ago, and they do now. While some Steroids are typically more often used for phases (Bulking and Cutting) the better idea is to use them for solving individual problems! Running Estrogenic compounds when you already have blood pressure issues because “It’s Bulking season bro!” is a stupid idea. Choose the right tool for the right job. Also, do some cardio you fatass, it’s healthy. You only have one health. 

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Ernst Peibst

Ernst Peibst has spent over 3,000 hours researching anabolic steroids and PED's. He's also dedicated the last 7 years educating people about their effects, with hundreds of thousands of people reading his articles. He's studied countless science papers, read several expert books and has consulted some of the finest doctors in the world - on the topic of steroids.

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