SARMs (selective androgen receptor modulators) were designed as safer alternatives to steroids but were discontinued by pharmaceutical companies due to not being as efficacious as expected and also because they had more side effects than anticipated. Now when big pharma decides that a compound is too dangerous to move forward with you should be very concerned. Just look at the side effects of many of the drugs they do move forward with!
The reality is that SARMs are nowhere near as effective as steroids but ironically have side effects similar to taking anabolics such as testosterone production suppression, elevated blood pressure, reduction in HDL cholesterol, and liver stress. In fact, there have been many reports of serious liver damage from the usage of some very popular SARMs such as ostarine, LGD 3033, and RAD 140
Anyone who tells you SARMs are safe is either a blatant liar or grossly misinformed. Either way, their advice is dangerous and you should be very cautious when taking SARMs. Make sure you don’t already have elevated liver enzymes (AST and ALT), high blood pressure, or a poor lipids profile as SARMs will likely make things worse.
Most concerning is the proliferation of young men that are experimenting with SARMs under the premise that they are safe and free of side effects. Essentially they believe SARMs have many of the benefits of anabolics without any of the negatives. A line of thinking which is completely erroneous. What makes matters worse is this demographic doesn’t tend to utilize any health screening or monitoring such as before and after blood work so they are often oblivious to the potentially serious damage they may be inflicting upon themselves.
In addition to having researched the pros and cons of using SARMs, I also have personal experience. A few years ago, I test drove a product called KONG which was a stack of SARMs (product is no longer available) that included Ostarine, Rad 140, LGD 3033, S-4, etc. I used it for 8 weeks and definitely noticed an increase in size and strength. However, I also noticed a huge increase in my liver enzymes which took many months to normalize. The benefits I experienced certainly did not justify the side effect of liver damage. I got into strength training, fitness, and hormone optimization to improve my health and age gracefully, not to harm my health. Fortunately, I get blood work regularly or I may not have even known about the liver stress as I certainly wasn’t feeling anything and if you can actually feel liver pain, you have really messed things up!
If I were to take the stack again, I would definitely run it with some liver support products such as milk thistle and NAC as well as run it for shorter time frames such as four weeks on and two off. I didn’t experience any suppression in testosterone as I was running ASTB with it as well as Clomid using Dr. Mark Gordon’s recommendation of 50mg every third day (An awesome stack by the way!)
I think the safest way to use SARMs is to use one compound at a time and for no longer than 4 weeks. Many who have used SARMs will argue that this is not the most effective way to use them and that you should engage in 8-12 week cycles. It may not be the most effective way to use SARMs but it is definitely the safest method. If you chose to go on for longer than four weeks then you should run liver support (Milk thistle and NAC) as well as take a testosterone booster such as Clomid or ASTB to avoid any suppression.
In my opinion, the positives do not outweigh the negatives when it comes to SARMs. There are just too many unknowns to make usage worth the risk. Especially, with the availability of peptides, TRT, and effective options to boost testosterone naturally (ASTB, Clomid, and Kisspeptin-10). Optimizing free testosterone levels as well as growth hormone production will go much further, in the long run, to produce desirable outcomes without the negatives. Remember, you want to be strong and healthy for as long as possible not for a short time frame. The last thing you want to do is morph into one of those guys who talks about what he used to be able to do. I want to be strong and fit for my entire life, not just a few months or years.