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Steroids – How to Use the Most Popular Anabolics

Bodybuilders and athletes use popular steroids to help them with their training. Steroids are a class of drugs that create bigger, faster, and more powerful muscles. Each drug has different benefits.

For example, some steroids make muscles bigger, others tone more, while some burn stomach fat, and steroids make muscles smaller. Thus, it is essential to understand the features of each steroid. But unfortunately, they also have some side effects. So if you’re thinking about taking steroids, we will provide you with some things to think about before you do it!

The word steroid is short for an anabolic-androgenic steroid, so they cause muscles to grow larger, more defined, and robust. Anabolic means muscle growth, while androgenic refers to adult male characteristics. Thus, steroids create large muscles with male-like features. Some people take them for medical reasons, but bodybuilders and athletes use the illegal form of these drugs called “pharma” steroids for performance enhancement and a competitive edge.

Are you looking for the most popular steroids to understand their use, side effects, and history? Then, this article is for you.

Steroids have many medicinal and muscle-building benefits. Also, further research shows doctors use these drugs as a first-line treatment for many protracted diseases.

Bodybuilders and athletes have been using steroids to augment muscle mass for many years. Most people who wish to achieve extraordinary fitness often use these drugs as a part of their bodybuilding regime. However, apart from their immediate benefits, many steroids have harmful side effects that people should not quickly overlook.

In this article, we will talk about some of the most popular steroids with their uses, side effects, and history so you can significantly improve your muscle mass and strength with the proper knowledge and wisdom.

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1. Anadrol (Oxymetholone)

This popular steroid was first mentioned in a  1959 paper by researchers from Syntex. Manufacturers introduced it to the world for different medical uses under Anapolon in 1961. Distributors also presented the drug under other brand names, i.e., Android in 1961 and Anadrol in 1962. However, the actual marketing of the popular steroid started in the early 1960s for medicinal purposes.


Anadrol (Oxymetholone) is currently popular among bodybuilders and others in the fitness industry. Athletes and fitness fanatics considered this drug a powerful synthetic anabolic. Because of this reason, many powerlifters use this steroid during their bulking phase to gain a massive amount of strength while hoping to reach their desired fitness goals. It replicates the strength-enhancing and muscle-building effects of some of the most high-end steroids. Also, weightlifters wanting to build muscle mass while experiencing no side effects turn to this popular steroid.

Side effects

  • Cholestatic jaundice
  • Liver cancer
  • Penis enlargement
  • Inhibition of testicular function
  • Low sperm count
  • Bladder irritability
  • Menstrual irregularities in females
  • Decrease in white blood cells
  • Excessive hair growth on the body
  • Pimple
  • Muscle cramps
  • Deepening of the voice in females
  • Breast enlargement in males

2. Anavar (Oxandrolone)

Raphael Pappo and Christopher J. Jung created Anavar (oxandrolone) at Searle Laboratories. However, after careful research and investigation, they introduced it as a pharmaceutical drug in 1964. Later, Bio-Technology General Corporation picked it up after successful clinical trials and launched it under Oxandrin.


Another most coveted popular steroid in the market is Anavar (oxandrolone). This steroid enhances the body’s T3 to T4 ratio, the active thyroid hormone that elevates an individual’s metabolism and weight loss. In addition, since it is a basic form of exogenous testosterone, it also helps increase muscle mass and tone. So those who want increased muscle mass often stack other steroids with Anavar (oxandrolone).

Side effects

  • Nausea, vomiting,
  • Headaches
  • Changes in skin color
  • Increased/decreased sexual desire
  • Hair loss
  • Oily skin
  • Acne
  • Mental/mood changes (depression, anxiety, increased hunger)
  • Trouble sleeping or snoring
  • Trouble urinating
  • Breast swelling or tenderness
  • Painful or prolonged erections in males
  • Low sperm count
  • Lower male fertility
  • Irregular menstrual periods
  • Unusual boy’s hair growth

3. Dianabol (Methandienone)

Many bodybuilders hail Dianabol as the best popular steroid for building muscle mass. Researchers at CIBA labs in Switzerland first synthesized Dianabol (methandienone). Initially, doctors prescribed the drug to older adults and burned victims. Then, some health practitioners prescribed it as a pharmaceutical performance-enhancement medication for athletes and weightlifters. Though the drug is no longer medicinally accessible in developed countries, some parts of the world produce and use it.


Dianabol (Methandienone) is a popular anabolic steroid designed to promote quick and massive strength and muscle mass without posing severe risks to the body. You can combine this steroid with your training regime to outperform your expectations and achieve the fastest muscle size and strength gains. It is also superb for bridging the cycles, keeping up with your improvements, and taking your overall performance to the next level.

Side effects

Androgenic side effects:

  • Acne
  • Oily skin
  • Seborrhea
  • Increased facial or body hair growth
  • Scalp hair loss
  • Virilization

Estrogenic side effects:

  • Gynecomastia
  • Fluid retention
  • Risk of hypo-toxicity over an extended period
  • Liver damage

4. Winstrol (Stanozolol)

Winstrol (stanozolol) is a popular synthetic steroid made from testosterone and features anabolic/ androgenic characteristics. The manufacturers initially launched it in 1962, but they changed the labeling and marketing with time because of FDA requirements and alterations in the drug market. As a result, the government classified Winstrol as a schedule III controlled substance under the federal regulation of the anabolic steroid act of 2004.


Winstrol (Stanozolol) is another popular performance-enhancing anabolic androgenic steroid. Professional athletes and powerlifters most frequently use it to improve their physical appearance and overall athletic performance. It is also a derivative of testosterone with very high anabolic and androgenic properties.

Side effects

  • Frequent/persistent penis erection
  • Aggravated acne
  • Hoarseness in females
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Facial hair growth in females
  • Ankle swelling
  • Changes in skin color

Other rare side effects may include:

  • Headaches
  • Trouble sleeping
  • No sexual desire,
  • New or worsening acne
  • Excessive vomiting
  • Masculinization
  • Hepatotoxicity
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Hypertension

5. Restandol (Testosterone Undecanoate)

The medical industry introduced restandol (testosterone undecanoate) for oral consumption in 1970. Even though the medical industry in China regularly used the intramuscular version of the popular steroid, it was not readily accessible in the United States or Europe. In 2000, FDA approved the drug in the US after three consecutive rejections because of safety issues.


Athletes and bodybuilders combine restandol (testosterone undecanoate) and other known anabolic steroids to maximize their workout sessions. Though medical experts mainly use it to treat low testosterone, it has the best performance-enhancing effects on the body.

Side effects

Some of the most common side effects of restandol (testosterone undecanoate) include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Skin color changes
  • More/less sexual desire
  • Hair loss
  • Oily skin
  • Severe acne
  • Pain or redness at the injection site
  • Breast swelling/tenderness
  • Depression, hostility, agitation,
  • Difficulty breathing while sleeping
  • Swelling of hands, feet, and ankles
  • Loss of appetite and severe abdominal pain as a symptom of liver problem
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1. Deca-Durabolin (Nandrolone Decanoate)

Until 1960, Deca-Durabolin (nandrolone decanoate) was in the literature and research papers. Later, the medical industry produced it for medicinal uses under the deca-durabolin’s brand name in 1962. Shortly after its launch, the popular steroid became the most widely used androgenic-anabolic steroid globally. It is the second most used form of nandrolone, led by phenylpropionate.


Deca-Durabolin (nandrolone decanoate) increases the body’s anabolic and androgenic activity ratio. It is a slow-acting drug designed to increase muscle mass. It works by promoting nitrogen retention in the muscles, which leads to an increase in muscle size. Apart from this, this popular steroid also provides joint pain relief due to bone mineralization.

Side effects

  • Allergic reactions like hives, itching, rash, or peeling skin
  • Wheezing or tightness in the chest
  • Trouble breathing,
  • Feeling tired, having headaches, upset stomach, and constipation.
  • Liver issues like dark urine, yellow skin/eyes
  • Loss of hunger

2. Durabolin (Nandrolone Phenylpropionate)

Durabolin (nandrolone phenpropionate) is an anabolic and androgenic steroid used as an ester for medicinal purposes. Some people know it by the name of 19-nortestosterone. Manufacturers launched these esters in the late 1950s, among the most commonly used popular androgenic-anabolic steroid globally. However, the government of many countries considers this drug a controlled substance and prohibits the non-medical use of the drug.


Durabolin (nandrolone phenylpropionate) increases and up-regulates the number of androgen receptors in the body. This way, it increases your training intensity and contributes to increased muscle size and strength. It also stimulates your appetite and the production of red blood cells.

Side effects

  • Masculinization
  • More libido, acne, facial hair, and body hair in females
  • Clitoral enlargement in females
  • Penile growth in prepubertal boys
  • Amenorrhea and menorrhagia
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Cardiovascular toxicity sometimes

3. Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate)

The medical industry launched depo-testosterone for medicinal use in 1951. Along with other popular steroids, depo-testosterone (cypionate) is the most widely used testosterone ester globally. It is currently being marketed under a wide range of brand names and is considered a schedule III controlled substance under the controlled substance act in the United States.


Depo-Testosterone (testosterone cypionate) is very popular with bodybuilders suffering from testosterone deficiency. It also regulates fat distribution in the body and helps maintain muscle mass. This popular steroid prevents increased body fat, especially around your abdominal area. It also helps increase muscle size and strength.

Side effects

The most common side effects include:

  • Pain and swelling at the injection site
  • Acne
  • Hair growth
  • Breast enlargement or gynecomastia
  • Frequent erections in men
  • Erections that last longer than usual
  • Headaches and mood swings
  • Low sperm count if used in high doses

4. Agovirin (Testosterone Propionate)

In 1936, the medical industry synthesized this testosterone ester for the very first time. Testosterone propionate was the most powerful of all the esters available, and many doctors used it widely to treat a wide range of medicinal disorders. Though doctors rarely use this steroid now because of its short duration and availability of other esters, it is still medically available for prompt medical use.


Agovirin (testosterone propionate) can generate impressive gains during the early bodybuilding stages. However, even though it kicks in fast, it is still not the most rapid form of testosterone in the body.

Side effects

  • Virilism
  • Irritable bladder and UTI
  • Irregular periods
  • High blood pressure
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Sleep apnea or dizziness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Low energy level
  • no sexual desire,
  • decreased testicle size
  • acne
  • diarrhea and stomach cramps
  • trouble sleeping,
  • infection of redness at the injection site

5. Retandrol (Testosterone Phenylpropionate)

Another successfully synthesized anabolic popular steroid on the list is retandrol (testosterone phenylpropionate). The medical industry first discussed retandrol in 1935 to augment synthetic testosterone’s therapeutic effectiveness. Scientists in Germany then produced it for clinical use two years later. This popular steroid is the most commercially available version of testosterone ester in the US prescription drug market.


Primarily, retandrol (testosterone phenylpropionate) increases protein synthesis in the muscles. As a result, it also increases muscle mass and strength. As far as body fat, this popular steroid blocks the uptake and storage of fat while augmenting the number of fat-burning receptors in the body—regular use of retandrol causes a better blood flow and metabolic rate of users.

Side effects

  • Allergic reaction or hives
  • Chest pain, dizziness, trouble breathing, and throat tightening
  • Swelling in ankles or feet
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Changes in skin color
  • Painful urination
  • Shortness of breath
  • Ejaculation issues or decreased testicle size
  • Stomach pain

6. Equipoise (Boldenone Undecylenate)

Reportedly, scientists patented this steroid in 1949 by Ciba, whereas the medical industry produced and distributed Equipoise (boldenone undecylenate) esters during 1950-1960. This drug is an intramuscular androgenic-anabolic steroid used under its brand name, parenabol. Also, after it discontinues human use, it is now available in the market for veterinary services under equipoise.


Usually, equipoise (boldenone undecylenate) is a synthetic derivative of testosterone primarily used for human performance enhancement. It features well-balanced androgenic and anabolic properties appreciated by athletes who wish to be more robust and muscular. Though it is not a rapid mass builder, it helps with steady muscle gain and quality/smooth bulk production.

Side effects

Some of the androgenic side effects of equipoise (boldenone undecylenate) are:

  • Acne and oily skin
  • More aggression
  • Hair loss
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety and flu

This article summarizes the list of the most popular steroids on the market. Ultimately, the choice to use steroids rests with the user. But if you decide to use steroids, ensure you understand the benefits and the consequences. Also, regular long-term use of steroids without the supervision of a licensed medical provider can damage your health and cause death.

Many bodybuilders follow a healthy diet, drink plenty of water, get regular exercise, and get regular checkups. During these checkups, doctors run routine blood work, which the bodybuilder can use to make a well-informed decision. Also, your doctor must protect many countries’ privacy and medical records. If you are using steroids illegally, don’t worry. Thus, your doctor will provide you with the best recommendations but not report you to the government.

Steroids are a popular but controversial topic. In this blog article, we’ve provided some information about the history of steroids and how they work in the body to increase muscle growth. You may have heard that many athletes use them illegally for increased performance or to recover from injury faster. In contrast, others take them as prescribed by their doctors for medical purposes, such as hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Finally, the healthiest way to build muscle or burn body fat long-term is through a balanced diet and a scientifically proven workout.

What has been your experience with steroids? We want to hear what you think! If you or someone you know is considering bodybuilding, share this article on Facebook or Twitter so that others can learn more about building muscle. Related Articles

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