Bodybuilding is on the rise, and consequently more people are taking steroids than ever before. This can be a dangerous situation, as people are taking illegal substances that can potentially ruin their health.
So, this beckons the question: What are the safest steroids?
People who take steroids in a reckless way will almost certainly decrease their lifespan, whilst jeopardizing their health and quality of life. But even lower doses and “safe” aproaches can lead to detrimental efects in some users.
This article will help readers understand the risks of steroids. The following guide is to reduce any potential casualties (from novices), who may take steroids without first educating themselves.
These are the widely considered Top 5 Safest Steroids, Their Risks, and Legal Alternatives
- Deca Durabolin
The reality is that no anabolic steroid is 100% safe, especially when taken without medical supervision.
Several of these steroids are approved by the FDA, thus are considered to be safe when prescribed to patients. However, even then side effects and negative long-term outcomes have been reported.
So why are these steroids considered safe?.
According to users, the safest steroid is one that first and foremost is not excessively straining to the heart. This is the most important side effect to be wary of when taking anabolic steroids, as sharp rises in blood pressure can be fatal; The risk for heart attacks and stroke is also significantly elevated.
The second most important side effect to be wary of is liver toxicity, with liver failure being a common occurrence when taking (oral) anabolic steroids; and can result in death.
Then there are other side effects that aren’t dangerous but are often important to users. Such adverse effects are gynecomastia, water retention, acne, and hair loss. Such side effects may affect a person’s quality of life and thus should also be considered.
Closest Supplement to Steroids
The rise of SARMs in the last few years are probably the closet things we can have to steroids that are kind of legal. SARMs are Selective Androgen Receptor Modules and can significantly boost muscle growth.
They are not illegal and stand in a grey area by the FDA that allows its use for research, learn all about SARMs here.
Testosterone is the first steroid to ever be synthesized, back in 1935 with the objective of treating depression. However, people soon understood the dramatic effects testosterone had on muscular size and strength.
Beginners are likely to gain 15-20lbs from their first testosterone cycle (taking 200-350mg per day). Future cycles with higher doses (up to 500mg per day) are likely to add another 10-15lbs.
Despite being the oldest steroid, testosterone arguably remains the most popular compound today. Test is used in almost every steroid stack as a base.
Testosterone is predominantly a bulking steroid, powerful by itself or in a stack; and produces significant gains in mass. It is regarded as the best steroid for the heart, having minimal impact on cholesterol levels and blood pressure. This is due to its route of administration, being an injectable steroid and its aromatizing nature; causing estrogen levels to rise.
When testosterone levels significantly increase, blood pressure often experiences a sharp rise too. However, due to the body converting some of the exogenous testosterone into estrogen (via the process of aromatization), blood pressure stays within a normal range on testosterone; due to estrogen increasing HDL cholesterol levels (the good kind). On the other hand, this will cause gynecomastia.
Research has shown that 300mg of testosterone per week, caused a 13% decrease in HDL cholesterol levels, during a 20-week cycle (1).
Doses as high as 600mg per week also might cause excessive cardiovascular strain, with HDL cholesterol levels decreasing by 21%. (2).
Testosterone’s impact on the heart is still lower compared to other steroids and that’s why it’s considered the safest steroid on the market. This is also why a test-only cycle is the most recommended protocol for beginners, minimizing the risk of side effects.
However, studies even when using a small dose show that Testosterone increases the risk of premature death from cardiovascular problems.
Testosterone also doesn’t seem to pose any risks in terms of liver strain. In one study, participants took a huge dose of 2,800mg per week for 20 days, yet none of them showed any signs of stress to the liver (3). This is rough 10x the dose a beginner would take.
As we already made it clear, Test is free from side effects.
It does have the ability to also produce less dangerous side effects, that are uncomfortable to users. These can be: gynecomastia, acne, hair loss or water retention.
Gynecomastia is possible, due to testosterone elevating estrogen levels. Estrogen is the female sex hormone, that can cause breast tissue to accumulate in males; creating the look of a female chest.
Gyno can be prevented by running an AI (aromatase inhibitor) or a SERM (Selective estrogen receptor modulator). AI’s will inhibit the conversion of testosterone into estrogen, whereas SERM’s block estrogen activity directly in the breast cells.
AI’s are not recommended to combat gyno when taking testosterone, as blood pressure will rise as a result. Thus, by taking effective SERM’s, such as Nolvadex or Clomid, estrogen levels will remain high; yet the possibility of developing gyno will be significantly reduced. And more importantly, blood pressure will not spike from using Clomid or Nolvadex (4).
Oily skin, acne, and hair loss are all possible when taking testosterone. These are not dangerous side effects, however, such implications may reduce the quality of life. These are common effects due to testosterone being androgenic, having an androgenic rating of 100. Male users take medications such as finasteride to help them combat hair loss, however the blocking of DHT may significantly reduce their gains on a cycle. It’s also common for any hair thinning, or recession to be reversed post-cycle when hormones regulate back to normal, however, if the hair follicle is dead, then hair loss is permanent (5).
Testosterone is not suitable for women to use, due to its androgenic nature. Women who use test will experience amazing muscle gains, but can also turn into a man.
The other main issue when taking testosterone is that a person’s natural testosterone level will become suppressed. Thus, users are likely to experience low testosterone levels post-cycle, taking several months for their normal test levels to return.
Testosterone is an FDA approved steroid for the treatment of testosterone replacement therapy (low testosterone in men) and delayed puberty in boys; demonstrating its safety (6).
Anavar is one of the most sought-after steroids on the market. This is mainly due to three reasons:
- It’s an oral steroid
- It’s suitable for men and women
- It has very weak side effects
Anavar is generally seen as a cutting steroid, as it does not aromatize; thereby creating a dry and lean look. Anavar produces noticeable increases in muscle size and strength; whilst simultaneously stripping fat.
Anavar’s fat-burning effects are significantly greater than testosterone’s, although its muscle-building effects are milder.
Users will gain roughly 10lbs of muscle on Anavar, with men taking doses of 15-20mg per day for 6 weeks.
If someone is looking to lose fat and get a bit bigger, Anavar will do the job. However, if someone is looking for huge gains in mass, testosterone is the better steroid.
Women are often very limited when it comes to which steroids they can use (without turning into a man). Anavar is one of the few compounds females can safely take, without experiencing any masculine effects. Women will also experience significant fat loss and noticeable muscle gains, yet typically take half the dose of men (5-10mg per day) and in shorter cycles (4-5 weeks).
Users will rarely notice any side effects when taking Anavar, as it doesn’t cause any water retention; plus there is no chance of developing gyno, as it doesn’t aromatize. Consequently, Anavar is in high demand by gym-goers who want to take their body to the next level without having to worry about jeopardizing their health.
Despite being an oral steroid, Anavar does not pose much stress to the liver. This may be due to the kidneys also helping to process the compound, in effect taking the work-load off the liver. In research, 20mg per day does not seem to affect the liver (7), whereas 40mg per day increases liver enzymes by 30-50%. Male bodybuilders will typically take a maximum dose of 20mg.
Anavar will cause some testosterone suppression. Such reductions are likely to be mild to moderate, taking several weeks to return to normal levels. As test levels will not be shut down fully, a post cycle therapy is deemed unnecessary by some users.
Anavar does have a negative effect on cholesterol levels, worse than testosterone, yet is considerably safer than other injectables and oral steroids. In the previous study, which monitored users’ liver enzymes on Anavar, they also monitored their cholesterol levels. They found users who took 20mg of Anavar for 12 weeks, experienced a 30% decrease in HDL (good) cholesterol. In the 40mg group, they decreased by 33% and on 80mg they decreased by 50%.
30% is a moderate decrease in HDL cholesterol, however, their cycle was lengthy, with it lasting 12 weeks. Bodybuilders typically will only take Anavar for 4-8 weeks.
To combat changes in cholesterol, thus affecting blood pressure, Anavar-users are recommended to regularly perform cardio. This will help to accelerate fat loss, maximizing gains from their cycle; as well as keeping their heart-healthy.
Primobolan is very similar to Anavar, being a mild, cutting, oral steroid.
Primo is a safe steroid, that has even been given to infants who were underweight (8), without any negative interactions. Its role in medicine is to help patients gain lean mass, bringing them up to a healthy weight. Primo’s been prescribed to people who have suffered from muscle-wasting diseases, infections and those recovering from surgery.
Like Anavar, Primobolan does not aromatize, thus keeping water retention at bay. Primo adds small amounts of lean muscle, whilst stripping away fat during a cutting phase.
It is believed that Arnold and other bodybuilders from the golden era frequently used Primobolan when cutting, to help them appear extra ripped on stage.
As Primobolan is not an androgenic steroid, it is generally very well tolerated by women, when taking doses of 50-75mg per day.
Primobolan will shift cholesterol levels to a similar degree as Anavar. Thus, cholesterol and blood pressure will fluctuate more than on testosterone or deca Durabolin; but less than other anabolic steroids.
Testosterone suppression is almost certain on primo. How much test levels decline will depend on your dose and the duration of your cycle; however natural test levels are likely to return within several weeks post-cycle (like Anavar). A PCT is considered as optional, due to primo’s mild nature (not causing a dramatic crash).
4. Deca Durabolin
Deca Durabolin is the safest steroid for bulking, after testosterone.
Like testosterone, deca is also an injectable steroid; although a slow-acting compound that takes several weeks to build up in the body.
Deca Durabolin can add significant amounts of muscle and strength in the off-season, however, its effects are limited when taken alone. Unlike testosterone which can produce massive gains by itself, deca is often stacked with other bulking steroids to produce dramatic muscle gains.
It’s often cycled with testosterone, Dianabol or Anadrol for further gains.
Deca Durabolin is currently FDA approved in medicine for the treatment of anemia, helping to increase lean mass and red blood cell count in the bone marrow. It has also been used in the past to treat HIV-patients, dwarfism and osteoporosis.
Deca Durabolin is not androgenic, thus users are not at risk of developing hair loss or acne.
Deca is tolerated among women, when taken in short to moderate cycles. Research suggests that a dose of 100mg, injected every other week for 12 weeks is safe for women. (9). However, long cycles even on smaller doses are likely to cause virilization effects.
Deca’s ability to increase estrogen is deemed to be 20% of testosterone, thus there is very little aromatization activity. However, users may still experience high estrogen-like side effects, due to deca raising progesterone; which can stimulate breast tissue in the mammary glands.
Deca will shift LDL/HDL cholesterol, causing an increase in blood pressure (however this effect is not significant). Research has found that 600mg of deca Durabolin per week, caused a 26% reduction in good HDL cholesterol (10).
The dose for deca is usually 200-400mg per week for male bodybuilders, thus the 600mg dose in the study was high. Therefore, cholesterol levels are only likely to worsen slightly. This effect on cholesterol is deemed to be more than testosterone, but less than all other steroids.
The worst part about deca Durabolin is the testosterone suppression experienced by users. Research shows that 300mg of deca can decrease testosterone levels by 70% in just 6 weeks (11). Suppression is likely to be worse than this, with deca cycles lasting as long as 14 weeks. Thus, a PCT will be needed on deca to help endogenous test levels come back.
Dianabol is the only steroid on this list which we wouldn’t class as safe, as it’s not FDA approved in medicine. However, it is more tolerable than several other steroids, such as Anadrol, trenbolone, Winstrol, superdrol, etc.
This is why dbol-only cycles are still a common protocol among novices as a first steroid cycle.
Furthermore, Dianabol was widely used 50 years ago, when bodybuilders not only looked better but were also much healthier. They could have their blood work done and everything could be in the normal range, whereas today bodybuilders are literally destroying their bodies with more powerful compounds; causing many to have heart attacks and drop dead prematurely.
Many bodybuilders from the golden era who used Dianabol have gone on to live long lives, such as Franco Columbu who recently died at the age of 78. Other classic bodybuilders such as Arnold and Frank Zane and more are currently in their 70’s and also in good health as elderly men.
Dianabol is a similar compound to testosterone, however it is more anabolic, less androgenic, and an oral steroid. Thus, on Dianabol, you’re likely to gain more muscle than on testosterone, whilst experiencing less androgenic side effects, such as oily skin, hair loss and acne. This is why many of the classic bodybuilders also kept their hair; because they were cycling less androgenic steroids (compared to harsher compounds used today).
A Dianabol-only cycle is likely to produce 30lbs of mass when taking a moderate dose of 15-20mg per day (for 6 weeks). Dianabol is one of the best bulking steroids, that is guaranteed to blow up a user’s muscles.
Dianabol is an C-17 alpha alkylated steroid, so it is going to pass through the liver and cause a notable amount of strain. However, unless someone abuses dbol, this strain is only going to be short-lived, as the liver self-restores itself post-cycle; causing AST and ALT enzymes to return back to normal. However, it is recommended to take a TUDCA supplement for extra liver protection during a dbol cycle.
The worst side effect on Dianabol is the rise in blood pressure. This due to dbol being an oral steroid, thus having a greater negative effect on HDL cholesterol levels. Also Dianabol is estrogenic, causing noticeable amounts of water retention and bloating when combined with a high-calorie diet; adding to further spikes in blood pressure.
To reduce substantial increases in blood pressure, it is recommended to eat a clean diet; full of unsaturated fats whilst limiting sodium. A common myth is that cardio should be performed to reduce any cardiovascular strain that’s commonly experienced on Dianabol. Unfortunately, it will not really help.
Gyno is a possible side effect from taking Dianabol, due to a high level of aromatization (conversion of testosterone into estrogen). Thus, a SERM can be taken to avoid any breast tissue forming in the chest region, such as Clomid. Taking an AI will also be effective in preventing gyno, although blocking estrogen from a hormone level, will further increase blood pressure.
Testosterone levels will become suppressed when taking Dianabol, thus an effective PCT protocol involving hCG, Clomid or Nolvadex will be needed to elevate natural test levels back to normal quickly. Generally, testosterone levels will return to normal levels within 1-4 months; however, a PCT will shorten this process significantly.
What Are the Most Dangerous Steroids?
Anabolic steroids such as Anadrol, trenbolone and Winstrol are considered the least safe to use.
Anadrol is an oral steroid, like Dianabol, however its effects on cholesterol, testosterone suppression and the liver are more significant.
Trenbolone is an injectable steroid, that was never approved medically for humans but is used as a lean bulking agent for cattle. Although tren doesn’t cause much strain to the liver, it is very harsh on the body. This is due to it being 5x more androgenic than testosterone; thus blood pressure and testosterone suppression are likely to be severe. Bodybuilders use tren in bulking and cutting cycles to add large amounts of lean muscle.
Winstrol is an oral steroid, that poses great risks in contrast to a user’s gains when on it. Winstrol is very liver toxic and has a dramatically negative impact on cholesterol. It’s also very androgenic causing hair loss, acne, and testosterone suppression. In return, Winstrol users can only expect to build moderate amounts of muscle, in conjunction with some fat loss. Its ability to build muscle size is notably inferior to compounds such as testosterone and Dianabol, which are also safer. The only plus with winstrol is that it doesn’t aromatize and thus gyno is not going to be a problem for users.
Legal Alternative to Testosterone
Legal Alternative to Testosterone
Testo-Max pumps up your testosterone levels naturally and contains a testo-boosting mega-mix of D-Aspartic acid, magnesium, zinc, vitamins D, B6, K1, and more.
Legal Alternative to Anavar
Legal Alternative to Anavar
Anvarol improves both strength and energy and is ideal for cutting cycles. It's suitable for both men and women.
Legal Alternative to Deca Durabolin
Legal Alternative to Deca Durabolin
DecaDuro is designed to increase nitrogen retention, protein synthesis, and red blood cell production, which help maximizes strength and muscle gains.
Legal Alternative to Dianabol
Legal Alternative to Dianabol
D-Bal creates the ultimate anabolic state for mega muscle growth, rapid strength gains and increased mass.
Best Steroid Stack for Beginners
As a beginner bodybuilder, you need to tread very warily. The transition period during which your body is getting used to synthetic compounds needs to take place slowly. For those reasons, your beginning steroids stack should be conservative. Follow a six week on, six week off stack that combines Testosterone and Dianabol. These three steroids have the lowest risk of side effects.
Take 20 mg per day of Dianabol for the first two weeks, along with 200 mg of testosterone. The for the final four weeks, step it up to 25 mg of Dianabol. Take 300mg of Testosterone per day during weeks 3 to 5. On week 6, ramp that dosage up to 350 mg per day.
This Testosterone / Dianabol stack is the safest mass building stack for beginners. However, it may still produce some slightly unpleasant side effects that you should be on the lookout for. These may include water retention, heightened blood pressure and the start of gynecomastia (enlarged male breasts).
Best Non Injectable Steroids
There are four ways to get steroids into your body:
- Through the skin as a cream or gel
- Pellets implanted under the skin
The benefit of injecting a steroid into your body is that it goes directly into the muscle fiber, ensuring that more of it is utilized. Of course, the downside is that not many of us enjoy jabbing a needle in our butts (or anywhere else, for that matter). Injecting steroids rather than taking them through the mouth also carries more risks of side effects due to dirty needles or infected injection sites.
The best injectable steroids are Deca Durabolin (Nandrolone Decanoate), Equipoise (Boldenone Undecylenate), and Finajet (Trenbolone Acetate).
Deca Durabolin is one of the most popular anabolic steroids due to its proven ability to pack on muscle mass during the off-season. It also has potent cutting abilities, making it a universally applicable drug. Deca will also increase strength levels but not as dramatically as some other drugs.
Deca Durabolin is one of the safer injectables in terms of side effects. If you are using this drug in accordance with dosage recommendations, your side effects should be minimal. There are some estrogenic effects, in which the female growth hormone is increased in the body. Other possible side effects are acne, facial hair growth and male pattern baldness.
Equipoise Safest Steroid?
Equipoise is often considered to be one of the safest steroids that you can get your hands on. The name Equipoise is a brand name for the steroid oldenone undecenoate. It was first developed as a veterinary drug for use with horses. It is taken by humans as a lean muscle mass builder. As well as increasing muscle size, Equipoise will also give you more training energy so that you can train harder in the gym. It increases the number of red blood cells in the blood, enabling faster transportation of oxygen and nutrients to the working muscles.
Equipoise contains boldenone which has been shown to strengthen ligaments. This keeps you safer when working out with heavy weights. It is recommended that Equipoise be taken over an 8-12 week cycle. Beginners should go with an 8 week cycle while advanced bodybuilders can cycle Equipoise for 12 weeks. Users should follow their on cycle with an off cycle for the same period of time.
Beginner users should take 200 mg per week over the course of their 8 week cycle. More advanced users can up the dosage to 400 mg per week. Space your injections evenly throughout the week. As a beginner, you can take four injections of 50 mg each evenly spaced over the week.
Even though the side effects of Equipoise are fewer than most steroids, they still exist. The most common side effects are increased bad (LDL) cholesterol levels, gynecomastia, water retention, excessive hair growth on the face and body, insomnia, irritability, acne, and male pattern baldness.
Natural Steroid Foods
Steroids do not work in isolation. Unless you are eating to support your muscle gain and cutting efforts, your results will be minimal. There are certain foods that you can eat that will encourage the release of your body’s androgenic hormones – testosterone and human growth hormone. Here are the Top 10 foods to add to your menu:
- Wild Oats
- Fava Beans
- Olive Oil
- Pine Pollen
Closest Supplements to Steroids
Because anabolic steroids carry very real side effects, a whole industry has emerged labeled ‘legal steroids.’ These are steroid alternatives that are made from plant derivatives and other natural substances. regardless of what you may read, these natural versions will not give you the same results that you would get with the real deal. They will, however, provide you with potent results minus any of the side effects that come with steroids.
The manufacturers of legal steroids go overboard in promising steroid like results when you buy their product. The vast majority of them are outright lies, often backed up by fake testimonials and bogus before and after pictures. That is why you have to be very careful when buying legal steroids. The best producer of legal steroids on the market right now is Crazy Bulk. These guys produce a range of steroid alternatives that have names that are very close to the real steroid names ( usually with just one letter different). These legal steroids contain the most proven ingredients in the right dosages to give the best results.
The most popular products in the Crazy Bulk range are:
Remember, there’s no need to take any steroids at all. There are legal steroid alternatives available that can give you pretty amazing results. Keep in mind, too, that unless and until you are training with full out intensity, eating clean foods and getting in around 500 more calories per day than you use up, you shouldn’t even think about taking steroids. You should also have at least a couple of years of training under your belt before you consider taking steroids.
Testosterone, Anavar, Primobolan, and deca Durabolin are the safest steroids users can take but they also have serious side effects. We hope this guide will educate people on the risks of steroids, even the “safest” ones so that they can choose safe and legal alternatives instead.
Although some of the steroids are used in medicine; side effects are still possible. Also all anabolic steroids are illegal to use for bodybuilding purposes.
Thus, we do not encourage any of our readers to break the law, but instead opt for legal steroid alternatives; which are designed to replicate the muscle-building and fat-burning effects of steroids (but without any negative effects). These are much safer than dangerous steroids, and even the steroids mentioned in this article.
Crazy Bulk are the leading producer of legal steroid alternatives worldwide, and you can save 20% on all of their products by clicking on the banner below.
Top Legal Steroid Alternatives
Testo Lab Pro
Testo Lab Pro
Contains research-backed test-boosters along with key nutrients that deliver powerful testosterone support, amplified secondary T benefits and additional support for everything masculine.
Boosts testosterone easily and safely through the use of 11 all-natural ingredients that include amino acids, herbs, and key nutrients.
Burn Lab Pro
Burn Lab Pro
This is a stim-free fat burner that contains 5 major ingredients that work together to shed fat, enhance training, and increase muscle.