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Some claim that steroids, taken correctly, are not only safe but also essential for fast recuperation and lean muscle growth and that only those who do not understand the methodology of taking steroids have problems. However, many well-known sports personalities, and even want-to-be celebrities, have died or suffered debilitating injuries because of steroids. Some athletes even use veterinarian drugs, used to fatten pigs and horses, to make themselves bigger and leaner, though most opt for the harder to detect varieties that clear the system very quickly.

Martial artists use anabolic steroids. The core of all martial arts is the art of self-defense, self-protection. It is hypocritical to practice martial arts while harming yourself. Maybe self-defense should mean defense against oneself.

Effects of steroids

Commonly reported positive effects

  • Increased leanness/muscle definition
  • Increased muscle mass/weight
  • Increased strength
  • Increased effectiveness of training
  • Improved recovery rate
  • Euphoria
  • Increased aggressiveness
  • Increased sex drive 

Commonly reported negative effects

Both Sexes
  • Increased risk of mood disturbances including mania and depression
  • Increased risk of psychosis
  • Increased risk of aggressive acts which may injure self or others
  • Increased risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Increased risk of liver disease and cancer
  • Increased risk of kidney disease and cancer
  • Risk of HIV and Hepatitis B & C from contaminated needles
  • Acne
  • Bad breath
  • Decreased sex drive
  • BaldnessWater retention
  • Muscle cramps
  • Aching joints
  • Increased risk of muscle tears.
  • Increased risk of tendon injuries.
  • Increased risk of nosebleeds.
  • Insomnia.
  • Decreased immune system effectiveness.
  • Infertility.
  • Increased risk of prostate enlargement and cancer.
  • Decreased testicular size.
  • Gynecomastia (growth of breasts).
  • Increased risk of cervical and endometrial cancer.
  • Increased risk of osteoporosis.
  • Irreversible enlargement of the clitoris.
  • Irreversible coarsening and deepening of the voice.
  • Irreversible increase in facial and body hair.
  • Decreased breast size.
  • Amenorrhea.
  • Uterine atrophy.
  • Short stature.
  • Premature epiphyseal closure.

Some more commonly used steroids include.

  • Dianabol increases strength and energy and promotes a feeling of well-being. It causes water retention, aggression, and in some cases breast growth.
  • Testosterone injections: increases energy, strength, size, and recovery but with the usual side effects, especially aggression and irritability.
  • Decca (Deca-Durabolin and Durabolin): promotes increased strength and size, helps to strengthen joints, and aids recovery.

Symptoms of steroid use

  • Unusually fast muscle growth.
  • Flare-ups of acne, especially over the back.
  • Mood swings.
  • Mood shifts into depression.
  • Violent, combative behavior.
  • Thin skin.
  • Enlarged jaw which over a long period causes gaps between the teeth.

Symptoms of steroid withdrawal

Because steroids are addictive, withdrawal symptoms may occur when a user is not using steroids. These symptoms may include:
  • Depression.
  • Loss of energy and appetite.
  • Insomnia.
  • Manic-like symptoms.

Controversy over steroid use

Some say that if used, judiciously and in a proper manner, that the side effects of steroid use may be reduced or avoided. But then, some say a lot of things.

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