What is Ostarine
Ostarine (MK-2866) or Enobosarm is one of the highly-demanded SARMs in the market today. Bodybuilders across the globe have used this SARM to gain significant muscle mass and a boost in strength levels. Research also shows that Ostarine can be used to treat muscle and bone wasting disorders both of which are very essential in the bodybuilding and medical sector. This research also points to the possibility of the substance being used for medicinal purposes in the future.
In the last couple of years, Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARM) have become very popular, and that’s because they deliver unmatched results. The compounds are formulated to emulate the insane bodybuilding effects associated with steroids, but then their working mechanism is more selective. This essentially means that the compounds focus on only the androgen receptors that are relevant. This results in insane bodybuilding results without the unpleasant side effects that are linked to steroids and prohormones.
History of Ostarine
Ostarine was initially under the development of mega-billion pharmaceutical company known as Merck and Company. The rights for developing the SARM were passed on to another smaller company known as GTx, Inc.
GTx was established back in 1997. The company has subjected Ostarine to different phases of trials since 2005.
The idea behind the development of Ostarine was to treat different wasting disorders in cancer patients. There is already enough evidence showing that Ostarine can be very effective for this purpose. According to the CEO of GTx, Mitchell S. Steiner, the outcomes of the Phase II trials involving patients with cancer cachexia that were under Ostarine showed “…significant improvements in lean body mass in both treatment cohorts.”
Trials have also been done to look into the substance’s impact on the treatment of urinary incontinence.
Since the trials provided a lot of evidence on just how brilliant Ostarine is in preventing muscle wasting, it was inevitable that the compound was going to get so popular in the bodybuilding industry. Today, bodybuilders of different backgrounds rely on this SARM to get that extra cutting edge to achieve their fitness goals.
Benefits of Ostarine
To better understand the advantages of Ostarine, it’s crucial that you first learn how the compound works.
Ostarine just like all other Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators works by interacting with the androgen receptors while targeting anabolic processes. Androgens are male sex hormones. They are responsible for a lot of functions including the skeletal muscle mass. This also explains why men have more skeletal muscle mass than women.
Ostarine helps in stimulating the androgen receptors to deliver the muscle-building effects that bodybuilders are looking for. Here is the thing about androgens though; androgen receptors are found in different parts of the body, and hence if the compound you are using isn’t selective on the sensors of androgens that are being stimulated, the user will experience a myriad of side effects such as gynecomastia, shrunken balls and many more. This is precisely what steroids do. Thankfully, Ostarine is formulated to interact with the androgen receptors in a very selective manner, and this is how it delivers the desired results without any severe complications. The compound will only target the anabolic processes which help in boosting muscle growth, energy and strength levels among others.
Research shows that Ostarine activates muscle stem cells. It is also useful in activating the cells located in the connective tissues. This helps in the remodeling and regeneration of muscles. It also plays a crucial role in enhancing recovery from muscle injuries.
Finally, Ostarine promotes muscle growth by encouraging the activities of IGF-1 or insulin-like growth factor 1 gene.
With that in mind, here are some of the benefits of Ostarine:
1. Increases Muscle Mass
In a double-blind, randomized controlled trial, 120 healthy elderly people were given Ostarine for 12 weeks. At the end of the study period, all individuals who received more than 3 mg witnessed an increase in lean muscle mass. The research also showed that Ostarine was much safer compared to steroids. For an increase in lean muscle mass, the study recommended that the user must take at least 3mg of Ostarine since there was no significant difference on individuals who took less than 3mg.
Ostarine was also effective in increasing lean muscle mass in research studies involving cancer patients. Most of the patients gained between 2 to 3lbs after 5 months of using the SARM. Doses as low as 1mg were also very useful.
There are still a dozen more clinical trials that are investigating the full effects of Ostarine on muscle mass and how it can be utilized for medicinal purposes.
2. Boost Bone Health
Osteoporosis is a severe issue especially among the elderly. Various other factors may also take their toll on one’s bones leading to frequent bone fractures. Ostarine deals with this issue by increasing muscle mass. This increase provides the much-needed support for the skeletal system leading to healthier bones.
Animal studies have hinted to the potential of Ostarine being an effective treatment for bone diseases. The evidence is convincing, but we still need more studies for further elaboration.
3. Promotes Cardiovascular Health
In a double-blind, randomized controlled trial, 120 healthy elderly people were given 1-3mg per day of Ostarine. As the study went on, the researchers recorded a decrease in the levels of lipids found in the blood. HDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglycerides decreased.
A decrease in lipids boosts cardiovascular health significantly. This reduces the risk of conditions such as high blood pressure, stroke, etc.
Side Effects of Ostarine
Ostarine is marketed as an incredible bodybuilding compound because it doesn’t just deliver monstrous results but also because it does so in the safest way possible. However, this does not mean that it is entirely free of adverse reactions. The negative effects of Ostarine may not be as brutal as those of steroids, but this doesn’t make them any less undesirable.
The good news is that unlike steroids and most other performance enhancement drugs; the user can avoid the known side effects of Ostarine by sticking to the recommended dosages. This makes sure that there is only the right amount that your body can tolerate. Even then, some individuals may still be susceptible to some complications.
You should also know that some people are at a bigger risk of contracting specific adverse reactions than others. This comes down to one’s genetics and medical history. That’s why it is advisable to consult your physician before you start taking this or any other SARM for that matter.
One of the most severe side effects of Ostarine is testosterone suppression. Heavy doses or prolonged use of this SARM may suppress your body’s ability to produce the male sex hormone testosterone. Usually, the user will not feel the effects of decreased testosterone secretion while they are still using Ostarine. The problem comes in when one is off-cycle. With low testosterone levels, your body becomes less anabolic. This means that all the muscle gains and other benefits that you may have accrued from using the compound will start diminishing. You will quickly notice the lean muscle mass getting replaced by fat.
Ostarine users can avoid testosterone suppression by merely sticking to the recommended dose. You can also decide to go through PCT to restore normal testosterone production. Post cycle therapy is highly encouraged because even though you may have used the right amounts of Ostarine, there may still be a possibility that your testosterone production was affected. It’s better to be safe than sorry, isn’t that right?
May lead to gynecomastia
Testosterone suppression opens the door to many other issues. Low production of testosterone means that your body will have low t-levels and this will affect the balance between your testosterone and estrogen levels. Estrogen is the female sex hormone. A man should never have more estrogen than testosterone. Low production of testosterone results in more estrogen than testosterone in the body. This leads to a variety of effects, and the most annoying of them all is perhaps gynecomastia. Lots of estrogen leads to fat accumulation which will be distributed to different body parts such as tummy and boobs. This results in the infamous “man boobs” which is up there amongst the worst bodybuilders’ nightmares.
Some users may experience a painful and enlarged nipple. Others may witness the effect on both nipples.
Just like testosterone suppression, gyno can be avoided by going through PCT.
A few of the other side effects reported by users include:
- Irregular sleeping patterns
- Acne breakout
- Joint pain
- Ostarine will lead to aggressive baldness to individuals who are already at a predisposed risk for the condition
- Increased hunger. This may come as a good thing to some people
- Back pain
- A few individuals also reported symptoms of depression
It’s important to note that none of the severe medical complications associated with steroids, e.g. liver toxicity and shrunken balls are in the above list.
It’s also crucial that you know the risk of the side effects will also depend on your reaction to the compound. Different people react differently to SARMs. If your tolerability to Ostarine is low, you may witness the above side effects regardless of the doses you use. The good news is that from our analysis of the different bodybuilding platforms online, over 90% of bodybuilders are successfully using Ostarine.
Ostarine cycles vary from one person to another depending on the goals of the user. Scientists recommend a cycle of between 8 to 10 weeks. Users who stick to 8 weeks cycles usually enjoy the best effects with minimal to zero side effects.
Some people are also known to extend cycles to up to 12 weeks. Of course, the bodybuilding effects will be immense at this point, but then the risk of side effects will also be very high. Testosterone suppression, in particular, will be severe if you take Ostarine for too long. It’s therefore advisable to avoid taking Ostarine for more than 10 weeks.
New users are also advised to start not just with low doses but also with shorter cycles. This reduces the risk of your body reacting negatively to the compound.
When using powerful substances such as Ostarine, it’s vital that you take time off the drug after every cycle. The general rule here is that the amount of time you take off should be the same as the duration you spent taking the SARM. For instance, if your Ostarine cycle lasted for 4 weeks, then you should also take a 4 weeks break.
It should also be noted that post cycle therapy is counted separately from the time off. Here is what I mean; 12 weeks of taking Ostarine, should be followed by 3-4 weeks of PCT before taking the 12 weeks of break.
Some people are also known to restart taking Ostarine much quicker after checking their hormone levels. Is that advisable? Well, if you go for thorough lab screening and your hormones are within healthy levels, lengthy time-off may not be necessary. Unfortunately, if you decide to go down this road, you will need to keep on checking your hormone levels regularly in the subsequent cycle to make sure that your system is functioning correctly.
Due to the lack of sufficient clinical data on the bodybuilding uses of Ostarine, it is difficult to know how much of the compound one should take. Fortunately, years of taking Ostarine have given bodybuilders some experience and knowledge of the doses required to achieve certain results. These doses are unofficial, but they have proven to be very effective.
It’s also known that the doses that one needs to take will depend on one’s objective. Also, men have a higher tolerance to SARMs than women, and hence they can take higher doses of Ostarine.
For bulking purposes, many men take 25mg every day while women use just 10mg per day. Men weighing more than 200lbs are known to take up to 37mg every day. This is highly discouraged though.
When it comes to cutting, men can take 15-20mg per day while women can take between 7 to 10mg every day.
For body recomposition, the doses vary from 12.5 to 25 mg/day.
Ostarine has a relatively long half-life which makes using the SARM very convenient. A single dose is sufficient to last you through the whole day regardless of how wild your fitness goals may be. Some people decide to split the dose and take it 2-3 times per day. There’s nothing wrong with doing that.
It should be noted that if you are going to stack Ostarine with other SARMs, you may have to readjust the doses slightly. In most cases, you’ll have to reduce the amount of Ostarine you are taking.
Is Ostarine legal?
The subject on the legality of SARMs can be very confusing. You need to check the regulations of these substances in your state or country before making your purchase.
In the U.S, Ostarine and other SARMs are permitted for research use only. The FDA does not allow the distribution of these compounds for human consumption. This hasn’t stopped underground labs from distributing the compounds in the black market though. They are still available on different online platforms where they are sold as dietary supplements.
Some companies also sell Ostarine under different names or include it in some of their other products. One of the worrying things about Ostarine is that some companies may even go to the lengths of including the SARM to some of their products without acknowledging its presence. This is also illegal.
You must be very careful when handling Ostarine and other SARMs lest you find yourself on the wrong side of the law.
Athletes engaging in competitive sports should also know that Ostarine is prohibited by WADA for obvious reasons. We’ve already seen a good number of sportsmen and sportswomen of different sports including the American Football league test positive for the substance. These athletes were not just fined, but they were also suspended.
Due to the continued abuse of SARMs in the fitness industry, it is very possible that Ostarine and the other compounds could very soon end up getting banned completely.
Many weightlifters swear by the bulking effects of Ostarine. The SARM is widely used in bulking cycles where it helps bodybuilders to gain pure, clean and dry lean muscle mass.
Ostarine achieves this by promoting protein synthesis which results in bigger muscle gains achieved within a short period.
An increase in muscle mass will also be accompanied by high strength and stamina levels. It also boosts endurance significantly. These are key in every bodybuilder’s fitness journey. The increase in strength and stamina allows one to push their limits with heavier weights. With more endurance, you can also increase the duration you spend in the gym. This is very crucial as it will help you to actualize your fitness fantasies a lot faster.
For full disclosure, Ostarine does have a remarkable impact when it comes to bulking, but it is not as potent as traditional steroids. On the brighter side, you won’t have to deal with aggression, water retention, liver toxicity or many other side effects that are linked to the potent steroids. The tradeoff is quite sensible if you ask me.
- Cutting or Fat Burning
Burning fat is very crucial to get that final physique every bodybuilder needs. It boosts muscle definition delivering the much-desired toned appearance. However, burning fat had been very tricky for quite a long time because most people had to rely on a calorie-deficit diet. This will indeed reduce body fat, but unfortunately, it will also eat into your muscle mass. This basically means that some or all of the gains you would have made will disappear with the fat.
Ostarine offers the perfect solution for this predicament. The SARM will help you to cut down on all the excess body fat while preserving your lean muscle mass. It also retains all your strength. Remember that multiple trials back Ostarine’s ability in preserving muscle wasting disorders which explains why it delivers the desired cutting results without the annoying muscle loss.
Ostarine has proven to be very effective in body recomposition, i.e. gaining muscle mass while losing fat. The SARM has just the right formula to enhance muscle growth and its ability to burn fat will also deliver great results when it comes to cutting.
Body recomposition typically increases one’s weight, but this increase is as a result of muscle gain and not fat accumulation. It also means that Ostarine will help you gain more muscles than the amount of fat you will end up losing. The exact amount of weight you’ll gain depends on the diet you are on and the number of calories you are consuming per day.
Fatigue can be a very serious issue. Many bodybuilders end up wasting a lot of time on the sidelines giving their muscles time to recover.
Ostarine allows you to improve muscle recovery very efficiently. It promotes the healing of both tendon and bone injuries.
Remember that various trials are showing Ostarine’s ability in preventing bone wasting disorders. The SARM achieves that by boosting bone density. This reduces one’s susceptibility to injuries significantly. This offers excellent protection against fractures which is very crucial especially if you spend a good part of your day lifting weights.
No one would want to battle with different life-threatening conditions just so they can gain some muscles. After all, the muscles will be of no use if you will end up spending the rest of your days bedridden. Therefore, Ostarine may not be as powerful as steroids, but it is definitely a better option. We still need more clinical trials on this compound to understand the extent of its effects and the doses required.