It seems like everyone and their cat is on steroids these days. But how do you tell what steroids vs natural really looks like?
It’s totally natural to scope out guys in the gym, especially when even the most unlikely of dudes are getting jacked. So, the next time you’re wondering if that muscle is natural or not, keep an eye out for the following signs.
Here’s how to spot when a dude is taking steroids.
Please note: Some dudes (in rare cases) may have a couple of these. However, when several of these signs occur, it’s highly likely they’re a steroid user.
Steroids vs natural comparison: How to tell
If you choose to use anabolic steroids, there are a variety of side effects that can make steroid use pretty damn obvious. Although, of course, many guys won’t admit to taking roids, there are specific signs on their bodies that give the game away.
So if you can’t help but envy some jacked-up dude in the gym, keep reading, as it might not be the hard-earned muscle you think! Here are the tell-tale signs of steroid muscles vs natural muscles.
While this isn’t a guaranteed side effect of bodybuilding steroids, flushed and reddish skin can be seen in many roids users.
This is due to the powerful effects of steroids, causing your blood pressure to rise, therefore spiking your body temperature.
So if you’re sitting in the gym and notice a guy looking pretty flushed, the chances are he’s had a helping hand to increase his size. Since the intention of anabolic steroids is to increase your testosterone levels, these often dangerously high levels also cause your LDL cholesterol levels to increase, too.
Yep, we’re talking about the bad cholesterol, which then in turn increases your blood pressure.
As we said, this isn’t always the case, though. But it is typically more noticeable when taking bulking steroids, such as trenbolone, dianabol and anadrol. These compounds are pretty brutal, causing significant strain on your heart.
So, if you’re wondering how natural vs steroids differences show, flushed skin can be one sign of roids.
Exaggerated trapezius muscles
If something seems too good to be true, the likelihood is, it is. And this is true in the case of a natty vs roids user and their trapezius muscles.
A damn hard muscle to train and make pop in size, crazy-sized trapezius muscles is a common sign of a steroid user. This is due to the muscle receptors in the traps, which respond hugely to steroids – since they contain more androgen receptors compared to other muscle groups.
Sure, some guys can train their traps hard and have very good genes for this type of growth, but if they’re bulging beyond all realistic expectation, you could be looking at the result of steroids.
Gynecomastia (man boobs)
When it comes to steroid muscles vs natural muscles, gynecomastia is a common side effect of anabolic steroids. While we all want to achieve a rock-hard chest, there is quite a difference between hard-earned muscle and a build-up of breast tissue.
“Gyno,” often referred to as “man boobs” occurs when high levels of the female hormone – estrogen – is present. Although the intention of bodybuilding steroids is to increase your testosterone levels, the body responds to these unnaturally high levels with an increase in estrogen – resulting in man boobs.
However, yet again, not every steroids user will experience gynecomastia, as it is determined by the aromatase enzyme, which is responsible for converting T into estrogen. Some dudes may experience it worse than others, depending on their genetics.
So, when it comes to natural vs steroids – this unusual bloat in the breast tissue is a sure sign of steroid use!
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There’s nothing quite like reliving your acne-ridden teenage years, right? While this may not be strictly muscle-focused, when we talk about natty vs roids, acne is a huge giveaway for steroid users.
This is due to the powerful effects of androgenic steroids causing the sebaceous glands to release oils in the skin. A common side effect for trenbolone users, it’s more than a few pimples as this type of acne can get pretty severe.
While not every guy has blemish-free skin, when it comes to steroids vs natural bodybuilders, both acne, acne scarring and even back acne can be an obvious sign of steroid use.
Many bodybuilders would die for an incredibly low body fat percentage. So when it comes to a steroids vs natural comparison, those juicing can experience an incredibly concerning bloat – which is pretty obvious for those who know natty vs roids signs.
This bloat is caused by water retention, due to high estrogen levels. Yet again, unnatural levels of testosterone cause the body to counteract this rise with estrogen. At its peak, this increase of estrogen results in an increase in sodium salts absorption.
Although steroid muscles vs natural muscles can be pretty obvious to tell apart, the side effects of illegal bodybuilding steroids are what really give the game away. For those using roids, to reduce water retention it is recommended that you increase your water intake.
Despite a spike in estrogen being the main cause (due to unnaturally high levels of testosterone in the body), any dangerous compound is going to impact the body significantly. By putting the body under stress, water retention occurs to try dilute the threat.
So, the next time you’re in the gym contemplating a user of roids vs natural growth, keep an eye out for the dreaded bloat.
Super-fast muscle growth (without fat)
In an ideal world, we’d all gain muscle mass overnight, with zero risks of gaining a little fat along the way. Unfortunately, this isn’t quite so easy.
Gaining a huge amount of lean muscle isn’t strictly impossible, but it is typically unheard of to not gain some fat initially during the process. And so, when it comes to natty vs roids, one sure sign is a huge amount of lean muscle gain – with zero fat gain.
While it is possible to gain large amounts of muscle without fat gain, this most certainly doesn’t happen overnight.
Steroids vs natural comparison 101: Too much lean muscle gain is a red flag for a roid user.
Steroids vs natural: The conclusion
If a dude at the gym shows several of these red flags for steroid use, the chances are they’ve been juicing.
However, that doesn’t mean that a roid user will show all of these signs. It is also pretty damn rare that a natural bodybuilder would experience these side effects.
Now, when you’re hitting the gym and see some gym rat with poppin’ traps, think back to this article! In terms of roids vs natural, there are probably other signs you may notice over time, but we’ve got you covered for now!
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