There’s always a raging debate on social media around whether SARMs are more powerful and safer than prohormones.
SARMs are definitely easy to get hold of (at least at the moment, but that may change with Congress in the USA instigating the SARMs control act and China banning the export of SARMs), and prohormones are already a scheduled substance that cannot be sold legally in the USA at least (and most other countries).
But people can still get hold of both of these online, and plenty of people use both SARMs and prohormones to get great gains. But which is better, and which is safer? That’s the debate we will try and answer here.
What Are SARMs?
SARMs stand for selective androgen receptor modulators, which literally means they selectively modulate androgen receptors in the body. They target androgen receptors in bone and muscle tissue, activating them in the way that testosterone does. In effect, they replace testosterone, which is why post cycle, you need a PCT supplement to help your body to start producing its own again as it cuts back.
However, that’s not the whole story with SARMs, as several key SARMs (Cardarine, MK-677, and SR-9009) are not anabolic in nature at all, so they don’t even work by selectively activating androgen receptors.
SARMs are best used to bulk or cut, and to get the most out of them you should stack them and really push yourself in the gym on cycle. They are not a magic potion, but with a great gym routine and diet, you will definitely see great gains, in the region of 10 lbs of lean muscle mass gain, or up to 10 lbs fat cutting in a 10 week cycle.
What Are Prohormones?
Prohormones act as chemical precursors to hormones. So they act like steroids, but they have to be converted first which lowers the potency as they don’t convert at 100%. Different prohormones target different conversion hormones.
Because of this conversion process, prohormones are not as strong and aggressive as anabolic steroids. For example, 4-Androstenediol or androst-4-ene-3β,17β-diol, two of the main ones, convert themselves into testosterone at a rate of around 16%.
They work in exactly the same way as anabolic steroids, by activating androgen receptors in the body. This means you will get muscle gain because it isn’t targeted, you will get other alpha male traits, such as a deepening voice and more strength, but that is alongside negative traits such as hair loss and aggression in the same way as with steroids.
So they are considered a mild version of steroids, however, they are also now banned in the way that anabolic steroids are. So a lot of them aren’t around anymore, they simply aren’t made, or they are not available from any source that you would really want to ever buy from.
A decade ago, prohormones were really popular. They were seen as a slightly safer but still potent version of anabolic steroids. You could buy them in bodybuilding and supplement stores, and they did give good results. They were sold under brand names such as Epistane and Superdrol.
But as people realized that they were actually very damaging in the same way steroids were, and they were causing a lot of side effects that were life-threatening, in the same way, that anabolic steroids were but just takin
g longer to achieve getting those side effects, prohormones were eventually banned in the USA, and are now banned in most other countries as well.
A few compounds are still around, including 1-DHEA and 4-DHEA, and these can give decent results, but they aren’t particularly potent, and SARMs have a far better track record of safety.
The Legal Status Of SARMs And Prohormones
Prohormones are pretty much banned everywhere in a way that anabolic steroids are. You can still get them on the grey market, but they are really poor quality.
In one study, it was found that many prohormones were cut with other stuff, mixed with anabolic steroids, or weren’t anything like what was described chemically in the bottle. Basically, it was steroid Russian roulette.
If you can find a reputable source of prohormones, good luck to you, but they certainly aren’t illegal to buy or sell, and the quality is so variable that you could never rely on batch to batch on what you’re getting and using.
SARMs are currently legal to buy and sell, as long as they are not advertised and sold for human consumption, It’s currently not illegal to consume them either. I usually purchase SARMs in capsule form from Swisschems they also sell PCt supplements, peptides, and nootropics as well.
However, at the start of 2020, China introduced a ban on the manufacture and export of SARMs worldwide. So the supply of cheap Chinese SARMs is going to dry up and nobody has picked up the baton yet.
On top of all that, in the USA at the moment, the SARMs control act is going through Congress. This would put it into the same category as prohormones and anabolic steroids, effectively making it illegal to sell or buy them. If you do, you’ll have the FDA and maybe even the Feds down on you like a ton of bricks.
However, that SARMs control act has been stalled for almost 2 years now. With the coronavirus outbreak, that delay length is set to increase. But the bottom line is that eventually in the USA SARMs will also come with scheduled substances that cannot be made, sell, or bought.
SARMs Vs Prohormones: Which Should You Use?
There’s no doubting that prohormones are very powerful. Not as powerful as anabolic steroids, but if you want pure aggressive bulk, and quickly, then they are the next best thing.
But there is a lot of downsides to prohormones as well, these are the pros and cons if you’re considering using them:
- Can produce dramatic anabolic results
- Fast-acting results
- Almost as good as anabolic steroids
- Can have severe side effects
- Activate androgen receptors generally in the body
- Are completely banned
- Most prohormones for sale are cut or not what they say
- Prohormones are highly suppressive of testosterone
The bottom line for me on prohormones is I really wouldn’t go near them. That’s the same with anabolic steroids as well. There’s a reason both of the banned.
Okay, I get what you’re thinking, if you want the best results in a short space of time, then they are more effective. You’re playing Russian roulette with your body though, and even your life, if you happen to have a weak heart, or problem with your kidneys that you weren’t aware of.
So let’s take a look at SARMs instead.
At this moment in time, SARMs are far easier to get your hands on. They aren’t banned anywhere, and 100% pure SARMs are obtainable easily online.
SARMs also produce good results. Not as good as prohormones if you put in the same effort though. But if you stack them, and you work hard, and back it up with great nutrition, then you can get steroid-level results in a few cycles.
These are the pros and cons of using SARMs:
- Easy to buy
- Legal in the USA and other countries
- 100% pure SARMs are easy to get your hands on
- SARMs are easy to take and manage
- Results can reach prohormone levels
- SARMs can be highly anabolic and suppressive to testosterone
- Some of the side effects of non-anabolic SARMs in the long term are unknown
So look, for me, SARMs are the better option. They are far safer to use, easy to obtain, and you can get great results with them.
I’ve used SARMs myself for a couple of years, and I recently ran a cutting stack using Cardarine, Ligandrol, and SR-9009. After 10 weeks, the weight was falling off me, and the lean muscle was showing through fantastically. Really potent, and just not worth taking a gamble for me on trying to find prohormones that are actually legitimate and would work better.
For me, the advice at the end of this has to be don’t bother looking for prohormones. They are out there, but you won’t have a clue if you’ve got the real deal until you’ve used them for a couple of cycles. By that point, you could be in real trouble physically. They can really impact your liver enzymes, hormone production, and really mess you up for the long term, especially if cut with rubbish.
I’m not messing around here, some guys experience total testosterone shutdown using this stuff, and other unwanted side effects from the fact they are cut with crap that you just don’t know about.
For me, stack SARMs, and stacked them with other supplements. Peptides, and herbal bodybuilding supplements, alongside protein shakes and all the usual stuff, will have you packing on muscle and stripping fat like there’s no tomorrow within three months or less.