Dianabol is one of the most powerful and popular anabolic steroids. Even though it’s been banned for a long time, the number of people that use it is still high and continues to grow.
However, if you’re among those who are interested, you need to learn about the side effects of Dianabol first and if it’s worth the risk.
What is Dianabol?
Dianabol is an anabolic steroid and is one of the first to be widely used by bodybuilders to boost performance.
What makes it popular with fitness buffs is that it is fast acting. In just a few weeks of taking Dianabol you can gain up to 20 lbs of muscle.
Today there are a lot of other steroids that build muscle and bulk you up, but Dianabol is still highly regarded and used in bulking preparations and stacks.
For all its potential you need to know the risks and why it is banned in the US and other countries.
The Dangers of Taking Dianabol
Dianabol carries a lot of potential side effects, and the severity varies among individuals. But the following are the most common.
Keep in mind that you will feel these side effects even if you do not overdose. While the impact varies, you will end up experiencing the following.
Estrogenic Side Effects
- Water retention
- High blood pressure
Dianabol has powerful estrogenic properties because its aromatase level is low. This causes Dianabol to turn into methylestradiol instead of estradiol which is more potent.
The end result is water retention and gynecomastia (man boobs).
Man boobs and water retention are very common and manifest quickly. After just a few doses of Dianabol you will see and feel these two side effects.
High blood pressure is another estrogenic side effect. The more Dianabol you take, the faster man boobs will appear.
Man boobs and water retention are the most prevalent side effects, but there are ways to counteract this.
SERMs are milder but for a lot of people find it’s effective. If it doesn’t work, take AI instead.
AI is more potent because it lowers serum estrogen levels and blocks aromatization. Unfortunately, AI negatively impacts cholesterol. Dianabol also increases cholesterol so that’s a double whammy.
If you’re going to use AI with Dianabol, proper management of cholesterol is necessary.
With SERM it is not that serious since it doesn’t affect your cholesterol level as much. However SERM might have a negative effect on your liver.
Going back to water retention, Dianabol may cause greater water retention. This leads to their buildup below your skin, making it difficult to build muscles.
The more water retention your body has, the harder it is to define muscles. You’ll not only look bloated but feel bloated.
- Body hair growth
- Oily skin
A complete list of Dianabol dangers won’t be complete without mentioning its androgenic side effects.
These include acne, body hair growth and rapid hair loss among those who are vulnerable to male pattern baldness.
Excessive body hair growth and hair loss may seem contradictory but it’s not.
What Dianabol does is make you vulnerable to hair loss at the top of your head. At the same time it’s going to spur hair growth in other parts of your body.
Dianabol also leads to virilization in women, the most common symptoms being clitoral enlargement, deepening voice and excess body hair growth.
Women may be able to avoid this by taking very low doses, but the dosage needs to be so low that it’s practically useless.
The reason this happens is Dianabol gets metabolized via the 5-alpha reductase enzyme. This is also the enzyme that lowers your testosterone.
The net effect of all this most 5-alpha reductase inhibitors don’t work as well on Dianabol as it does on other steroids.
While acne is the most common side effect, you’ll also end up with oily skin. Oily skin is not only irritating but it makes your skin more vulnerable to acne.
Another thing to consider is even if you stop taking Dianabol, it doesn’t mean your acne will disappear. Instead it’s going to take a while for acne and oily skin to disappear.
- Increases bad cholesterol
- Lowers high cholesterol
- Makes you vulnerable to cardiovascular diseases
Dianabol is notorious for its negative effect on cholesterol and cardio. It leads to a spike in LDL (bad) cholesterol and lowers HDL (good) cholesterol, and the changes produced is significant.
This doesn’t mean you can’t keep your cholesterol level healthy, but it’s going to be more difficult. However reading it can be difficult and misleading since the HDL level is being limited.
It is important to note that repeated use of Dianabol and other anabolic steroids will have a detrimental effect on your heart.
Another thing to consider is that it’s gong to build up plaque in your arteries. This leads to greater strain on your cholesterol especially if you take AI.
Bottom line: Dianabol is going to affect your cholesterol level and the results won’t be good. Taking an anti-estrogen supplement to counteract gynecomastia also increases your cholesterol level so management is key.
Blood pressure and cholesterol levels are linked together and management of both is essential to your health.
Hypertension and high cholesterol makes you vulnerable to heart attacks, stroke, diabetes and other diseases.
Do not take Dianabol if you have high blood pressure and your cholesterol level is already high.
- Liver damage
Is Dianabol toxic? Yes, it has hepatoxic properties as it is a C17-alpha alkylated anabolic steroid.
There are more toxic anabolic steroids but that doesn’t mean Dianabol is mild. Taking too much in short, causes liver damage.
Even if you take Dianabol at the recommended doses, liver enzyme levels go up. This doesn’t mean your liver’s been damage, only that it’s under a lot of strain and health risk is higher than normal.
Needless to say you should not take Dianabol or any anabolic steroids if your liver is already damaged.
Do not take another C17-aa steroid for 6 weeks after using a C17-aa steroid. Not all bodybuilders follow this, but you are putting yourself at risk.
You’ll also help yourself reducing or eliminating alcohol from your diet while you’re on Dianabol.
Just remember that alcohol is not good for your liver, and consuming it while you’re taking Dianabol puts it under even more stress.
Apart from alcohol you should avoid OTC (over the counter) medications as most of them are hepatic and worsen the steroid’s side effects.
One thing needs to be pointed here: if Dianabol causes liver damage it will be permanent.
Basically what happens is Dianabol enters your bloodstream in its entirety, making you vulnerable to liver damage and even make you susceptible to cancer.
One of the worst side effects of Dianabol is its negative impact on testosterone production.
All anabolic steroids suppress testosterone, but it is very apparent with Dianabol.
Some of the side effects include weakness, your testicles get smaller, low sex drive and other symptoms of low testosterone will also appear.
Even if you’re young and strong, it’s still better if you take an exogenous testosterone supplement to minimize the effect.
It is true that some men are more genetically predisposed to suffering testosterone side effects, but don’t bet on your genetics to keep you safe. Take a testosterone supplement to keep the symptoms at bay.
Even if the symptoms are mild, this doesn’t change the fact you’ve got low testosterone.
At the end of your Dianabol cycle, your testosterone levels will slowly return to functional levels. However this is only possible if there were no problems with your testosterone in the first place.
Overdosing on Dianabol damages your Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Testicular-Axis (HPTA) and impedes recovery. That’s the reason why PCT (Post Cycle Therapy) is necessary after an anabolic steroid cycle.
It must be stressed your testosterone level will not return to normal on its own.
You need to take Nolvadex or other supplements to boost your testosterone. Even with Novaldex it’s going to take months for your testosterone to get back up.
Other Side Effects
The side effects above are the most common, but there are many others that may affect you. Overdosing or stacking with powerful anabolic steroids could be detrimental to your health.
Among these are:
- Damage to other organs in your body besides your liver
- Mood swings
- Aggressive behavior
- Weakened immune system
Dianabol is often called the granddaddy of all anabolic steroids, and in spite of the competition it’s still got a strong following.
However, the fact remains that this anabolic steroid is illegal.
If you don’t want to get into legal trouble or suffer the side effects of Dianabol, you may want to check out this guide to safe alternatives.