It’s very hard to deny that SARMs are much safer than steroids when used correctly. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any side effects to look out for.
Before you decide to buy sarms, read this article and make sure that understand the risks. For more in depth guides, check out our individual guides.
I do want to point out that we split this guide is aimed at our male readers. If you’re a female curious about side effects then stay tuned for our guide for females.
Now that’s out of the way, lets go ahead and jump into it. Here are the top five sarms side effects that you should look out for:
#1 – Suppressed Testosterone
There seems to be a lot of confusion about whether sarms suppress testosterone.
I can clear this up right now: yes, they do. But not by very much.
The good news is that while sarms do lower testosterone, they do not suppress LH or FSH. This is a very important difference between sarms vs steroids.
You see, anabolic steroids suppress your natural Testosterone, LH and FSH. In fact, steroids can completely nuke these hormones completely.
Why does this matter? Because LH and FSH are the building blocks to your body’s natural test production.
These are two hormones you do NOT want to crash. With sarms, you don’t have to worry about that.
Because sarms are selective by nature, they do not affect your body the same way that steroids do. They do suppress (not crash) your natty test production, but not the building blocks.
That’s why it’s so easy to recover from a sarms cycle. Even though your baseline testosterone levels dip, your LH and FSH remain untouched.
That means when you come off your cycle, your levels will go right back to where they were.
How to Prevent Suppression on SARMs
You don’t need to do anything to prevent suppressed test levels from sarms.
There’s no point, because the temporary suppression caused from cycling doesn’t last. Studies conclude that it takes around 5 weeks to return to normal baseline levels.
There are exceptions of course. For example, if you are running a bulking stack then you will experience more suppression.
High amounts of suppression can lead to some symptoms. To counteract both, try a low daily dose of Cialis (5mg a day) and up your caffeine intake.
Most people won’t even notice the temporary drop in T, so don’t worry too much.
#2 Hair Loss
Next up we have every guy’s worst nightmare: hair loss.
Androgenic Alopecia AKA Male Pattern Baldness is very common in men. In fact, over XYZ% of men report that they are losing their hair.
It’s a natural part of aging, but that doesn’t make it fun.
So do sarms cause hairloss?
Yes, but not any more than having natural levels of testosterone in your body.
Here’s the thing: male pattern baldness is inevitable if you have the gene. Most guys do, which means it’s only a matter of time before hair follicles begin to miniaturize and fall out.
If your hair follicles are so sensitive that a small dose of sarms causes them to fall out, you were about to lose it anyways.
How to Prevent Hair Loss on SARMs
If you want to be extra careful while you run your cycle, here is a bulletproof way to prevent hair loss on sarms.
Use Nizoral Shampoo
Nizoral is an over the counter brand of medicated shampoo used to treat dandruff. It contains Ketoconazole, which binds to the androgen receptors in your scalp and prevents hair loss. Use it every time you shower and allow it 5 minutes to absorb before rinsing.
Daily Head Massages
It sounds weird, but it works. Scalp massages increase blood flow and provide a healthy environment for hair growth. Using your fingers, massage your scalp twice a day for five minutes each time.
Still concerned? Applying topical RU58841 will stop hair loss in it’s tracks. You can buy it here. 50mg a day is all you need to keep your hair while on cycle.
Many people think that acne only affects teenagers, but this is false. In fact, lots of adults struggle with acne, and sarms can make it worse.
If you aren’t already susceptible to acne then you don’t need to worry. It’s very rare to get acne from sarms if you’re not already experiencing it.
For those of you who do get breakouts here and there, you need to be careful when cycling.
How to Prevent Acne on SARMs
I’m going to assume that since you already deal with acne, you know how to take care of your skin. Most people with acne actually have pretty good skin hygiene!
To crank it up a notch, you can try using Nizoral shampoo as a face wash. It will decrease sebum and prevent pimples caused by androgenic activity in the skin.
Don’t use it too much though. It is very drying, so I wouldn’t recommend using it more than once a day.
If you’ve never used a performance enhancing drug before, you’re probably saying… “I thought pumps were good! I like pumps!”
For the most part you’re right. Pumps can feel really good (and even be addicting). But we’re not talking about the pumps you get from repping out bicep curls.
Some pumps can hurt BAD. Go ask anyone who has experienced shin, calf, or lower back pumps. It’s the equivalent of getting a charlie horse that lasts for hours.
What causes it?
To be honest, nobody knows for sure. There are some theories that dehydration can play a role. Others say it has to do with potassium levels.
One thing is for sure though, sarms such as LGD 4033 can make them worse.
I’m not sure of the exact science (nobody is), but look online and you’ll see that many users experience painful pumps while using sarms.
Here’s a pretty good regimen for preventing painful pumps caused by sarms:
- Increase water intake to 1Gal per day.
- Take a potassium supplement.
- Supplement with 10g of taurine per day.
- Use a foam roller on affected muscles.
- Take 400mg of ibuprofen.
#5 Liver Impact
Last but not least, we need to address the biggest possible side effect of using sarms: liver impact.
Liver values are the standard indicator of liver health. The two main ones that you should check are ALT and AST.
Both ALT and AST are indicators of liver inflammation. While they do not give the full picture, you can use them as reference points while on cycle.
The only way to know what your levels look like is to get your blood drawn. I recommend using a service like PrivateMDLabs that allows you to order blood tests online.
You’ll want to get a liver and kidney panel done before you start your cycle and also a few weeks in. That will allow you to assess how your body is reacting and whether your liver is being affected.
There are a few things that you can take to prevent any sort of liver damage while using sarms like RAD 140. Here is what I recommend:
And for the love of god, if you decide to cycle then DO NOT drink alcohol while you are on!
No. Large doses of Cardarine causes tumor growth in mice, but it’s never been replicated in humans.
It is physically impossible to get gyno from using sarms. Anyone who says otherwise is using a product that contains unlisted ingredients. Always shop with a trusted source!
There has never been a single reported death attributed to using sarms.
Chris Jackson is a fitness blogger, physique model, and co founder of SARMS.io. He received his degree in exercise physiology from the University of Miami in 2012 and now contributes to some of the largest mens fitness publications in the world.