About half of a man’s testosterone is actually freely in circulation, or ‘biologically active’. The other half is bound to a globulin, called the sex h...
The phrase, life is not fair, is a very true saying. It is true in life as well as other things you may encounter in your lifetime, including sports. The sports world is not exactly fair due to many reasons, especially because of legal and illegal steroid use. There are different types of steroids used in sports, and most are very controversial, many different groups use them as well. Finally, they have many harmful side-affects.
The androgenic effects of AAS are numerous. Depending on the length of use, the side effects of the steroid can be irreversible. Processes affected include pubertal growth, sebaceous gland oil production, and sexuality. Some examples of effects are growth of the clitoris in females and the penis in male children, increased vocal cord size, increased libido, suppression of natural sex hormones, and impaired production of sperm. Effects on women include deepening of the voice, facial hair growth, and possibly a decrease in breast size. Men may develop an enlargement of breast tissue, known as gynecomastia, testicular atrophy, and a reduced sperm count.
Testosterone, one of the main ingredients in steroids is a result in the body from cholesterol; testosterone like other hormones has its main effect on tissues. “Testosterone enters a body cell and attaches to a receptor, which goes into the cell nucleus where it activates the synthesis of protein. Protein synthesis leads to tissue repair and growth. If we were able to increase protein synthesis it would lead to quicker regeneration of the body, and to give faster recovery from illness and injuries”.
Former NFL player Lawrence Taylor once said: “Steroids are for guys who want to cheat opponents." Recently, many professional athletes have been caught abusing steroids in order to improve their performance in certain sports. While there are many different types of steroids, the one most commonly talked about and used by many of these athletes today are called Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids. Anabolic steroids are a synthetic drug that comes from and has the same effects as the male sex hormone, testosterone. It increases protein made within the cells which results in cellular tissue build up specifically in the muscles. Steroid use throughout the past has shown to have many negative effects on the body and has had a enormous impact in sports, especially in baseball.
Until the year 1935 scientists never knew that testosterone steroids were associated with an increase in muscle production. During the next two years scientists found through research with dogs that in certain circumstances steroids had an increase on muscle mass production. There are three major divisions of steroids: corticosteroids, estrogens and progestogens, androgens. Corticosteroids are found in both prescription and non-prescription creams that are used to control rashes and itches. These two common trade names are Cortaid and Lanacort. This form of steroid is not to be thought of as having addictive properties. The second forms of steroids are estrogens and progestogens. These forms of steroids are female sex hormones that promote sexual development and help to maintain a healthy reproductive system. The third forms of steroids are androgens. These are the male hormones called testosterone, which lead to secondary sexual characteristics and also help to maintain the male reproductive system. These specific forms have been labeled a highly addictive and are frequently abused; they are referred to as “anabolic steroids.”
Anabolic steroids are the quickest known way for male athletes to improve their bodies and excel in sports, but not necessarily the safest. The Encyclopedia of Drugs and Alcohol defines anabolic steroids as "the synthetic versions of the naturally occurring male sex hormone testosterone; they are properly called anabolic-androgen steroids because they have both body building (anabolic) and masculinizing (androgenic) effects." Anabolic steroids have been around for many years, dating back to the 1930's, where they were primarily used to treat hypogonadism, a condition in which the testicles do not produce enough testosterone for normal growth, development, and sexual functioning. Shortly after their discovery, people began abusing them. In World War II for example, German troops were given anabolic steroids to improve muscle strength as well as increasing aggressiveness to fight at war (Wadler and Hainline). The first abuse of steroids in sports did not occur until the 1950's, when Russian athletes began taking steroids to increase weight and strength. The Russians use of anabolic steroids led to the development of anabolic steroids in the United States. Steroids have come a long way since then. They now serve an important role in assisting patients with many medical conditions. They are often given to patients with abnormally low amounts of testosterone, such as delayed puberty and some types of impotence, as well as treating people with AIDS and other diseases that waste away their bodies (NIDA). In the United States anabolic steroids are available legally, but they require a prescription.
Wrongful uses for steroids have become a popular phenomenon in life today by the professional athletes encouraging them to adolescent minds. The TCADA, or Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, says: “The majority of users taking steroids are young, male athletes, bodybuilders, and endurance sports participants” (Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse 1). If one uses steroids at an age too young growth can be stunned forever. Steroids can also cause acne flare up, rapid mood swings, premature balding and aggressive behavior. In Figure 1, it displays the key locations on the body that steroids affect with the harmful effects. Steroids do not just affect men; women also are victims of the harmful effects, such as developing male hormones, causing hair growth and deepening of the voice.
In the past three decades, steroids has been becoming a serious problem more than ever in the athletic field. Steroids are anabolic drug "to build" growth hormones that include the androgens (male sex hormones) principally testosterone and estrogen and progestogens (female sex hormones). Steroids were first developed for medical purposes. They're used in controlling inflammation, strengthening weakened hearts, preventing conception, and alleviating symptoms of arthritis and asthma. Unfortunately research has shown that steroids have been abused in almost every kind of sport. Although steroids contribute to a muscular body, usage should remain illegal because they physically deteriorate and mentally destroy the body.
Natural testosterone is produced in healthy testicles which are capable of producing a lot of this chemical if and when required. Their ability to produce testosterone is limited by the negative feedback systems that are in place in the body.
Testosterone acts by directly binding to receptors found in skeletal muscle which stimulates protein synthesis. Numerous studies have shown that in aging men, a decrease in resting testosterone levels exists. This decrease begins at approximately 40 years of age and continues at a rate of 1% per year thereafter (Brill, Weltman et al. 2002). The observed decreases in resting serum testosterone levels contribute to declines in both muscle mass, and muscle strength. This age-related decline in serum testosterone levels is referred to as “andropause”. In the human body, approximately 98% of circulating testosterone is bound to serum proteins, in particular sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) and albumin. The remaining 1%-2% is unbound
Testosterone is a male steroid hormone which is responsible for maintaining man’s physical and mental health. Testosterone hormone plays a vital role in sperm production and most often it is associated with sex drive. Apart from regulating sperm production, it also regulates bone mass, muscle size, fat distribution and red blood cell production. The production of testosterone significantly increases during puberty and begins to decline after age 30. In a recent survey, it has been stated that low testosterone is becoming increasingly common among men. The decline in testosterone production is driven by less stigma, aging population and more precise tests.