Achieve Your Personal Best with HGH Testosterone Enhancer

Testosterone Enhancer: Tribulus Terrestris + Human Growth Hormone
(extract from Supplement Fact & Fiction: Tribulus Terrestris by Bryan Haycock)
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In the pursuit of wealth, many supplement companies make fraudulent claims about what their product can do for you. Often these claims are based on misrepresented science, shoddy science, or no science at all. This column exists to offer the consumer some protection from fraudulent supplement companies as well as direct your attention to supplements that really do offer some benefit. The information presented here will be based entirely on data collected in controlled experimental conditions. Anecdotal evidence will be considered, but not relied upon to support the manufacturer's claims.

HGH is Not Steroids

Human Growth Hormone is not steroids. Read that again. HGH and anabolic steroids are not the same thing. Got it? Good, because there are so many misconceptions about both agents of human growth and development that most people simply lump them into the same category.

Heck, even the media doesn't know the difference. Most stories you read about performance enhancing drugs just hide the fact that the journalist who wrote the story doesn't have a clue about what steroids are, what HGH does, and that there's no grey area that separates the two in athletic competition. HGH is not steroids. Simple as that.

A Definition Please...

HGH is a synthetic version of growth hormone, a 191 amino acid protein-based peptide hormone produced by the anterior pituitary gland and responsible for cell growth and regeneration. Growth hormone determines your height, bone density, skin condition and your body's ability to repair itself and look young.

Anabolic steroids are a drug that mimics the effects of testosterone and dihydrotestosterone. Such drugs, including Halotestin and Durabolin, increase muscle size and strengthen bones. They're legal only with a doctor's prescription to treat medical conditions related to lack of testosterone. When taken for reasons other than this purpose, they're illegal.

Having said this, both HGH and steroids have anabolic properties, meaning they can can 'build up' human tissue. And in some cases, they produce similar benefits. They also share similar side effects, and in the event you're looking for a safer alternative to HGH and steroids for a natural advantage in the gym, we'll review that too.

Where the Confusion Comes From

HGH and steroids are both legally available to treat medical conditions related to hormone deficiencies. Some endocrinologists prescribe HGH to treat growth hormone deficiency, in children and adults. When administered to a child, HGH can increase height, which makes it a popular treatment for children who demonstrate stunted growth.

HGH is also approved to treat cachexia " loss of body mass from AIDS.

Steroids are a legal way to treat deficiencies in testosterone. Such drugs can cause puberty to start early and can treat boys with a genetic disorder. As with HGH, they're legal only when prescribed by a doctor.

Both HGH and steroids are synthetic and have performance enhancing properties. They can both increase muscle volume and human performance, though steroids more dramatically than HGH.

Their anabolic properties make both HGH and steroids an attractive option for individuals who want to enhance the human condition. In that light, HGH is most often abused for cosmetic reasons, particularly to look younger. And steroids are often misused between 10-100 times their recommended dosage to build muscle mass.

Handle With Care

While both treatments are synthetic, HGH is a synthetic form of growth hormone. Somatropin is a well-known patented version of HGH.

Steroids, though designed to mimic testosterone, are simply drugs.

As you may have heard, both synthetic HGH and steroids come with a concerning list of side effects. Among other things, HGH when taken with injections can cause abnormal bone growth, nausea, joint stiffness, increased risk of diabetes, several forms of cancer and more.

But it's those steroids, and the many health risks associated with them, that have received the most attention in media circles. These include:

  • damage to sperm
  • permanent impotence
  • shrunken testicles
  • gynecomastia (man breasts)
  • hair loss
  • acne

Steroids are also linked to increased blood pressure, risk of heart attack and stroke. There is also compelling evidence that steroids can cause irritability, intense mood swings and 'roid rage'. The death and double murder surrounding former WWE superstar Chris Benoit's early demise is an infamous case of such a phenomena.

Men looking to make gains in the weight room should avoid needles completely, be it from HGH or steroids. Instead, they might consider another route.

A Safer Alternative: The HGH Releaser

An HGH releaser is a dietary supplement of herbals and amino acids designed to stimulate natural production of growth hormone.

Unlike synthetic HGH, an HGH releaser contains no growth hormone. Instead, it's formulated to encourage the pituitary gland to release growth hormone naturally, for similar benefits of more intrusive HGH injections, but with milder results and without the reported side effects.

The HGH releaser has received substantial media attention in recent years as an anti-aging supplement. And yet, with the influence of growth hormone on muscle development, a natural growth hormone supplement may have applications for all men looking to build muscle naturally, but without the dangers of synthetic HGH and those nasty steroids.

An HGH releaser may help with muscle growth and offer more energy. But to benefit the most from such a product, it's advisable to choose an HGH releaser with the right dosage for muscle growth and energy, yet within safe and acceptable levels.

To that end, and if this interests you, look for an HGH releaser formulated specifically for muscle growth. Ideally it should consist of an oral supplement and a spray with Alpha-GPC. The product should be taken twice a day, once in the morning and again at night, to maximize your circadian rhythm and natural, exercise-induced growth hormone release.

With this in mind, you might consider HyperGH 14x, which in addition to having the above prerequisites, comes with enteric coating, which maximizes absorption and delivers the most ingredients to the small intestine where they're processed and used for the greatest benefit.


Tribulus Terrestris Extract

I first read of a tribulus terrestris product called Tribestan®, which I believe was the first tribulus terrestris product marketed to the public, in Dan Duchaine's Underground Steroid Handbook. Since that time I have accumulated mostly second hand accounts of how, and how well, it works. Though the research is questionable, products containing tribulus terrestris continue to sell very well.

Tribulus is an herbal supplement used since the late 70's in Eastern Europe. Its purported effects include increased luteinizing hormone release, and thus testosterone production, increased sperm production, increased ejaculatory volume, and increased libido. In young patients with a condition known as hypogonadism, an increase in pubic hair has also been observed. All of these effects make tribulus an interesting supplement indeed.

At the onset, very little research was done on tribulus outside of Eastern Europe, let alone without some association with a Bulgarian company called Sopharma. This makes getting access to independent studies in English very difficult because they are virtually non-existent. Most of the information I will use is provided by Sopharma of Bulgaria. Many of you know that this is the company the manufactures Tribestan®. This does not mean the data is necessarily false, it simply needs to be kept in mind when interpreting the data. Much of their research on tribulus terrestris was used to get patent approval as well as to get the product registered for distribution in the United States.

So why is there so little research done on herbal preparations with medicinal purposes here in the US? For those of you not from the U.S. or not familiar with the “American Medical Model” I will briefly explain. Here in the U.S. we practice what is sometimes called “rescue medicine.” This refers to the fact that we put the overwhelming majority of our funds and man-hours into discovering ways to save people from the brink of death. Regardless of what you hear on the morning news, there is only a minute percentage of federal moneys spent on exploring preventative medicine. We claim bragging rights to a considerable number of medical innovations all designed to cheat fate (i.e. death). If nature has dealt you a bad hand you can count on the American Medical Association to do everything in their Hippocratic power to slip you an Ace or two under the operating table. More often than not this simply prolongs the suffering of the sick as they “enjoy” the sometimes involuntary treatment from medical doctors.

Recently there has been a push from the public to explore more holistic approaches to health. The popularity of “alternative medicine” has been growing every year for the past decade or more. Where are we getting this alternative medicine? From countries in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and of course the Far East. In countries such as China, Bulgaria and the former Soviet Union plants with medicinal properties are taken very seriously. Scientists involved in this research are just as respected as those involved in more traditional “western” medicine, unlike here in the U.S. where they are often labeled as quacks. OK, time to step down form my soapbox. Let me finish by saying that things are changing here in the U.S. and I wouldn't be surprised to see a dramatic paradigm shift in the next couple of years as herbal medicine shows itself profitable to pharmaceutical companies. After all, where do you think the exorbitant amounts of money spent on health care go? That's right, into the pockets of those working in the health care and pharmaceutical industry.

The original purpose for tribulus terrestris extract was as a “tonic” to treat sexual dysfunction. In animal husbandry studies tribulus extract was shown to stimulate rutting behavior (i.e. attempting to score) in rams as well as boars. When the supplement Tribestan® was given to healthy men (Milanov, 1981) in a dose of 750 milligrams per day for five days, LH and testosterone were elevated 72% and 40% respectively. As you might expect, estradiol was also elevated. In fact estradiol was elevated by 81%! The increase in testosterone is obviously what all the fuss is about, nevertheless, you can't ignore the fact that whenever you increase testosterone you are going to increase aromatization and therefor estrogen levels. To put these changes in hormone levels into perspective, the reference range for testosterone in men is between 300 - 1,000 ng/dL. The subjects in this study started out with an average of 600 ng/dL and ended up with about 850 ng/dL. This is still well within the “normal” range for men. Estradiol on the other hand went from normal levels of about 76 pg/ml to significantly elevated levels of 137.5 pg/ml. This is well above normal levels which range from about 20-80 pg/ml in men.

So why haven't people been reporting symptoms of elevated estrogens like bloating and gyno from the use of tribulus products? My first response would be to say because they are not actually experiencing elevated estradiol levels due to the poor quality of most tribulus terrestris supplements. Lab tests (paid for by Sopharma) on several manufacturers of raw tribulus terrestris extract show that the majority don't contain sufficient levels of protodioscine. Sopharma also went on to test various supplements said to contain tribulus terrestris extract and found most all of them to contain far less than that found in Tribestan®. Another important issue to point out is that tribulus terrestris as an herbal supplement is not the same thing as tribulus terrestris extract. Plain tribulus terrestris looks like any other herb that has been chopped up finely and dried, no different than the dried herbs you buy to cook (Fig. 1). Tribulus terrestris extract looks much different. It is a reddish brown [red ochre] powder (Fig. 2).

(Fig. 1)
(Fig. 2)

According to the manufacturers, tribulus “extract” is extremely safe and appears to have no undesirable side effects. One of the reasons Tribulus extract doesn't seem to have any apparent side effects in research subjects is because it doesn't push testosterone above “upper” normal levels. The body is seemingly up-regulating aromatization to accommodate for the increase in LH and testosterone. No studies have been done to date to support this but from the changes in testosterone and estradiol respectively I would say there is a good chance this is in fact what is happening.

So to get the most out of tribulus extract I would suggest that you make sure you are in fact taking tribulus terrestris extract. Now that you know what it looks like you should have no problem finding a product that at least appears to be genuine. Although Chrysin has not exactly performed as expected, if you take enough of it you should be able to reduce the amount of aromatization caused by tribulus extract and hopefully increase testosterone levels slightly more. 1.5 -2 grams per day is a good place to start with Chrysin. Obviously an aromatase inhibitor like Arimidex would be perfect if you have access to it. ½ tablet per day would be sufficient for the first week, then ½ tablet every other day for the duration of time using tribulus extract should be enough. You don't want to completely inhibit aromatase because that will lead to a reduction in GH and IGF-1 levels. As a rule of thumb take as little Arimidex as you need to control symptoms.

Prohormones such as androdiol, norandrodiol, and 1-AD should theoretically also be helpful when taking tribulus extract. To be more precise, tribulus should help prevent or postpone the reduction of LH caused by chronic prohormone intake. I am also assuming that you would be using prohormones to elevate testosterone levels not just to “help” your workouts. This usually requires higher doses of prohormones taken throughout the day and can be accompanied by the usual unwanted side effects. Keep in mind that we are talking about taking 750-1,500 milligrams of pure tribulus extract per day to be effective. Taking less will simply be a waste of money for most people. Upon discontinuation of the tribulus product you should taper your dose over a period of at least 2-3 weeks.

Summary of Tribulus terrestris extract

Compound:

Tribulus terrestris extract

NOTE: The following comments and recommendations are valid only with respect to tribulus products containing tribulus terrestris extract standardized for at least 45% steroidal saponins of the furostanol type. Of these saponins protodioscine should predominate.

Reported Benefit:

Marketed as a “testosterone booster”, claims include increased Luteinizing Hormone (LH) release and thus increased testosterone production. Unfortunately claims about tribulus products usually insinuate that you will get steroid-like effects from this product. Even the most potent tribulus products will not approach the effectiveness of most synthetic androgens for building muscle.

Have controlled studies been performed?

Yes, but most research was done in Eastern Europe and was sponsored/produced by Sopharma, a manufacturer of the product. Their research shows tribulus terrestris extract to have a significant effect by increasing LH (~72%), testosterone(~40%), and estradiol(~80%).

Mechanism of action:

Tribulus Terrestris extract has been shown to stimulate LH release from the pituitary gland. It may also have some peripheral effects as manifested by increased pubic hair in some hypogonadal test subjects. It is speculated that the metabolites of protodioscine may also have mild androgenic properties. The exact mechanisms are still vague and current explanations are speculative at best.

Interaction with other nutrients?

No

Effective dose:

Effective doses used in clinical settings are 750-1500 milligrams per day.

NOTE: I refer to studies using Tribestan®. Other supplements with lower concentrations of active steroidal saponins would require larger doses to achieve the same effect.

Proper dosing schedule (prior to athletic competitions):

Take 3-4 times per day with meals. As the half-life of protodioscine is very low (~2 ½ hours), a more frequent dosing schedule might increase effectiveness.

NOTE: In order to have an effect on male fertility, supplementation must continue for at least 90 days.

Toxicity?

None demonstrated with “extract”

Conditions where may be effective:

May be most effective at correcting a decline in LH pulsatile amplitude and/or frequency. Should be effective at returning testosterone to “normal” levels in situations where testosterone is abnormally low such as in chronic or acute hypogonadism, after a steroid cycle, while overtraining, with age associated declines in testosterone, and during extreme and/or prolonged dieting.

NOTE: Taking an aromatase inhibitor should significantly enhance the effectiveness of tribulus terrestris extract to elevate serum testosterone.

References for Tribulus Terrestris extract:

NSI Tribulus Terrestris Extract -- 200 Capsules

Vankov, S. Apropos of Tribestan pharmacology. Scientific technical Report, 1980.

Viktorov, Iv., D. Kaloyanov, Al. Lilov, L. Zlatanova, Vl., Kasabov. Clinical investigation on Tribestan in males with disorders in the sexual function MBI, 1982 (in print).

Gendjeiv, Z. Studies on Tribestan carcinogenicity. Scientific technical report, 1981.

Koumanov, F., E. Bozadjieva, M. Andreeva, E. Platonova, V. Ankov. Clinical trial of Tribestan. Exper. Med. 1982, 2.

Milanov, S., E. Maleeva, M. Tashkov. Tribestan effect on the concentration of some hormones in the serum of healthy subjects (Company documentation)(1981).

Nikolov, R. Neuropharmacological Study on Tribestan. Scientific technical report, 1981.

Protich, M., D. Tsvetkov, B. Nalbanski, R. Stanislavov, M. Katsarova. Clinical trial of Tribestan in infertile males. Scientific technical Report, 1981.

Tanev, G., S. Zarkova, Toxicological studies on Tribestan. Scientific technical Report, 1981.

Tomova, M., R. Gyulemetova, S. Zarkova. An agent for stimulation of sexual function. Patent (11) 27584 A61K35/1978.

Tomova, M., R. Gyulemetova, S. Zarkova   License (11) 27584 AGIR 35/1978.

Tomova, M., R. Gyulemetova, S. Zarkova at al., License 68428/18.I.1985.


Statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (They are a gestapo agency for pharmaceutical industry anyway). These products are not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Always consult with your professional health care provider before changing any medication.

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