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Human Growth Hormone (HGH) is naturally present in our body but slowly recedes as we grow older. The pituitary gland, which based in the brain, is the one responsible for our growth hormone and physical development. Some people suffer from overproduction of HGH, resulting in giantism, while others suffer from growth hormone deficiency (GHD), resulting in proportionate dwarfism. Those who suffer from giantism can become as tall as 7 or even reaching 8 feet. In some rare cases, they will suffer from acromegaly, a disorder that often affects middle-aged people. The sufferers of acromegaly will experience overgrowth is some parts of their body like hands, feet, and face.
Although HGH normally exists in the body, medical experts use synthetic HGH to trigger growth in people who can’t produce it naturally. Doctors also use it in treating patients suffering from certain serious diseases.
Medical practitioners are the one who administers the injectable type of HGH, and the HGH that come in pills and sprays are available in online anti-aging clinics, pharmacies, and websites.
The use of HGH for bodybuilding, better athletic performance, and cell renewal
People who are into bodybuilding do heavy exercises to gain more muscles and tone their bodies. Aside from that, with the introduction of HGH, and with the belief that it will help in gaining muscles and improve athletism, they turn to it – even combining it with anabolic steroids.
Even those who seek to regain their youthfulness and slow down the advancement of aging introduce this performance-enhancing medicine to their system.
The side effects
HGH use has some side effects that many are not aware of. Prescribed and unprescribed forms of HGH have a negative reaction to the body as the contents are not yet regulated and reviewed to be effective and safe for use. Surprisingly, older adults are more affected by these side-effects than the younger ones. Also, the long-term effects of taking HGH are not yet known.
The following are the possible effects of injectable HGH:
- Edema (fluid retention causing swelling of the arms and legs)
- Increase in cholesterol levels
- Numbness and tingling in the skin
- Muscle, nerve, or joint pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome (pain in wrist nerve)
- Liver damage
- Gynecomastia (the enlargement of breast in men)
- Low blood sugar
- Enlargement of the heart
- Acromegaly (growth of facial features, hands, and feet)
- Suppression of pituitary gland function
- Development of cancerous tumors
- Increased risk of diabetes and heart disease
What a Medical Doctor say about HGH
In an interview done by Sound Bite with Michael Joyner, M.D., Mayo Clinic Physiology Researcher, which was published in Mayo Clinic newsnetwork on August 7, 2013 he said, “There are pretty good tests for anabolic steroid, testosterone and amphetamines, kind of the traditional performance enhancing drugs, but growth hormone is very, very difficult to test for.” He added, “These so-called anti-aging clinics that give people hormones, you might be ahead for a while and people might get themselves a bit buffed up, but there’s not a long-term evidence that this stuff works. And who knows what is going to do when you’re 70 or 80 years old?”
He also said that some people use the drug to slow down aging as the hormone can add muscle mass in a short period. It also helps muscles heal faster after using it excessively. This has become an enticing method for professional athletes to have an edge.
From the point of view of an amateur bodybuider and trainer
Ali Amini, a professional bodybuilding trainer and nutritional guru said in an article published on July 15, 2019, that growth hormone is used in sport because it has the ability to increase muscle build-up, shorten the time of recovery, and make joints and ligaments strong while restoring injured tissue.
From the point of view of World Anti-Doping Agency
WADA, in their website Q & A section, question 2 ‘WHAT EFFECT CAN HGH HAVE ON ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE?’ states that,
Some of the effects attributed to hGH, which may explain the attraction for its use as a doping agent, especially in power and endurance sports, include he reduction of body fat (lipolysis), the increase in muscle mass and strength (anabolic effect), as well as its tissue-repairing effects (recovery) on the musculo-skeletal system. The anabolic actions of GH are mostly mediated through IGF-I and include increases in total body protein turnover and muscle synthesis. hGH also appears to be used synergistically with other performance-enhancing drugs, thus having an effect, albeit indirect, on muscle anabolism and athletic performance.
The use of HGH has a lot of claims of its effectiveness, but only one certain effect has stood out among the experts, and that is its ability to add muscle mass resulting in fat loss. Claims that it can add up to athletic performance is still limited. It still needs further studies for this, and it should be noted too that in most countries under the World Anti-Doping Authority, HGH is prohibited.