Deca Durabolin is one of the more side effect friendly anabolic steroids for men and can prove useful for women, but normally only in therapeutic level doses. However, side effects of Deca Durabolin most certainly exist, but as we will see they largely fall into the realm of possible rather than guaranteed. With responsible use, most men will be able to use this steroid without the first negative effect. In order to achieve this level of safe supplementation, your first step is to recognize the possible side effects of Deca Durabolin, as well as what you can do about them. For an ease of understanding, we have broken down the side effects into separate categories along with the related information you’ll need.
The Nandrolone hormone is not very estrogenic, but it does carry a slight aromatizing nature. Aromatization refers to testosterone’s ability to convert to estrogen, a process that occurs due to the hormone’s interaction with the aromatase enzyme. As estrogen levels rise, this can promote gynecomastia, excess water retention and promote high blood pressure due to severe levels of water retention. Fortunately, the aromatase level of Deca Durabolin is low, but there is another factor to consider, which is its progestin nature. Nandrolone has a strong affinity for the progesterone receptor, as well as the ability to significantly stimulate the estrogenic mechanism in the mammary tissue enhancing the risk of gynecomastia.
In order to protect from the possible estrogenic and progesterone related side effects of Deca Durabolin, an anti-estrogen medication is often recommended. There are two primary choices in anti-estrogens, Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators (SERM’s) like Nolvadex (Tamoxifen Citrate) and Aromatase Inhibitors (AI’s) like Arimidex (Anastrozole). AI’s will be far more effective, but SERM’s should be the first choice if they can get the job done. Many choose to rely on AI’s due to their tremendous anti-estrogenic power, but AI’s have been noted to have a negative impact on cholesterol, and one that can be greatly exasperated with the use of anabolic steroids. Conversely, while SERM’s are sometimes not enough they will have no adverse effect on cholesterol. In fact, SERM’s have actually been shown to improve cholesterol levels.
An important note of interest on the side effects of Deca Durabolin as it pertains to gynecomastia. It has long been assumed and passed around numerous steroid message boards that the cause of 19-nor induced gynecomastia is prolactin, not progesterone stimulation. This has been argued heavily regarding the 19-nor Trenbolone, but with Nandrolone as well. In his Anabolics series, William Llewellyn explains how the imbalance between estrogen and progesterone is what leads to gynecomastia. If this is not addressed and you’re merely combating a possible prolactin buildup, you may not be providing the protection you need.
Deca Durabolin can produce androgenic side effects; however, the threshold tends to be rather high for most men. Possible androgenic side effects of Deca Durabolin include acne, accelerated hair loss in those predisposed to male pattern baldness, and body hair growth. Such side effects are strongly dependent on genetic predispositions, but most men should find no problems exist. Unlike testosterone, Nandrolone is reduced to DHN rather than DHT, and while this takes place due to interaction with the 5-alpha reductase enzyme it greatly reduces the androgenicity of Nandrolone.
An important note regarding the androgenic side effects of Deca Durabolin or any Nandrolone hormone: Many choose to use 5-alpha reductase inhibitors like Finasteride to combat androgenic side effects brought on by anabolic steroids. However, the use of a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor along with Deca Durabolin will enhance the steroid’s androgenicity. It will actually have the opposite effect and increase the risk of androgenic side effects.
The androgenic nature of Deca Durabolin may lead to virilization symptoms in women. Virilization symptoms can include body hair growth, a deepening of the vocal chords, and clitoral enlargement. Women can use this steroid without virilizing effects, but it will require very low doses, and there are often better steroids for females to choose. If Nandrolone is desired, faster acting Phenylpropionate may be the way to go as it’s easier to control, but the odds of beating virilization symptoms are not as great as they are with steroids like Anavar or Primobolan. Regardless, if virilization symptoms occur, discontinue use immediately, and they will fade away. If such symptoms are ignored, they may become permanent.
Deca Durabolin can have a negative impact on cholesterol by skewing the HDL and LDL ratios. This potential negative effect will be most prominent as it pertains to HDL cholesterol suppression. Studies have shown that the Nandrolone hormone will actually have a stronger, negative impact on HDL cholesterol than testosterone. However, the total cardiovascular strain should be much less than most oral steroids.
Due to the potential cholesterol issues caused by Deca Durabolin, maintaining a cholesterol friendly lifestyle during use will be extremely important. This should not only include a cholesterol friendly diet, but one that is rich in omega fatty acids and that ensures you implement plenty of cardiovascular activity into your routine. It’s also important to keep in mind that if you use an Aromatase Inhibitor when supplementing with Deca Durabolin, you will need to give your cholesterol even more attention. Of all the possible side effects of Deca Durabolin, this is the one you’ll want to keep the closest eye on, and all are encouraged to keep a very close eye on their cholesterol throughout the duration of use as well as post use.
Deca Durabolin like all anabolic steroids is suppressive to natural testosterone production. The rate of suppression varies from one steroid to the next, but with Deca Durabolin, and all Nandrolone based compounds, it will be extreme. Some studies have shown that a single 100mg dosing of the steroid will suppress total natural production. Other studies, while they do not show near the rate of suppression, are still more than significant and often a representation of at least 2/3rd total reduction in serum testosterone levels. For this reason, all men who supplement with Deca Durabolin should include exogenous testosterone. The form of testosterone you choose is of no consequence, all that matters is that your body is provided with the testosterone it needs. Failure to supplement with exogenous testosterone will result in a low testosterone condition. Such a condition can be quite bothersome; it comes with numerous possible symptoms but, more importantly, is extremely unhealthy.
Once the use of Deca Durabolin has come to an end and all the exogenous steroidal hormones have cleared your system, natural testosterone production will begin again. It will not occur overnight, and for this reason a Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) plan is often recommended. This will speed up the recovery process as well as improve the overall efficiency. No, contrary to popular myth, there is no PCT plan that will return your natural testosterone levels back to normal all on its own. Total recovery will take several months. However, a PCT plan will ensure you have enough testosterone in order for proper function while your levels continue to naturally rise.
Important notes on natural testosterone recovery post Deca Durabolin use: Natural recovery assumes no prior low testosterone condition existed. It also assumes no severe damage was done to the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Testicular-Axis (HPTA) due to improper practices. It is also important to note that a PCT plan should not begin until Deca Durabolin has been discontinued for at least 2-3 weeks. Most will find ending their Deca Durabolin use before the total conclusion of their cycle to be the best way to go.
Deca Durabolin is not toxic to the liver and will present no stress or damage to the vital organ.