Statistically speaking, only 45,000 Americans are in need of using the Human Growth Hormone, yet in 2013, the substance was consumed by double the number of individuals. In the 2017-18 NCAA banned drugs list, HGH is included. In 1990, even the lawmakers stressed upon restricting the use of hormone of its excessive use as a sports dope. Henceforth, if you think about getting performance enhancing drug (PED), stop and ask yourself why the National Collegiate Athletic Association would prohibit its use to athletes. To help you answer this question, let’s discuss first the functions of HGH:
Human growth hormone increases the physical capabilities of a person by stimulating the production of collagen in muscles and tendons. But scientifically, when HGH is injected, the amount of muscle gain in an individual depends on factors like age, genetics, diet, lifestyle etc. Roughly estimating, an individual who has normal health, goes to gym 3 to 5 times a week, takes a good sleep of 7-8 hours, eats healthy and protein rich food, tends to increase 20 to 30 percent of muscle mass when injected with HGH in the first cycle. Although after a certain time, the muscle growth gradually decreases and eventually stops because it has reached the maximum limit it could with that certain amount of dose. However, to increase the muscle mass further, the process can be repeated with a different dose.
Image source: Main pathways in endocrine regulation of growth.
Risk: In 2003, a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that HGH grows muscles, but does not strengthen them. In fact, exercise is proved more effective in strengthening the muscles compared to using HGH. The Mayo Clinic, in one of its own studies about HGH also stated, “Increase in muscle doesn’t translate into increased strength.” Also, they mentioned, muscle and joint pain, male breast enlargement and swelling of limbs are possible side effects of HGH.
Reduction in Cardiovascular Diseases:
Individuals with HGH deficiency are at risk of losing their life due to the improper functioning of the cardiovascular system. In Sweden, a research was conducted on 104 patients suffering from HGH deficiency, and the results showed that those patients had greater than usual body mass and increased amount of triglycerides, which are the main components of body fat, increasing the risk of cholesterol and consequently heart diseases. In fact, the fewer amount of growth hormone altered the lipoprotein metabolism making the body unable to undergo fat decomposition.
Risk: No doubt, a certain amount of substance is necessary for preventing cardiovascular diseases, but as soon as the amount reaches beyond the critical level, it further aggravates the chance of cardiovascular mortality. In patients suffering from acromegaly, the extra intake causes cardiomyopathy leading to diastolic dysfunctions or even sometimes systolic dysfunctions. It can also cause abnormality in cardiac rhythm and cardiac valves.
Image source: pexels
Recovery from brain traumas:
In 2009, a 42 years old amateur cyclist, Jeff Dombrowski was hit by a motorist and met a terrible accident leading to brain trauma. He was wrecked so bad that he snapped his neck and back and broke his leg into three along with other injuries. He recovered from body injuries, but his mind turned so sluggish because of the trauma that he started facing hindrance in remembering general facts necessary for his job. Although he recovered from injuries, but he started having sleepless nights and terrible body ache. Jeff, explaining his state, said,
“I was sleeping just two to three hours a night because of the pain and then the anxiety.”
Hoping to find a solution he surfed the web for a couple of weeks, and got to know that pituitary gland is attached to the base of the brain with a small stalk, which can be damaged by some severe trauma, so he began to suspect if it is due to the lack of Human Growth Hormone. However, he was unable to test his hypothesis due to restricted use of the substance, so he started to look for volunteer opportunities for HGH programs and found one at the University of Texas Medical Branch. When he got into the program, he started getting 0.6 milligrams injections of HGH, and within weeks his situation was improved, and all his pains were gone. Professor Charles Wilkinson from the University of Washington, stated highlighting the importance of recovering Human Growth Hormone,
“You can imagine that if the brain starts moving back and forth, it’s going to put stress on that stalk.”
Risk: There are no possible risks of using HGH for brain trauma, discovered so far. The substance seems very promising in this regard. In fact, the wonder drug is a mandatory substance to spend a normal life, and Dr. Urban from the University of Texas Medical Branch said,
“If you’ve had a brain or head injury, and develop profound fatigue and cognitive dysfunction, see a physician—and preferably also an endocrinologist.”