What Is A Cycle Support?
A cycle support supplement assists you in performing at your best and supporting your health while going through a cycle use of performance-enhancers such as steroids, SARMs or pro-hormones.
These enhancing supplements can put a lot of stress on different organ systems and have been associated with health issues such as liver toxicity, heart attack, and stroke. The long-term effects are unknown as this time.
Cycle support supplements can help you to avoid adverse effects and improve performance results. Many of these anabolic steroid supplements can, unfortunately, be toxic to the liver and other organs therefore if you are choosing to use them you must support these organs to combat negative effects and maintain optimal health on and off-cycle. Below we will be discussing some cycle support products and cycle support ingredients that can help you to perform at your best.
NAC is derived from the amino acid, l-cysteine and is particularly well known for recycling antioxidants but also protecting the liver, fighting cellular damage, and supporting immune function. NAC is a precursor to glutathione, our master antioxidant, known to support both phases of liver detoxification and reduce damage done to liver cells (1).
NAC may also help to reduce the risk of heart disease by reducing oxidative damage, increasing nitric oxide production, improving blood flow (4). Oxidative stress can damage and injure tissues including those of the heart (5).
Always check with your doctor before supplementing as NAC may interact with certain medications.
Milk Thistle (Silymarin)
Milk thistle, known scientifically as Silybum marianum, is a herbal hepatoprotective and hepatorestorative, meaning it helps to protect the liver against toxins but also stimulates regeneration of diseased liver cells (6). In fact, it is the most researched natural supplement in the treatment of liver disease (7).
It may come as no surprise then that milk thistle is typically one of the key ingredients found in liver support supplements.
For Cardiovascular Health
CoQ10 is another potent antioxidant, known for its significant cardiovascular protective effects that may help prevent cardiovascular disease, the world’s leading cause of death (9). Numerous health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, cognitive disabilities, neurodegenerative disorders, fibromyalgia, muscular diseases, and cancers have been associated with low levels of coQ10 (10). This supplement may prove to be a promising option in the treatment of heart failure (11).
It is primarily produced in the liver but if this organ is damaged it can reduce the production of CoQ10. Supplementation may help to also support the healing and regeneration of the liver organ, as studies show beneficial effects in cases of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, improving systemic inflammation and biochemical variables (14).
Beetroot extract is another promising herbal and therapeutic treatment in a range of clinical pathologies associated with oxidative stress and inflammation due to its potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects (15).
For Blood Pressure
Hawthorn berry is one of the most well-known herbs for heart health as studies show that hawthorn extracts may exert a wide range of cardiovascular protection due to its antioxidant effects, anti-inflammatory actions, anti-aggregation effects, anti-atherosclerotic effects, vasodilating actions, endothelial protective benefits, and more (16).
Be careful if you are taking other medications, specifically heart medications, as Hawthorn Berry extract may interact and amplify blood pressure levels. Always check with your doctor before supplementing.
For Lipid Profile
High cholesterol levels do not necessarily mean heart problems as it is much more complex than that. Research has shown that other markers such as inflammatory and metabolic markers have a greater influence on cardiovascular disease.
High LDL cholesterol is typically associated with poorer health outcomes though it’s important to properly assess your different lipid profiles on a regular basis to verify how you are doing.
Plant sterols are cholesterol-like compounds that occur naturally in plant-based foods that can help to lower elevated LDL cholesterol levels and triglycerides, associated with heart disease (17)(18).
For Mood and Wellbeing
Certain ingredients in performance-enhancing supplements could potentially cause fatigue, low mood, and even anxiety.
Magnesium is a calming mineral that is essential for the proper functioning of the nervous system and involved in regulating neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine and GABA which are influential on mood. The form of magnesium bisglycinate in particular can help to relieve anxiety and reduce cortisol levels.
Magnesium status has been shown to be highly correlated with stress and anxiety and is a very common mineral deficiency (21). It is involved in over 300 enzymatic reactions including energy production on a cellular level (22).
Cordyceps is a medicinal mushroom supplement shown to increase ATP production (energy) and oxygen utilization as well as improve blood flow which can result in improved energy levels but also exercise performance and recovery (23).
There are many natural supplements that can support mood, energy, and stress regulation however diet and lifestyle cannot be overlooked and will be key foundations for good health.
The 3 Best Cycle Support Supplements
In order to best support you during a cycle of performance enhancers, there are many formulations that are designed to help support healthy organs on a cellular level, reduce toxic effects, and promote optimal performance.
TUDCA (Tauroursodexoycholic acid) is a little known ingredient that can rapidly improve your liver function! TUDCA is a component of your bile acid. Your body only produces a small amount, but through oral supplementation you can easily increase the amount of TUDCA in your body.
In your body TUDCA is made through a microbial process. Bile salts are released into your intestines through your liver bile duct. Then the microbes in your gut metabolize the bile salts into Ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA). Later it is connected to a Taurine molecule to create TUDCA.
Healthology Liv-Great provides the liver with daily support by boosting its detox capacity and helping to protect it from damage. It contains high quality ingredients with nutrients and herbs to support both Phase 1 and Phase 2 of liver detoxification, and it promotes the production of bile to improve the elimination of toxins. It also contains assistive features such as powerful antioxidants to protect and heal the liver from damage. There are two phases of liver detoxification, and each requires vitamins, proteins and minerals to work effectively. In Phase 1, enzymes called Cytochromes add an oxygen molecule to the toxin, which prepares it to enter Phase 21. This is called oxidation, and it actually makes the toxin more harmful to the body. In Phase 2, we deactivate the toxin through a process called conjugation1. This neutralizes the toxin so that it can be excreted safely by the colon or bladder. In some people, one phase or both phases of liver detoxification are sluggish. This is especially damaging when Phase 1 is working more quickly than Phase 2 because we get a build-up of oxidized toxins that are harmful to the body. Sluggish liver detoxification can be caused by genetic deficiencies, nutrients missing from the diet, or a high toxic burden from alcohol, medication use, or exposures to toxins in the environment. Most of us are bombarded with more toxins than we realize, and this is where a liver support can help to neutralize toxins, get rid of them, and help keep the body healthy.
CanPrev Healthy Heart
Healthy Heart is a comprehensive nutritional formula with key ingredients designed to address multiple cardiovascular issues, including circulation, arterial damage, blood aggregation, high blood pressure and elevated blood lipid and cholesterol levels.
Healthy Heart combines an impressive 200 milligram dosage of the heart-specific antioxidant Coenzyme Q10 with active ingredients and a rich blend of polyphenols, herbs and vitamins, shown by research to aid in the maintenance of cardiovascular health, cholesterol levels, proper formation of red blood cells and the metabolism of proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
There are side effects and adverse reactions that may arise from performance enhancer use such as steroid and pro-hormone cycles thus it’s important to be educated on what this may mean for your health. If you do choose to go down that route there are many natural remedies that can help support your body in the process, protect the body from harmful side effects and maximize gains.
About the Author
Laurence Annez is a Certified Nutritional Practitioner and Health Coach, specializing in PCOS and women’s hormones. She also holds a degree in Creative Writing and has extensive experience writing on health and wellness topics. Laurence’s mission is to inspire and motivate individuals to take control of their own health and reach their ultimate health goals.