In this SARMs review, we look at the legal situation surrounding SARMs and we ask the questions are SARMs legal?
Are SARMs Steroids?
Anabolic steroids have long been considered illegal unless they have been prescribed by a doctor for medical reasons. With the update of the Steroid Control Act, it is now legally no longer only in the gray area to sell prohormones. For some time now, selective androgen receptor modulators, or SARMS for short, have been the next big thing in research. This is due to them showing positive signs in medications that inhibit pathological muscle wasting and have potent anabolic effects.
SARMs – what is it anyway?
The abbreviation SARM means selective androgen receptor modulators. Basically, this means that they can dock to the androgen receptors, but are designed so that they only act selectively on certain representatives of these receptors. In the class of androgens we are dealing with steroid hormones such as testosterone, which are mainly responsible for the development of male sexual characteristics in the body such as reproductive organs, beard growth, increased muscle mass etc. An excess of androgens can also lead to side effects, such as an enlarged prostate or, in women, masculinization.
Natural androgens that the body produces itself can dock on all androgen receptors in the body. SARMs have been chemically designed by scientists so that they only have an effect in certain areas of the body. For example, attempts have been made to develop substances that only work in the muscle cells and bones and thereby increase muscle growth and bone density, whereas the prostate or hair follicle remains unaffected.
However, the background of the research was not to give bodybuilders more muscle mass but to provide sick people who suffer from muscle loss or recover from serious injuries with the safest possible alternative to androgen therapy. In medicine, testosterone and the like are traditionally administered to patients who do not naturally produce sufficient amounts of the hormone or who can benefit from the anabolic effects on muscle mass and bones in emergencies. However, it is difficult, for example, to apply testosterone therapy to a female burn victim, since she could then possibly suffer from irreversible masculinization symptoms in the long term.
Question: SARMs Side Effects
One can only speculate about the reasons why SARMs have so far hardly made it into human studies, despite extensive research on cells and animals. Some representatives initially showed promising results, but the experiments were only rarely transferred to humans. In order to obtain approval as a pharmaceutical, extensive research work on volunteers is required. Some proponents of selective androgen receptor modulators claim that the expected profit margin on corresponding products for the pharmaceutical companies is too small and therefore attempts are being made to slow down further development. We do not want to make any assumptions here.
The current legal situation in the USA
Since bodybuilding and the misuse of medication for the purpose of increasing performance are much more pronounced in the United States than in this country, SARMs are also a much bigger topic there. However, until April 24, 2018, there was no very precise regulation, which is why they could be legally sold and consumed until then. However, SARMs were never considered dietary supplements in the USA either, which is why some manufacturers were sued for placing such substances on the market as supplements. Declared as “research chemicals”, however, it was possible to distribute SARMs.
With the enactment of the SARMs Control Act, SARMS were included in the American Narcotics Act and therefore they now belong to the same category as cocaine, opiates or anabolic steroids. Selling, owning and consuming SARMs are therefore punishable in the United States. But what made the state take this decision?
The Story so Far…
Well, the push came from at least three different directions. The anti-doping facilities were obviously one of them. In January 2008, some SARMs such as Ostarine or Andarine were included in the WADA doping list. Since then, numerous athletes have tested positive for this class of substance. Obviously, the relevant national and international organizations want to reduce the availability of SARMs for athletes.
The second instance in favor of the ban is trade groups in the food supplement industry. The sale of SARMs, declared as “Dietary Supplements” or “Dietary Supplements”, as it is called was a thorn in the side of the majority of the industry, which provoked a change and new edition of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA), for which one had fought for years. However, selling SARMs as dietary supplements were illegal from the outset because they did not meet the criteria for this and the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the power to take legal action against manufacturers and sellers.
SARMs for Sale
Then there are the “guard dogs” of health care. SARMs have been developed as medicines and, like all medicines and drugs; can have negative side effects. Unlike the FDA-approved drugs, many SARMs have not been studied extensively enough in clinical trials, as we mentioned earlier. As a result, unsupervised and non-prescribed use is considered risky, especially if the products do not come from the pharmacy, but from the underground laboratories of hobby chemists who buy their raw materials in China and sell them online.
Are SARMs Legal in the US?
It is, therefore, no surprise that the US legal body has passed the SARMs Control Act to prevent the spread and use of these substances. This does not mean that research in this area will not be resumed and continued, but it would still take years before approval as a drug, and even then SARMs would only be available as prescription drugs.