Side Effects of SARMS: A Complete Guide

Overview of Sarms

If you are thinking about using SARMs, but not quite sure about its potential side effects, you have come to the right place. SARMs are a performance enhancer that can help you to develop strength, endurance, muscle mass, and they are also beneficial at losing fats. Although the side effects of SARMs are very minimal to none as compared to the steroids, it might be helpful for you to learn about some of its adverse effects.

side effects sarms

Should SARMs be considered safe?

Almost every SARMs that are available in the market as of now, are considered to overcome the potent aromatization and virilization effects of using steroids. This was achieved when the search for tissue-selective agonists present in the androgen receptors activates themselves in specific tissues and sparing others.

As SARMs are non-steroidal in nature, they are not vulnerable to the enzymes of the targeted tissues. Whereas in the case of steroids, some of the enzymes manufacture testosterone from androstenedione or converts DHT into metabolites. However, these enzymes are not affected by SARMs. That implies, overall SARMs don’t convert themselves into unwanted elements such as DHT and estrogen, which can cause undesirable results.

Hence, SARMs are considered as synthetic substances that resemble the effects of testosterone in the bones and muscles and has very minimal impact on other organs along with reduced adverse effects as compared to the steroids. Therefore, you can rest assured that you can enjoy the positive effects of steroids, but with least side effects.

Because of the non-steroidal properties of the SARMs, they cause minimal side effects. That means when you use the supplement for a prolonged time, or in higher doses, you are bound to have some complications. Remember, that the subject here is, minimal effect.


What are the possible side effects of SARMs?

These days, a new supplement has been doing rounds as a safer substance than steroids on the internet. SARMs, or selective androgen receptor modulators, are the chemical compounds that help in boosting the performance and improving your physique by resembling the effects of testosterone, without the adverse effects that you can get while using steroids.

However, a recent study has indicated that the online market is full of products disguised as SARMs, and contains harmful substances, steroids, and prohormones. Moreover, the labels present on them are very misleading. There was a research where the scientists analyzed about 44 products that were marketed a SARMs.

The results were disturbing as it showed about 39% of them contain illegal substances such as prohormones and steroids. Around 25% of disguised products contained elements that were not included on the product’s label. Moreover, 59% of them were either overdosed or under-dosed.

In addition, these products are not even approved by the FDA, and hence there is an acute shortage of sufficient information about their safety and efficacy. The FDA released a statutory warning against the usage of SARMs in October 2017.

The agency declared that SARMs have caused severe threatening reactions, which include strokes, heart attacks, and liver toxicity. The research also stated those results were not derived from all SARMs products, but they insist that there should be more regulation. There is no doubt that SARMs are safer than steroids, but the question still remains how much safe is the supplement.

The general understanding obtained from numerous reviews that were given personally, different scientific research, and from other sources, is that they are safe than prohormones and anabolic steroids. But it should be kept in mind that there is a huge range of SARMs, and they have different properties along with their own sets of side effects.

Ligandrol (LGD4033) – The Company Ligand Pharmaceuticals is responsible for the research, growth, and development of the supplement LGD4033. Ligand Pharmaceuticals is also working with another company in a collaboration called Viking Therapeutics, to develop a new substance known as Anabolic. However, Ligandrol is a very popular SARM and considered as perfect for bulking stacks.

Ligandrol was developed for its potentialities to fight with the catabolic conditions for muscle and bone tissue. There are lots of reviews about Ligandrol that won’t show any side effects, or intentionally will slide over this subject. But that’s not the correct information. Here are some of the adverse effects that you might get when you use Ligandrol.

  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Mild nausea
  • Water retention
  • Reduced testosterone production
  • Mild gynecomastia

Ostarine (MK2866) – The SARM Ostarine was first developed by a reputed pharmaceutical company that goes by the name of Merck. This supplement was developed for preventing and reversing muscle and bone wastage that arises from some diseases.

Because of this, there are lots of speculations that the supplement might be helpful in curing patients suffering from muscle and bone atrophy. However, Ostarine is currently under the testing period under a company named GTx Inc. The side effects of using Ostarine include the following.

  • Cold sweats
  • Low production of testosterone at higher doses
  • Lethargy
  • Back pain and headaches, for beginners
  • Swollen nipples on persons who are more sensitive to estrogen
  • Some people might experience an issue with erectile dysfunction, skin changes, and reduced strength at high dosage

Andarine (S4) –Company GTx Inc. has been researching and developing the supplement Andarine. The company initially considered the supplement to be used for treating osteoporosis, muscle wasting, and prostate hypertrophy. The supplement is highly bioavailable and has the potential to burn fat, gain strength and build muscle mass.

However, based on rumors, it has been heard that the company has halted further development of Andarine, and focused their resources on developing Ostarine. Just like the side effects found with other SARMs, Andarine too has some adverse effects that you should keep in mind while using the supplement. Here are some of the side effects of Andarine.

  • Andarine might cause a significant decrease in the production of testosterone during a cycle. However, most people recover from it by taking the help of post cycle therapy that helps them to bounce back.
  • Andarine might also cause some issues with your vision by making the eyes sensitive towards the light, and affects your capability to see in the dark.
  • Depression is yet another side effect of using Andarine.

Cardarine (GW501516) – This supplement is being developed by the company GlaxoSmithKline PLC. Cardarine has positive effects on your heart, blood vessels, and diabetes. It is unfortunate that the company stopped further development of the supplement in Phase II after they found out that it caused cancer when it was tested on rats.

But as time rolled by, Cardarine became very much popular in the fitness community, especially during cutting. That’s because of its ability to boost the oxidation of fats. SARMs will have certain side effects. But they are far behind than the harmful effects of using steroids. Here are some of the adverse effects that you might experience when you take Cardarine.

  • Might have digestive issues such as bowel trouble, diarrhea, constipation, stomach aching, and cramps
  • A potent substance that can cause liver damage
  • Have shown positive results of cancer when tested on rats, human trials are yet to be conducted for proving the theory.

Testolone (RAD140) – This SARM is considered to be the new supplement on the fitness community. The supplement was developed by Radius Health Incorporated in 2010. It was not developed for bodybuilding purposes. This supplement has the highest ratio of anabolic to androgenic reactions to be found on any other SARM.

RAD140 has the highest ratio, which means that it is anabolic like testosterone. The supplement is very versatile as it is used for cutting fat and gaining lean muscle mass during the cutting phase. The side effects of using Testolone are not very frequent as long as you stick to the suggested dosage. However, when you increase the dosage, the following adverse effects will appear.

  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Sleeping disorders
  • Dry mouth
  • The abnormal growth of hair in women
  • Mood swings and aggression
  • Headaches
  • Changes in sexual behavior

Stenabolic (SR9009), Ibutamoren (MK677), and YK11 are not SARMs in reality, but they are marketed as one of them. Because of this reason, they aren’t discussed in this article.

How can you avoid the side effects of SARMs?

It is good to know that the side effects of SARMs can be avoided. All you need is to select the least potent or the weakest of the supplements and follow a strict small dosage. It the standard dosage is about 20 mg, then you have to go for 10 mg. If it is recommended to take 50 mg, start by using only 25 to 30 mg.

When you realize that the SARM can be restricted to a certain dosage, don’t go further beyond that. Also, keep an eye on the day dosages and the way you split those during the day. For instance, you can take a single dose, or you can split them up to 3 times throughout the day. For a dosage of 30 mg, you can take it all alone, or you can split it into 3 equal parts, and consume them maintaining a suitable gap between them.


All the side effects of using SARMs are very minor and cast no severe effects for a prolonged time. For people who have serious medical conditions, or undergoing medical treatment, it is recommended to consult a physician before thinking about using SARMs.