Is Hafthor Bjornsson On Steroids Or Natural? (Revealed)

Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Published by Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: May 10, 2024
FACT CHECKED by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
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Hafthor Julius Bjornsson, renowned for his portrayal of "The Mountain" in Game of Thrones, is also a celebrated figure in strength competitions.

However, athletes of his caliber often face allegations, with critics speculating about the role of performance-enhancing drugs in their achievements.

So, is his strength the result of dedication and discipline, or is there more to the story?

As a personal fitness coach, I spent a few weeks researching Hafthor's progress over the years to find out if there was steroid use involved.

Keep reading to uncover the truth behind the allegations.

Does Hafthor Bjornsson Take Steroids?

The Game Of Thrones star known as The Mountain has openly admitted to taking steroids in the past.

He did this during an ESPN interview, and it seemed to not surprise a lot of people.

Since that lengthy interview on ESPN, several journalists have asked him if he still takes steroids.

His answer is usually to ask the interviewer to move on as he's dealt with that question before.

One reason for this decision may have to do with the fact that his dream of becoming a professional basketball player fell apart due to a bad ankle injury.

He had multiple surgeries and a long recovery that led him on a path to become a strongman known as The Mountain.

Where There Early Signs That Hafthor Bjornsson Took Anabolic Steroids?

man with veiny hands and another man flexing body muscles

I spent a few weeks looking at photos from his career as a strongman to see if there was evidence that he took anabolic drugs.

There is no concrete evidence to support the claim that Hafthor Bjornsson, renowned for his participation in the World's Strongest Man competition and impressive muscle mass, has used performance-enhancing drugs or anabolic steroids.

Extreme Vascularity

Based on a study published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), athletes who use anabolic supplements often show signs of veins popping up even when they aren't working out [1]. While Hafthor is a mountain of a man, he wasn't ripped like a professional bodybuilder for most of his career. And that meant he wouldn’t have been vascular at that time.

And even in the more recent photos, there's no evidence of this constant vascularity.

Large Breast Tissue

According to insights from the Cleveland Clinic, long-term steroid use can lead to enlarged breasts made up of soft fat tissue [2]. There are drugs to deal with this, but it's a difficult thing to hide for athletes.

If you look at his photos from the final season of Game Of Thrones, he was a lot heavier. But even then, it doesn't look like his chest is soft and flabby.

Fast Bulking Process

This is the main reason that athletes turn to anabolic drugs, and it's a total giveaway for someone who uses steroids. Looking at photos from when Hafthor was a teenager and comparing them to his first few strongman events, it does look like this was a fast transition.

"People will remember me as the strongest human ever to walk the earth."

- Hafthor Bjornsson

Hafthor Bjornsson's Stats And Accomplishments

  • Born: November 26, 1988
  • Height: 6'9"
  • Weight: 450lbs

No, those numbers aren't typos, and they explain why people call him The Mountain.

Hafthor Julius Bjornsson officially won Iceland's strongest man title in 2011 and held that title continuously until 2019. He was also the reigning World's Strongest Man until 2020.

What Would It Take To Bulk Up Like Bjornsson?

Variety of vitamins and supplements

Based on my first-hand experience, achieving a physique like Bjornsson's without steroids is possible but demands immense dedication in diet, supplements, and rigorous training.

Diet & Supplements

First of all, you'll need to eat a lot more carbs and protein to fuel weight lifting and muscle building. And beyond taking whey protein supplements for your recovery, you could also fast-track your progress with a bulking stack.

There are also natural supplements designed to boost your performance and progress by triggering your body's natural testosterone production. These products are called testosterone boosters.

Tough Training

This is one area that most people underestimate. To get anywhere near Hafthor's physique, you'll have to train at least 90 minutes a day, five days a week for five or more years.

And it's that dedication that many people don't have.

Was Hafthor Bjornsson Tested For Steroid Use?

A bodybuilder that looks on steroids

So, Hafthor admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs in the past, but I was interested to see if there was evidence of a failed drug test at any of his World's Strongest Man or other events.

The governing body of these events has strict rules on drug testing, but I couldn't find any evidence that Hafthor failed one of these tests.


Why Is Hafthor’s Face Paralyzed?

Hafthor's face is paralyzed due to a condition called Bell's Palsy. He has had this since 2017, but it doesn't seem to affect his strength or ability to compete.

Does Hafthor Bjornsson Have Health Issues Due to Steroids?

No, Hafthor Bjornsson doesn't have health issues due to steroid abuse. Long-term use can have serious impacts on the liver and kidneys, which would impact his appearance and strength.


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About The Author

Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC is an ex-National Soccer player turned MMA and Kickboxing champion, with ACE CPT and PN1-NC certifications. His advice is rooted in education and experience, ensuring that readers receive scientific and battle-tested insights. His mission is to empower his clients and readers to realize their potential and become the best versions of themselves.
Learn more about our editorial policy
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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