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HGH is a complex 191 amino acid protein - based hormone, which plays a critical role in growth and development. The primary function of the hormone is to control cellular growth, multiplication and repair. Most of the benefits of HGH arise from these primary functions of the hormone of promoting cellular multiplication and growth.
HGH increases the muscle mass in the body, which in turn, contributes to an increase in the energy and strength. Further, as it has an essential role in reducing body fat, it helps one achieve the perfect body contour and physical structure. This is one of the reasons why HGH products are preferred by athletes, sports personalities and build builders, in comparison with other anabolic drugs like steroids. The use of HGH supplements, pills, sprays and injections have been proved efficacious in increasing the muscle mass.
Research studies validating the role of HGH in increasing muscle mass
In the study conducted by Dr Rudman, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in the 1990, HGH was shown to have potential benefits of increasing lean muscle mass, even without exercise, in a group of elderly participants (between the age group of 65 years to 81 years). The participants underwent a six month treatment course, with HGH injections, during the case study, and results showed an increase in the muscle mass by approximately 8.8 %.
Another study was conducted in Palm Springs Life Extension Institute, in collaboration with the Medical college of Wisconsin, over 202 participants (between the age of 39 years and 74 years). It was observed that the use of HGH increased the muscle strength by 88 %. This study, conducted in the later part of 1990s, reiterated the findings of Dr Rudman’s study.
How does HGH help in muscle growth?
HGH stimulates the release of an intermediate factor called IGF-1 (insulin like growth factor-1) from the liver. As per research studies, it has been found that IGF-1 and calcineurium (an enzyme in the muscle tissue which is activated by high intracellular concentration of calcium ions), stimulates GATA-2 which is a transcription factor. GATA-2 stimulates the muscle nuclei to increase protein synthesis and bring about muscle hypertrophy (i.e. muscle enlargement).
What‘s more, in addition to increasing the size of the existing muscle tissue, HGH also stimulates muscle growth, resulting in hyperplasia (i.e. increase multiplication of tissue cells). Hence, HGH has a dual action of increasing the size of existing muscle cells, whilst, concurrently increasing the number of muscle cells.
HGH also has a potent effect on speeding up the transportation of amino acids, which in turn, increases the velocity of protein synthesis. Also the anabolic effect has a protein sparing action, which reduces the wear and tear of proteins after rigorous exercise, hastens repair and further contributes to increasing the muscle mass.
Benefits of HGH over steroids and other anabolic substances
As steroids are more commonly associated with an increase in muscle mass, it is vital to understand the difference between HGH and anabolic steroids. Firstly, the gain of muscle mass after HGH therapy is a relatively gradual process, compared to the effects of steroids, with the muscle gain being of the magnitude of one to two pounds, every two to three weeks. Unfortunately though, with steroids, water retention is more common.
Secondly, HGH forces the body to burn down the fat reserves, so one can consume large volumes of food without worrying about unnecessary increase in weight from fat. Steroids do not burn down fat reserves in the body and hence, a strict diet regimen becomes imperative.
Finally, HGH strengthens the connective tissue like, cartilages, tendons and ligaments which reduces the incidence of fractures or injuries that is quite common in body builders and athletes. Steroids do not provide any such beneficial effect on the connective tissue.
To conclude, HGH provides far reaching potential benefits to promote muscle mass in the body, whilst, offering other simultaneous benefits, which are essential for a strong, youthful and robust body structure.