Question: Bodybuilders talk about taking too high a dosage of anabolic steroids and how there comes a point at which the androgen receptors become ‘overloaded’. For example, if one were to take five different steroid compounds all at high dosages, how much can your body actually use? I understand that everyone would be somewhat different but there must be a point of diminishing returns?
Bill Roberts’ answer: For any drug, the approach to virtually 100% binding is a gradual one as dose increases. No hard line can be drawn where some exact value represents maximal effect.
It might be hoped that an answer could be provided from pharmacological theory but due to poor data, that isn’t the case.
For most drugs there would be dose/response studies that would answer the question. This isn’t the case for testosterone or any anabolic steroid, however, so far as I know.
The closest work seems to be that of Forbes. From his data, it appeared to me that a testosterone ester dosage of approximately 4 grams per week is where I would interpret the effect as being virtually 100%.
But really Forbes’ data was not enough to be conclusive.
From the practical bodybuilding standpoint, my conclusion is that if testosterone alone is used, then from the standpoint of, for example, many NPC bodybuilding competitors, 2 grams/week represents very-near-maximal effect. I’d readily grant it as reasonable that doubling the dose might well eke out a little more effect that is important at a yet-higher level of competition.
Some who have better drug sensitivity may have near-maximal effect on substantially lower doses than this.
Oh, as an addition: the fact that 2 grams/week might be called “very near maximal” effect — with it being arbitrary as to exactly what is considered to be very near — does not mean that for example half that dose gives only half that effect.
Quite the contrary. For someone who is presently quite some ways from the level of development at which he’d achieve homeostasis at 1 gram/week and his training and nutrition protocol, 1 gram/week would give very nearly equal rate of gains.
And so far as what level of development is possible at one dosage vs the other, it is also not the case that the 2 grams/week level would provide twice the improvement over natural vs the 1 gram/week level. The difference might be only a few pounds of muscle mass.
For most, 1 gram/week of total steroid use is a quite solid, yet reasonable dose.