Insulin is the most powerful anabolic product available on the market today and is widely used within the medical field to treat type 1 Diabetes. This works by using exogenous Insulin as a replacement for the user’s own Insulin hormone once their pancreas has stopped producing this hormone naturally. The body breaks down or converts most carbohydrates into the sugar, glucose. Glucose is absorbed into the bloodstream, and with the help of Insulin, it can travel into the cells within the body where it can be used as energy.
So… Why is Insulin important? Insulin is important because it helps to control your blood sugar (glucose) levels so that your body can get the energy that is needed for daily activities. When the amount of glucose within the blood rises to a certain level, the pancreas will release higher amounts of Insulin into the blood stream to push more glucose (energy) into the cells. Without Insulin, whether that be synthetic or natural, the body cannot break down the carbohydrates that are ingested and convert them into the energy that the body needs. If no Insulin is present to combat the carbohydrates within the blood stream, this will lead to a condition called Hyperglycaemia.
Why is Insulin used by athletes and bodybuilders?
Insulin is the most effective anabolic substance that bodybuilders, weightlifters, and athletes can put into their bodies to enhance muscle growth. We have discussed within the previous section what Insulin is used for within the medical field and also why it is so important for us to have this hormone available within our bodies. Without this hormone, our body’s will go hyperglycaemic, which in turn, can lead to some serious side effects stretching from a mild dizziness to a full blown coma.
So why would body builders or athletes need to take this if they are still producing Insulin naturally? Although its primary use is as a diabetes medication and has been for many years and still is to this day. This drug has been recognised within the world of bodybuilding to have great effects and it is used to promote the fast onset and growth of muscle mass for bodybuilders or athletes who want to take their physique to the next level. This hormone, if used properly and taken as an add on to a user’s natural production of insulin, can create mind blowing results for the user!
In simple terms, when a user consumes a big meal full of calories, the body can only process so much of these before discarding the rest. After the intake of food, your pancreas will release Insulin to maintain glucose homeostasis and start the process of getting energy to cells within the body. This is because Insulin stimulates the uptake of amino acids into the cells and simulates protein synthesis in muscle tissue. So, as an athlete or bodybuilder who is eating huge meals to gain the most mass possible, extra Insulin that is added into the blood stream will enhance this process in time and effectiveness. For example; it is stated that the only time simple sugars such as “jellybeans” should be eaten for a bodybuilder, is straight after the gym, as this signals the body to start producing Insulin (which in turn, starts the process of feeding the muscles for energy and repair). However, if we take a shot of synthetic Insulin after the gym, then we can start this process of feeding the muscles more rapidly and efficiently without the intake of simple sugars (which are not great for our muscles).
As Insulin is primarily used for bodybuilders to gain some serious mass, it can also be used for dieting purposes (although this route carries more severe risks, due to calories and nutrition having to be timed perfectly with little to no room for error!).
What dosage of insulin should be taken?
Insulin dosages are extremely important when it comes down to using this majorly powerful anabolic drug. As noted above, Insulin can be used for gaining mass or dieting purposes, and although both still run a risk, it is the dieting purpose that needs to be monitored very closely. When Insulin is taken synthetically, its half-life is around 3-5 hours. This means that within this time after administration, the insulin will be flying around your blood stream, collecting all of the food content available to be used as energy and carrying it to your cells. If you have not consumed enough food within this half-life time, the Insulin will keep working but without sufficient proteins, carbs and aminos. This will run your blood sugars so low, that you may enter a state of Hypoglycaemia, which can again lead to a coma!
For the use of mass gain, it is still important to monitor your signs and symptoms while using Insulin as an add on, but if you are consuming enough foods; proteins, carbs and amino acids this should not become an issue, if you are taking the correct recommended dosage. Eating the right foods is very important while using insulin, because if you consume fatty content during this time, the insulin will also grab hold of that fat and store it quickly. This is the same process used, but rather than carry good proteins and energy to the muscle cells, it will also carry unwanted energy backups into your fatty tissues.
It is important to note that there are five types of Insulin; Rapid acting, Short acting, Intermediate acting, Long acting and a mixed acting insulin. While some experienced bodybuilders will use several types of these, it is strongly recommended that if you do not have vast experience of using Insulin, then the Intermediate (3-5 hour) acting insulin is the most advised and easiest to control. This comes down to the shorter half-life of this compound making it less risky to use. It is also important to note, that if you are taking multiple injections within a day e.g. (morning, afternoon and evening), then the dosage amounts can build up and increase within the blood stream during the day. This is because by the time your second injection is taken, there may still be some active Insulin floating around within your blood stream. So, in essence, when you inject your afternoon or evening dosages, they may be stacked on top of some left over active Insulin within the blood stream, making the total amount of active Insulin within the blood more than the intended amount that you required.
For intermediate users, the basic recommended dose you will want to start with for strictly performance purposes is 1IU for 10 pounds of body weight. So if you weigh 170 pounds, you’ll want 17IU in total (this can be split between morning, afternoon and evening). However, given the volatility of using insulin, for beginners, it is a good idea to start, very, very conservative. This is why we recommend starting with 3-5IU per day (post-training), and after a little while, assess your tolerance levels and increase the dosage by 1IU per day, to see how your body copes. If you start to notice any of the symptoms of hypoglycaemia, then you know that your dosage is too high and you will need to cut down on this dose.
Once you figure out your dosing protocol, then comes the timing of injections. You will want to time your injections following your workouts, specifically heavy weight bearing exercises (this is for post-training usage). Once you inject your required dose, you’re going to need about 100g of carbs. Once injected, you will want to immediately consume your carbs, whether they will be in liquid or a solid form. Also you need to get about 40-50 grams of protein down the hatch alongside your carbs. The 100 grams of carbs should only be a baseline, it should be noted that as your dosages of insulin increase, so should the amount of carbohydrates because a lot of men will need more than just a 100 grams of carbs. But remember, insulin isn’t needed in massive doses to have a substantial effect, too much can simply lead towards issues with Hypoglycaemia, so keep that in mind when cycling with Insulin.
After you have consumed these amounts of food, please remember that Insulin even in the intermediate acting version, will still be active, floating around your blood stream for a few hours afterwards. So it is recommended that a second meal around the 1.5 to 2-hour mark is recommended. We have given you the basic recommendation for the “safest” way to use Insulin and pack on some serious size. As for the use for dietary purposes, obviously these carb and protein ratios will be different, as there can be some added fat along with your added muscle but this is more for safety and health reasons. To be able to add clean pure lean muscle mass, a user must restrict their carb intake, but this can lead to much greater risk of having a “Hypo” attack. For users planning on using restricted carbs, please make sure someone is aware when you have taken your insulin dose and always keep a blood glucose monitoring machine on hand to be able to check your blood sugars regularly during this time where the Insulin is active within your blood stream!
Insulin is taken subcutaneously; subcutaneous injections can be given straight in at a 90-degree angle or at a 45-degree angle. Give the injection at a 90-degree angle only if you can pinch 2 inches of skin between your thumb and first finger and inject into the skin in-between your fingers and body (the soft part). If you can grasp only 1 inch of skin, this must be given at a 45-degree angle again into the skin between where you have pinched and your body. The aim of a subcutaneous injection, is to inject the liquid into the area between the muscle and the skin layer.
Please note: While using Insulin, please keep at arm’s length some simple sugars such as; pure orange juice, biscuits, Glucogel or any form of pure sugar. If you feel any symptoms of Hypoglycaemia including; dizziness, the fast onset of fatigue, or palpitations. Please consume some sugary substances quickly, as this will help fight and subside this issue.
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