Human growth hormone is a very important anabolic hormone in the human body that’s especially popular in the bodybuilding and fitness community. While testosterone usually gets all the credit for muscle growth and other gains, human growth hormone plays a vital role in both building muscle and shedding fat and any serious bodybuilder could benefit a lot from naturally increasing its production in the body. Read the rest of this article to find out why.
What is human growth hormone?
The growth hormone is actually a small protein that gets secreted into the bloodstream by the pituitary gland. Its production is regulated by the hypothalamus, intestinal tract and pancreas. It was discovered in the 1920’s and isolated in the form of somatotropin in 1956, while it was first successfully synthesized in laboratories in 1981.
The levels of growth hormone significantly rise during childhood, peak during puberty and slowly decline throughout the rest of the life. Levels also rise after exercise, trauma and sleep. The main function of growth hormone is to regulate cell growth and regeneration in all tissues, including muscles and bones. It is vital for maintaining the health of the brain, all vital organs, increasing muscle mass, promoting bone density and producing energy.
In every age, growth hormone boosts protein production, raises blood sugar levels and promotes the utilization of fat as a source of energy. Furthermore, the liver converts growth hormone into different growth factors, the most important of them being insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), which has powerful anabolic properties.
Benefits and side effects of human growth hormone
Recent research shows that growth hormone may be superior to testosterone in terms of contributing to muscle growth because it’s not androgenic and has fewer side effects. However, it is most potent when combined with higher levels of testosterone. Typically, healthy adult men have less than 5 nanograms per milliliter of growth hormone circulating in the blood, while females can produce up to twice of that amount in child-bearing years.
But the benefits of growth hormone stretch further than its role in building muscle mass. According to multiple studies, growth hormone can slow the progression of age-related degenerative diseases, maintain healthy brain function, improve the mood and increase sex drive, while a lack of growth hormone in the body leads to impairment in all of these areas. All in all, growth hormone is needed in precise amounts in the body for the optimal functioning of many processes, such as growth and renovation of body tissues, which makes it irreplaceable in the process of building mass as well.
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