Anavar Side Effects: 6 Things You Should Know

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Uncover the 6 key Anavar side effects in our detailed guide. Curious about Anavar’s risks? Gain expert insights into how this steroid can impact your health and learn the critical facts for safer usage.

Oxandrolone (commonly known as Anavar) ranks among the foremost anabolic steroids worldwide, famed for its dual capacity to build lean muscle while concurrently reducing both subcutaneous and visceral fat layers.

Moreover, based on our clinical experience with professional strongmen and powerlifters, the beneficial effects of Anavar on muscle strength tend to be underemphasized. Consequently, it’s a frequently chosen option for many powerlifters’ pre-competition regimen.

Our male clientele typically use Anavar to achieve a leaner, more defined, stronger, and larger physique. Our female clientele utilize Anavar for similar purposes; nonetheless, it is particularly sought after by women due to its rarity among steroids that avert masculinization effects at moderate dosages.

The widespread appeal of Anavar is not solely attributable to its positive impact on physical composition but also to its reputable safety profile.

6 Anavar side effects You should know.

As an FDA-approved anabolic steroid, Anavar is sanctioned for safe medical use when a healthcare provider prescribes it in therapeutic doses. This endorsement reflects its gentle impact, with historical usage by women and children in medical studies manifesting minimal adverse effects (1).

Still, bodybuilders are noted for acquiring Anavar through unregulated means, often from the black market, which accompanies increased risks. Medical prescriptions are typically reserved for patients grappling with muscle wasting (2) or bone thinning (3).

Therefore, the risk of pronounced side effects rises when sourcing non-pharmaceutical varieties of oxandrolone, due to the absence of strict production and safety standards. Bodybuilders also tend to consume doses exceeding medically recommended levels without medical oversight.

6 Common Anavar Side Effects

The following side effects are based on observations and interventions in our clinic, with the severity often linked to the individual’s genetic makeup, exercise routine, dietary habits, dosage, and the duration of the steroid cycle.

We’ve observed that high Anavar dosage, particularly when combined with an unhealthy lifestyle, prompts negative reactions, which may become apparent in the individual’s subsequent medical examinations.

By contrast, individuals leading a healthy lifestyle and adhering to moderate Anavar dosages often report no side effects, with laboratory tests yielding normal results.

1. Cholesterol

From our professional standpoint, oral anabolic steroids generally exert a more severe impact on cholesterol levels than injectables due to their stimulation of the hepatic lipase enzyme in the liver.

In our assessments, levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol do not skyrocket with Anavar usage, rendering it a more heart-friendly oral steroid option.

We have determined that Testosterone and Deca Durabolin present less cardiovascular risk than Anavar does within the whole steroid family.

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Users may still experience a noticeable elevation in blood pressure, which typically returns to baseline after the conclusion of the steroid cycle. As such, a degree of cardiovascular stress is anticipated, slightly increasing the risk for a heart attack.

We recommend that individuals with preexisting high blood pressure or a genetic predisposition to heart disease avoid Anavar (or any other anabolic steroid).

In the short term, those with healthy cholesterol profiles are unlikely to encounter cardiac issues on Anavar.

Nonetheless, users are advised to engage in consistent cardiovascular workouts and adhere to a diet that is rich in unsaturated fats, low in saturated fats, and sodium to minimize potential heart-related risks.

2. Liver Toxicity

Being a c-17 alpha-alkylated compound, Anavar inevitably prompts an increase in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) following liver function evaluations.

Even so, thanks to Anavar’s milder profile and the role of the kidneys in processing the substance, the strain on the liver is generally controllable.

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Many bodybuilders at our facility opt for Tauroursodeoxycholic Acid (TUDCA) at a daily intake of 500 mg, or NAC (N-acetylcysteine) at 1,200 mg/day for added liver protection.

Users are advised against coupling Anavar with hepatotoxic substances or alcohol to avoid additional liver strain. Moreover, individuals with a pre-inflamed or compromised liver should abstain from Anavar use.

Typically, liver stress from Anavar is manageable for most, and the liver – being a remarkably resilient organ – sees enzyme levels returning to normal soon after the cycle ends.

3. Testosterone Suppression

While men inherently have higher levels of testosterone than women, we have seen testosterone suppression affect both sexes, as it is vital for both men’s and women’s libido, energy, and overall well-being.

Anavar is among the least suppressive steroids, according to our clinical experience; nonetheless, it does cause notable reductions in endogenous testosterone due to interference with the hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis (HPTA).

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Therefore, individuals may experience temporary sexual dysfunction, decreased sexual desire, fatigue, and depression once they have finished a cycle.

Our laboratory findings indicate that Anavar does not lead to a complete shutdown of testosterone production. Thus, the recovery span is fairly rapid (a matter of weeks) before natural testosterone levels return to normal.Many of our patients using Anavar, a mild anabolic steroid, report not experiencing significant side effects or withdrawal symptoms after discontinuing use; therefore, they often forego post-cycle therapy (PCT).

Nonetheless, for those looking to expedite the recovery of their natural testosterone production and rebalance their hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis, pharmaceutical aids like Clomid or Nolvadex can be effective.

4. Intense Muscular Pumps

Anavar enhances glycogen storage, which can lead to more pronounced muscular pumps both during and outside of gym sessions.

While this can be aesthetically pleasing for bodybuilders, it sometimes results in discomfort or even pain caused by extreme muscle fullness during exercise.

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Painful muscular pumps, specifically in the lower back, can occur with deadlifts while on Anavar. It is advisable then to be wary about overly brief resting periods between sets or too many repetitions in a workout.

To manage excessive fluid retention, one could significantly cut back on carbohydrate intake, thus reducing the volume of fluid inside cells.

An alternative is using diuretics, but due to the potential to exacerbate kidney strain and consequently heighten the risk of kidney-related issues (4), this practice is not advised.

5. Kidney Strain

Unlike other steroids, Anavar predominantly involves the kidneys rather than the liver in its metabolism, which means lower liver inflammation but increased renal inflammation.

Abuse of Anavar, such as by exceeding recommended doses or extending cycles beyond 8 weeks, poses a threat of triggering acute or chronic kidney damage (5).

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To support kidney health, regular medical checkups to monitor serum creatinine levels are recommended before, during, and after Anavar cycles.

Those who vigilantly maintain cardiovascular health through regular cardio exercise and managing sodium intake, tend to exhibit healthier kidney function.

The reason lies in the connection between high blood pressure and kidney damage, where increased pressure can harm nephron tubules, essential for the body’s water filtration (6).

6. Virilization

Even though Anavar is generally deemed safe for women, when used in extended cycles (longer than 5 weeks) or high doses (more than 10 mg/day), it can cause masculinizing effects.

Such side effects may include voice deepening, reduction in breast size, clitoral enlargement, and increased body hair growth. Menstrual irregularities can also occur (7).

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Conservative dosing and intermittent cycling, rather than prolonged use, is the best approach to avoid these virilization symptoms.


Based on our experience, when it comes to minimizing side effects, the three most favorable anabolic steroids are:

  1. Testosterone
  2. Deca Durabolin
  3. Anavar

Anavar stands out for its mildness, being used safely in both clinical settings and by bodybuilders alike.

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Despite this, the potential adverse effects should not be overlooked, especially considering the likelihood of counterfeit products in the black market, where Anavar may be replaced with methandrostenolone (Dianabol), resulting in unintended risks.

There is an increased potential for exacerbating the side effects of Anavar when misused or when combined with more harmful steroids, potentially leading to a decline in health.









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Dr. Grant Fourie, a specialist in male hormones, is based in Cape Town, South Africa. He provides comprehensive treatments for conditions related to low testosterone, such as erectile dysfunction, fatigue, and mood changes. His methods include hormone replacement therapy and other modern treatment options.
Contact me via email or phone to book personal appointment in my clinic: The Village Square, Cape Town - South Africa


About Dr. Grant Fourie

Dr. Grant Fourie, a specialist in male hormones, is based in Cape Town, South Africa. He provides comprehensive treatments for conditions related to low testosterone, such as erectile dysfunction, fatigue, and mood changes. His methods include hormone replacement therapy and other modern treatment options. Contact me via email or phone to book personal appointment in my clinic: The Village Square, Cape Town - South Africa

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