Steroids. If there was one word that could neatly describe steroids, it would be "powerful."
They can do a lot of good for your muscle growth, performance, stamina, endurance, and other aspects involved in maximizing what your body can do in a short amount of time. Love them or hate them, they're here to stay.
As you all know, steroids aren't all good. There are plenty of side effects associated with steroid use and abuse. Then, steroid usage is deemed illegal in professional sports because of its power-enhancing properties and health risks.
This didn't stop people from taking them.
In fact, there are many, many cases of professional athletes who compete (and even win), but then later get caught and be disqualified not just from future events, but also the past ones. The result? Their medals and other accolades were taken, and their names forever tarnished.
There has to be a safe way to feel like you're on steroids without actually being on steroids, right? This is exactly what the people at Crazybulk aimed to do when they released their "steroid alternatives" series.
For this one, we'll be going over D-Bal, which is supposedly a Dianabol replacer.
How good is it? Is it really formulated to mimic Dianabol? Read our D-Bal Review to find out.
- Smart formulation
- Has pumps, testosterone, and recovery ingredients
- Safer than an actual steroid
- May not be great for seasoned athletes
- Not sure if banned in sports
- 1 About Crazybulk D-Bal
- 2 Supplement Facts
- 3 What is D-Bal?
- 4 D-Bal: Pros & Cons
- 5 Frequently Asked Questions:
- 6 Pricing info
- 7 Summary
About Crazybulk D-Bal
It's described as "not-on-steroids" Dianabol.
They promise D-Bal to have the same performance-boosting effects of the steroid, but without the side effects, and we think this is likely true. After all, if you're comparing a natural supplement to a substance actually known to cause liver, kidney, and even heart problems, yeah, you'll come out looking safer regardless of what you put.
As for the formula itself, here are some of the things we noticed:
- Transparent formula: Nothing beats knowing exactly what you're taking with each serving. If someone says this brand is safer than what you are using now, they better tell us what's inside and how much of it is in every serving.
- Familiar ingredients: We see a lot of "bulking" ingredients and others often found in post-workouts. This is good as it means these ingredients are universally tolerated by the human body and have undergone some research for both safety and efficacy. Novel ingredients are exciting, but they can be a coin-toss when it comes to both health and performance.
- Minimal ingredients: By this, we also include the "other" ingredients. Nowadays, most supplements add too many crappy ingredients after the key ingredients, and it's just a horrible mess. Good to see Crazybulk doesn't do that.
We also noticed how the website kept insisting that their product works best with other supplements. Most will see this as a marketing tactic, but we also kind of see this as them saying "our supplement is safe, so it's not as good as the actual bad steroid." But for now, we'll give it the benefit of the doubt.
Other Ingredients: Hydroxypropyl Methylcullulose (Capsule), Microcrystalline Cellulose, Silica, Magnesium Stearate.
Directions: Take three (3) capsules with water approximately 45 minutes after your workout. For best results, use for a minimum of 2 months. Use with a suitable diet and exercise programme.
Workout Period: 2 months on and 1.5 weeks off
Thinking about ordering online? We've put in the research so that you don't have to!
What is D-Bal?
Let's check what Dianabol is to see if the ingredients in D-Bal can truly mimic what it can do.
Dianabol is the brand name of the androgen and anabolic steroid methandienone. Lifters who know their stuff call this DBol for short.
DBol was medically used for androgen replacement therapy and other hormonal treatments, but has since been discontinued and outright banned in most countries. In the US, it's currently a strictly monitored substance. In fact, you can find ways to buy this in Mexico and other Asian countries.
DBol is one of the most popular steroids because it is actually the first-ever steroid actual Olympians used to compete. However, it's at its best when you're trying to bulk up and maximize as many gains as you can per lifting session.
Due to the competitive advantage DBol afforded athletes, it was naturally banned in sports. More importantly, it was also banned due to the health risks associated with steroid use.
The "minimal" side effects are swelling (due to water retention), lethargy, low sex drive, excessive hair growth, and gynecomastia or "manboobs." The worst it can do is actually destroy your liver and even give you a stroke, as steroids in general boost blood clotting.
"Alterations in serum lipids, elevations in blood pressure and an increased risk of thrombosis (blood clots) are additional cardiovascular changes often associated with anabolic steroid use. The magnitude of these effects may differ depending upon the type, duration, and volume of anabolic steroids used. Interesting to note is that these effects appear to be reversible upon cessation of the drug."
With regards to the gains you get, scientists point out that the muscle you get with methandienone is not normal muscle.
"The increases in body potassium and nitrogen were too large in proportion to the weight gain for this to be attributed to gain of normal muscle or other lean tissue, and imply gain of nitrogen-rich, phosphate-poor substance. Although this action of methandienone might be described as anabolic, the weight gain produced is not normal muscle."
Now that we know more about what Dianabol is, let's find out how D-Bal stacks up.
Best Combo for Bulking
Looking for a way to get the most out of D-Bal? Check out the before and after pictures from people stacking this with other Crazybulk products!
- Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol): This is the exact form of vitamin D the body converts when the skin is exposed to sunlight. It's highly bioavailable and just good for overall health and metabolism. Vitamin D is also known to boost free testosterone levels and production, but the dosage is really low.
- Magnesium (from Magnesium Oxide): Magnesium is a mineral that many people don't really get enough of, and it's due to where it's commonly found: Greens, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and wheat. Why is this an issue? Because most people in a typical Western diet don't really consume these types of food regularly.
- What magnesium does is it also boosts natural testosterone levels like Vitamin D, but to a greater degree if you're a hardcore lifter. The dosage is alright, but the form is what we take issue with. We prefer citrate over oxide for maximum absorption.
- MSM: Short for methylsulfonylmethane, this ingredient has been cited to help with quick muscle recovery after intense workouts. It works by directly reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.
- Moreover, MSM is also more popularly taken for joint pains and other health problems related to inflammation. So, MSM is always good regardless of whether you lift or not.
- L - Isoleucine: Isoleucine is one part of the popular BCAA or Branched Chain Amino Acids. BCAAs are specifically known to be one of the best supplements for gains, but isoleucine specifically boosts endurance and repairs muscle tissue faster.
"In conclusion, (isoleucine) consumption suppressed exercise-induced elevation of muscle damage markers in blood, suggesting LEAA could attenuate muscle damage and aid muscle recovery."
- Suma Root Concentrated Extract 2:1 (Pfaffia paniculata): Suma root is a powerful adaptogen which can help lower the stress associated with working out hard. More importantly, adaptogens work by lowering cortisol, the stress hormone. This is important as research shows cortisol and testosterone can't exactly be in one room. If your cortisol is too high, your testosterone can be lower and vice versa.
- In a way, Suma helps us maintain high testosterone levels by making sure we're not feeling too stressed out. The dose feels kinda weak, but we also understand that the effects vary with the individual.
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera): This is the most popular adaptogen in the market. You already know what adaptogens are because of Suma, but treat ashwagandha as the gold standard.
- Tribulus Terrestris (Fruit): If you've been using men's supplements for a while, this ingredient should be familiar to you. Tribulus is known as a testosterone supplement, and some studies suggest this herb does positively influence testosterone production. However, more studies confirm it as more of a libido booster than anything else.
- Sodium Hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid): This is the body's natural lubricant and moisturizer, and can be found in our eyes, skin, and joints. It helps relieve joint pain and speeds up wound healing. Apart from the "general health and wellness" benefits, we're not entirely sure why this is in its formula.
Based on the formulation, D-Bal seems to be for faster muscle recovery and higher testosterone production. As a purely "gains" supplement, we think it's alright. It could be better, but it looks good enough for most lifters.
D-Bal Side Effects
The good news is, it's side effects are nowhere near the life-threatening side effects Dianabol is known for. If nothing else, D-Bal shouldn't cause you to have too high blood pressure levels or wreak havoc on your kidneys or liver.
As to the side effects associated with D-Bal, we like to believe the side effects will be more about nausea and the usual stomach issues which is more about a person's individual tolerance.
For nausea, there have been issues with adaptogens and how they can make people dizzy at times or during the first few minutes of the herbs working.
These are often temporary and don't usually last longer than the day you took them, but if you do suspect D-Bal to be the cause of things that you're not supposed to feel, stop taking D-Bal and consult a health professional on how to move forward.
D-Bal: Pros & Cons
- Smart formulation
- Has pumps, testosterone, and recovery ingredients
- Safer than an actual steroid
- May not be great for seasoned athletes
- The doses aren't that good for their purpose
- Not sure if safe for sport
- Awful website design
- Generic ingredients
Best Combo for Strength
Want to gain more strength with D-Bal? Check out the before and after pictures from people stacking this with other Crazybulk products!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Who is D-Bal made for?
Based on their website, it was made for those looking to substitute Dianabol. Whether they're looking for alternatives for health, sport, or supply reasons, D-Bal wants them to know that they have the next best thing.
However, we think it's really made for those who want to try a really, really watered-down "steroid-like" supplement. Steroids get a lot of bad rap everywhere, not just in sports, but it will always have those who are just curious as to why it's banned and what a banned substance feels like.
What are D-Bal benefits?
The primary benefits it can offer involve faster muscle recovery, lower stress levels, and higher testosterone production.
Faster muscle recovery leads to more gym time or more consistent gym time instead of having those days where you're too sore even to walk. Lower stress levels can help you be more focused and confident in doing your workout routines. Higher testosterone can lead to better performance and better gains.
Now, will all this happen to you? That depends on how disciplined you are. If you think it's a shortcut to gains, you're doing it wrong. Fix your diet, get a proper workout program, sleep better, and just let D-Bal fill in some of those gaps.
Is Crazybulk D-Bal FDA Approved?
Supplements, in general, are not approved by the FDA, which explains why there are so many of them. This means no one really knows if the ingredients are safe or whether the dosages work. This also means supplements like this need to pass through third-party quality and safety checkers to boost buyer confidence.
For those competing in sports, supplements like this need to pass through rigorous testing by third-party testers, and it's more challenging because sports is serious stuff! So many athletes get banned or disqualified for having trace amounts of prohibited substances in their system.
Then, of course, banned is not illegal. What's not allowed in sports is sometimes fine outside of sports. This makes it too easy to take something that's banned by accident, especially if the supplement didn't pass through the right filters.
Is it illegal in Sports?
We did a quick sweep over at the World Anti-Doping Agency website (WADA) to see if D-Bal would sound any alarms, and it didn't.
We also did a search for the ingredients in their latest prohibited substances list and found none of the ingredients in the product.
So, D-Bal is safe for professionals, right? Not exactly.
We looked at their website (which is quite hard on the eyes), and we saw nothing that guarantees that it's safe for sport. This means they didn't go through a sports certification that lets professional athletes use their products without testing any banned substances.
This can mean two things:
1. D-Bal's budget doesn't include third-party sports certification (and sports pros aren't their market).
2. Crazybulk is hiding something.
Either way, we don't recommend any sports professional taking it if they plan on competing, maybe within the next three months just to be safe.
How long does D-Bal last?
This varies depending on how quickly your body burns through the entire ingredients list. At the very least, it shouldn't last longer than 24 hours, especially when you take it after a crazy lifting session.
However, correct us if you have a different experience or know someone who says otherwise.
Is D-Bal Safe?
Safe is relative. Compared to actual Dianabol (which, if we may reiterate, is banned partly due to health risks), D-Bal is like taking chewable vitamins.
Now, is it safe based on every person's body type or response to ingredients? This varies and should be based on a person's personal experience with the supplement.
Can D-Bal actually replace Dianabol?
It, unfortunately, can't. It's in the nature of "natural" ingredients to have lower or more modest properties than their synthetic counterparts. However, it won't give you those life-threatening side effects, so that's always good to know.
How to improve Crazybulk D-Bal's performance
D-Bal on its own is a pretty decent supplement. It will definitely fall short from being something as powerful as Dianabol, but as far as recovery and potential testosterone spikes is concerned, we think it can pull its own weight.
However, we think there are ways to make this Dianabol "replacer" even better.
For the recovery part, we think adding melatonin would improve the recovery. Melatonin is the sleep hormone, but it actually does more than make us feel sleepy.
A 2020 study confirmed taking melatonin as part of a regular fitness supplement plan can help reduce muscle deterioration and improve lean muscle mass in the long-term.
They say it's due to its inherent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. They also add taking melatonin before and after a tough workout can lower insulin resistance (which can lead to Type 2 Diabetes) and boost overall muscle growth.
"In particular, during strenuous training and muscular trauma induced in rodents, melatonin supplementation via different routes improved muscle recovery, inhibiting NF-kB activation and inflammatory cytokines and downregulating atrophy pathways."
For its testosterone benefits, we think adding something like D-Aspartic Acid on top of it will help. DAA is one of the most popular and most studied testosterone boosters.
Many studies suggest taking DAA can directly improve testosterone levels in as little as two weeks, and it works really well if you're over 40 or experiencing low levels of testosterone.
The ULTIMATE Stack
Improve muscle gain, strength and weight loss, all with this stack! Highly reviewed by past customers, this truly is the Ultimate Stack.
- Single purchase: $59.99
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D-Bal's goal is to be the next best thing to Dianabol, and for what it's worth, we think it's an alright supplement.
Dianabol's main effect revolves around optimizing muscle recovery while also imparting performance benefits. D-Bal's formula is more about improving muscle recovery and boosting testosterone levels which may sound similar, but not really.
If anything, D-Bal's benefits are more passive, which is only typical for a supplement. The last thing you want in your supplements is a substance that can directly mess with your system.
If Dianabol automatically lets you punch through a brick wall, D-Bal's formula will help you build a stronger punch. This punch won't go through a brick wall, and it will hurt like hell, but you'll punch hard anyway.
If there's any real reason as to why it's an upgrade to Dianabol, it would be due to the much lower risk of serious health problems. D-Bal uses natural ingredients for the most part, and these ingredients don't directly interfere with the body's processes but rather "suggest" them.
Health is wealth, and safety over gains is a good motto in anything strength and training related, and we think D-Bal is an excellent example of that if the other product it's being compared to is Dianabol.
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