With each generation bodybuilders seem to get bigger and bigger. The legs, arms, backs and chests grow thanks to training and massive drug cycles. However, there’s one big problem – the bigger the bodybuilder, the bigger his mid-section. Modern bodybuilders look like pregnant pigs even when they are absolutely “shredded” and have super low body fat. What’s the cause for that? What causes the so called growth hormone gut?
There are a lot of speculations over the Internet and outside of it regarding what’s the actual cause of the growth hormone gut which is the trademark of modern bodybuilding. If we follow the history of the sport, we will see that competitors from the Golden Era rarely had distended stomachs. Bodybuilders like Mike Mentzer, Sergio Oliva, Frank Zane, Arnold Schwarzenegger…had relatively small mid-sections unlike the current grotesque abdominal bags observed at major bodybuilding events.
So, what happened? What was added to equation that changed the classic look? Many things with the most prominent being: GH (growth hormone)a and insulin.
The bodybuilding world has accepted that Dorian Yates was the bodybuilder to set the so-called new standards in size as the the first Mr, OLYMPIA at 250 lbs / 110+kg. Many believe that the reason for the increase in competition weight was caused by Yates’ growth hormone abuse. He was the first to use unreal amounts of growth hormone for a long time and that step was one of the reasons for the so-called new standards. Is it a coincidence that the guts of professional bodybuilder during Yates’ era grew a lot?
In general growth hormone helps a lot with fat loss. This is one of the primary reasons bodybuilders take it during their whole preparation – to maintain low body fat levels. So, if growth hormone is so good for fat loss, how would it cause growth of the mid-section?
Many believe that growth hormone is the reason why bodybuilder’s internal organ increase in size.
An excessive level of HGH in the body can cause the organs including the heart, liver and kidneys to grow to an excessively large size. This can lead to organ failure or dangerous conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and atherosclerosis. Extremely high levels of the human growth hormone in the system can also cause the bones to grow at an unhealthily fast rate, increasing the chance of injury during physical activity or natural periods of growth.
While it’s true that GH causes growth of the internal organs it would be a little childish and naive to make a conclusion that the insanely large guts of modern bodybuilders are simply intestines pushing out.
There are also claims that the use of GH causes increase of the so-called visceral fat (also known as organ fat or intra-abdominal fat) but there are already researches that show the opposite – reduction of visceral fat during usage of recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH).
So, what we are left so far is organ growth due to abuse of GH.
Insulin is a peptide hormone, produced by beta cells in the pancreas, and is central to regulating carbohydrate and fat metabolism in the body. It causes cells in the skeletal muscles, and fat tissue to absorb glucose from the blood. Bodybuilders inject insulin to drive nutrients into the muscle post workout. However, improper usage of insulin can cause extreme side effects including coma and death.
Many believe that the modern growth hormone guts are actually caused for the most part by insulin abuse and therefore should be called ‘slin guts’. The reason being is that insulin is linked to increase of intra-abdominal fat.
The constant abuse of insulin and injecting it in your body when a medical condition does not require you to do so can lead to improper insulin sensitivity in the body. In general insulin resistance and intra-abdominal obesity are strongly related:
One of the major conditions caused by excess intra-abdominal adipose tissue is insulin resistance, defined as the inability of insulin to perform many of its major metabolic functions. Most evidence points to a cause-and-effect relationship between excess intra-abdominal fat and insulin resistance, as well as between insulin resistance and the health complications associated with intra-abdominal obesity.
Professional bodybuilders love to eat. A lot. Their sport requires it. It’s not uncommon for bodybuilders to consume 10 000 calories a day. That’s what most common people eat in a week. This alone causes enlargement of your stomach. Your body becomes a bag stretched to it’s maximum. Once it’s stretched so far it never return to the previous tightness.
The guts of modern bodybuilders are caused by growth hormone and insulin abuse coupled with super high calorie diets.