Anavar: Benefits, Risks, Side Effects & Safer Alternatives

Chemical structural formula 3D ball-and-stick model of anabolic steroid Anavar

What is Anavar?

Anavar, which also goes by the name Oxandrolone, is one of a category of substances known as androgenic-anabolic steroids (AAS) that build muscle mass. It is used medically to treat catabolic (wasting) conditions such as certain forms of cancer and HIV/AIDS.

Doctors sometimes use Anavar to promote weight gain in patients who are not maintaining an appropriate weight.

Bodybuilders, weightlifters, and athletes often use Anavar without medical approval to increase muscle mass, physical strength, and stamina. Anavar is not typically used as a performance enhancer outside of competitive bodybuilding or powerlifting circles because it does not have any significant advantages over other steroids with regards to building lean muscle mass; however, it does carry less side effects than many others.

As with many other anabolic steroids, this steroid is on the prohibited list of the World Anti-Doping Agency and is a Schedule III controlled substance in the United States.

Is Anavar Legal?

Anavar, is a prescription medication in many countries, including the United States. In the context of bodybuilding or performance enhancement, it’s important to know that the non-medical use of Anavar is not legal without a prescription.

Additionally, sports organizations, such as the International Olympic Committee and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), prohibit the use of anabolic steroids, including Anavar.

However, laws can vary by country, so it’s always a good idea to check the current laws in your country or state. Always consult with a healthcare provider before beginning any new medication or supplement.


Anavar can cause people to burn more fat and build lean muscle, increasing strength. The anabolic effects of this steroid are stronger than its androgenic effects.

Anavar can also improve bone density, which may help to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Because it increases bone calcium levels, patients with osteoporosis may take the drug to increase bone strength and relieve bone pain.

Additionally, Anavar has also been shown in some studies to be effective at treating anemia and increasing levels of hemoglobin or red blood cells. It might have a positive effect on HDL cholesterol (the “good” kind) and total cholesterol for people with high triglyceride levels.

Some people, often women, might take Anavar for its ability to burn fat. In patients who have suffered severe burns, it can speed the growth and healing of muscle tissue.

Side Effects

The side effects of Anavar are similar to those of other anabolic steroids, including high cholesterol, water retention, increased levels of calcium, acne and oily skin. Irritability and other mood changes can also occur when taking Anavar, and may continue after stopping the use of the steroid as well.

Anavar may cause cardiovascular disease and increase the risk of a heart attack.

For males, Anavar can cause enlarged breast tissue, painful erections, and reduced fertility. Risks for enlarged prostate and prostate cancer may also increase.

For women, this steroid can interfere with menstruation and trigger the development of male secondary sex characteristics, such as facial hair and a deep voice. Anavar can also cause enlargement of the clitoris.

For both sexes, changes in the level of interest in sex may occur.

One rare but troubling side effect that sets this steroid apart from other performance enhancing drugs is the short-term changes in liver function, including jaundice, loss of appetite, fatigue, and pain in the abdomen.

Blood-filled cysts resulting from a rare liver condition known as peliosis hepatis can develop in people taking Anavar. However, research does not show that short-term use of Anavar necessarily leads to permanent liver damage.

Patients taking this drug in oral form and should take it with food if it causes stomach irritation.

Anavar Alternatives

Anavar is a popular steroid among bodybuilders because it helps with muscle growth and weight loss. But there are risks and side effects associated with Anavar use, which is why we strongly endorse the use of safe and all-natural alternatives.

There are some legal Anavar alternatives available that deliver many of the same effects as Anavar, but (since they’re 100% all-natural) without any of the adverse reactions. These products are not only safe but also effective and affordable.

That said, while these products can produce some great results, there is no natural supplement that is as potent as anabolic steroids, and there is no getting around that. However, they don’t come with any of the health or legal risks, either. End the end, the decision is up to you.

We have tested a number of Anavar-like supplements over the years, most of which produced only marginal effects (if any), but the ones that we can definitely recommend are:

These supplements are perfect for anyone who wants to get ripped fast, lose weight, or push their performance to the next level. Although the effects are not as powerful as actual Anavar, they come with no side-effects or health risks, which is why they’re becoming more popular than ever before.

See Also: The Top-Rated Legal Steroid Supplements


Anavar resembles other anabolic steroids in terms of its medical and non-medical applications, and its availability in oral form may be more convenient for some users. However, the risk of severe liver problems and the fact that Anavar is intended only for short-term use argues against its safety as a bodybuilding or performance-enhancing drug.

For more information about natural supplements that have similar effects to PEDs, be sure to see our list of the top-rated legal steroids.

Anabolic Research display of product bottles.

The facts presented in this article should not be construed as medical advice or as a substitute for consulting your doctor.

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