Biochemical Profile and Body Composition Alteration of Amateur Bodybuilders during the Pre-Contest Period

The paper aims to analyze body composition and biochemical profile alterations in amateur bodybuilders during the cutting phase of a contest preparation, and to discuss them in light of scientific evidence. For the purpose of this study, bodybuilders and coaches provided details of drug administration, supplement use and training schedule. The four participants were two men competing in different Men’s Physique categories, one woman in the Wellness category, and one woman competing in the Bikini category. Participants were evaluated for anthropometry and body composition before and after the cutting phase. There was an evident decrease in body fat for most of the participants during the cutting phase without evident loss of fat-free mass. In general, participants performed high volume resistance training combined with aerobic training. Regarding drug administration, participants used high doses of anabolic androgen steroids (AAS), combined with clenbuterol, thyroid hormone, and ephedrine. Blood analysis revealed alterations in lipid profiles, with increased total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and reduced high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels. There were marked alterations in markers of liver (aspartate aminotransferase) and cardiac (MB isoenzyme creatine kinase) damage. Our analysis suggests that the strategies adopted by bodybuilders during the pre-contest phase (high use of AAS and stimulant-based substances) may result in an increased risk of heart disease and liver dysfunction

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