Similar in structure to insulin, IGF-1 appropriately stands for Insulin-like Growth Factor. After growth hormone is released from the pituitary gland and makes it way out into the body, it is then primarily used in the liver to produce and provide the main source of IGF-1 found in circulation.
IGF-1 is a hormone released in the liver as well as in peripheral tissues such as skeletal muscle. As mentioned already, in the body, IGF-1 is released in response to the presence of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). After intense resistance training, the body experiences a surge in HGH and then IGF-1, and this is one way that new muscle is built. Although HGH is considered to be highly anabolic, in actuality, IGF-1 is thought to be responsible for the primary anabolic activities of HGH.
IGF-1 LR-3 Supplementation May Help Form New Cells (And MORE Muscle)??
IGF-1 LR-3 is a synthetic protein and lengthened analogue of human insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). It belongs to the peptide family of substances identified as growth factors. This LR-3 version of IGF-1 is a “time released” version of it lasting twice as long with its 83 amino acid chain and is 3 times more potent that regular IGF-1 and its smaller 70 amino acid chain.
IGF-1 helps to build new muscle tissue by promoting nitrogen retention and protein synthesis. IGF-1 causes muscle cell hyperplasia, which is an actual splitting and forming of NEW muscle cells. This causes the growth of muscles through an increase in number of muscle cells and the actual growth of new muscle fibers. Thus IGF-1 not only can enhance your ability (if enough testosterone is present) to make current muscle fibers bigger, but it also makes more of them as well which is a big thing to take note of here! In short, it can help enhance and strengthen most of our connective tissue (skin, muscle, tendons, ligaments, etc) while adding more of it in the body. This is especially helpful for those with injuries or nagging ailments from injuries and aging itself that are slow to heal and repair. In addition, IGF-1 is known for promoting proper bone density which is especially helpful in our older years.
IGF-1 LR-3 May Help with Fat Loss Too??
IGF-1’s effects are not limited to just building new muscle and tissue however. It has a potent effect on lipid (fat) metabolism, and helps the body burn fat at a significantly elevated rate. In addition, IGF-1 is both a neuro-protector and neuro-promotor, which improves mental functions such as reflexes, memory, and learning ability. Although IGF-1 is very potent at building muscle and burning fat, the IGF-1 LR-3 version is roughly 2-3x as powerful.
But Why Do So Many People Want This Hormone Optimized?
In simple bullet pointed terms, IGF-1 has been shown to help improve the following:
- Utilizing fat for better use as energy, helping significantly with fat loss efforts and boosting metabolism.
- Contributing to slowing down the aging process. As we get older, IGF-1 production slows down and this results in cell reduction. Low levels of IGF-1 are linked to heart failure, lower brain cell regulation and neuron function. Not to mention muscle tissue breakdown.
- Helping to increase nutrient shuttling (protein synthesis).
- Increasing regenerative functions of nerve tissues.
- Boosting the ability to cause hyperplasia (increase in # of) in muscle cells resulting in fuller muscle tissue and is shown to increase the amount of these cells. In laymen’s terms: Unlike testosterone that helps increase the size of muscle that is currently there, this actually adds more muscle.
- Glucose metabolism (better blood sugar regulation).
- Assisting with strengthening and healing of connective tissue.
But There Could Be More Benefits for Men…
Another surprising but still speculated effect that remains largely unexplained is that it actually has shown promise to reverses testicular atrophy where advanced liver disease is present. Testicles if shrunken for various reasons such as TRT treatment, may get some additional help here to drop and return to normal function. If not shrunken they will not shrink during a program. This may explain partially why gains are kept after, but again this is still needing more studies as they are still in infant stages. The increased circulating levels of IGF-1 are believed by some to prevent shrinkage and allow for increased LH output in ledyge cells (in testicles) during a reboot as well.
So imagine having optimized levels of IGF-1 that assist with increased muscle retention and faster recovery of your natural T levels and endocrine system… IGF-1-LR3 will cause even greater elevations in IGF-1 and the potential for more muscle growth and fat loss through its unique ability to drain fat cells and supply muscle cells with vital nutrients. Also… IGF-1 because of its action of forcing nutrients into the muscle, has the potential to increase the uptake of amino acids, creatine and other nutrients!!!
What Are Potential Side Effects from IGF-1?
First and foremost, most side effects that could come from IGF-1 supplementation typically come from incorrect and/or abused dosing practices. Only those that show a medical need or have significant room for improvement to optimize their levels for better health should consider exploring this powerful option. The goal should be to optimize this hormone or in other words, get it to the higher end of normal without going to such high and dangerous zones to put one at any type of risk.
It should be noted that high doses of IGF-1 have been known to cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), but nowhere near what high doses of insulin are capable of.
Our bodies need IGF-1 to regulate nervous system, heart function, tissue repair and brain cell stimulation. People with low IGF-1 levels were found to have low lean body mass which in turn, can be as equally unhealthy as it is typically associated with obesity, poor glucose regulation and the related diseases. If you have a headache, you don’t swallow a whole bottle of Aspirin with a bottle of booze. Likewise, to guard yourself from making reckless mistakes, IGF-1 should be administered and dosed properly and never irresponsibly or in an abusive manner. Together with a qualified physician, your dosing protocol should be in sync with your reported lab results and your specific needs to avoid any danger zones.