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             Steroids in today's society are used by more athletes than in any other era because of the benefits; however, there are also dangers in steroid use. In addition, many people believe the muscle gain resulting from steroids provides an unethical edge over opponents. Steroids are a group of natural and artificial chemicals that produce male-like effects in both males and females. "Anabolic steroids, synthetic compounds formulated to act like the male sex hormone testosterone are the subject of conversation these days. Many athletes, including male and female bodybuilders, weight lifters, runners, swimmers, and pro athletes, have used them because they believe, that in doing so they will gain size and strength in their sports" (Meer 68). .
             There are only three main types of steroids. "Corticosteroids which are medically used to control inflammation and pain. Estrogen steroids, which are made from the female sex hormone estrogen, are used for birth control pills" (Clayton 21). Of course you also have anabolic steroids, which are made from the sex hormone testosterone and "are used medically in patients which suffer from cancer or aids" (Clayton 22). With these three types of steroids there are only two ways to intake steroids, "by mouth or by injection" (Clayton 22). These two methods have similar muscle growing effects but different side effects. Steroids are often consumed in cycles. Each cycle lasts anywhere from four to eight weeks, but the most common cycle lasts six weeks. "Steroids are taken this way because they need time to change the body's chemistry and produce more muscle" (Lukas 20). After the first cycle most users will stop taking steroids for a few weeks, then the cycles are then repeated.
             Steroids are becoming increasingly popular for sportsmen and women to help aid their performance. Steroids promote muscle growth and increase lean body mass. Anabolic steroids have many approved medical uses, but they are also abused by many athletes to help improve performance and for those who seek a pleasant physical appearance.

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