Build Muscle

Everything You Need to Know About Human Growth Hormone

Get the facts about this powerful anabolic hormone, then decide if HGH is right for you.


Muscular Bodybuilder

Paul Aiken / EyeEm / Getty

Age-related declines are natural. Why do I need GH if I’m not growing anymore?

Aside from GH’s crucial role in building muscle mass, not all of its benefits are necessarily evident to the naked eye. GH has been shown to slow the progression of age-related degenerative diseases, as well as increase sex drive, help maintain mental acuity, and engender a general sense of well-being. The flip side of the coin—low GH—can result in the exact opposite: muscle loss, fat gain, low sex drive and energy levels, and a poor sense of well-being.

Where can I get HGH?

HGH can be obtained only through a doctor’s prescription in the United States. Anti-aging clinics like Braverman’s specialize in identifying GH deficiencies and making the diagnosis. For those who lack GH sensitivity, a doctor may prescribe pure IGF-1. Although not uncommon, obtaining HGH through illegal means can be dangerous—you can’t be certain of what you’re actually getting—and very expensive.

How can I boost GH levels without an HGH prescription?

Two major factors that contribute to increased GH levels are ones you can control without drugs: weight training and proper sleep. The more you exercise, the more GH you release naturally. A recent study observed significant increases in circulating GH and IGF-1 after intense resistance exercise in a group of trained men but found no significant diferences in untrained men who performed the same workout. GH is also secreted while you sleep, and studies have shown a spike in GH levels at the onset of deep sleep, so getting the recommended seven to nine hours per night is essential to maintaining GH. Diet is the third major factor in keeping GH levels topped off. It’s necessary to eat a balanced diet. Eating to stay lean is also key; fat gain leads to low levels of GH.

What supplements can I take to boost GH?

While a multivitamin may give you some of the nutrients needed to provide a small boost in GH levels, a new study reveals that arginine and glutamine can dramatically raise GH levels, but only if taken in proper ratios. You could try to mix these aminos yourself, but if you want something proven to work, you need a specialty supplement. One of our favorites is Growth Factor-9, the only supplement proven to provide a mean GH increase of 682% in a wide range of study subjects.

For access to exclusive fitness advice, interviews, and more, subscribe on YouTube!