Is Ecdysterone Natural? | What You MUST Know

Dr. Mike Jansen

Last Updated September 19, 2022

Dr. Mike Jansen

 September 19, 2022

Curious… is ecdysterone natural?

Do you wonder if ecdysterone is truly a legal steroid alternative, or just another illegal performance enhancing drug?

Then you’ve come to the right place. In this comprehensive guide, we detail everything you need to know about ecdysterone, including the major benefits of this natural sports supplement.

We also answer your most important questions, including:

  • Is ecdysterone safe?
  • Is ecdysterone a steroid?
    • How do I take ecdysterone?

…And much more!

We conducted extensive research on studies done on this supplement, the effects it can have on your body, how to take it, and answering other questions you might have.

After reading this in-depth guide, you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed decision on ecdysterone, including whether it’s a good choice for you.

Now let’s get started!

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What is Ecdysterone?

Ecdysterone (also known as 20-beta-eydroxyecdysterone) is a compound that up until 1966 was known to only exist in arthropod insects. It acted as the hormone that controls their molting and reproductive processes.

In 1966 researchers discovered many naturally occurring compounds that were structurally similar to ecdysterone.

These compounds, called phytoecdysteroids, were discovered in large quantities in plant species, making them easily available in large quantities for research purposes.

Initially, these studies were started with the goal of developing safer and more specific insecticides, as certain hormones in plants were initially suggested to act as a defense against insect predators.

Upon further study, however, it was revealed that ecdysterone and other ecdysteroids are not toxic to mammals.

Rather, they proved to possess a host of pharmacological benefits – explaining their presence in several plant species like Achyranthes and Leuzea, which are widely used in traditional medicine [1, 2].

The discovery of ecdysterone in large quantities in plants made it possible for further research to be carried out. In fact, the majority of plants known to contain phytoecdysteroids (such as ecdysterone) aren’t safe for human consumption, with the exception of spinach and quinoa.

Both phytoecdysteroids and zooecdysteroids (molecularly identical hormones found in arthropods) have been a subject of study in vertebrates like mice since the 1960s because of their anabolic, hypoglycaemic, and hypocholesterolaemic effects.

They’ve also been shown to confer pharmacological benefits (e.g against diabetes or asthenia) [1].

All of these effects have led to the development of different ecdysteroid-containing preparations on the market which are marketed based on their anabolic and apoptogenic properties on humans, thus making ecdysterone a popular choice among bodybuilders and athletes because of its anabolic properties [1].


Ecdysterone


Is Ecdysterone Natural?

Ecdysterone is a naturally occurring compound. Just like humans produce the testosterone hormone, arthropods and several plants also produce ecdysterone.

For arthropods, the hormone helps in their molting and reproduction process, while in plants the hormone serves to deter invertebrate predators.

Most ecdysterone extracts are acquired from plant sources as they provide a larger concentration of the compound and are naturally more available for sourcing ecdysterone. Polar solvents like ethanol or methanol are required to extract ecdysterone from arthropods and plants [3].

When it comes to extracting ecdysterone from plants, they are screened by RIA for ecdysone-like immunoreactive compounds or for molting hormone activity by an appropriate bioassay.

Plants that possess the desired compound are then taken through an appropriate extraction and isolation process. This is monitored by the assay used for screening the whole plant until a chromatographic peak (or peaks) are identified as being associated with the activity [3].

After extraction, lipids and other nonpolar materials are removed using a solvent partition with a nonpolar solvent, such as hexane–aqueous methanol 7:3 [3].

Ecdysterone Vs Steroids

Because of its anabolic properties, the question “is ecdysterone a steroid?” has been asked repeatedly.

The answer to that question is “not exactly.”

While ecdysterone is known to possess certain anabolic properties, it is not legally considered to be an anabolic or androgenic steroid.

Also, ecdysterone is different from other traditional steroids common to bodybuilders like trenbolone and dianabol, in that it does not cause testosterone levels to plummet after a cycle is completed.

It’s easy to see why ecdysterone is often considered a steroid, though. Studies have shown that ecdysterone induces hypertrophy of muscles with a comparable or even higher potency when compared with anabolic androgenic steroids, SARMs, or IGF-1 [4].

It’s also no wonder ecdysterone was suspected to be used by Russian Olympic athletes as part of their training in the 1980s [4].

Ecdysterone Research Studies

Much of the research available concerning the effects of ecdysterone on vertebrates was conducted on mice.

The findings of many of these studies reported the compound to have a wide array of benefits beyond just anabolic effects, such as:

  • Stimulatory effects on protein synthesis
  • Stimulating bile secretion
  • Accelerated healing of small wounds or burns
  • Degradation and protection of neurons against the deleterious effects of various drugs [5]

Finally, one study on the effects of Rhaponticum (a plant containing ecdysterone) conducted on 60 military cadets at the end of their academic year saw an improvement in appetite, sleep, and their general physical and mental state [6].

In short, ecdysterone is not a steroid – it is a natural substance found in many plants.

You can harness the benefits of this natural substance by consuming foods known to possess large quantities of ecdysterone, or by taking an ecdysterone supplement 1-2 times per day.


Ecdysterone and Bodybuilding

So far we’ve covered what ecdysterone is, its natural origin, its role in plant and animal development, and a few of the benefits users can experience from using this extract.

We’ve seen that one of the major benefits of ecdysterone lie in its anabolic properties. This is one of the main reasons why ecdysterone has become popular as a supplement for bodybuilders, athletes, and people looking to get an edge in the gym.

To best understand why and how ecdysterone is used in bodybuilding, it’s important to first understand the circumstances under how it was studied initially. For instance, one study conducted in the Soviet Union on castrated immature rats saw an increase in the mass of specific muscles and an increase in liver mass.

Also, the total protein and glycogen content of their organs increased after administration of Ecdysterone for 10 days.

Another study where ecdysterone was administered orally for 60 days on mice in doses of 5-100 ug / animal / day reported increased growth on the treated mice, enhanced protein synthesis in the liver and kidney, and also a slightly altered morphological structure of the liver cells [2].

These earlier studies on mice provided evidence that Ecdysterone can potentially produce anabolic effects on vertebrates.

You might be thinking…

“Well yes, those are mice… But what about the effects of Ecdysterone on humans?”

Once researchers had established that ecdysterone was generally safe for mammals, they transitioned to observing its effects on human subjects.

A study involving three groups of male athletes of similar body composition took place, where one group was able to increase in one-rep max for both the bench press and leg press by an average of 10 pounds and 60 pounds after ingesting a daily dosage of 200mg of ecdysterone over an 8-week period [2].

A standardized dosage for ecdysterone is yet to emerge, since the right dosage usually varies depending on individual body weight and the differences in how each person’s body processes anabolic substances.

It’s advised that individuals test out different doses to find out what works for them.

Though it’s also been noted that the anabolic effects of Ecdysterone is dependent on the dosage taken with tests carried out reporting subjects to have experienced increased strength and stamina with higher administered dose [1], 1000mg still remains the maximum recommended dose with effects tending to peak around that level according to studies [5].


Is Ecdysterone Safe?

After going through the studies and research done on ecdysterone, we can confirm that ecdysterone is generally safe when used responsibly.

Aside from the fact that little to no side effects are associated with it, both researchers and consumers have reported significant improvements in their athletic activities.

Ecdysterone supplements offer a very convenient means of consumption.

While other anabolic steroids out there are typically administered by injection into the bloodstream with the use of a syringe, ecdysterone is consumed orally – either in powder form, or through capsules. This makes it a much more practical and preferred alternative to most other traditional anabolic steroids out there.

As for the cycle length for consumption of ecdysterone, the majority of the studies we’ve referenced here have based their findings on 8-12 week cycles.

For instance, a study conducted in 2021 reported gains in lean muscle mass and strength among participants who consumed an ecdysterone dosage of 2 grams per day over a 12-week period, and reported no adverse effects [7].

The average ecdysterone dosage of most supplement products tends to be 500mg. However, studies have been conducted showing the effects of ecdysterone to be noticed in far lower quantities. Reference is made to the same 2021 study mentioned above where the subject consumed a dosage of 2grams/day and was still able to experience noticeable increases in lean muscle mass and strength without recording any side effects [8].

Nevertheless, due to the limited information out there concerning ecdysterone in humans, it is advised that you cycle this substance for 8-12 weeks at a time, without exceeding two cycles per year [6, 9].

Most strength athletes and bodybuilders who take ecdysterone tend to ingest their dose on a daily basis in the morning on an empty stomach, while others split it into a morning and evening dose.


Ecdysterone


Is Ecdysterone Legal?

In 2019, WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) funded a study which was conducted by German scientists.

The research team advocated that ecdysterone be included in the list of banned substances. This was done after they found evidence supporting ecdysterone’s status as a strong performance-enhancing supplement whose effects could be compared to more traditional steroids like dianabol.

9Although ecdysterone wasn’t added to the List of Banned Substances, as of 2020 it was added to the list of substances in the WADA Monitoring Program.

It remains unclear if ecdysterone will be officially banned in professional sports or not [10]. In short, the answer to the question “is ecdysterone legal?” is a resounding “yes.”

Unlike other traditional anabolic and androgenic steroids, ecdysterone is not classified as an anabolic steroid. This means it is completely legal to purchase, possess, and consume in the United States.

Also, it’s worth noting that even if ecdysterone is eventually added to the WADA Banned Substances List, it would still be legal to sell, buy, possess, and consume it.

If ecdysterone is banned in the future, it would only affect athletes competing in professional sports.


Best Ecdysterone Supplements | 2022 Edition

Currently there are over 150 different ecdysterone supplements on the market. Many companies selling ecdysterone claim that their products are legitimate. However, upon further investigation you will find that some vendors are more transparent than others.

This is why we’ve taken the time to research through the various ecdysterone supplements found on the market.

Through our research we were able to discover two online vendors who stand out from the crowd with their commitment to their customers by selling high quality products and ensuring customer satisfaction.

We made sure to check if they…

  • Offer reliable shipping options
  • Sold lab-tested and safe-to-use products
  • Offer fair prices
  • Have a fair number of positive reviews from others who had previously purchased

Our top recommendation for an ecdysterone vendor is Huge Supplements. Here’s why Huge Supplements is our favorite ecdysterone vendor:

  • Superior quality. Our biggest reason for recommending Huge Supplements is the fact that they manufacture their products in an FDA-approved facility located in the United States.
  • Fast, affordable shipping. Their shipping is also fantastic: apart from countries located in the European Union, they offer worldwide shipping and free domestic shipping for orders over $100.
  • Great customer service. While other supplement companies tend to be slow in answering their phones and replying to email inquiries, Huge Supplements were able to get back to us promptly – answering all our questions and handling concerns in an in-depth and comprehensive manner.
  • Enhanced absorption. To make things even better, Huge Supplements include cyclodextrin in their supplements – a polysaccharide that functions to speed up and enhance absorption of ingested ecdysterone into the body.

You can click the link below to learn more about Huge Supplements Ecdysterone, and purchase 98% pure Ecdysterone capsules:

Order the best Ecdysterone from Huge Supplements...

Our next recommended vendor on our list is Intelligent Elephant.

Not only is Intelligent Ecdysterone sold at a competitive price point, but they allow you to pay for your order via cryptocurrency. So, if you’re looking to buy ecdysterone capsules using Bitcoin or Ethereum, then you should pay a visit to Intelligent Elephant.

To learn more about Intelligent Ecdysterone and make your purchase, just click the link below:

Order the best Ecdysterone from Intelligent Elephant...


What are the Benefits of Ecdysterone?

When used responsibly within the dosing parameters we’ve recommended in this article, ecdysterone can produce a number of potent effects for both bodybuilders and athletes involved in various pursuits.

Firstly, numerous studies have shown ecdysterone to have an effect in enhancing fat loss, improving sleep, increasing muscle mass, and even possessing cancer fighting properties [3, 6, 10].

Ecdysterone has also been shown to improve and speed up the healing process in wounds and contribute to epidermis regeneration [11].

In addition, ecdysterone also possesses anabolic properties for which it is most known for.

Studies across both animal and human subjects have shown ecdysterone to contribute to an increase in strength and stamina gains, which is made possible in part by the enhanced protein synthesis stimulated by ecdysterone – as high as 20%, in some cases [12].

This compound has also been known to improve general well-being.

A study conducted on 47 sailors after four months of sailing when symptoms of fatigue had begun to appear showed participants to experience normalized sleep, an increase in appetite, and a general improvement in their mental and physical state, as well as an increase in their overall work capacity.

On the other hand, the control group that didn’t consume the extract experienced a worsening of their physical and mental state [6].


Is Ecdysterone Natural? | Verdict

In conclusion….

We’ve gone through ecdysterone’s legitimacy as a natural compound, how it was first found in only arthropod insects and later discovered in large amounts in plants.

We also considered its functions in bodybuilding and its ability to enhance strength, stamina, and overall performance in athletes, safety concerns associated with ecdysterone, dosage cycles, its legal status, and the benefits of using this over-the-counter supplement.

Ultimately, the answer the question “is beta-ecdysterone natural?” is a resounding “yes.” It is a naturally occurring compound that is found in many plants like spinach and quinoa.

Most of the confusion surrounding ecdysterone’s status as a naturally sourced supplement stems from the clandestine practices some manufacturers out there engage in when producing this substance.

Ready to get started with ecdysterone?

If you answered “yes,” then we strongly recommend the online ecdysterone vendor Huge Supplements.

They use a special cyclodextrin ingredient in all of their ecdysterone products to maximize its absorption and its muscle-building benefits.

So what are you waiting for?

Grab a bottle of Huge Supplements ecdysterone today and get ready to take your training to the next level!


References

  1. R. Lafont, L. Dinan, Practical uses for ecdysteroids in mammals including humans: and update, Journal of Insect Science, Volume 3, Issue 1, 2003, 7, https://doi.org/10.1093/jis/3.1.7
  2. SLAMA, K., & LAFONT, R. (1995). Insect hormones – ecdysteroids: their presence and actions in vertebrates. Eur. J. Entomol., 92(1), 355-377
  3. Phytoecdysteroid. Phytoecdysteroid – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics. (n.d.). Retrieved February 17, 2022, from https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/phytoecdysteroid
  4. Parr MK, Botrè F, Naß A, Hengevoss J, Diel P, Wolber G. Ecdysteroids: A novel class of anabolic agents?. Biol Sport. 2015;32(2):169-173. doi:10.5604/20831862.1144420
  5. Dinan, L., & Lafont, R. (2006). Effects and applications of arthropod steroid hormones (ecdysteroids) in mammals, Journal of Endocrinology, 191(1), 1-8. Retrieved Feb 15, 2022, from https://joe.bioscientifica.com/view/journals/joe/191/1/1910001.xml
  6. 20-Hydroxyecdysone: The pro-anabolic, plant steroid. (n.d.). Retrieved February 17, 2022, from https://www.huhs.edu/literature/20-Hyroxyecdysone.pdf
  7. Syrov VN, Kurmukov AG. Ob anabolicheskoĭ aktivnosti fitoékdizona-ékdisterona, vydelennogo iz Rhaponticum carthamoides (Willd.) Iljin [Anabolic activity of phytoecdysone-ecdysterone isolated from Rhaponticum carthamoides (Willd.) Iljin]. Farmakol Toksikol. 1976 Nov-Dec;39(6):690-3. Russian. PMID: 1030669.
  8. Pérez-Piñero S, Ávila-Gandía V, Rubio Arias JA, Muñoz-Carrillo JC, Losada-Zafrilla P, López-Román FJ. A 12-Week Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial, Evaluating the Effect of Supplementation with a Spinach Extract on Skeletal Muscle Fitness in Adults Older Than 50 Years of Age. Nutrients. 2021 Dec 6;13(12):4373. doi: 10.3390/nu13124373. PMID: 34959924; PMCID: PMC8706266.
  9. Simakin SY: The Combined Use of Ecdisten and the Product ‘Bodrost’ during Training in Cyclical Types of Sport. Scientific Sports Bulletin. 1988, 2:
  10. Isenmann, E., Ambrosio, G., Joseph, J.F. et al. Ecdysteroids as non-conventional anabolic agent: performance enhancement by ecdysterone supplementation in humans. Arch Toxicol 93, 1807–1816 (2019).
  11. Cahlíková, L., Macáková, K., Chlebek, J., Hošt’álková, A., Kulhánková, A., & Opletal, L. (2011). Ecdysterone and its activity on some degenerative diseases. Natural Product Communications, 6(5). https://doi.org/10.1177/1934578×1100600527
  12. Wilborn, C.D., Taylor, L.W., Campbell, B.I. et al. Effects of Methoxyisoflavone, Ecdysterone, and Sulfo-Polysaccharide Supplementation on Training Adaptations in Resistance-Trained Males. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 3, 19 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-3-2-19
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