Clenbuterol – What is it and Why Do Bodybuilders Use It?

New call-to-action

Drugs – it’s one of the most taboo topics in the fitness sphere. Dianabol, Nandralone, Testosterone, the list goes on. Performance enhancing substances have been around as long as bodybuilding has. Clenbuterol is one of these drugs that is a little more complex, and here’s why.

By Abby Cronin


To begin, yes, the FDA has banned the use of Clenbuterol in food and supplement products in the U.S.. While its original purpose was to help asthma sufferers breathe, it is also used by celebrities and athletes as a weight loss drug. Clenbuterol’s anabolic properties help burn fat without losing muscle, making it especially popular among bodybuilders.

New call-to-action

clenbuterolNotable Users of the Drug

We’ve all heard the scandals of elite athletes using performance enhancing drugs. Here are a few who got busted for Clenbuterol use for their sport:

Olympic sprinter Katrin Krabbe got a three-year suspension after taking Clenbuterol, which ultimately ended her career as she was not allowed to compete in the 1992 Summer Olympics.

Czech body builder Petr Soukup got a lifetime ban after being tested positive for Clenbuterol and a host of other performance enhancing drugs in 2014.

and most recently, Canelo Alvarez. The highly anticipated boxing match between Alvarez and Golovkin was cancelled due to his positive test results back in March of 2018.

Cyclo BolanSide Effects

While losing fat and gaining muscle sounds like a great deal, it is accompanied by some bad side effects. Reports of heart problems, nausea, anxiety, and electrolyte imbalance are just some of the issues reported by Clenbuterol users. In addition, many find they have to increase their dose over time to get the same effect. Since the body adapts to the drug, it is recommended that it should be cycled on and off.


While it may seem like a quick fix to getting shredded, good old diet and exercise is probably your best bet. While Clenbuterol has worked for some, it is important to remember it has not been approved by the FDA for humans.