If muscle cells stay forever, why do you lose muscle and strength after you stop using steroids?

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If you stop working out as a natural, you still keep your muscle cells making it easier to gain the muscle back.

So why do you lose it when jumping off steroids, even if you keep working out? And as a natural why can’t you gain that muscle back that you built while on steroids?

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The cells shrink in response to hormonal changes. One of the detrimental effects of steroids (at least in most cases) is that the body’s natural levels of testosterone plummet while taking them. And when you stop taking them, you get a double whammy of no testosterone due to steroid use and no testosterone because natural production levels are so low. Without adequate testosterone, the body has a really hard time holding onto muscle mass. Over time, testosterone production returns to normal levels, but that is likely still below the levels coursing through your body while taking steroids.

There’s some research that suggests the muscles “remember” their size and strength (the cells have extra nuclei that can produce more muscle tissue quickly), so in theory it may be possible to (over long periods of time) regain a good chunk of “steroid” muscle after you stop taking them, but it’s a long, hard grind.