The largest trend in the supplement industry over the past few years has been the massive rise in the use of SARMs. One compound that often gets grouped in with SARMs–but actually isn’t one–is MK 677.
In this article, we’ll discuss everything there is to discuss about MK 677, including:
- What Is MK 677?
- How Does It Work?
- What Are The Benefits?
- What Type Of Results Can You Achieve?
- Is It Safe?
In other words, after you read this article, you’ll know everything you need to know about MK 677.
I don’t preach to people about which substances they should or shouldn’t put in their bodies. My goal is simply to educate you before you do it, so you can make an informed decision for yourself.
So, with that said, let’s get to it!
What Is MK 677?
MK 677, also known as Ibutamoren, is a synthetic Growth Hormone secretagogue.
The term secretagogue refers to any substance that triggers secretion of another substance.
In this case, the substance being secreted is Growth Hormone (GH).
GH is a peptide hormone which is released by the Pituitary Gland. It’s primary function is right in the name:
It stimulates the growth of pretty much all tissues, including muscle and bone. Mostly, this is due to GH triggering the release of Insulin-like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1).
Your body secretes a small amount of Growth Hormone normally but this tends to decline with age. Many bodybuilders use Growth Hormone to stimulate muscle growth and burn fat, but it also has legitimate medical uses as well.
Increasing Growth Hormone can:
- Increase Muscle Growth
- Decrease Body Fat
- Improve Cognitive Function
- Slow Aging
- Speed Up Healing Processes
And those are just some of the benefits.
Scientists are still learning about all the ways Growth Hormone impacts our health, but one thing is for sure…
So naturally, anything that supposedly increases Growth Hormone is of interest to a wide range of people.
Needless to say, a lot of supplements have been marketed as GH-boosters but most have turned out to be useless.
So, is MK 677 any different?
Yes. It actually works…
How Does MK 677 Work?
MK 677 works by mimicking a naturally occurring Growth Hormone secretagogue called Ghrelin and activating Growth Hormone Secretagogue Receptors (GHSR)–also known as Ghrelin Receptors–in the brain.
For a more visual representation of how Ghrelin and Leptin work side by side to regulate the amount of food you eat, check out the graph below…
Before Eating – Leptin levels are low and Ghrelin levels are high.
After Eating – Leptin levels are high and Ghrelin levels are low.
One of the things Ghrelin does is stimulate the release of Growth Hormone.
Since MK 677 mimicks Ghrelin to the point that it actually binds to the Ghrelin Receptors, it too stimulates the release of Growth Hormone to a pretty significant degree.
Interestingly, it does this without influencing other hormones very much at all.
This is why it’s kind of unfair that it often gets grouped in with SARMs. It’s not a Selective Androgen Receptor Moedulator. It’s a GH secretagogue. Two entirely separate things.
What Are The Benefits Of MK 677?
The benefits of MK 677 are simply the benefits of increased Growth Hormone. There’s a lot of them and, like I said earlier, the research is ongoing.
But here are a few of the most notable…
MK 677 Increases Muscle Mass
The most common use for MK 677 is to gain muscle. That’s why it’s made such a big splash in the bodybuilding industry, despite not originally being intended for that at all.
The research on Growth Hormone is pretty clear: It increases muscle mass.
Bodybuilders have been using GH for years to stimulate muscle growth and tons of supplements have been sold as GH-boosters.
Unlike most other so-called GH-boosters, MK 677 actually has some research behind it (albeit not that much).
In one study, researchers found that 8 weeks on MK 677 (at 25mg/day) resulted in a significant increase in fat-free mass (also known as lean body mass).
These findings were replicated in a more recent (2008) study as well.
Of course it does!
MK 677 Preserves Muscle During Calorie Restriction
As I said earlier, MK 677 wasn’t originally developed to help people build muscle. That’s not something that drugs get approved for because it’s viewed as purely cosmetic for the most part.
Muscle wasting–the breakdown and loss of muscle tissue–is another story though.
There are a ton of diseases which are characterized by muscular wasting, either because of a direct effect of the disease or inability to eat in people who have the disease.
Either way, there are legitimate health reasons why one might take a drug that preserves muscle mass.
Growth Hormone treatment has been shown to preserve muscle in instances of dietary restriction, so naturally, MK 677 has been investigated for this as well.
Not much research has been conducted in this area, but the research that has been conducted is promising.
MK 677 has been shown to preserve muscle mass during severe caloric restriction. That’s not particularly surprising though. It increases GH and as we just discussed, GH is known to do that.
MK 677 Improves Quality Of Sleep
Growth Hormone is known to play a role in regulating sleep.
GH itself has been shown to improve various aspects of sleep. So, it makes sense that some of the research on MK 677 looked specifically at how it impacted sleep.
MK 677 has been shown to improve sleep quality and increase the time spent in REM sleep.
Sure, you could argue that it’s only been shown to do so in one study, but we already know that GH is highly correlated with sleep quality, and that MK-677 increases GH, so it’s not a stretch to say that it improves sleep quality as well.
If you take a look around the internet, you’ll find a lot of anecdotal reports that support this notion.
While these types of subjective reports should always be taken with a grain of salt (the placebo effe ct is VERY real), there’s a good chance MK-677 can help you get a better nights sleep.
Still, another study or two would be nice…
MK 677 Encourages Healthy Bones
Growth Hormone plays an important role in bone formation and maintaining optimal bone health.
Given the obvious role of GH in bone health, it makes sense that some of the research on MK 677 would look specifically at how it impacts bone health.
Out of all the benefits MK 677 has to offer, improving bone health actually appears to have the most research behind it. If you have osteoporosis or any other kind of bone-debilitating condition, you stand to benefit from MK 677.
Interestingly, it seems as though the most common use for MK-677 is to gain muscle. Perhaps that has something to do with the fact that it’s been mislabeled as a SARM, despite being something entirely different.
What Can I Expect When Taking MK 677?
If you’re considering using MK 677, it’s important to set realistic expectations.
If you think you’re going to suddenly blow up and be super jacked, you may be disappointed.
Don’t get me wrong…
You’ll definitely gain some weight on MK 677, but how much muscle you end up building will largely depend on how much you train and eat.
If you eat clean, you’ll remain lean. If you eat junk, you might get a little pudgy.
Here’s what you can expect with MK 677:
- Increased Appetite
- Increased Muscle Mass
- Better Sleep
There are also anecdotal reports of MK-677 having healing properties and improving skin health, but these potential benefits remain unexplored in a clinical setting.
What Are The Side Effects Of MK 677? Is It Safe?
MK 677 has been remarkably well-tolerated throughout most of the studies.
One thing that’s worth point out though, is that it may reduce insulin sensitivity and increase blood sugar.
The impact isn’t likely to be massive, but if you have issues with insulin sensitivity or a pre-existing condition like Diabetes, you may want to stay away.
Other than that, there haven’t really been any reports of adverse health effects with MK 677.
In one study, some elderly subjects (over 80 years old) experienced heart failure, but these subjects had a pre-existing condition (and they were really old).
In healthy individuals, there’s no evidence that MK 677 is particularly harmful.
MK 677 Dosing
Although the research on MK-677 is still in the early stages, we do know that 25mg/day is a effective (clinical) dose, based on the studies we discussed earlier.
No studies have used lower doses though, so it’s possible that lower doses are still somewhat effective, just as it’s possible that higher doses are even more effective.
More studies are needed to determine an ideal dose, but for now, stick with 25mg/daily.
At that dose, we know MK 677 works and, perhaps more importantly, we know it’s generally considered safe (well tolerated in both studies).
The average MK 677 cycle is around 8 weeks or so, but since it doesn’t suppress the body’s natural ability to produce GH, there’s no real reason to cycle off.
It’s not like a SARM that shuts down your natural Testosterone production. MK-677 has no impact on your sex hormones, just GH.
In one study, subjects took 25mg/day for 12 months with no adverse effects reported by healthy subjects.
When Should I Take MK-677 For Best Results?
Timing isn’t particularly important with MK-677.
This is because the half-life is pretty long (around 24 hours).
So, as long as you’re taking 25mg (or whatever dose you choose to take) roughly every 24 hours, there will be a constant build-up in your system.
Some people like to take MK-677 before bed because your body secretes Growth Hormone while you sleep. For that reason, it make sense to take something that boosts GH before bed.
But again, given the abnormally long half-life of MK-677, it probably doesn’t matter much when you take it.
Is MK 677 Legal?
If you’ve been doing your research on MK 677, you’ve probably read that it’s “perfectly legal” and “available over the counter” in the US.
While it’s true that it’s perfectly legal to buy, sell, and possess MK 677, it can’t be sold as a dietary supplement. Technically, it’s an unscheduled drug.
That means any company that sells an MK 677 product that’s intended for human consumption is breaking the law.
So, you can’t buy it? Not so fast…
This is America, remember? There’s always a loophole.
This particular loophole is used for a ton of different drugs and, given the way our laws work here in the US, it doesn’t look like it’ll close up any time soon.
What am I talking about? Research Chemical sites!
These are websites that sell unapproved drugs and various chemical substances which are allegedly for “research purposes only” and “not for human consumption“.
Obviously, this is a bunch of nonsense.
But if you want to try MK 677, it’s great news! It means you can buy it online without having to worry about breaking the law. You just have to find a reliable research-chem site.
My Personal Opinion On MK 677
I think MK 677 is hands down one of the most intriguing compounds to come out of the whole SARM trend, even though it’s not technically a SARM at all.
Unlike SARMs, it doesn’t cause any kind of suppression of natural hormone production and appears to have a myriad of potential health benefits.
I personally have never used MK 677 because I don’t have trouble gaining weight, nor do I want to get much bigger than I already am (maybe just a little more cut).
That said, it’s unfair to group MK 677 in with SARMs that actually do have androgenic side effects and can cause suppression of natural hormone levels.
Most of the information on MK 677 that you’ll find on the internet is riddled with false claims or unfair biases (people trying to sell you “all natural GH-boosters” that don’t really work.
Arginine isn’t going to boost your GH to the point that you actually get bigger.
There’s a big difference.
Still, it’s important to gather your information from a variety of (trusted) sources before deciding whether or not to experiment with any kind of supplement or drug, especially when we’re talking about something that’s still in developmental stages.
Hopefully this article has helped steer you in the right direction.
The last thing I want to do is tell you which substances you should or shouldn’t ingest. That’s not my place and, as a bit of a libertarian, I don’t think that’s anyone’s place.
My goal is simply to lay out the facts (based on research) to help you make a educated decision in the end.
The Bottom Line On MK 677
MK 677 is not a SARM. It’s often grouped in with SARMs because it’s produced and sold by people who produce and sell SARMs, but it’s definitely NOT a SARM.
It’s an effective Growth Hormone secretagogue which can increase GH and IGF-1 levels to the point that it actually has some beneficial effects.
A ton of substances are marketed as GH-boosters, but MK-677 is one that is actually deserving of that title.
If you’re looking to get bigger, it can definitely help. It also has a number of other potential health benefits that remain under-researched at this time, but which appear quite promising.
I’ll be keeping an eye on this particular compound or similar compounds to come and will be sure to update this article with any more studies that surface.
Just make sure you understand what you’re doing and do your research on suppliers!
Got Anything To Add About MK-677? Experience You’d Like To Share Perhaps?Comment Below…