Bulking stacks are a combination of nutritional supplements that help to increase muscle-building hormones, promote maximum power, and fuel overall muscle growth. These stacks encourage the body to add bulk in the most efficient way possible, supercharging your workouts and stimulating fast, incredible gains.
Below, you’ll find the best bulking stacks on the market, backed by our expert research team at Healthtrends.
Best Bulking Stacks
1. Crazy Bulk Bulking Stack
When you want to bulk up your muscle mass, you want to do it fast. Crazy Bulk Bulking Stack can help you meet your goals in record time. Testo-Max boosts your natural testosterone hormone levels, while D-Bal increases protein synthesis and reduces protein degradation.
Decaduro and Trenorol provide crazy strength gains to further enhance muscle growth. Healthtrends #1 bulking stack by a landslide.
2. Advanced Bulking Stack by Crazy Muscle
Four bulking supplements – branched-chain amino acids, glutamine, a testosterone booster, and a creatine blend – partner up in this Advanced Bulking Stack to help you rapidly repair and grow muscle.
Branched-chain amino acids and glutamine help protect your muscles from soreness and aid in the recovery process while also contributing to enhanced exercise performance and increased muscle bulk. The testosterone booster and creatine support an optimal hormonal environment for maximum mass in minimum time.
3. Legion Athletics Build Muscle Stack
The Build Muscle Stack by Legion Athletics combines three of their most potent muscle building supplements to increase strength, performance and recovery.
All products are free of fillers and contain clinically effective dosages of each muscle building ingredient.
4. Animal M-Stak – Non-Hormonal Hard Gainers Muscle Building Stack
With a mix of branched-chain amino acids, Animal M-Stak stacks seek to stimulate protein synthesis for increased mass; flooding your system with a range of anabolic nutrients to support stamina and muscle growth.
This bulking stack comes in a handy pouch so you can carry these to the gym for a pre-training boost.
5. Pride Nutrition Anabolic Strength & Recovery Support with Estrogen Blocker
Pride is a trusted industry name and has been in the business for over two decades. They’ve used their experience to create a stack with amino support to aid recovery, a muscle agent to make the most of your gym work, and an estrogen blocker to help boost your level of testosterone.
With an anabolic cycle of just 30 days, they aim to give fast and effective results.
6. Anabolic Pro Stack by Top Legal Steroids
The combination of three complementary supplements from Top Legal Steroids can help you to bulk up, while simultaneously shredding excess body fat for a lean, hard look.
For convenience and bioavailability, you can spray the supplements directly under your tongue for sublingual absorption.
7. Anabolic Research Ultimate Growth Stack
The Ultimate Growth Stack by Anabolic Research is designed to build lean and dense muscle tissue quickly.
This bulking stack is a great choice if you also want to support fat loss, physical endurance, and gym performance.
8. Clear Muscle Next Gen With Testovox
By supplying a revolutionary muscle-building compound called BetaTor, Clear Muscle Next Gen can help you maximize your bulking results in conjunction with an intense training regimen.
For enhanced results, the stack includes Testovox to give your natural testosterone levels a boost, supporting effective muscle growth and superior bulking.
9. Nutracell Labs 10 Blend Decabolic Creatine + Testo Anabolic Patch
This stack utilizes a patch for greater delivery into your system, raising testosterone levels, boosting performance, and supporting your muscle bulking goals.
Nutracell’s Decabolic Creatines formula combines ten of the most effective creatines for a comprehensive blend, which they claim can give you up to five times more muscle mass.
10. Testovox with Status Testosterone Support
Testovox and Blue Star Nutraceuticals combined forces in this stack to focus on the role of testosterone in dramatic muscle bulking processes. After you’ve received your hormone boost from one supplement, the other increases the levels even further.
The results are pronounced muscle growth, improved strength, enhanced stamina, and increased libido.
How We Ranked
For our rankings, we considered a few important factors, including ingredient quality, legality, and company reputation. Bulking stacks that included testosterone boosters were ideal, which is why Animal M-Stak ranked so highly. We also looked for products that included more cutting edge ingredients, including DHEA and Tribulus terrestris. For these rankings, we also decided to provide a balance of proven and more untested ingredients like DIM.
Any product with a proprietary blend was severely penalized, as we did not like companies hiding behind ingredient labels. In addition, products that had proven ingredients, backed by science, were ranked a lot higher. This is mainly why Legion Athletics ranked so highly, providing science-backed ingredients at clinically effective dosages of each ingredient.
While pills were preferred form, there were bonus points given for innovation, like the Testo testosterone-boosting patch or creatine blends. We’re not convinced using ten different types of creatine in one blend produces significantly beneficial results, but that could change with more research of that claim.
Lastly, we looked at the company’s reputation. Companies like Crazy Mass and Crazy Bulk that have a proven track record with thousands of reviews, ranked exceptionally. It’s not to say that newer companies aren’t creating great products, but company reputation allows you to be certain of the safety and efficacy of what’s going into your body.
Bulking stacks help you gain muscle quickly. By providing your body with layers of nutritional supplementation and hormonal boosts, you give your body a helping hand at every phase of the bulking process. When you gain muscle, this brings a whole host of physiological and psychological benefits along with it.
Muscle gain, in conjunction with resistance training, is linked to improvements in your resting metabolism, average walking speed, overall body fat, self-esteem, movement control, physical performance, cardiovascular health, and cognitive abilities (1). In other words, growing stronger makes you stronger – in many ways.
Bulking stacks can help improve bone density in conjunction with resistance training. Muscle health impacts bone health and resistance training puts both your muscles and bones under tension, which leads to adaptation. Resistance training, as a result, can improve bone density and help counteract the symptoms of osteosarcopenia (2).
In younger individuals, increased resistance training can help build bone density and help counteract future issues associated with the aging process. Resistance training and muscle growth, when you are young, can lead to increased bone strength and reduced risk of fractures. Studies also show that it can improve overall strength and self-confidence (3).
In bulking stacks, creatine acts as an ergogenic aid that supports the muscle-building process and protects immunity. Creatine is a compound formed when the body metabolizes protein and serves to jumpstart the cellular recovery process. As one research review demonstrated, countless studies have documented how creatine offers a wide variety of benefits to human athletic development, immunity, and preventative healthcare (4).
In terms of human athletic development, creatine helps the user on several levels. It increases creatinine concentrations in muscle cells before and after a workout. This can help to improve athletic performance, which can lead to more muscular adaptation due to increased effort.
The review also shows that creatine may also expedite the recovery process after a tough workout and help prevent injury, which is often an athlete’s most significant barrier to achieving progress. By jumpstarting the protein metabolism process in cells, creatine helps muscle cells rebuild, repair, and grow bigger.
Speeding up the recovery process may also help the body heal small, nagging aches and pains, thereby stopping injuries before they start. On a larger scale, creatine can also aid in thermoregulation, rehabilitation, and immunity. In other words, it helps to regulate the body’s inflammation and healing processes.
By helping to control cellular response to stress and promote repair, it may serve to protect against a wide variety of ailments and diseases. More research is needed to document the exact role creatine supplementation can have in disease prevention, but what scientists do know is promising.
Some of these ailments include neurodegenerative diseases, like Parkinson’s, Huntington’s disease, or muscular dystrophy. The review found other potential applications for creatine supplementation include adolescent depression, pregnancy, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, diabetes, and heart or brain ischemia.
As always, consult your healthcare provider before changing your supplementation regimen, especially if you have any of these pre-existing medical conditions.
Bulking stacks can help protect the body when in a catabolic state. In a catabolic state, the body starts to break down fat and muscle tissue to fuel itself. It’s the opposite of anabolism, which is constructive metabolism that fuels cellular and muscular growth. Glutamine in bulking stacks can help protect the body from catabolism (5).
As a conditionally essential amino acid, glutamine is the preferred fuel for many cells. When your system is under stress – due to a training program, life events, or both – your body requires extra glutamine supplementation to metabolize other amino acids, fuel blood cells, and aid in the proper functioning of many intestinal cells.
Bulking stacks may help the body heal after a surgery or an injury. Glutamine plays a significant role in healing cellular damage and repairing wounds. It helps transport nitrogen, a building block in wound repair, to vital organs and sites of injury, thereby assisting the body in recovery efficiently. One study demonstrated that glutamine supplementation seemed to increase overall healing speed and reduce hospital stay time in patients recovering from surgery or trauma (6).
While more research is necessary to determine precisely how glutamine helps expedite healing, this data suggests that glutamine can help athletes and body-builders prevent injury and expedite the post-exercise recovery process.
Bulking stacks help enhance muscle recovery and immune function. As many athletes know all too well, injury and illness often act as the most significant setbacks to gains. While branched-chain amino acid supplements have not yet been conclusively linked to improved athletic performance, they do enhance muscle recovery and boost immunity (7).
You can utilize glutamine supplements pre-exercise to help decrease exercise-induced muscle damage while supplementing glutamine post-exercise promotes muscle-protein synthesis. This can help your muscles recover and grow more quickly. BCAAs also help to regulate the effects of exercise on the immune system, which can help you stay healthy as you push your limits.
Furthermore, athletes who want to build muscle but also love endurance sports, BCAA supplementation can enhance recovery after long bouts of exercise and improve nutrient delivery in the bloodstream. These combined benefits of glutamine can then help promote muscle growth and prevent setbacks in your training.
Testosterone boosters in bulking stacks may help enhance muscle development and boost performance. According to one study, testosterone supplementation can help increase muscle mass by enhancing how muscles synthesize protein (8). This can lead to improved overall gains, including increased muscle mass and a boost in performance.
Due to the role of testosterone in muscle-building, testosterone supplementation may also help maintain a healthy metabolism and promote muscle retention as athletes age.
One study demonstrated how protein synthesis, when adjusted for total lean mass, is comparable in younger and older men (9). The critical difference in metabolism is often due to a loss of overall muscle, which then reduces the body’s metabolic rate.
As a result, testosterone supplementation in bulking stacks may help promote athletic performance and increase metabolism as older men are facing the aging process. This can help compound the other benefits of resistance training, which include improved bone density and improved cardiovascular health.
Bulking stacks may negatively impact some hepatic functions. More research is necessary to elucidate the exact side effects testosterone boosters may have. However, one study warns that using too many courses of testosterone back-to-back may impact hepatic functions (liver functioning), and also lead to stomach upset (10).
As a result, it’s essential to consult with your doctor before beginning a course of testosterone booster, especially if you’ve had intestinal or liver problems in the past. In that situation, a healthcare provider can help you determine the correct amount of testosterone to take and for how long it’s safe to consume testosterone.
Some lesser-quality bulking stacks may contain undeclared androgenic steroids. While this is not an issue with reputably-sourced bulking stacks, it is an issue of which all supplement buyers should be aware (11). Symptoms of excess androgenic steroid consumption can include irritability, hair loss, low libido, acne, impotence, mood swings, liver damage, gynecomastia, increased cardiovascular risk, sexual dysfunction, osteopenia, and osteoporosis.
Due to these risks, it’s crucial to ensure you’re obtaining your bulking stacks from established, well-reviewed companies. These suppliers are transparent about their product ingredients and do not superficially augment their supplements with harmful, illicit substances.
Excess testosterone in bulking stacks may result in adverse side effects for women. In women, high testosterone levels are linked to depression, Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), hirsutism (abnormal hair growth), and acne. If you’re female and currently struggle with any of these conditions, consult your doctor before beginning a course of bulking supplements with a testosterone booster.
Excess testosterone levels in bulking stacks may be detrimental to the mental health of adolescents and young men. While muscle growth and athletic performance can often lead to huge gains in confidence, some psychological risks may accompany excess testosterone levels. According to one study, excess testosterone in adolescents and young men is associated with an increased risk for depression and suicide (12).
On the flip side, the same study also suggests that low testosterone levels are linked with poor mental health in older men. This can serve as an essential reminder to bring up mental health and any possible symptoms of depression with your doctor before beginning a course of testosterone boosters.
As an older adult male, you may benefit immensely from testosterone supplementation. Younger men who deal with some symptoms of depression, on the other hand, want to exercise caution and use testosterone boosters under the watchful eye of a qualified healthcare provider.
Bulking stacks should be used based on the manufacturers recommendation. It’s important to talk to your doctor about each supplement within the stack and to monitor your dosage carefully.
Additionally, remember that bulking stacks are most effective when used in conjunction with a structured resistance training program. A certified personal trainer can help you construct a training regimen.
Should women use a bulking stack with a testosterone booster? Young women undergoing puberty and adolescence experience a spike of testosterone, as well as some female hormones, which can lead to depression (13). However, the same study also documents how testosterone supplementation can benefit post-menopausal women.
For these women, testosterone can help combat obesity–particularly gynoid or hip obesity–and build muscle, which can improve overall metabolism. Due to all of these reasons, it’s important for women looking to build muscle to seek the advice of a trusted healthcare provider.
A professional can help women assess their overall health and help them determine what course of action is best for building muscle and improving overall well-being.
What’s the technical definition of a bulking stack? A bulking stack is a combination of supplements used synergistically to maximize muscle and strength gains and complement the bulking process with injury prevention. Many of these stacks include testosterone boosters and glutamine, as well as BCAAs.
Do bulking stacks contain steroids? When many people think of steroids, they think of illegal activity at the Olympics or the Tour de France, where athletes willingly and covertly damage their long-term health to supercharge their short-term performance by both artificial and illegal means. Bulking stacks are not blood doping; they are legal supplements that promote muscular growth.
While the FDA does not regulate supplements, it still retains the authority to remove them from circulation if studies show that they are harmful to consumers. Bulking stacks are deemed safe when used as directed and under the supervision of a healthcare provider.
Do I need a prescription for bulking stacks? No, bulking stacks are available for consumer purchase.
Will bulking stacks interfere with other medications or supplements? Will they influence other health conditions? Because bulking stacks affect the body’s metabolism, it’s sensible to assume they might affect how the body metabolizes other medications. While most medication will not interact with your bulking stack, it’s always best to talk to your healthcare provider, just to be safe.
Speak to your healthcare provider if you currently are on blood thinners, have a thyroid disorder, diabetes, or suffer from another autoimmune disease and want to begin a bulking stack course.
Do I need to talk to a doctor before starting a bulking stack, even if I’m healthy? Before beginning a new course of exercise, a new diet, or changing supplementation, it’s always beneficial to talk to your doctor.
When is the best time of day to take a bulking stack? Different elements of each bulking stack are best consumed at different times of the day. Here are some of the basic timings, although not every supplement mentioned below is present in every stack. Testosterone boosters are best consumed first thing in the morning, as this gets the muscle-building energy flowing.
You can be prepped for your workout, and your body primed for optimal energy, bulking, and recovery all day. If your stack contains creatine, this can be consumed before or after a workout. You can take creatine before your workout to help you perform at a higher level, and use creatine afterward can help jumpstart your recovery.
Supplements with Trenorol and DecoDura are best taken right before a workout to jumpstart your protein metabolism and get you ready to crush your workout. If your stack includes D-Bal, consume that supplement after your workout to supercharge your recovery process.
BCAAs should be taken immediately before or after exercise, depending on the other elements of your bulking stack. BCAA levels peak in your bloodstream approximately 30 minutes after supplement consumption and can help you reduce overall fatigue and soreness. Some users suggest that, if you’ve had a well-balanced meal a few hours before your workout, BCAA timing matters slightly less.
While your specific stack may come with more particular timing instructions, glutamine can, in general, be consumed at almost any time throughout the day. It’s best taken with food, especially for individuals with sensitive stomachs. If you take it before bedtime, it can help aid in recovery as you sleep. Conversely, it can also be taken with a post-exercise meal to help boost your recovery processes.
What amino acids are in BCAAs, and why are they essential in bulking stacks? BCAAs contain three essential amino acids with branching chemical structures: Leucine, valine, and isoleucine. These amino acids aid in overall muscle protein synthesis and prevent the breakdown of existing muscle protein during exercise.
They encourage the body to remain in an anabolism – a muscle-building – state, rather than entering the destructive metabolic state of catabolism, where muscles are broken down for energy.
Are bulking stacks appropriate for women? Too much testosterone in the bloodstream can lead to serious health problems for women, such as PCOS. For these reasons, bulking stacks that feature testosterone boosters may be inappropriate for females.
However, some gender-neutral bulking stacks focus on creatine, glutamine, and BCAAs, while other companies formulate bulking stacks specifically for women. If you are unsure of whether a particular bulking stack is appropriate for you, consult with your physician.
Are bulking stacks appropriate for adolescents? As bulking stacks contain testosterone boosters, these may be inappropriate for young adolescents. If your teenager expresses an interest in gaining muscle, direct them to a personal trainer or other qualified health professional. Encourage them to exercise, introduce them to proper fitness techniques, and help them consume the appropriate nutrition for their overall health.
If glutamine isn’t an essential amino acid, why is it useful in a bulking stack? There are two primary types of amino acids: Essential and non-essential. Of the 20 types of dietary amino acids, nine are strictly essential. However, sometimes non-essential amino acids are conditionally essential.
This means that, at certain times, your body doesn’t produce all of the non-essential amino acids that it needs on its own. In these instances, your body needs non-essential amino acids to be supplemented by your diet.
Glutamine is vital in the cell and tissue rebuilding process, and it acts as the favorite fuel of cells that are rapidly growing and reproducing (14). It carries nitrogen between tissues and is an essential precursor of muscle proteins. When the body is under stress due to injury, surgery, or a strict exercise regimen, it needs more glutamine than it can make on its own. If you’re trying to put on some serious bulk, glutamine is an important supplement.
How does glutamine in a bulking stack help the rest of the body (not just muscles) when the whole body is under stress? Aside from cellular growth, glutamine helps protect your overall immunity and even helps to repair and rebuild your gastrointestinal mucus membrane (15).
This aids in efficient digestion – which can help your body get all the nutrients it needs from food during the bulking process. By improving overall immunity, glutamine can also help safeguard you from illness, which is by far one of the most significant barriers to bulking success.
Does creatine in bulking stacks help with all kinds of exercise? As one of the most-researched exercise supplements on the planet today, creatine can help athletes in almost any sport progress in their gains (16). This is particularly true if that athlete is increasing the intensity of their workload, starting a new program, or recovering from injury or surgery.
After an extended period spent exercising and taking creatine, some of its effectiveness decreases slightly. However, even in this situation, creatine seems to have several preventative benefits as it safeguards against ailments and disease.
What is Trenorol, and why is it beneficial in a bulking stack? Trenorol is marketed as a healthy and safe alternative to trenbolone, the notorious steroid that gained a reputation for serious muscle bulking, as well as some dangerous side effects. Trenorol contains beta-sitosterol, which helps to balance testosterone levels and supports immunity. Pepsin and nettle leaf extract ingredients help to aid in protein absorption, detoxify your bloodstream, improve inflammation, and support libido.
The supplement also contains Uncaria tomentosa, an Amazonian plant which further helps support the immune system. The overall results are faster muscle growth, enhanced oxygen flow, expedited healing of sore muscles, nitrogen retention, improved metabolism, greater likelihood of fat loss, and heightened performance.
What is D-Bal, and why is it useful in a bulking stack? D-Bal is marketed as a legal and healthy version of the banned, dangerous anabolic steroid known as Dianabol. With a finely honed balance of vitamins, minerals, proteins, and herbal additions, D-Bal helps to regulate overall testosterone levels and safely initiate the body’s muscle-building processes.
This raises testosterone and energy levels for improved performance and an efficient bulking process.
What role does DecaDuro play in a bulking stack? DecaDuro is a safe, legal alternative to one of the most famous anabolic bodybuilding steroids of all time, Deca-Durobolin. By increasing red blood cell production, nitrogen retention, and protein synthesis, it helps your body build muscle and strength while protecting your joints.
As a bonus, DecaDuro naturally increases collagen synthesis, which helps strengthen tendons, muscles, ligaments, and even skin as you put on muscle and build explosive strength. The result is a leaner, stronger, and more powerful physique.
How do bulking stacks affect depression? Testosterone boosters found in bulking stacks are sometimes associated with decreased serotonin levels (17). For individuals who already struggle with mental health issues or are currently on SSRIs (selected serotonin reuptake inhibitors), this can be problematic.
If you are currently on an antidepressant, talk to your doctor about your dosage and how you can monitor your mental health symptoms while taking a bulking stack. For other individuals, testosterone can serve as a mental upper, helping them approach the day with renewed focus and energy. As they watch themselves meet their gains and reap results, confidence, and a sense of well-being can improve.
Will my gains disappear after I’ve finished with the bulking stack? So long as you maintain a healthy, balanced diet and a suitable strength training regimen, you will not lose your gains. You won’t gain as fast as you did while on the bulking stack, but you can continue to make progress in your physique and your strength, given you’ve already supercharged your gains for several weeks.
Will I gain fat while using a bulking stack? Bulking stacks are formulated to help you put on muscle, which helps you burn more fat at rest. As your body puts on muscle mass, you may also put on small amounts of fat. It all depends on your diet, your genetics, and your strength training regimen. Every individual’s bulking journey is different, but the result of a bulking stack course is increased lean muscle mass.
Can I use cutting stacks and bulking stacks at the same time? It is counter-productive and potentially dangerous to use cutting stacks and bulking stacks at the same time. Bulking stacks encourage your body to gain muscle mass while cutting stacks helps you maintain muscle mass while reducing fat.
These are two separate metabolic processes, and attempting to cut and bulk at the same time and with two different supplement courses could result in complications.
Can I use cutting stacks and bulking stacks back-to-back? So long as you do so under the guidance of a fitness expert or healthcare provider, it can be safe to follow bulking stacks with cutting stacks. Cycles of muscle gain and lean-down are tried-and-true bodybuilding methods to put on muscle and then hone, tone, and better define that muscle.
To give your body a rest from hormonal supplementation, consider taking breaks between cutting and bulking cycles and enjoying a few maintenance weeks. This can help protect your metabolism, stabilize your mental health, and promote more sustainable gains. If you continuously shock your metabolism with rapid changes, you can hinder long-term retention of progress.
By building strength and muscle mass, bulking stacks can improve your overall well-being and confidence. They can also help boost testosterone, libido and support recovery to further fuel muscle growth.
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