Prohormones vs Testosterone Boosters | Which Option Should You Choose?

The array of supposed solutions to testosterone deficiencies is enormous. Testosterone is at the core of the stereotypical traits of masculinity such as muscle mass, physical strength and sex drive. The numerous solutions and products all look to tap into this massive market. 

I would likely not be wrong to assume that if you have been looking to increase your testosterone levels, chances are you have run into testosterone boosters. Prohormones are much less talked about but they will occasionally pop up in conversations around testosterone-enhancing solutions. 

You need to know the difference between prohormones and testosterone boosters if you are going to choose the right solution for you. As always, I’m here to help you out.

What Are Prohormones?

Prohormones are precursors that convert to testosterone after ingestion. Precursors, right? Shouldn’t they be called prehormones then? Anyway, they are building blocks that provide the material required for testosterone synthesis. They amplify the relevant hormone’s impact. In that sense, they are different from anabolic steroids. Steroids mimic testosterone whereas prohormones provide the raw material the body needs to naturally produce its own testosterone.

As synthetic testosterone, steroids can cause hormonal imbalance. Prohormones offer the ingredients and let the body control the actual production which means only as much prohormone as is required is used. Despite their advantages, prohormones can be hazardous if abused and could cause serious harm to long term health. In fact, prohormones are classified as controlled substances in many countries including the United States.

Side effects of prohormones

  • Acne.
  • Mood fluctuations.
  • Unexpected exhaustion.
  • Shrinking testes.
  • Breast enlargement.
  • Hair Loss
  • Infertility.
  • Liver toxicity.
  • Kidney diseases.
  • Cardiovascular problems.
  • Risk factor for prostate and pancreatic cancers..

And what are Testosterone boosters?

Testosterone boosters are supplements made from naturally occurring, testosterone-enhancing ingredients. These ingredients usually comprise herb/plant extracts, amino acids, vitamins and minerals found in common foods. Like prohormones, testosterone boosters look to support the body’s ability to make testosterone. But that core function as far as their similarity goes. 

How they achieve it is markedly different. Prohormones take a somewhat direct approach that’s more akin to anabolic steroids hence their prohibition in numerous jurisdictions. Testosterone boosters have a more indirect path of action by providing the body with the nutrients it requires to make testosterone but in larger quantities than are available from food alone.

Aside from this general principle, testosterone boosters are diverse in their ingredient mix. Each product has a unique blend of active elements. Of course, there is a raft of counterfeits out there so on this point, I’m referring to legitimate products.

Side effects of testosterone boosters

This is one area where testosterone boosters really kick ass. And this is not just in comparison to prohormones but virtually every other non-dietary solution to testosterone deficiency including TRT. Since they use natural ingredients, the best testosterone boosters have little to no side effects. You do not need a doctor’s prescription and can purchase them over the counter. Allergen-sensitive persons may experience mild stomach upsets, bloating, flatulence and headaches.

Manner of action

Prohormones provide the body with the building blocks that can be readily converted into testosterone. Testosterone boosters feed the body with common nutrients required for not just natural testosterone production but overall health.

Ingredient type

Prohormones are steroid precursors that directly convert to testosterone. Testosterone boosters are a mixture of herb/plant extracts, amino acids, vitamins and minerals with proven contribution to natural testosterone production.

Speed of results

Prohormones are just a step lower than anabolic steroids and so deliver a sizable testosterone boost in a matter of days or a couple of weeks. Testosterone boosters have a longer curve which is perhaps the price you have to pay for using a much safer product. It can be months of booster use before you see substantial improvements.


Prohormones are classified as controlled substances. That alone tells you all you need to know about their safety reputation. In contrast, testosterone boosters are safe – so safe that the FDA regulates them in the same way it does food products.

Who should use which?

Use a testosterone booster If:

  • You have (or suspect) a mild testosterone deficiency.
  • It’s the first time you have contemplated getting a testosterone lift, go for a testosterone booster.
  • You have allergen sensitivity.
  • There is no urgency.
  • You have not been subjected to a blood test confirming your testosterone levels.

I’m going to repeat it for as long as necessary so here we go again – prohormones are a prohibited substance. I’m sharing these reasons only on the presumption that you have the legal and medical greenlight to use them. Under those preconditions, use a prohormone only if:

  • You have a severe testosterone deficiency.
  • You have undergone medical tests confirming your unusually low testosterone levels.
  • You are an athlete and want to enhance your performance.


Prohormones would be a reasonable choice if your goal is a rapid increase in testosterone. But they are dangerous and often illegal. Do not use them unless you have a doctor’s clearance and obtained the legal go ahead. Testosterone boosters are slower but sure. You can count on their safety and legality. No worries about battling serious medical conditions over the long term.

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About the Author

Sam is a passionate health and fitness enthusiast who has been interested in supplements, fitness, and wellness for over 10 years. He is the founder of Great Green Wall - the health and wellness brand and has completed multiple fitness certificates, including personal training and nutrition certifications. Sam has been working as a personal trainer for the past three years and is dedicated to helping his clients achieve their fitness goals and lead healthier lifestyles. He believes that a healthy lifestyle is crucial to a happy and fulfilling life and is committed to sharing his knowledge and passion with others.

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