Q: Are there any steroids that produce desirable results in terms of fat loss for cutting, or are we solely looking at them from a perspective of retaining muscle mass with minimal bloat? I.e - compounds such as Winstrol, etc, seem to get a good reputation in this regard, but is it misinterpreted?
Answer: No, I believe it is appropriate to look at certain steroids as being more likely to support fat loss. Hormones have a good deal of influence over our fat cells. Generally speaking, androgens support lipolysis (fat loss). Estrogens, on the other hand, are more likely to promote the retention of fat. Mind you, this is a very crude oversimplification. For the purposes of our discussion here, however, it works.
As we all know with anabolic/androgenic steroids, these drugs can have overlapping hormonal activities. They all act as androgens, of course. This is what would classify something as an AAS. At the same time, however, many also have some level of estrogenic activity. Some convert to estrogen in the body, others activate the estrogen receptor directly (mimicking estrogens). Depending on the steroid in question, you can have two different hormonal activities fighting for influence over your adipose tissues.
Winstrol (stanozolol) is among a class of anabolic/androgenic steroids with minimal or no estrogenic activity. Because of this, people often notice a reduction of fat while taking it (its influence over fat cells being purely androgenic). On the other side, you have drugs like testosterone or oxymetholone, which can be substantially estrogenic. With these, the estrogenic activity is often strong enough to have a dominant influence over fat cells. Then, you may notice fat gain.
Steroids are not ideal cutting agents. I don’t want to paint the picture that dropping fat is as easy as taking Winstrol. There are better ways of reducing your body fat percentage than anabolic/androgenic steroids. Still, you cannot discount the influence these drugs often have over fat while they are being used for bodybuilding purposes. Diet and exercise also play a role in the outcome, as does individual metabolism and sensitivity to AAS. Some people lean out while taking strongly estrogenic steroids. Others start to look smooth with even small doses of testosterone. So, this is more a matter of likely outcomes, than set rules.