A BODYBUILDER known as the “Liver King” who put his toned physique down to an “ancestral lifestyle” has admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs.
Brian Johnson initially claimed he has achieved his physique thanks to a diet that includes raw liver and other animal organs.
But leaked emails how he spends up to £9,000 a month on steroids
Johnson, who lives in Austin, Texas, first became famous for his extremely toned body and unusual eating habits in August 2021 when he began sharing insights into his way of life.
His “primal fare” diet, which is part of nine “tenets” programme that he sold for a profit to customers, also includes animal lungs and testicles.
He told his fans they too could become buff by following his diet and working out.
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But the dad-of-two has now admitted to taking steroids after being accused by another bodybuilder of using performance-enhancing drugs, who claims they have accessed leaked emails allegedly sent by Johnson.
Johnson last night apologised for "misleading" fans in a video posted on YouTube.
He said: "When asked if I've ever taken steroids I've always said no, I don't touch the stuff. That was a lie."
The 44-year-old told his 220,000 followers that he has experimented with testosterone and human growth hormone (HGH).
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Johnson previously said his body is 100 per cent natural and is kept in shape by intense workouts and his diet.
The confession comes after growing online scrutiny of the bodybuilder and claims of leaked emails which showed Johnson discussing his drug use.
An hour-long video posted on the YouTube channel “More Plates More Dates” which is dedicated to working out whether bodybuilders are “natty [natural] or not”, the host, known only as Derek, says he unearthed the emails believed to have been sent by Johnson.
Claims made in the footage, called “The Liver King Lie”, say the correspondence showed Johnson confessing he wanted to grow the “Liver King” brand and admitting spending a sizeable £9,000 a month on HGH.
The emails are said to have been sent to an unnamed coach in 2021, the same year the Liver King started posting on Instagram and building up his fanbase of more than 1.7million followers.
The video was released on Monday and quickly drew attention and had been watched more than 675,000 times in less than 24 hours.
Many viewers were quick to blast the muscleman, with some hoping it would encourage others to be honest about their steroid use.
One commented: “This was bound to happen. I’m surprised he lasted as long as he did.”
Another said: "Hopefully this is a watershed moment for the fitness industry and will lead to greater transparency."
A third person wrote: “Man it’s great to see it finally made perfectly clear that what we all knew was true. I feel bad for the few people who believed he was natty.”
Johnson has previously been accused of taking steroids.
When Joe Rogan alluded to his possible steroid use, Johnson said he was simply happy to be exposed to a wider audience.
The hosts of the Barstool Sports podcast Pardon My Take also accused him of taking PEDs – performance-enhancing drugs.
In response though Johnson said: "I’ll be honest, I take PEDs: I prioritise, execute and dominate every f**king morning.”
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Johnson wrote in an email to the publication that his “message has always been about” the thousands of people who attempt or die by suicide each day, noting that “our people are hurting at record rates with depression, anxiety, autoimmune, infertility and low ambition in life… our young men are hurting the most… lost, weak and submissive.”
He pitched his Ancestral Living brand as the “solution,” and emphasised: “This is my fight!”
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