I get a lot of emails about what supplements I use and whether some are any good or just hype.
One thing I must say, whilst supplements do have their place ultimately your diet will make or break you.
If I did not meet my calories goal on the previous day or ate bad, my training always suffers the next day whether I am taking supplements or not.
When everything is in place where it should be such as proper nutrition and hydration, optimal sleep and stress patterns, and proper programme design then you will start to see some benefits from these supplements.
There are hundreds if not thousands of supplements out there, and from that list I have chosen 5 that I take on a regular basis which I believe are the essentials. Some supplements compete with others, some don’t mix well with others. It is important to do proper research before going out and spending money on supplements because they promise they can do something.
These are the ones that I use every month and the ones that I have personally felt and seen positive results from, not just believed what it said on the label.
So here they are…
Helps maintain protein synthesis.
Amino acids are the 22 building blocks of protein and ultimately responsible for protein synthesis and the build-up of muscle tissue after exercise.
BCAA’s consist of Leucine, Iso-Leucine and Valine.
So, to utilize any ingested whole proteins for building muscle, your body must first break down the proteins into amino acids before any muscle can be built
BCAA’s are very popular due to their bio-availability and free-form. They are released quickly into the blood stream and are absorbed by the muscles immediately rather than have to be broken down and digested in the intestines as they travel through a different metabolic pathway hence the meaning bio-availability.
The term free-form means they don’t have to compete with other nutrients on who should be absorbed quicker.
Recovery is much faster with this supplement in your armour. The quicker you recover the quicker you can start to build muscles.
Supplementation of BCAA’s has been shown to trigger significant and preferencial losses of visceral body fat.
So this supplement can help you lose body fat and build muscles at the same time.
Whey Protein/Isolate Drink – Contains essential and non-essential amino acids.
Whey protein Isolates are the fastest acting out there. They are important for an after workout shake something that can be absorbed quickly without having to be digested.
There are critical times of the day when a whole food meal just does not work – such as after the workout, or even during the workout
Here, it’s the speed of digestion that matters, and whole food just takes longer, that’s the way it is
Choose one that manufactures protein at low temperatures and one that contains no artificial sweeteners.
Choose your supplement companies carefully as even some of the well-known companies get up to dirty tricks.
Some include materials such as lead, mercury, cadmium and arsenic inside your protein shake.
Manufacturing protein at low temperatures preserves their bioavailability and natural state.
If proteins are processed at high temperature, it makes it completely worthless.
Personally I like to use one that has a mixture of proteins such as Micellar Casein, Whey Isolate, Milk Protein and/or Whey Concentrate.
It offers different speeds of release so your muscles are receiving a constant release of protein rather than having this initial burst then boom nothing.
I use and recommend BioTrust Low Carb ™.
BioTrust Low Carb is 100% All-Natural. You won’t find any artificial colors, flavors, and most importantly artificial sweeteners in the protein.
One of the most talked about and researched supplements. This is a really good supplement that helps to supply energy to the body, primarily muscle.
Muscle contraction is fuelled by free adenosine-triphosphate (ATP) as the immediate energy source.
This is the first source of energy utilised. It only lasts a few seconds but with creatine supplementation it helps to replenish ATP stores so that you can train better.
What creatine also does is it promotes intracellular water gain.
All that basically means is it draws water to the cells, making them swell and creates more definition within the muscle. A hydrated muscle is an anabolic one.
Personally I find when I take creatine there is less lactic acid being produced which is a sign that the muscles are being worked for longer without fatiguing.
Creatine is not an essential nutrient, as it is manufactured in the human body from L-arginine, Glycine, and L-methionine.
Carbohydrate drink –
Glycogen is the storage form of the carbohydrate glucose. As exercise intensity increases, your body has a greater reliance on carbohydrates; particularly, muscle glycogen.
You need to consume both protein and carbohydrates post workout to replenish glycogen stores.
Carbohydrates also help shuttle the proteins to the muscles by spiking insulin.
Studies have shown that protein when combined with carbohydrates has a much greater effect in spiking insulin levels.
You might have heard that Insulin is a storage hormone, yes it is correct but it can also be a very anabolic hormone if utilised correctly.
Is oil derived from the tissues of oily fish. Fish oils contain the omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), precursors of certain eicosanoids. Amongst its benefits are reduction of inflammation throughout the body, and helps balance the Omega 6-Omega 3 fatty acids ratio. Other benefits include optimal mobilization of fats, improves brain function, promotes cardiovascular health and more.
I hope you guys enjoyed this report, as I said before supplements are good when all the variables such as diet, training and rest are optimised. This is when you will start to see the real benefit.
Let me know which supplements you take.