As I have said before, supplements are designed to add to an already outstanding nutrition program. You need to eat real food. You need to eat food that is well prepared, sourced from quality ingredients, and not full of additives and other processed crap. Then you can look to add things into your dies that will help you perform better.
In part 1, we talked about glucosamine, fish oil (omega 3) and DHEA. Those are supplements everyone should be taking whether you work out a lot or a little. 2000mg of glucosamine, 3000mg of fish oil (epa & dha), and 10 -100mg of DHEA depending on gender and age.
In part 2 we talked about Vitamin D and protein powders. These 2 are more dependent on your exercise regimen, age, and need.
These last 2 I only recommend for those of you who are hitting the gym 3+ days a week and are pursuing goals of increasing your strength and stamina.
Branched-chain amino acids are essential nutrients the body gets from protein. They help prevent fatigue and improve concentration. As athletes we use them to improve exercise performance and reduce protein and muscle breakdown during intense exercise. You can take them before, during, and after exercise. Most BCAA formulas are the same and often are flavored. It is not a terribly expensive supplement.
Creatine is a chemical that is normally found in the body, mostly in muscle fibers. It is made by the body and can also be obtained from certain foods.
We use creatine to improve exercise performance and increasing muscle mass in athletes and older adults. The science on this is not definitive however and not everyone will benefit. Creatine is involved with making the energy muscles need in order to work. Some people find that creatine has them retain water or upsets their stomachs. Most creatine formulas are made with a carbohydrate solution (sugar) that helps make the creatine more effective. Usually a 5 gram dose is all you need but you may want to start with less to make sure you have no adverse reaction.
Supplements are designed to enhance and improve health, fitness, or performance and sometimes all 3 at the same time. Check with your health provider, especially if you are taking medications. You would not want a bad interaction to ruin your day!
Again, fix your diet first. Just like you can’t exercise your way out of a bad diet, neither can you supplement your way out of a bad diet.
Eat right, eat real food.
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