While this billion-dollar industry is built primarily on lies and deception and the least important part of your overall diet plan, it’s probably the area with the most questions in need of answering.
Truth is, everything that is truly needed in order for your goal to be reached can be provided through a combination of a proper diet and workout program.
Most supplements are complete and utter garbage that don’t do anything no matter what they claim. Are there any that actually ARE useful in some way? Sure, and I’ll tell you about them in a minute.
There is no legal supplement that will cause fat loss. There is no legal supplement that will build muscle. ONLY a proper diet and workout program are capable of making these things happen. Once you’ve set up both and effectively put them into action, supplements can, at best, only help at that point. Why? Because no supplement will work in the absence of a proper diet and workout, and no supplement will make up for a poor diet and workout.
The truth is, the key to losing fat, building muscle, or just improving your body or health in any way is a combination of a proper diet and workout program. The best supplements in the world won’t do a thing if you don’t get the important stuff right first.
Any supplement I ever take or recommend MUST meet the following 2 requirements:
· They must be scientifically proven to be useful or beneficial in some way.
· They must be safe.
I am WAY overly cautious about supplements and what I put into my body in general. So, if it’s even remotely dangerous or unsafe when used properly, then I’m not interested at all.
The following are health supplements that I personally use and I will explain why.
Making sure you take a high-potency multivitamin/multi-mineral formula may help ensure the presence of those essential nutrients necessary for thousands of metabolic reactions. Bodybuilders, athletes, and people that lead active lifestyles need even more nutrients than the average non-active person.
It doesn’t matter whether you are male or female, young or old, bodybuilder, football player, or everyday gym rat. Your multi should be the first supplement you take every day.
2. Fish oil
Fish oil is extracted from cold-water fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring and cod. It contains a blend of omega-3 fatty acids made up of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), both of which are essential for such basic bodily functions as muscle activity and cell growth. Our bodies can’t make these omega-3 fats, so we have to take them in through foods or supplements.
Fish oil may provide numerous benefits for bodybuilders largely due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
As you age, it becomes more difficult to maintain and build muscle, partly due to a decreased response to both resistance training and protein intake.
Interestingly, the anti-inflammatory properties of fish oil may enhance your muscles’ sensitivity to protein and resistance training, allowing for greater gains in muscle size and strength as you age.
3. Calcium & Magnesium
The relationship between calcium and magnesium in our bodies is complex. They work together in many functions, such as regulating heartbeat, muscle tone and contraction, and nerve conduction. At other times, calcium and magnesium seem to compete by binding competitively to the same sites in the body.
Most calcium and magnesium supplements contain a ratio of two or three parts calcium to one-part magnesium. Magnesium, however, is either used up or excreted and must be replenished on a daily basis. So, even though the daily need for calcium is greater, we are much more likely to become deficient in magnesium.
Magnesium is responsible for more than 300 biochemical reactions, all necessary for optimum health. Magnesium plays a vital role in digestion, energy production, muscle contraction and relaxation, bone formation and cell division. In addition, magnesium is a key nutrient in the proper functioning of the heart, the kidneys, the adrenals and the entire nervous system.
4. Vitamin D
Vitamin D, along with calcium, helps build bones and keep bones strong and healthy. The parathyroid glands work minute to minute to balance the calcium in the blood by communicating with the kidneys, gut and skeleton. When there is sufficient calcium in the diet and sufficient active Vitamin D, dietary calcium is absorbed and put to good use throughout the body. If calcium intake is insufficient, or vitamin D is low, the parathyroid glands will ‘borrow’ calcium from the skeleton in order to keep the blood calcium in the normal range.
Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for you, especially your digestive system. We usually think of these as germs that cause diseases. But your body is full of bacteria, both good and bad. Probiotics are often called “good” or “helpful” bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy.
When you lose “good” bacteria in your body, for example after taking antibiotics, probiotics can help replace them and maintain a balance of your “good” and “bad” bacteria to keep your body working the way it should.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body. It is the major component of connective tissues that make up several body parts, including tendons, ligaments, skin and muscles.
Collagen has many important functions, including providing your skin with structure and strengthening your bones.
In recent years, collagen supplements have become popular. Most are hydrolyzed, which means the collagen has been broken down, making it easier for you to absorb. Consuming collagen may have a variety of health benefits, from relieving joint pain to improving skin health.
Taking collagen is associated with a number of health benefits and very few known risks. For starters, supplements may improve skin health by reducing wrinkles and dryness. They may also help increase muscle mass, prevent bone loss and relieve joint pain.
Although several foods contain collagen, it is unknown whether the collagen in food has the same benefits as supplements. Collagen supplements are generally safe, quite easy to use and definitely worth trying for their potential benefits.