Given the stress of modern life, lack of sleep, the poor supply and cost of quality foods and lack of movement, people look for a cure to their health with all the pills, powders and potions. Hence, in today's fitness industry, supplements have taken up a huge share in the industry's revenue as people look for the secret weapon to achieve their fitness goals faster.
Supplements can help cover nutrient gaps, especially protein requirements, ensuring that your body has the appropriate resources it needs to repair it and keep healthy. They are also very convenient at times where you may not be able to sit down to have a meal, let alone prepare and cook one. For example, if you're working out in the morning before work, you may only have time in the car on the way to work to fit in your first meal for the day. This is where supplements can be beneficial, giving you the nutrition needed to repair your body after a hard workout, whilst it is easy to consume and there is no preparation needed.
However, do not let persuasive marketing fool you. Beside the high cost of supplements, in a battle between protein sources from whole foods or supplements, whole foods are the winner. A well rounded and diverse diet will give you the nutrients you need to lead you a healthy lifestyle. Too much reliance on supplements, especially protein supplements, may mean you will miss out on many natural and protective substances.
Types of supplements
Basics - contain few added ingredients, what you buy is what you get
- Hydrolysate - highest quality, fastest absorbing but also highest in price .
- Isolate - Quick absorbing protein, usually low in carbohydrates.
- Concentrate - Medium absorption, usually mixed with low to moderate carbohydrates, lower in price.
- Casein - Slow release protein, usually good for night.
Creatine - supplies the body with extra creatine phosphate molecules, increasing the muscles efficiency and ability to do work.
Glutamine - increase protein metabolism and helps prevent breakdown of muscles
BCAA's (Branch Chain Amino Acids) - increase muscle retention (helpful during weight loss) and increased protein synthesis.
Cocktails (Blends) - a few ingredients mixed together
Pre-workout - designed to give you a hit with energy, increase your strength, and stamina for your workout
Intra-workout - designed to nourish the body as much as possible during exercise, in turn increasing performance during the workout and muscle building potential.
Post-Workout - designed to give your body the nutrients your body needs to recovery as quickly as possible so that you can return back to training as soon as possible.
Remember, there is no tablet, powder, or supplement that will get you the results you want! Master the basics first by having a balanced diet, adequate sleep and exercise, before you look into supplements.
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.