A question you may have asked yourself and one which we often get.
Perhaps you have previous experience of supplements, you may of been fooled by a slick advertising campaign into purchasing the latest fancy supplement that promises to get you the body you always wanted, gain a load of muscle or lose ‘x’ lbs in 14 days .
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Supplements are not all bad
We are not anti-supplements, in fact we use supplements ourselves with the view that supplements do exactly what the name suggests… SUPPLEMENT.
Outside of exercise, If we say the foods you eat contribute to 95% of your results, then supplements may be able to add that extra 5%. If you don’t have that 95% in place then supplements will likely not have a great impact, you would be better placed putting your efforts into a higher quality nutritional intake.
Supplements can act as a type of insurance policy for your body. For example if you use a high quality multi vitamin – this covers a lot of bases which comes in handy.
There be may be times things are really busy with life/work where you are unable to get your regular intake of fruit & veggies meaning you miss out on your micronutrients (vitamins/minerals which are important for fighting disease and general wellbeing).
This is where a quality multi vitamin can act as your insurance.
Between 2014-2016 the sales of vitamins & supplements increased by 4% to reach £421 million.
That’s a lot of money people are spending on their health, which shows an awareness of being health conscious, which is great if the money is being spent on the right stuff.
What’s the ‘right stuff’ you ask?
Here is a list of our top supplements to use providing your nutrition is on point.
1. Protein supplement – Whey/Rice/Pea
This is one supplement that we think a lot of people could do with adding to their nutrition plan. A common theme we see when a new member brings us a food diary, is a lack of protein.
It can be a hard task trying to get enough protein in through only food sources, this where protein supplementation can come in handy.
For more info on protein give THIS a read…
2. Fish oil
Fish oil is highly recommended because it’s a good source of 2 beneficial, health-enhancing fatty acids: EPA and DHA.
It has been proven to help reduce inflammation, support cardiovascular function, nervous system function, brain development, and all around immune health. Plus a whole lot of other stuff which make this an important supplement to use. As general recommendation is to consume 1-2 grams per day of EPA/DHA to start getting the benefits of this useful supplement.
3. Multi vitamin
While a basic multi-vitamin/multi-mineral is not going to be a miracle supplement, it is a solid addition to any supplement regimen. Think of it as simple insurance that may prevent any minor micronutrient deficiencies. There is evidence that hard-training individuals have an increased need for vitamins and minerals. There is also ample evidence that the majority of the population suffers from some level of micronutrient deficiency.
As such, a simple daily multi can help to ensure adequate micronutrient intake.
4. Vitamin D3
Low blood levels of vitamin D are associated with lowered immunity; increased risk of heart disease, psychological disorders, diabetes, loss of bone density, muscle mass & strength as we age.
Clearly, a deficiency in Vitamin D seems to have implications in body composition management on a number of fronts, and being deficient is a situation we want to avoid.
While we can get vitamin D from being outside in the sun…this doesn’t happen often enough in England!
Although it’s definitely in your best interest to have your physician test your vitamin D levels, you can safely supplement with at least 1,000-2,000IU of vitamin D3 per day.
Hopefully that gives you a better understand of supplements (and especially our view on the matter).
We help our members with a nutritional programme that works for them, if you’re struggling, give us a shout at our gym or try out our personal training and we’ll help you work out a plan that suits you.
You may also find our nutritional e-books helpful to eating healthier.