Why Your Hundreds of $$$ Worth of Supplements Simply Don’t Work
It’s all about hype. When you read a bodybuilding magazine or article online you hear about a magical supplement that will make your muscles massive or shred the fat around you mid section and make you ripped, all in 4 weeks. You find this new scientific formula guaranteed to give you mind-blowing results, there’s even a before and after picture of some guy who’s used this products and had unbelieveable results (usually a fitness model who’s let himself go intentionally before hand). So why not pull out you hard earned cash and make a purchase, it’s one of the more expensive products out there but what the hell? You deserve to be in shape, and this supplement is the key, or so you think…
This is the mentality of many out there who have spent hundreds or even thousands on these miracle supplements in belief that it will bring about the results they’ve craved for months or years. The problem is that the hype the advertisement creates over-shadows the reality, tricking the uneducated into handing over their money. Although these supplements may help in some small way, there is no magic pill for instant muscle or weight loss. The truth is it’s all about keeping active with the right exercise and feeding your body appropriate nutrition. This is where supplements really can come in handy, but only when ‘supplementing’ your nutrition correctly.
The key is to first understand what you need to eat. Keeping a healthy intake of Protein, Complex Carbs and Good fats are key, aswell as proper vitamins and minerals. Coming up with an eating plan first that can cover most of this will yield the best results, but you can’t always cover everything. This is where proper supplementation comes in. I’ve had some people sit down and tell me ‘Stop wasting your money on Protein powder, it’s just useless’ – what a load. Protein Powder, like all supplements has it’s place. The idea is to help fill the gap where protein is needed and also to be used with proper timing. Some quality Whey Protein Isolate/Concentrate is perfect for just after a workout, or to help add a little protein to a meal, since it’s hard to reach the standard one gram of protein per pound of lean bodyweight.
Somehow though, I don’t think any weightlifting or bodybuilding enthusiast is without protein powder. Most people short on results are missing the important vitamins and minerals. Most vegetables you buy today are lacking in vitamins and good nutrition from being transported for long periods of time before being stocked at your local supermarket. This makes good nutrition even harder. Simply eating natural, although the best advice, is not a simple as it sounds. Because of this, people are lacking in the vitamins we need for everyday life, let alone sport, athleticism and muscle growth – a lack in these important vitamins leaves us a little malnurished, causing our bodies to store more fat, instead of burning it off or growing muscle. It’s because of our current lifestyle and situation that people are missing a lot of the vital nutrients needed. As a bit of a guide, here’s what supplements I consider to be more important than a bottle of HMB, or Nitric Oxide or whatever they’re selling these days:
Fish Oil or Flaxseed Oil
Perfect for getting Healthy EFA’s – Essential Fatty Acids like Omega 3. Most people simply do not get enough good fat for good health or to process those fat soluble vitamins. A simple increase in EFA’s would make a difference with most people training hard for a better body. I recommend a quality fat supplement like Optimum Fish Oil or Flaxseed Oil.
A good multivitamin tablet is a good way to cover a lot of bases, and get a more complete intake of required vitamins and minerals. Taken first thing in the morning can give you a bit more energy throughout the day. A good quality multivitamin like Opti-Men.
Zinc is is not only good for your health but your hormones, which will have an effect on your body fat and muscle. Zinc prevents free Testosterone from being converted to Oestrogen. Since Testosterone is the key to muscle growth and fat loss, I consider hormone levels to be an extremely important aspect of being healthy and fit. With clean eating, avoiding soy produ0cts, whilst using proper Zinc supplementation, you can make a big difference to your hormones and reap the benefits. A good Zinc supplement like Olympian Labs Zinc Plus can be highly effective for acheiving this (when couplde with a Testosterone Booster like Now Tribulus you can really get your Testosterone levels on the rise naturally).
For those who like to avoid dairy or simply don’t get the calcium they need this is a handy supplement to have. Calcium is important for bone health, which is a big deal when lifting heavy weights. Recent research has indicated that healthy levels of calcium can aid in fat loss, so don’t overlook it! Try a quality Calcium supplement like Twinlab Calcium or Now Coral Calcium Plus.
The highest selling supplement on the bodybuilding market definitely has its uses. Since protein is required to both repair and build muscle, both for muscle gain and/or weight loss, it’s an excellent way to see your protein levels reach their desired amount. But like all the supplements above, it is only required if there is a lack in your diet. Too much protein can cause the body to convert it to glucose to be used for fuel. This means less protein for your muscles, so try not to overdo it. As mentioned above, a quality protein powder (like “Optimum 100% Whey Protein, or Gaspari Nutrition MyoFusion) can make a big difference when used correctly.
The above samples are only a few of whats available and whats useful in proper supplementation, but don’t be fooled into thinking you MUST buy these supplements to be successful. The supplements, as I mentioned above, are to used to fix any weak points in your nutrition, so once you’ve formulated a diet, do a little research to see what you lack, then let proper supplementation with products that are far cheaper and more effective, give you the results you want, leaving the hype behind for some no-nonsense results!