Workout supplements over the years have become omnipresent. Likewise, it has become an increasingly popular practice by all gym and workout enthusiasts. However, it raises this question: Can they really help you?
Workout Supplements: Can They Help Or Hurt?
For the majority of healthy people, workout supplements that exist for the purpose of enhancing the body are completely harmless. However, in some cases, too much consumption of workout supplements can jeopardize your health.
People who consume workout supplements do it for the purpose of supporting the buildup of their muscle mass. Usual workout supplements in the market comprise amino acids such as protein hydrolysates. Also, common workout supplements are composed of branched-chain amino acids containing leucine, isoleucine and valine.
It’s safe to say that a person can take workout supplements on the assumption that they don’t have any underlying medical condition. For instance, a study conducted by the Journal of Nutrition showed the difference on the supplement consumption between athletes and healthy persons.
Athletes consume 3g/kg per day of leucine. That amount exceeds three times than the recommended daily consumption of 0.8 grams. Meanwhile, a healthy individual who consumed 1.25g/kg/day showed that there were minimal to no contrary effects even when consumed high amounts of leucine. Thus, you can take supplements given that you’re healthy. For the meantime, it would be wise to consult your doctor before trying any workout supplement when you have a medical condition, or if you’re taking a certain medication.
Workout Supplements You Should Take
So are workout supplements really helpful, and healthy? Do you really need them? Some ingredients found in workout supplements are well-studied. In fact, they actually help enhance your physical and mental performance. However, some ingredients probably won’t do any good. So, what are the effective supplements you should take?
Protein bars and powders are exceptional in supplying the essential amount of protein your body needs to boost and strengthen your muscles. Further, protein is crucial because almost every cell in the body has protein. Protein plays a specific role and function in your body such as providing you with energy, helps manage your appetite, and helps fight of infections. It’s recommended to consume protein at least 10-30 percent of your daily calories. You can also take around 20g of protein powder as a substitute.
This ingredient is still a subject for debate among the fitness and health community. Some presume that it has minimal to no effect in muscle production. The truth is, creatinine actually works, given under the right conditions.
- A derivative of three amino acids: The body naturally produces three amino acids which are collected in the muscles as a source of energy. Since creatinine works like those amino acids, high doses can help increase strength and muscle mass over time.
- Boosts exercise performance: Fitness enthusiasts also suggest that creatine monohydrate works better in boosting your exercise performance when taken after a workout rather than prior to. This is because the body is more apt to digest and store it when natural stores are at their lowest.
- Exercise longer: Creatinine also aids in producing energy thus helping you workout faster, longer, and heavier. It’s highly recommended for people who do strength training and other high-intensity sports.
3. Carbohydrates and Caffeine
Two common ingredients of workout supplements are carbohydrates and caffeine. They show significant improvement in exercise performance.
- Carbohydrates: The body’s go-to source of energy are carbohydrates. Almost everyone is aware of it and experts recommend consuming it before exercise to properly fire up your body. When doing high intensity workouts, your body will use glycogen and blood glucose as sources of energy. Thus, topping off the levels of carbohydrates before an exercise helps increase performance.
- Caffeine: Meanwhile, caffeine is a stimulant that is famous for promoting alertness and energy. Research also shows that caffeine helps improve performance in sports. It helps muscles in burning more fat and preserves glycogen. Thus, it allows you to workout longer and harder before using up all of your energy storage.
4. Beetroot juice
There may be little research on beetroot juice, but it has been consistently showing increase in the body’s levels of nitric oxide and enhances cardiovascular performance.
- Has inorganic nitrates: Beetroot juice carries inorganic nitrates, which converts to nitric oxide inside the body. This helps expand the body’s blood vessels, thus increasing the blood flow. Likewise, it regulates the amount of work your heart has to perform in a given workout.
So, can workout supplements really help you? It depends. What your body consumes can either make or break your workout goals. Choosing the right workout supplements are as crucial as your exercise program and existing diet. Supplement Investigator can help you find out the truth about your favorite health and workout supplements.
Trevor Gilligan is a writer contributing pieces for Supplement Investigator. His interests lie in the health and nutrition niche, being a fitness enthusiast himself. Trevor strives to provide creative flair in his articles, which he also ensures are informative and entertaining for his readers. He spen