Sports Supplements

1. Protein Powder

Protein powder is the most important supplement for fitness enthusiasts. It contains amino acids that form the building blocks of muscle tissue. It enables muscles to efficiently repair and grow.

Protein powder comes in different varieties, but the two most important types are whey and casein. Whey protein is a fast digesting protein that works best post workout. Casein protein is a slower digesting protein that works best in between workouts and before bed.

2. Creatine Monohydrate

Creatine is an organic acid that supplies energy to muscle cells. Numerous studies have shown that creatine improves strength, energy, muscle mass and recovery. It’s found naturally in the body, as well as common foods such as, tuna and beef.

Creatine comes in a variety of different forms, but the oldest, most trusted and reliable is creatine monohydrate. Not to mention, it’s extremely cost effective. It works best when taken with simple carbohydrates, such as dextrose.

3. Beta Alanine

Beta alanine is another amino acid that is found naturally in the body and in a variety of foods we eat. Research has shown that beta alanine can increase aerobic and anaerobic performance by increasing the concentration of carnosine in the muscles, which delays the onset of fatigue. Numerous studies have shown that compared to a placebo, supplementation with beta alanine significantly enhanced endurance and lean muscle gains. It increases muscle buffer capacity, allowing you to train harder and longer.

4. Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s)

Among the nine essential amino acids in the body, three comprise the Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAA), leucine, isoleucine and valine. These three amino acids account for about one third of muscle tissue in the body. BCAAs are the building blocks of protein and they play a critical role in building and repairing muscle tissue. During intense exercise, the body burns off BCAA’s, stripping muscles of its primary source of fuel. Taking a BCAA supplement will help replenish lost nutrients and energy to the muscles, reducing breakdown and enhancing muscle building and recovery.

5. Glutamine

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in muscle. Studies show that glutamine levels are reduced by up to 50% after intense exercise. Glutamine has a large impact on the healthy functioning of the body’s immune system. When glutamine levels are depleted during exercise, the body enters a catabolic state, feeding off of muscle tissue to replace the lost glutamine molecules in order to restore the immune system. A lack of glutamine may cause overtraining, soreness, fatigue and even muscle loss.

Other Suggestions

• Pre-workout Stimulants

o These products help increase the intensity of your workouts. It includes things like caffeine, ginseng and energy drinks.

• Joint Supplements

o Glucosamine and chondroitin are two popular supplements that are believed to prevent the breakdown of joint cartilage and to stimulate the production of new cartilage. Studies show mixed results on the effectiveness of these products.

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