The Importance Of Supplements!

Supplements make it much easier to get the necessary nutrients to build muscle and can even give you an advantage and enhance your training when taken right and combined with a good diet.

Article Summary:
  • Everyone I know has gotten phenominal results from using creatine.
  • Glutamine makes up 60% of the amino acids in the skeletal muscles.
  • I highly promote caffeine for fat loss and preserving muscle mass.
  • I am often asked the following two questions:

    1. What do you take and how is it working?
    2. But can't you build a better physique from whole food?

    These two questions go hand in hand. Right now I'm taking protein powder, meal replacement powders, multivitamins, and glutamine.

    The answer to both questions is yes. You can build a better body on a real good diet just like the guys back in the 50's did, but to do so can take so much time, energy, and trips to the supermarket. Believe me, mothers hate running to the grocery store to buy food. It's one of my mom's biggest pet peeves.

    Supplements make it much easier to get the necessary nutrients to build muscle and can even give you an advantage and enhance your training when taken right and combined with a good diet.

    In this following article, I'm going to talk about the importance of supplements, their rank of importance (in my opinion), and supplements that can be added to give you the advantage over the guy who refuses to use creatine, but thinks he'll get big from eating frosted flakes after he works out.

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    Ok, let me first say that the most important aspect of diet is whole foods. You must eat 6 - 7 meals per day and each one should contain protein and carbs. 3 - 4 of these meals should consist of whole foods like chicken, rice and salad. The other 3 - 4 should consist of liquid protein like protein shakes and MRP's.

    dot Meal Replacements dot

      Usually when I pick out an MRP, I try to get the most inexpensive. Most contain about the same ratio of macro-nutrients, but I still chooise one that is from a reputable company. Right now I am taking EAS Myoplex ($1.90 per serving).

    Myoplex Original EAS Presents:
    Myoplex Original

    It takes a solid nutritional foundation to build your best body ever. Myoplex is designed to take the guesswork out of high performance nutrition, delivering the highest quality protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

      As you can easily see it is much cheaper and much better for you than eating at a fast food restaraunt and about the same price as 10 egg whites and a serving of oatmeal, but much easier to eat and better tasting. Usually I take a packet between classes (I eat breakfast at 7:30, and lunch at 2:30).

    arrow View Meal Replacements Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Whey Protein dot

      Equally important are whey protein powders as they are absorbed faster than MRP's and therefore desireable after working out and before bed. This is exactly when I take them. A scoop after working out, then a scoop and a half before bed. Like MRP's, I try to find one that is inexpensive, has low sodium (under 100mg), low-carbs (under 5-6gm), and from a reputable company.

    Big Red
    Enlarge Click Image To Enlarge.
    Author, Jay Cholewa: "I Try To Find A
    Protein Powder From A Reputable Company."

    100% Whey Protein Optimum Presents:
    100% Whey Protein

    Optimum 100% Whey Protein won the Supplement Of The Year and Protein Powder Of The Year award for 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008! Since the very beginning, Optimum Nutrition has raised the standard by which all other whey protein supplements are judged.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Pure Whey Prolab Presents:
    Pure Whey

    Pure Whey is a great tasting, high quality, 100% whey protein formula. We start with only the finest raw material and put it through a series of refined, sensitive filtration steps.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    100% Whey Protein EAS Presents:
    100% Whey Protein

    100% Whey Protein is pure "instantized" whey protein processed through a serious of low-temperature micro and ultra filtration steps, producing the cleanest, most instant form of whey protein available.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

    arrow View Whey Protein Products Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Multivitamins dot

      I believe that along with the top two, multivitamins rank in the top 3 (between protein and multi's it is impossible to distinguish which is more important, they are both essential). Currently I take a generic one-a-day multi four times per day (2 with breakfast and 2 before bed).

      Make sure you are getting at least 500 mg's of vitamin C and 400 mg's from vitamin E. The other nutrients should be over 100%, remember people that exercise intensely need more nutrients than those who don't.

    The Importance Of Vitamins And Minerals!
    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Vitamins & Minerals!
    Vitamins and minerals, widely used by the general population are useful. Learn about types of vitamins and minerals and what they can be used for.
    Dr. Di Pasquale

      When you're diet is good and the above three are being used properly, then and only then (considering you have the money, that's why I gave what I thought to be the most inexpensive solutions) should you move on to the next set of supplements. I think the next most important supplement is creatine.

    arrow View Multivitamins Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Creatine dot

      While it has never really worked well for me (I'm in the unlucky 10 percentile), almost everyone else I know has gotten phenominal results from this supplement. The most important time to take it is directly after working out with a high carb. I prefer to take it with Endurox Accelerade, but grape juice will work well too.

    Big Red
    Enlarge Click Image To Enlarge.
    Creatine Has Never Really
    Worked Well For Me.

      It is important to take your creatine with a protein powder that is not enriched with glutamine (this means you cannot take it with MRP's as most are enriched with glutamine) because the two amino's use the same substrate to transport them into your muscle cells and when taken within 1-1/2 hour apart will not absorb.

      I prefer to take it with a carb, then have a protein shake an hour later, then eat a whole food meal an hour after that.


    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Cleaning Up Creatine Confusion: The Truth!
    To this day I still get questions regarding the effectiveness and safety of creatine use. Learn more.
    Kevin Neeld

      When buying creatine it is important to find a reputable brand. This means no GNC blowout sale creatine as it can be very low quality. Personally I think the best creatine products out there (pure creatine, flavored ones are a waste of money in my opinion, as you are paying for dextrose which costs about 30 cents a pound) are Prolab's, AST's, and EAS's.

    Creatine Monohydrate Prolab Presents:
    Creatine Monohydrate

    Prolab's Creatine Monohydrate can help maximize energy output during intense training to help you reach peak levels of performance. This natural compound found in our bodies plays a powerful role in energy metabolism.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Micronized Creatine AST Presents:
    Micronized Creatine

    With AST's constant commitment to improve the effectiveness of sports supplementation we have developed a new creatine supplement that incorporates state-of-the-art particle micronizing technology.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Phosphagen EAS Presents:

    Numerous double-blind, placebo-controlled university studies have show creatine monohydrate supplementation may boost muscle size and strength, increase lean body mass, delay fatigue, and speed muscle recovery after exercise.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

    arrow View Creatine Monohydrate Products Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Glutamine dot

      Glutamine is also very important as it makes up to 60% of the amino acids in the skeletal muscles. When you train intensely (as I'm sure you do) glutamine is the first amino to be used as fuel. It is found in food, so if you're eating a high protein diet, you probably are getting somewhere from 3-5 gms per day.

      You can find it in most whole protein foods, but it is abundant in cottage cheese, whey protein, and most MRP's are enriched with it.

    Big Red
    Enlarge Click Image To Enlarge.
    When You Train Intensely, Glutamine Is The
    First Amino Acid To Be Used As Fuel.

      Most people supplement with 5-10 gms per day. Some of the advantages to taking glutamine is that not only does it replenish your glutamine stores in your muscles, but it highly strengthens the immune system which for those of you who have had to miss workouts due to illness will gladly appreciate.

      Lastly (I have seen this in many places, although I'm not sure how true it is) it can increase growth hormone by as much as 400% if taken before bed. I have taken glutamine religiously for the past 3 months and feel it has helped my recovery immensely. This is great because it takes my legs forever to recover and I have to do a lot of walking being in college.


    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    Is Glutamine Worth Your Money: Value Questioned!
    Among the many supplements regaining popularity recently is glutamine. It's the most abundant amino acid of the body.
    Kevin Neeld

      I recommend glutamine to all of those who have the money. Take it first thing in the morning (5 gm) and right before you go to bed (5 gm). Will it cause you to put on 10lbs in under a month? No, but being defficient in it could hurt your gains greatly. My favorite glutamine brand is Prolab.

    Glutamine Powder Prolab Presents:
    Glutamine Powder

    Prolab Glutamine won the Glutamine Product Of The Year award for 2005 and 2006! Glutamine, the forgotten supplement, is comparable to creatine in results, and in some instances, is even better!
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

    arrow View Glutamine Products Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Caffeine dot

      I highly promote caffeine as it is a great supplement toward fat loss and preserving muscle in the process. I have gotten the most dramatic results from caffeine.

      Not only can it significantly increase your fat metabolism when you are using a cutting diet, but it can help you increase the intensity of your workouts. When I'm tired from classes, I'll pop a caffeine and 15 minutes later be pumping out more weight than I would if I had gone in without it.

      It is very important that you cycle it if you are taking it every day for fat loss, and if you are taking it as a workout booster, not to use for more than 3 days per week without out cycling. I try not to take it more than 2 times per week. I think in the aspects of saving money that buying Prolab Caffeine 200mg is good.

    Caffeine Prolab Presents:

    Helps restore mental alertness or wakefulness when experiencing fatigue or drowsiness. Get direct results for all of your endevours with the highest quality caffeine available!
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

    arrow View Caffeine Products Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    dot Testosterone Enhancers dot

      Being a teenager means you have naturally high testosterone, and while it is bad to alter it unnatrually by introducing androgen's or steroids into the body, it's always a plus to enhance your testostorone production naturaully. ZMA is becoming one of the most popular supplements today, and it's also one of the safest.

      Your body needs zinc and magnesium, the two are responsible for over 500 different functions in the human body, and these minerals are hard to get because multivitamins contain calcium as fillers. ZMA is calcium free, and when taking on an empty stomach before bed can give great results for most people.

    Testosterone Enhancers.
    [ Click To Join The Thread. ]
    Testosterone Enhancers.
    Has anyone tried testosterone enhancers? I just want a bit of feedback, I might dabble in Testosterone enhancers to boost energy for a more intense workout.
    Started By:
    Jim K

      I believe that because so many are deficient in these minerals and when they get enough it causes a great change. This just shows how powerful it can be. I think most of the ZMA on this site is of good quality. I think the most cost effective is Optimum Nutrition's ZMA.

    ZMA Optimum Presents:

    Two recent clinical trials suggest that a synergistic combination of Zinc Monomethionine Aspartate, Magnesium Aspartate, and Vitamin B6 can significantly increase testosterone levels and muscle strength in well-trained athletes.
    [ Click here to learn more. ]

    arrow View Natural Testosterone Boosters Sorted By Top Seller Here.

    Sample Supplement Stack

    As I have said many times before, diet is the most important aspect of the nutrition part of bodybuilding. Once your diet is in order though, supplements can give you a great advantage. Below I'm going to briefly outline a great supplement stack for a workout day (provided you have the money, most won't).

    Only take caffeine on workout days (less then 3 days per week) and on non-workout days take your creatine mid-day on an empty stomach.

    Now obviously most of you being students cannot afford this, but this would be the ultimate teenage stack to add lean mass. The reason your protein shake after your workout is in water is because the casein in the milk slows the absorbsion of whey, and after you lift, you want it to be absorbed fast.


    [ Click here to learn more. ]
    New Year's Mass Building: Supplements!
    Is your New Year's resolution aimed towards gaining overall mass? Then learn and use the most effective supplements.
    Richard Choueiri