Transform Into
A Teen-Titan

Expert Picked Supplements For Your Age.

Choose The Right Muscle Building Basics.

Begin Building Muscle & Strength.

Considering the thousands of dietary supplements on the market today, what should you be using at your age to most effectively aid in the muscle and strength building process...and stay healthy in the process?

Teens have many reasons for trying to gain muscle, lose fat, and become stronger and in better overall physical condition. Whether you want to just look good for the opposite sex or for personal satisfaction, or you’d like to get big and strong for sport participation, the correct dietary supplement plan can help. That said, you should always keep in mind that regular and proper exercise training is of primary importance, as is appropriate whole food intake. At the same time, you should strive to avoid the peer pressure to get involved in alcohol and recreational drug use, both of which can significantly impair your strength and physique transformation progress.

Do teens need dietary supplements? No. You can obtain great results just by working out hard (and smart) and eating a good quality whole food diet. Many people have done this over the years and you can as well. However, with recent advancements in nutrition science, it is very likely that selected dietary supplements will help you achieve the desired results that you seek sooner or allow you to go beyond what might be obtained with exercise and whole food alone. With the thousands of dietary supplements available today, choosing the right supplements for you is of main importance. The selection below provides an overview of what you may consider in your supplement regimen, to complement your already well-designed exercise training and whole food nutrition plan.

Before we present the list of those supplements that we believe may be of help to you, it’s important that you understand which supplements classes you should avoid using. First, teens should not use dietary supplements that are designed to influence hormone levels, such as growth hormone or testosterone. At this stage of life, you are already primed to generate sufficiently high levels of “muscle building” hormones and you should never mess with this process unless you are under the care of a medical doctor. Second, teens should not use stimulant-based dietary supplements. Stimulants are common components of most “pre-workout” and “fat-burning” supplements. At your age, you should have no problem getting yourself motivated to train hard at the gym for an hour or so at a time. You should never need to rely on artificial stimulation to fuel your workouts.

It is our hope that the information on this page will help you choose a supplement plan based on your age and your particular goals. It should be understood that our recommendations are based on scientific evidence for effect and not simply on what someone might think is best based on their own personal opinion or experience. Therefore, what you see below may vary somewhat from what you might read on various message boards or internet sites, as well as what your friends or coaches might tell you.

As always, it is important that you inform your parents or guardian of your chose to use dietary supplements and ideally, consult with a qualified healthcare provider before beginning any dietary supplement regimen.

If desiring to use dietary supplements, teens under 16 years of age should stick to the following product classes only. Note: While one example product is included for each class below, this does not necessarily indicate that this particular product is the best product in the class or the best product for you. Please view all products to determine which might be most desired based on your personal taste.

NOTE: To sort product by price, servings and more, simply click the VIEW ALL links in each category.

Protein Products

Protein is made of amino acids. Amino acids are the basic building blocks of muscle. Therefore, protein is an essential ingredient for muscle building and muscle recovery following strenuous exercise. Your muscle building goals will not be maximized without adequate protein. Although you may hear of a wide variety of recommendations for protein intake, our recommendations are based on current scientific evidence. For most hard-training teens, protein intake equal to 0.7 to 0.9 grams per pound of body weight is sufficient. For example, if you currently weigh 150 pounds, you should aim for 105-135 grams of good quality protein each day. This should ideally be spread over 4-6 meals or snacks, in such a way that you ingest 20-30 grams of protein at each sitting throughout the day. If you are just beginning a strenuous exercise program, are engaged in a high volume exercise program, and/or are restricting your calorie intake for some reason, you may need more protein to help preserve muscle mass. Using high quality protein powders to construct convenient, tasty, and cost effective meals and snacks is a great idea for teens and will help achieve the daily protein needs when combined with whole food protein sources.

There are several types of protein including: Whey, Soy, Egg, and Casein. So which type is best? Well that depends on how and when you want to use them. All can be helpful and you may decide to have more than one type available to best meet your needs. We invite you to view our in-depth articles on this subject.

Whey - Whey protein is a good choice throughout the day, but particularly for post- workout supplementation. This is due to the fact that whey protein is digested rapidly (30-60 minutes) and the amino acids will be available to the body during the immediate post exercise period when recovery begins. View all Whey products.

Casein - Casein protein is thought to be digested more slowly than whey. This has led some to use this type of protein prior to bedtime because a nighttime of sleep should be the longest your body goes without protein over the course of the day. View all Casein products.

Egg - Egg protein (albumen) is thought to be digested at a medium pace, so it's a good anytime protein to provide a good sustained release of amino acids to the body. View all Egg Protein products.

Soy - Soy protein is the vegetarian's friend because it's one of the only complete protein sources derived from plants. Soy is a good overall protein source, although the quality may not be as good as whey, casein, or egg. Soy has been noted to have certain health benefits for women. View all Soy products.

Blends - Protein powders are either available as straight whey, casein, egg, soy, or other (such as pea protein), or can be available as a combination blend consisting of different concentrations of protein types. A blended protein powder might be helpful in terms of offering different rates of digestion. BSN Syntha-6 is one of the best in the blended proteins category.

Protein Powders versus Weight Gainers

Protein powders typically contain 20-25 grams of protein per scoop, along with 1-3 grams of fat and carbohydrate; they are designed to be nearly 100% protein and to be used to supplement daily whole food protein intake. These may be viewed as “low carb” powders. The powder could be mixed with other ingredients such as milk, fruit, yogurt, and rolled oats to construct a meal replacement shake. View all Low Carb Protein products.

Weight Gainers also contain protein but typically contain a significant quantity of carbohydrate, as well as more fat than a standard protein powder. Weight gainers are often designed to be high calorie powders used either to replace a meal or to be consumed between meals in an attempt to supplement daily protein and calories. Those interested in gaining weight or “bulking up” might be interested in using a weight gainer. While these may prove beneficial, be careful not to consume too many calories of weight gain powder in any one sitting. Doing so can result in GI distress (bloating, gas, diarrhea). View all Gainer products.

Multi-Vitamins / Multi-Minerals

Although likely not directly impacting your ability to build muscle and get stronger, vitamins and minerals are of great importance in your overall nutrition plan. Think of a good multi-vitamin/multi-mineral as an inexpensive insurance plan for your body. You want to maintain optimal health so that you can continue with your regular training and nutrition plan. You also want to make sure that you are obtaining all desired nutrients for optimal progress. If you are deficient in one or more vitamin or mineral, your gains can be hampered. This may be especially true if you find yourself restricting calories in an attempt to maintain a lower body weight in order to compete in certain sports (wrestling, bodybuilding, cheerleading). In such a case, you may be nutrient deficient and a good multi-vitamin/multi-mineral may help. Furthermore, recent evidence indicates that appropriate micro-nutrient intake in the form of a multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplement may reduce stress and anxiety, help you recover from extreme physical stress, and improve concentration, mental stamina and attentiveness. These are important findings for teens and lead us to suggest that a high quality multi-vitamin/multi-mineral is a must have for all who are serious about optimal health and performance. Most formulas contain all essential vitamins and the most important minerals. The daily dosage for multi-vitamins/mulit-minerals is typically one capsule or tablet.


Although referred to as a vitamin, vitamin D3 has multiple “hormonal” effects on the human body, including involvement in many metabolic processes. Most American adults and teens are deficient in vitamin D3 and can benefit from daily supplementation. While vitamin D3 is likely contained in your multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplement, the dosage may not be ideal. For example, it might contain only 400-600 IU, despite most expert recommendations for 1000-4000 IU daily of this vitamin. We suggest a total daily dosage of 1000-2000 IU for teens engaged in strenuous exercise.


Most health-conscious teens have been taught to avoid fat. So, the thought of purposely supplementing additional oil into your diet may not make sense. But keep in mind that these healthy fish oils have been noted to have a favorable impact on the metabolism. In fact, research indicates an increased metabolic rate, decreased inflammation and joint pain, and enhanced exercise recovery with regular intake of these oils. Aim for 1-2 grams of fish oil daily, which should provide the highest concentration of Omega 3 fatty acids— eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).


Probiotic supplements regulate gut bacteria and enhance both gut and immune function. If you are a teen who is engaged in strenuous exercise and/or competition, are routinely under stress due to the demands of school work and other things, and lack adequate sleep due to your busy lifestyle, chances are that your immune system may be compromised. This could lead to more frequent illnesses and time away from your training. A probiotic supplement may help to support your immune system in such circumstances. Of course, getting your life in balance should be your first priority. Follow manufacturer label instructions regarding the daily dosage.

In addition to the products listed above, teens in the 16-19 year old age bracket may consider using the products listed below. Not all products will apply to all teens, so make sure to carefully consider your unique situation and goals before you decide to begin using one or more of these supplements.

NOTE: To sort product by price, servings and more, simply click the VIEW ALL links in each category.


Creatine may be the most well-researched sport supplement of all time (with the possible exception of carbohydrate). In many studies, creatine has been shown to improve high intensity, short duration exercise performance (for example: sprinting, weight lifting, jumping). Creatine has also been noted to increase body weight in most users—usually 2- 5 pounds within the initial 1-2 weeks of use. This appears largely due to fluid retention within the muscle and is often viewed as a desired “side effect” for those wanting to gain body weight.

Creatine is naturally occurring in the body and has been noted to be safe when ingested by humans daily at a dosage of approximately 5 grams. We have tons of great articles on creatine on our site, so you can become somewhat of an expert on the topic in no time!

The basics behind creatine are this: it increases ATP (the main energy source muscles use for explosive power) availability so that you can perform more reps and sets and lift more weight. Over time, this increased work output may translate into greater muscle growth. Some authors suggest that creatine be “cycled.” For example, you might use it for 6-8 weeks, followed by a 2-4 week “off” period in which you do not use it. You might also just use creatine during a period of time when peak performance is needed, such as your main competition period or a period of training when you are aiming for a personal best.

There are quite a few different types of creatine which you can view by top sellers. For example, there is pure creatine monohydrate, liquid creatine, micronized creatine and many more. That said, you should know that the majority of research performed on creatine has been done using creatine monohydrate. If using creatine monohydrate, the typical dosage is 5 grams taken 3-4 times per day (15-20 grams per day) for a period of 5- 7 days (this is the so called “loading phase”), followed by daily intake of 5 grams per day (taken in one serving, typically following your workout, along with carbohydrate).


L-Glutamine is the most abundant free amino acid found in muscle tissue. It serves multiple functions, including enhancing immunity, helping to prevent muscle wasting, and improving muscle recovery. The better and quicker you recover from strenuous exercise, the sooner you can get back to the gym or the field. Glutamine is safe to take year-round. While you may hear some discussion about avoiding taking glutamine and creatine at the same time due to impaired absorption, there is little evidence to support this idea. If you are concerned about this possibility, you might take your creatine immediately following your workout (along with carbohydrate) and take your glutamine before going to bed at night. The usual daily dosage of glutamine is between 3 and 5 grams.

Amino Acids (Branched-Chain AAS and Essentials)

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. If you are interested in peak performance and muscle building, you may benefit from the use of amino acids. While many isolated amino acids exist, two classes are most popular within the bodybuilding and fitness world. These are the branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) and the essential amino acids (EAAs). The BCAAs include leucine, isoleucine, and valine. The EAAs include the three BCAAs, in addition to phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, methionine, lysine, and histidine. In some studies, the BCAAs have been reported to improve long-duration exercise performance. The EAAs have been reported to improve exercise recovery—in particular when ingested along with carbohydrate before, during, or within the 1-2 hour period immediately following a workout. If you are engaged in a period of intense and heavy training, in which you find that your recovery is compromised, consider using a quality amino acid mix to aid your recovery efforts. The usual daily dosage of amino acids is between 3 and 8 grams.

Nitric Oxide (NO), Nitrate, Beetroot

Nitric Oxide is a free form gas that is produced in the body and used for multiple biological purposes. One purpose is to “relax” blood vessels, which may allow for increased blood flow to tissues such as exercising muscle. This increase in blood flow not only allows the muscle to feel more “pumped” but may also lead to increased oxygen and nutrient delivery to muscle during and after an exercise session—which may aid exercise performance and recovery. While many different ingredients have been touted as having the ability to increase blood flow, leading to improved physical performance, that of most interest recently is nitrate. Available within beetroot and some other vegetables, nitrate has been reported in several scientific studies over the past five years to boost exercise performance. Most studies have used beetroot juice to deliver the nitrate. This may be one ingredient to keep an eye on. The usual daily dosage of nitrate is between 200 and 400 mg.


MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a well-known anti-inflammatory agent that can also decrease the production of potentially harmful chemicals known as “free radicals.” Historically, MSM has been used to combat joint inflammation in people with arthritis. However, more recently MSM has been used to combat exercise-induced muscle injury, inflammation, and soreness (joint and muscle). If you are engaged in an intense exercise training program and feel as though you can benefit from assistance with regards to your exercise recovery, you might consider the use of MSM. It is a relatively inexpensive training aid, which may impart positive changes on your overall health. The usual daily dosage of MSM is between 2 and 4 grams.


Technically known as beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate, HMB is a metabolite of leucine, one of the body's essential amino acids. HMB has been used in the bodybuilding world for close to 20 years, although it recently resurfaced and is being used by many athletes as an aid for muscle tissue recovery from strenuous exercise. Historically, it appeared to be most effective for individuals who were unaccustomed to strenuous exercise, so this might be a consideration if you are just beginning a new training program and you believe that you may need additional assistance with exercise recovery. A new form of HMB referred to as HMB free acid has been recently shown to provide benefits with regards to muscle strength and recovery from strenuous exercise. The usual daily dosage of HMB is between 2 and 3 grams.

Other Muscle Building, Strength and Recovery Products

Certain other products may help with your adventure in gaining muscle and strength, as well as aiding in your recovery from strenuous exercise. Below are a few of the most commonly used products, with links to full information pertaining to these classes.

  • Meal Replacement Shakes - Either “ready to drink” or in powder form to be mixed into your beverage of choice. These products offer convenience in obtaining high quality protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Just grab a shake and you have instant nutrition. (Note: With the use of protein powder, you can make your own high quality meal replacement shakes with the addition of milk, juice, fruit, yogurt, oats, etc.).
  • Meal Replacement Bars - Similar to the meal replacement shakes, the bars typically contain a mix of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Although these bars often contain more sugar, sugar alcohol, and fat than the shakes, you cannot beat the overall convenience of this nutritional tool. Pack a few in your backpack or gym bag and quality nutrition can be found at any time. (Note: Look carefully at the bar ingredients to make sure you choose a bar that is healthy. Some are nothing more than a candy bar with 20 grams of protein!).
  • Hydration Beverage - Maintains adequate hydration during periods of prolonged exercise and/or exposure to heat stress. The drinks typically contain a blend of cardohydrate and electrolytes. Small amounts of protein may be included as well. Important for maintaining optimal performance.
View Other Goals
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.