Weight Trainees : Should you use Food Supplements ?
December 11, 2013 Admin 0
It was the start of the 1990’s that I first experienced the benefits of an intelligent eating program that supported an intense weight training regime. In those days, over 20 years ago, supplements were available, but the industry as a whole was not how we know it today. Protein powders, vitamin packs, carb powders, liver tablets and amino acid supplements formed the cornerstone of product portfolios, with a few ’boutique’ type products that had little scientific weight behind them, gained some popularity.
Things like Dibencozide (an active form of Vitamin B12) were added to supplements and touted as offering anabolic effects, when the efficacy of this was often none existent. In addition to products that did little to increase gains, things like protein powders were often of a very low quality and used skimmed milk powder, isolated pea protein, soy and a multitude of fillers to increase product volume, simultaneously reducing manufacturing costs. Not only did I experience these products first hand as a consumer, but I also worked within the industry at this time, in manufacture, and many of the products available were little more than tweaked bulk food powders.
Fortunately for myself, supplement use rarely extended beyond using a well rounded multi-vitamin, some additional vitamin C and carbohydrate powders. Some years later, as effective products emerged, albeit surrounded by some not so effective, my supplement use increased and I was able to make good gains. In fact I was almost relying on certain supplements for a large proportion of my calorie intake, in particular thinks like meal replacement powders (MRP’s). With the introduction of Creatine and Whey Protein to the market in the middle and latter half of the 1990’s, consumers could take advantage of two very effective supplements, often offering very short term tangible effects. Products which were able to provide the benefits that others had promised, but failed to deliver.
Notwithstanding the effectiveness of good supplementation and the role it plays in bodybuilding nutrition, the foundation of any plan, and before any kind of product is considered, should be the diet itself. We live in a world that has been desensitized to the role of hard work and dedication in achieving goals. In a quick fix society, long term plans and slow growth are eschewed for those wanting instant results, glory for little or no effort and products which offer all of these things and more. Apart from Creatine Monohydrates ability to provide rapid muscle gains in a very short period of time, the supplement industry itself, paradoxically tries to offer something that is the direct opposite of bodybuilding itself ; a quick fix. Perhaps it is the notion of weight training gains being slow and progressive, that the marketing people have felt the need to jump in with the solution to these woes. One of the biggest issues with the whole genre of supplementation as a whole, is the way in which the basic diet is overlooked. Make the following your mantra :
Thou shalt not use supplements until the diet is optimised.
Because your actual diet has the ability to make more difference to your gains, than any supplement you might care to mention, getting this right, before even considering using sports supplements should not just be a plan, it should be your mantra. Once you are extracting the most from your diet, using supplements can help you achieve your goals more easily. In some cases, such as the use of supplements like Creatine, it can actually provide a larger benefit than diet alone.
Categories: Healthy Eating
Tags: blender, bodybuilding, bulking, calories, carbs, creatine, diet, dieting, eating, fats, feast, gaining, health, hunger, hypertrophy, lifting, macronutrients, mass, micronutrients, mrp, nation, nutrition, people, plan, powerlifting, protein, squats, super, supplements, testosterone, trainee, training, unity, vitamins, weight, whey