Supplements are a common and widely accepted form of nutrition in today’s society, regardless of whether they are there to help keep us healthy, or there to help us build muscle. There are no shortage of options on the market, each offering slightly different specifications and effects that are sure to provide you with fantastic results, regardless of what you are particularly looking for there is certain to be something. But have you thought about the considerations you’re going to have to take into account before you start taking the supplements.
These considerations include not only finding the right supplements for your particular needs, but help you to establish when to use the supplements, how much to use, the best exercise and diet to compliment the use of the supplements and of course the potential health risks that the supplements could have.
- Your needs and goals
When it comes to finding the right supplements for your needs, you need to be sure to take note of your goals, your timeframe and so on. For example; whey protein is a very popular one for bodybuilding, but those looking to trim down fat and gain lean muscle would be more suited to the use of thermogenics. Your particular requirements are a very important part of finding the right supplements for your needs, so it is little surprise that they should be among your primary considerations when looking for your supplement of choice. Aside from selecting your goals you should also decide on a reasonable timeframe in while to meet that goal, and decide how you will be accomplishing it. The type of training and diet you use can add to or remove from the efficiency of your supplement choice, depending on the supplement and your methods, so you should be sure to take these factors into consideration.
- When you’re going to use them
Your timing can have a big impact on the effectiveness of your supplements, some offer a much more beneficial experience when integrated with regular meals, and others are more effective before or after your workouts. Some, such as Casein, can even by highly effective while you’re sleeping. There are no shortage of ways to use the supplements, but how you use them can impact on when you use them. Certain supplements are best used when timed to the exercise plans, providing you with either a set amount of time before or after exercise to work with so that you can find the best option for your schedule.
- How much you should use
The dosage is very important when it comes to finding the right options for your supplement choices, of course you need to find a dosage that is suitable for your particular needs, as well as one that is suitable to your size, weight and any particular health requirements you might have. While most supplements are not damaging to your health it can be counterproductive to take too much or too little. For example; when it comes to protein the right dose alongside the right amount of exercise will help you to build muscle fast and healthier. However, should your level of exercise drop enough they can cause you to lose muscle mass and gain weight, depending on the type of protein you’re using, and taking too little for the amount of exercise makes it considerably less effective than it could be, which will work to slow your progress and make your work at body building more painful, prolonged and difficult than it probably needs to be.
- Your diet and exercise
One of the big things to remember about supplements is that they’re only there to enhance the effects of what you already do. A protein supplement doesn’t strictly build muscle for you, but rather works to build and repair muscles that you have already worked on, which means that if you haven’t done any work there is nothing for the protein to do, and nothing will change. A good diet and the ability to push yourself in exercise to accomplish your goals is important for those wanting to take bodybuilding supplements, regardless of whether the goal is to be a body builder or just to be a fitter, healthier person. Take your diet preferences into account; if you already eat copious amounts of protein in your meals naturally then you’re more likely to need Amino Acids than more protein, as these help your body to use the protein effectively. Of course different types of exercise will provide you with different requirements and effects that will need to be taken into account; while protein might be needed if you’re bodybuilding you’ll want some endurance supplements to help you out when you’re running or cycling, as these will help you to push your workout that little bit further to accomplish slightly emphasised results.
- The potential health risks
Even though most supplements are very natural and good for you, even offering vitamins and mineral that can improve your health, they aren’t always suitable for everyone, and there are things you need to take into account. For example; supplements that work to boost testosterone should be more strictly avoided during pregnancy, because these can have an effect on your unborn child as well as yourself. Of course it is important to remember when pregnant that everything you intake is also take in my your child, but the unborn baby has no way of getting rid of it, so if you’re taking weight gainers to build mass and muscle you run the risk of your child developing as overweight before it is even born. Additionally, if you have heart issues or any health concerns that make exercise difficult, or even just allergies, it can be worth consulting your physician before starting a regular supplement plan.
Remember to workout in order to get the best results possible, ensure you’re using your supplements responsibly and within the recommended doses and be careful of where you buy your supplements and who you are buying them from. Reputable suppliers offer genuine, healthy products that are effective and safe, however there are cheaper alternatives that are not legally recognised as safe for use fitness supplements, which should of course be avoided.
Kate Critchlow is a freelance writer working with a variety of clients to provide informative and useful articles on a wide range of topics, from bodybuilding supplements to general health and fitness.