As more and more of us are finally becoming more health and body conscious, despite the fact that so many people are still classed as obese or morbidly obese, health and fitness supplements are now more popular than ever before, and that’s quite an impressive feat considering they’ve been a pivotal part of many health and fitness routines for a number of decades now. When used in conjunction with a healthy and balanced diet, as well as a healthy lifestyle complete with plenty of regular physical exercise, health and fitness supplements can be incredibly beneficial indeed. However, in order to get the best out of them, we must first know exactly how and when to use them, and what each one does, and why. Numerous people all over the world will see an advertisement for various supplements and will hand over their hard earned cash, despite the fact that they have no real idea about how to use them, or what they actually do. Think about it, if you picked up a blank bottle of pills with no label or packaging on the pills or bottle in the slightest, would you swallow them, despite not knowing anything about them? No, you probably wouldn’t, and if you would, you really shouldn’t as they could literally have been anything. Well, the same principle applies to health and fitness supplements. For that reason, to help you choose the right supplements for you, and to get the most out of them, here are a few basic supplement tips.
Know your goals beforehand
This should go without saying really, but in any event, here goes. Before purchasing and using any health and fitness supplement, you must first know your goals and know exactly what you’re looking to achieve beforehand. If your goal is muscle-building for example, you wouldn’t choose a fat-loss supplement, you’d choose a supplement designed to aid in muscle building, such as whey protein or creatine perhaps. Before you buy any supplement, work out exactly what your goals are and then make an informed decision based upon that.
Do your research
The supplement industry generates billions upon billions in profit every single year, so naturally you can tell that it’s extremely popular. Because of this, there are multiple different supplement companies and manufacturers out there, with countless different products. If you’ve made your mind up that you would indeed like a whey protein supplement to help you build lean muscle mass, don’t simply order to first whey protein supplement you can find. There are many different whey protein supplements out there, and naturally some are better than others. Generally you’ll find that very cheap ones have much less protein per serving, and are often bulked out with sweeteners and cheap amino acids, so even though the product is cheap, you won’t be getting anywhere near as much protein as you should be. Read up on supplement companies and the products they offer, and see what other users and more biased individuals have to say. Obviously you’re looking for positive reviews and feedback, so take the time to find a company that offers a product with a lot of positive feedback.
Keep things simple
As there are so many different products currently available, it’s easy to find yourself overwhelmed by choice, especially if you’re not sure about what each supplement does. Of course the companies will tell you to combine ‘Product A’ with ‘product B’ during the day, and then with ‘Product C’ in the evening for optimal results, because they’re looking to increase their sales. We’re not saying that combining them won’t be beneficial, because it will, but it’s certainly not essential, especially if you’re relatively new to the world of health and fitness. Say your goal is muscle building, to get started all you should really be using would be a decent quality multi-vitamin, an omega 3 supplement, and a good quality whey protein powder. Forget about pre-workouts, intra workouts, BCAA’s, Leucine, Valine, amino acids, dextrose, glutamine etc as you will easily find yourself confused and overspending. As time goes by and you do become more knowledgeable, and perhaps you do step up your intensity in the gym, then you may consider additional supplements but in the meantime, keep things simple as wholesome food is your best friend at this stage.
Ease your way into new products
When purchasing any new supplement, before using the product as recommended on the packaging, first set aside a few days and ease your way into new products. By this, we mean go ahead and use half, or even a quarter, or the recommended serving size, and assess your tolerance to the product in question. If you feel fine and don’t experience any side effects or issues, gradually increase your serving sizes until you’re able to use them as recommended on the packaging.
Always focus on your diet
Despite what some manufacturers may tell you, relying on one supplement alone, whilst eating and drinking whatever you like will not provide the benefits of the progress you may have been hoping for, so forget about that right away. Supplements can be great when used correctly, but they are no substitute for wholesome, healthy, and balanced food and drink. Once you’re satisfied you do have your diet in check, then you may pay a little more attention to supplements but until then, save your money and focus on cleaning up your diet.