Supplements can play a key role in helping you get closer to your work-out goals. This article gives you a quick overview of three of the top sports supplements that will lay the groundwork and get you kick started on reaching your fitness goals!
As you probably know there are many types of protein powder on the market, made from a wide variety of sources. To sort through the hype, we have listed what we think are the top ones.
Whey protein is made from milk. The concentrate retains some lactose, but the isolate version contains only small amounts because most is lost during processing. Research has shown that whey protein can help build and maintain muscle mass, assist athletes and body builders with recovery from heavy and demanding exercise and increase muscle strength in response to strength training. Whey protein is quickly digested, providing a rapid rise in amino acids that may help increase muscle mass and strength. It may also reduce appetite and promote fat loss.
Casein protein, similar to whey protein, is found in milk – although absorption and digestion is considered to be much slower. Some studies have indicated that casein is more effective at increasing muscle protein synthesis and strength than other protein supplements, but with whey still coming out on top. Casein is a slow-digesting dairy protein that may reduce muscle protein breakdown and promote muscle mass growth and fat loss during calorie restriction.
Pea protein, made from yellow split peas, is a high-fibre legume. It has all but one of all the essential amino acids. Pea protein powder is popular among vegetarians and vegans and those with allergies or sensitivities to dairy or eggs. While research is still limited, early research shows that pea protein may promote fullness and increase muscle growth as effectively as animal-based proteins.
- PranaOn – Natural Mass Protein
- White Wolf Nutrition – Vegan All-In-One Pea Protein
- EHP Labs – Blessed Protein
Egg protein is an excellent source of high-quality protein. Egg protein is considered the easiest of the proteins to digest and is a complete protein source, meaning it provides all nine essential amino acids that your body can’t make itself. Egg-white protein is also a good choice for people with dairy allergies who prefer an animal protein-based supplement.
Creatine is considered the number-one supplement for improving performance in the gym.
Studies show that it can increase muscle mass, strength and exercise performance. It also has a number of additional health benefits, like protecting against neurological disease.
Creatine is a substance that is found naturally in muscle cells. It helps your muscles produce energy during heavy lifting or high-intensity exercise. A lot of athletes and bodybuilders take creatine as a supplement to help gain muscle, increase strength and improve their exercise performance.
Creatine can help:
- Boost workload – increase your work or volume in a single training session.
- Improve cell signalling – increase satellite cell signalling, which aids muscle repair and new muscle growth.
- Raise anabolic hormones.
- Increase cell hydration – lift water content in your muscle cells, which may play a role in muscle growth.
- Reduce protein breakdown – may increase total muscle mass by reducing muscle breakdown.
- Lower myostatin levels – to reduce elevated levels of the protein myostatin, which can slow or inhibit new muscle growth.
BCAAS (BRANCHED-CHAIN AMINO ACIDS)
BCCAS are essential amino acids, this means that they can’t be produced by your body on its own and must be attained from food. They are a group of three essential amino acids – leucine, isoleucine and valine. Most people take BCAA supplements to boost muscle growth and enhance exercise performance and they’ve also been shown to help with weight loss and reduce fatigue after intensive training sessions.
Five of the proven benefits of BCAAS:
- Increase muscle growth
- Decrease muscle soreness
- Reduce exercise fatigue
- Inhibit muscle wasting
- Benefit people with liver disease