With so many health supplements and products being thrown in our face through media it’s easy to get confused to know what you should be taking and what you shouldn’t be taking for your goals.
Here we keep it as simple as possible and make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck; minimal supplements for maximal results.
If you’re like any of our goal driven clients you’re most likely aiming for:
- Optimal health (minimising sickness and injury)
- Mental and physical performance (top 5% in your field)
- Optimal rest and recovery (so you can repeatedly do good things)
- Fast body composition changes (get results and look on point)
The following 5 supplement are what we recommend for the above results.
1. Pharmaceutical Grade Multivitamin
Quality is key here and you want to aim for pharmaceutical grade supplements vs food grade supplements. The difference is in quality of control; pharmaceutical grade supplements meet strict guidelines with ingredients, potency and purity. Food grade supplements are fit for human consumption but are unregulated and there are often disreprencies when tested (Tip: I wouldn’t get your supplements from a local supermarket or on the shelf of chemist warehouse).
Think of your Multivitamin as your vitamin and mineral health insurance policy. You can get some of your vitamins and minerals from eating real good alone (meats; fruits and vegetables) but the quality compared to thousands of years ago isn’t the same due to the quality of our soil; it’s better to be sure that you’re getting in and adequate amount.
The talk about gut health is more common than ever as we’re beginning to understand what we eat isn’t simply a number of calories that we can then calculate to burn off to get shredded (if only it was that easy). What we eat contains nutrients and ingredients (good and bad) that behave as a chemical messenger in our body. Eat fast food for a week and you’re most likely consuming millions of bad bacteria which enters your gut which will then have negative effects to your energy, libido, mental clarity and health. Eat healthy food for a week and you’ll notice the reverse; you’ll even start to crave more of the healthy food and less of the junk.
Probiotics are good live bacteria that optimise or balance out your gut health. If you’re craving sugary food all the time it could mean that your gut has more bad bacteria which likes to feed off sugar. The more good gut bacteria you can control your appetite and the more you’ll notice the benefits of optimal health.
3. Fish Oil
We like this because it’s one of the most researched and studied supplements. Fish oil will help with your body composition, mood and overall health. It’s been shown to reduce triglycerides (a type of fat lipid in your body) in the ranges of 15-30%. Too much triglycerides in your body can lead to an increase risk of heart diseases. Studies have also shown fish oil to be comparable to pharmaceutical drugs for depressed people.
Getting into optimal health and body composition in the initial stages can be challenging especially if you’re making a big lifestyle swap or shift. If you can supplement with something that’s going to help your fat loss and your mood which will both lead to more compliance in following a nutrition and training program then fish oil is something we highly recommend.
4. Magnesium Chelates
Get up and go again; if you’re looking for optimal performance and you’re doing the right things; exercising and eating well but still feeling tired and worn out you may be lacking magnesium in your diet. The reason why this is one of the first supplements we recommend to our clients is because of how vital it is for energy production, muscle function and recovery (of course we want our clients training hard and recovering harder).
Magnesium is responsible for more than 300 biochemical responses in your body and producing energy by activating ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is one of those biochemical responses. Without proper levels of magnesium, the nutrients that you take in through food and supplements would be less efficient in being metabolised into energy.
With rest and recovery magnesium helps your nerves and muscles relax properly; think of the athlete without enough magnesium who is always having trouble sleeping and is getting muscle cramps; you don’t want to be that person.
The best form of magnesium’s are chelated magnesium (magnesium bound to amino acids – citrate, glycinate, orotate, threonate, malate and taurate); the reason for this is that the body is very efficient at absorbing amino acids meaning it will absorb the magnesium bound with it as well; magnesium oxide which is common in supermarkets is the one you want to avoid as it can go straight through you.
5. Vitamin D
You can get Vitamin D through sun exposure but in Melbourne lets be honest and admit we don’t get that much sun exposure through winter; our best strategy is to supplement. Optimal levels of Vitamin D have been shown to improve all cause mortality (people with higher levels of Vitamin D die less frequently) and in fat loss people with higher levels of Vitamin D tend to lose more weight especially belly fat. A study at Laval University in Quebec City found that people who consumed more dietary Vitamin D had less belly fat compared to people who simply ate less.
Results with Vitamin D can also be attributed to the fact that Vitamin D isn’t only seen as a Vitamin but also a hormone; nearly every tissue and cell in our body has a receptor to Vitamin D meaning without adequate levels of Vitamin D signalling between cells isn’t going to be as efficient. Maybe you’ve noticed everytime you go away on holidays to a sunny region your stress levels are down and your operate better.
BONUS: Whatever you’re deficient in or wanting
At the Athletic Club we go specific and next level when it comes to health and performance; one of the tools we utilise is analysing blood work. If you’re deficient in X it’s proof that you need to get those levels up to certain range to be at optimal health.
Some are looking for an edge with performance whether that’s improving their sleep, work performance or with their workouts; certain magnesium blends are good, nootropics for brain function enhancement and performance supplements whey protein, BCAA’s and natural pre-training blends.
It depends on what you want and what’s going to be most bang for your buck.
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Your Training Consultation
Notice how we didn’t recommend fat burners, weight loss shakes, pre workout stimulants and zero carb protein powders here? That’s because with years of experience we know that if you look after your health, train hard and supplement smart your weight and body composition (what you look like on the outside) will take care of itself.
Your body is a fluid functioning machine that has 37 thousand billion billion chemical reactions per second (not a typo) so 1 magic pill or supplement isn’t going to make a big difference in the big scheme of things. Nutrition, training and supplements all have a role to play as they will work synergistically.
To find out the best protocol for your goal book in consultation today.