First, I would like to clarify that you do not need any supplements to gain muscle. Supplements can offer a 20% difference in terms of getting results. It is hard work, a correct diet, and adequate rest to give you the remaining 80% to achieve your goals.
Many people have a large muscle volume without taking any supplementation. However, most of us don’t have the time or dedication to achieve this with just the right diet and consistent training.
It is clear that these factors and rest are essential to reach our goal, but sometimes extra help does not hurt. This is where supplements come in. These won’t magically build muscle, but they will help our bodies receive the necessary nutrients to build them.
Many people ask themselves: “There are many on the market, what should I take?”. The answer is complex because each one is designed for different purposes. Depending on their needs and body chemistry, people will react differently to a supplement. If we consider this, there are four supplements everyone needs and can find in any bodybuilder’s closet: multivitamins, protein, creatine, and essential fatty acids.
With all that processed food flooding our supermarket shelves, getting all your nutritional requirements from food alone is almost impossible. Even if you only eat organic food, you must eat a lot to get it.
Our body is a complex machine that performs millions of functions simultaneously. Each nutrient contributes to thousands of essential reactions that make those functions possible, such as B12 for proper red blood cell production, iodine for thyroid regulation, and B6 for protein metabolism. Missing just one nutrient will jeopardize thousands of chemical reactions in your body, making it much harder to perform at your full potential.
People who put their bodies under physical stress three to four days a week need a higher intake of nutrients than people with a more sedentary lifestyle. Surely you have noticed your hunger after a good intense workout. Your body tells you you are low on energy and need to recover and fill those stores.
To make sure my body isn’t starved for nutrients, I like to take the best multivitamins for two reasons:
On the one hand, some products use lower-quality ingredients, and your body will only assimilate some of those supposed vitamins that your body is ingesting. Even if I take a good multivitamin, sometimes I like to split the dose into multiple doses throughout the day. Part of the scientific community believes that there are too many nutrients in a single dose for the body to assimilate at one time.
On the other hand, the nutrient demands on my body are not the same on days I train compared to days I don’t. I don’t want to be low on nutrients if my body needs them. Some people take a double dose on days of high physical demand, one in the morning and one in the evening. The good thing about multivitamins is that most nutrients, like vitamin C or B, are water soluble and can be excreted easily if your body already has enough.
We all know that to gain muscle, we must eat many calories, especially protein. The rule for protein consumption is to consume between 1.5 and 2.5 grams per kg of weight. With any bulking plan, you’ll need to spread those calories into several servings throughout the day to keep your metabolism at a high level and your nutrient intake stable.
A certain scientific current affirms that the body cannot digest more than 35 grams of protein per meal, another good reason to distribute its daily consumption. If we have a very tight schedule, sometimes it becomes difficult to eat so many times during the day, and a protein shake is an ideal contribution to replace a meal. We are not saying you should replace meals with shakes as a general rule, but it can benefit us at specific times.
The Most Important Moments for Taking Protein Powder Would Be:
In the Morning:
Drink a shake as soon as you get up to digest it quickly. Your body hasn’t had any protein all night, and your body will go into catabolism if you don’t eat something. You can have a smoothie and have a normal breakfast thirty minutes later.
Some people prefer a protein shake before training instead of a whole meal because the body digests it in as little as an hour. With a normal meal, with chicken or fish, your body will need about two and a half hours. That way, these people don’t feel stuffed in the gym, and the protein goes straight to the muscles.
This is the most important time to take your protein shake. When you finish training, the recovery phase begins. Your muscles are exhausted after intense exercise and need protein quickly to repair themselves and build new muscles.
There are many types of proteins on the market, and each one will be able to help you better depending on your goal. Whey protein is very good quality, works well to gain volume, and is one of the cheapest. It contains the essential amino acids to build new muscle and is easily digested by your body. It also has a high concentration of branched-chain amino acids, or BCAAs, aiding muscle recovery and protein synthesis.
Since the turn of the last century, it has been known for its role in building muscle, but it was introduced to professional athletes during the 1992 Olympics. Many of the English athletes admitted to training with creatine, which caused some protests from the other athletes by claiming it had given them an advantage.
However, there was no penalty of any kind as creatine is a naturally occurring compound found in skeletal muscle in the human body. They also determined that creatine is abundant in foods such as red meat and fish, and it would only be possible to determine whether or not it was obtained naturally.
For the last twenty years, creatine has been the most used supplement by athletes and people who want to gain muscle. The popularity of this supplement is not a surprise since the main function of creatine is to give muscles extra energy. to perform strenuous activities. It is mostly used for a short duration, high-intensity activities such as sprinting or weight lifting. Typically at a maximum of eight repetitions.
When we use our muscles to lift weights or do any work, ATP is break down into ADP to release energy. The amount of ATP stored in our muscles will only be enough for a certain maximum effort. Such as lifting a weight for 10 or 15 seconds. After this period, the muscle will depend on creatine to replenish its ATP stores. Creatine allows us to improve our performance by filling those energy deposits. In addition, this supplement has many other benefits that make it so popular:
Delays the buildup of lactic acid so you can train harder and longer.
- I increase muscle volume by retaining more water in muscle cells. This water retention will favor protein synthesis.
- Several studies have shown that it decreases mental fatigue by increasing the number of oxygenated red blood cells in the brain.
Increases your Strength by 5-15% for a Short Time:
Increases the amount of growth hormone released during exercise. Your body naturally releases this hormone as you exercise, and creatine allows your body to lift heavier weights. Which will cause increased secretion of the hormone.
Like any other supplement, there is a time and an appropriate amount to maximize the effects of creatine. You can choose to do a loading phase, which means taking a dose of about 5 grams per day for about 5-7 days to saturate your muscles with creatine.
However, this phase is unnecessary to achieve results, although it can speed up the process. For all the information you need on the proper protocol to follow. You can visit the section on how to take creatine on this page.
It is evident that it is not mandatory to take creatine to increase the volume of your muscles. But it can help you in certain periods, especially if you are stuck in the gym. Its side effects are minimal, although it can cause stomach upset if it doesn’t dissolve properly.
Essential Fatty Acids:
Fatty acids are important both for gaining muscle and for our overall health. There are two large families of fatty acids: Omega 3 and Omega 6. These acids are not produce in our body and must be obtain from our diet.
Omega 3 and Omega 6 assist in many essential functions of our body:
Cardiac health: Improves heart rate, is a mild anticoagulant, and slows the heart rate.
- Cardiovascular health: Increases the flexibility of blood vessels.
- Cellular Regulation: Regulates many cellular processes such as oxygen use, electron transport, and energy production.
- Testosterone increase: Required for proper testicular function.
- Improves insulin action: Helps balance blood sugar levels.
- Increases fat burning: Many studies have shown how fatty acids help lose fat and retain muscle.
- Cholesterol reduction: Helps transport cholesterol in the bloodstream.
- Anti-inflammatory: Certain inflammation increases the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity, among many other conditions.
- Strengthens the immune system: Promotes the synthesis of hormones responsible for a healthy immune system.
- Reduces recovery time: Helps reduce fatigue by transporting nutrients between cell membranes.
- Function and development of the brain: They are necessary for correct communication between the cerebral nerves.
As you can see, essential fatty acids are important for our health. Surely you have already hear of them, also including the name fish oil, since they are obtaining mainly from fish. There are also other sources of foods such as nuts, vegetables, soybean oil, etc.
None of these products contain dangerous hormones or other substances not already in our bodies. These universal nutrition uk supplements represent nutrients that help our body release the necessary chemical components to gain muscle naturally and safely. By supplementing with these nutrients, you will ensure that your body works at 100%. Even if your diet could be better.
These four supplements will not replace hard work, but if you combine them with a correct diet, a good training routine, and adequate rest, you will likely see results soon. As mentioned, building muscle is unnecessary, but it will help.