These are my top 5 supplements I recommend for building muscle:
Whey protein supplies the body with high amounts of protein. It is typically taken before or after a workout, or can be used as a meal replacement. Whey protein also provides other benefits:
- It is easily digested and quickly absorbed by the body
- Improves muscle repair
- Helps suppress appetite
- It contains high concentration of amino acids
- Improves metabolism
Recommended dosing: Take 1 gram to 1.5 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. Depending on the individual, consume 30-50 grams of whey at a time. It is best taken after a workout. Note: Though having whey protein shake can be convenient at times, it is best to consume protein in whole food sources.
Creatine can be found in animal foods, especially red meat, it is also produced in the liver and kidneys. However, most of the creatine that is found in our food is destroyed when cooking. By supplementing creatine it can help improve muscle mass and strength.
Currently, there are many different types of supplemented creatine on the market such as creatine ethyl ester, creatine hydrochloride, and many others. The most researched creatine and approved is creatine monohydrate.
Recommended dosing: Newer forms of creatine monohydrate do not require loading phases. The recommended dosing is between 5-10 grams. The best time to take creatine is directly after a workout - this is when your muscles are most receptive to absorbing creatine from the blood.
Branched Chain Amino Acids
Branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) are essential amino acids (specifically Leucine, Isoleucine and Valine). They are essential because our bodies do not produce them and we must get them in the foods we eat. BCAAs are especially helpful for muscle protein synthesis and maintaining muscle mass while on a calorie-deficit diet. Another benefit is BCAAs delay muscle fatigue – That means you can push yourself harder, longer in the gym.
Recommended dosing: On training days take 5-10 grams prior training or post training. On non-training days, take it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach or right before bed.
Enzymes are essential for digestion, they help break down the foods that we eat, and help move nutrients to where the body needs them the most. If the body does not produce enough enzymes, then you get putrefaction within the intestinal tract. Putrefaction is the process of decay in which the foods we eat are not properly broken down. As a result the food rots in our intestinal tract producing foul odors and toxic substances. So if you are experiencing bloating, gas, loose stools, and foul smelling stools, then you may have putrefaction. By supplementing digestive enzymes, not only will you reduce these symptoms, but it will help with digestion and maximize the absorption and intake of protein, especially when consuming in large amounts.
Recommended dosing: Take one capsule with every meal.
Vitamins and minerals can be found in many of the foods we eat. But, it can be hard to make sure you are getting all the necessary vitamins in the right amounts. A deficiency of vitamins can impair optimum functioning of the body and hinder the growth of new muscle.
Recommended dosing: Multi-Vitamins should be taken daily. The actual time of intake is of little irrelevance. Morning is probably the best time, so you don’t start the day with a deficiency.