Supplements for Sports & Fitness

You might be working out, but are you fuelling your body adequately? Whether you’re looking to increase your muscle mass for strength and athletic performance or to compensate for age- and illness-related loss of muscle, an important starting point is to ensure your diet is providing you with the right fuel to achieve your fitness goals. Muscle building needs a good supply of dietary nutrients to provide raw materials, energy and the hormonal conditions for growth.

In addition to a healthy diet, lifestyle factors that can help to improve your chances of building muscle include finding ways to ease stress (chronically elevated stress hormones are counterproductive to building muscle), good sleep hygiene practices, and avoiding or limiting alcohol intake.

Key Foods for Muscle Building

Include the following foods in your diet to help you reach your muscle building goals:

Protein - to grow muscles need a steady intake of the protein building blocks – amino acids – that muscle tissue is predominantly made of. Include protein with every meal, such as meat, eggs, fish and dairy foods – or, for vegan diets, buckwheat, nuts, seeds, tofu, quinoa and soy beans.

  • Omega-3 fatty acids - research suggests that increasing the Omega-3 content of our muscles can improve their function and metabolism. Oily fish such as salmon, herring, anchovies, trout and mackerel are excellent sources. Plant sources include hemp seeds, flaxseeds and walnuts.
  • Unrefined, complex carbohydrates - carbohydrates replenish the glucose in your muscles after exercise. Instead of refined carbohydrates such as cakes, biscuits, crisps and sugary drinks that cause energy peaks and troughs, choose complex carbohydrates that are higher in nutrients and which help to maintain steady energy levels such as sweet potatoes, quinoa, bananas, apples, oats or brown rice.
  • Fats help to build hormones such as testosterone that are involved in muscle building. Foods such as steak, pork, eggs, nuts and their oils, olives, coconut oil, and avocado are good sources.

Which Supplements Can Support Muscle Building?

  1. Protein powders
  2. Omega-3 fatty acids
  3. Multivitamin and mineral supplement
  4. Vitamin D

Top Tips on Buying Supplements for Muscle Building

  1. Look for protein powders that do not contain added sugars and additives. Protein powders may be sourced from whey or casein (both derived from milk), egg white or plant proteins such as pea, hemp or brown rice.
  2. Opt for Vitamin D3 which is a more bioavailable form than vitamin D2.
  3. You can supplement with either a fish oil supplement for omega-3 or if you prefer, a vegan source of omega-3, look for supplements derived from algae oil.

Nutritional Therapy Support For Muscle Building

Work with a registered Nutritional Therapist for a personalised nutrition and diet plan, tailored to your specific health requirements. For one-to-one support with Muscle Building and to book a consultation, head over to our expert page here:

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