Do You Really Need Bodybuilding Supplements

Do You Need Supplements

Nutritional supplements are a hallowed part of the scientifically calculated diets that nourish world-class athletes in Russia and other Eastern European countries. The policy stemmed from the Soviet sports scientists who had determined that even the best, most balanced diets don't meet the extraordinary nutritional demands of hard-training athletes. The great success of Eastern European athletes is in part a tribute to their supplementation program. But while the Russians say nyet to the question of whether a "balanced diet" can provide sufficient fuel for a high-performance body, conservative Yankee nutritionists say yes. They believe that physically active people can get all their nutrient requirements from stepped-up intake of calories.

In the face of American eating habits and the questionable nutritional contents of American foods, such thinking might be unrealistic, however. Studies done with both physically active people and athletes alike have shown them to be short on many key nutrients despite their increased food intake.

For example, a Syracuse University study some years ago found numerous nutritional deficiencies among athletes, even though some consumed 14,000 calories per day - as much as most men need to eat in a week.

"It's not just a question of needing more calories for fuel to maintain a higher activity level, but of maintaining the body's systems at the upper limits of performance," explained Jerzy Meduski, MD a leading authority on nutritional biochemistry. "Exhaustive physical work puts a tremendous burden on the immune, recovery and other systems of the body. The ratio of special nutrients - those directly related to exercise, endurance, muscle breakdown, reconstruction and immunity -- to total caloric nutrients is significantly changed. There's an increased need for certain vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and amino acids. Merely eating more doesn't supply these specific substances."

Nutritional Robbery:

The infant science of nutritional biochemistry - which at this stage offers us only imperfect knowledge - is complicated even more by the unique stresses that accompany physical training. Some of the factors to consider are:


If you believe you should supplement your diet, visit a performance nutritionist to discuss your needs. The thousands of chemical reactions that must take place to create energy and make repairs are regulated in a very precise way. Vitamins, minerals and proteins work closely together to maintain this control. Because the metabolic interactions that occur when your body digests and uses nutrients are complex and interdependent, helter-skelter supplementation with megadoses of single components might have unpleasant - even unhealthy - results. The key is to make nutrition work for you by adopting a scientific approach. That way you'll get the most out of your tough hours of training.

Physically active people eat and use supplements for ten central purposes that go beyond mere survival or gustatory indulgence:

     1. To get stronger
     2. To gain muscle mass
     3. To lose fat
     4. For anaerobic energy
     5. For aerobic energy
     6. To reduce pain and inflammation
     7. For more rapid tissue healing
     8. For faster post-exercise recovery
     9. For better mental focus or arousal
     10. For general health

To learn more about our line of quality supplements, please go to Bodybuilding Supplements.

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