Those who exercise regularly try and get the most out of their sessions and post various gains. They have various goals, including weight loss, strength training, and muscle growth. When it comes to muscle growth, there are three things you need to do; consume a higher protein intake that you break down in the gym, eating a lot more calories than you lose, and of course, an exercise regimen that puts a positive strain on your muscles.
Satisfying all these dietary criteria is possible with proper planning, but it is made a lot easier by taking supplements. There are different supplements that add several micro and macro nutrients in the body that are essential for the building muscles. Here are some of the most commonly used supplements that help you with muscle growth:
One of the most essential nutrients for muscle building is protein. As research has shown, people that consume more protein add muscle at a slightly faster rate than those with a higher carbohydrate intake. To successfully build muscle, it is imperative that you consume a lot more protein than your body is able to break down. While this is possible through a well put together nutritional plan, it becomes hectic trying to keep up with the number of meal preps and shopping that will undoubtedly be involved. This is where protein supplements come into play.
There are a bunch of protein supplements in the market, with some of the more popular ones being whey, soy and casein. For successful results, it is advised that you take about 20 grams of protein supplements, such as Gold Standard Whey, before a workout and about 40 grams within an hour after your session.
Most people are usually surprised that Creatine supplement is a naturally produced molecule in the body. It provides energy bursts for your body, allowing your muscles to handle a greater amount of strain.
Creatine supplements are made with three different amino acids, namely Arginine, Methionine and Glycine. The way this works is that it increases the amount of fast energy being sent to the muscles, allowing you to perform heavier reps for longer. It also draws water into the cells in our muscles. This stretches them and increases their capacity for long term growth. Creatine comes in different forms, including creatine monohydrate, creatine malate, creatine alpha-ketoglutarate, and creatine ethyl ester. For best results, take about 5 grams with your pre-workout protein shakes.
These are supplements that help you add more protein and calories to your budget. They are recommended for people who have a hard time meeting their daily calorie intake requirements. Hardgainers (those that need to eat large amounts of food daily in order to put on the tiniest muscle mass) especially benefit from weight gainers.
There are different varieties of weight gainers, and it is not hard to find one that can be taken as close to your workout as possible, whether it is before or after. Some can be taken as meal supplements, while others are eaten together with food, as calorific additions. A lot of the weight gainers come with creatine already added in, which when coupled with the fast acting carbs, combine to give faster results.
Branch-Chain Amino Acids
Popularly referred to as BCAAs, branch-chain amino acids are very useful for the formation of skeletal muscles. Most people get their BCAAs from whey protein powders, but at times this is not enough, especially if your muscle building goal is extreme. They are also absorbed faster when occurring in free form.
BCAAs contain essential amino acids valine, isoleucine, and leucine, and are better than normal protein at stimulating muscle protein synthesis. They also decrease the rate at which your body breaks down protein and allow you to have a better workout on the day.
There are other supplements that will help you in your quest for better muscle mass. These are HMB and Beta-Alanine.
Beta-Alanine is an amino acid that helps you increase your performance during a workout, by reducing fatigue. While more information on this supplement is needed, there was a study that showed taking 4 grams of Beta-Alanine every day for eight weeks increased lean muscle mass in the body. This study was carried out among college wrestlers and American football players.
HMB on the other hand is a naturally occurring molecule that is produced in the body when the amino acid leucine is produced. It is crucial to reducing the breakdown of muscle proteins in the body and is responsible for releasing the benefits of leucine in the diet. While it is naturally synthesised in the body, taking the supplements increases the amounts, allowing you to reap the benefits quicker.