Sports supplements – are they really needed?
Pick up any sports magazine anywhere on the planet and you would be hard-pressed to find one that doesn’t contain at least a few pages dedicated to supplements ads. Almost invariably, they show muscled people with highly defined abs and bulging biceps, creating an illusion that, despite how much time you spend in a gym, you won’t get anywhere without dishing out some cash for a protein bucket.
To fully understand what supplements can do for us, we first need to understand what they are. We will start with the best-selling supplement, protein. Proteins play a very important role in our organism and are essential un muscle-building, maintain our immunity and various other processes inside our bodies. They consist of amino acids, which are divided into two groups, essential and non-essential. Non-essential amino acids are the ones that can be produced by our body. Essential amino acids cannot and have to be ingested via food or drink. There are nine of them and most of the protein powders on the market today will include all nine of them. You can even get them sold separately.
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Our body can separate these essential amino acids from other food, but the process is more efficient when we ingest them already separated.
The other thing to consider is the amount of food we need to eat in order to get the same amount of protein compared to the protein powders. One serving of powder usually has 25 to 30 grams of protein. You would need to eat 100 grams of chicken breasts in order to get that amount of protein. When you take into account how much protein our body needs, the math says you need to eat a lot of chicken every day. Chucking a protein shake is just so much easier.
Proteins vary in terms of source and purity. Nice selection can be found on Express Health Shop, where you can see various types and prices. Make sure to read up on all possible restrictions before you start using them, though.
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Are supplements really needed for any kind of sport? The answer is yes and no. If you are an everyday guy, just trying to stay healthy and look nice on the beach, then probably no. You can get by without them, but the whole process will be more enjoyable with them, as you will avoid stuffing your face with huge amounts of food.
If you are a professional athlete, then supplements are a definitely a must. The amount of energy and minerals their body consumes every day is simply unattainable by food and supplements are not just a handy shortcut, but an essential part of their diet. That being said, they are called supplements for a reason, as they are intended to supplement a diet, not be a diet.