Supplements – Should You Take Them?

What exactly are supplements and should you be using them? That is a very good question, and one that a lot of people will struggle with to give you a definite answer.

There are two primary categories of supplements in my opinion – dietary supplements and sports nutrition supplements. Dietary supplements are taken with the intent to “supplement” or enhance one’s diet. This means that the multi-vitamin that you take daily is considered a dietary supplement. Sports nutrition supplements are known as ergogenic aids and are simply any product used with the intent to enhance athletic performance. These products are full of amino acids, vitamins, and minerals among other things. Supplements are available in all different forms and can typically be purchased by anyone without a prescription.

One of the problems with supplements is that they are not governed by the FDA. Some supplements have a lot of research backing up the claims that they make, while others have very little research behind them. This makes it very difficult to know which supplements to take or if you should even take one at all.

There are several supplements that I am personally comfortable with taking. For example, I’ve used different protein shakes, pre-workout drinks, and post-workout drinks. When I’m trying to decide on a supplement one of the first things I look at is the company behind the product. Is it a company that I trust? Is it one that I have used before? I also try to find supplements with natural ingredients. Will this supplement help me reach my current needs and goals? These are all questions I have to answer as I look into using different supplements.

These are the same type of questions you will need to answer. You will also need to consider what your goals are and what you are expecting from the supplements as you consider adding them to your workouts. These sports nutrition supplements are primarily going to be used by people doing high intensity workouts 4-6 days a week, but that may not hold true in all cases.

Because there are so many things to consider when you are looking into adding supplements, it can be very confusing. In no way do I feel like I have this all figured out. I’ve gone through a lot of trial and error to find the few supplements that I’m comfortable taking based on my current needs and goals. If you would like to email me questions about this I would be glad to help you out as much as I can. My email address is: jen at gettingfitwithjen dot com.

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